This month’s critter is quite the VIP around these parts. None of the staff here at the clinic can resist the charms of this handsome one-eyed West Highland terrier. Everybody stops what they’re doing to say hello when Casper comes into the clinic. I was happy when his companions agreed to share this canine charmer’s story. Owner Rick relays the tale below.
“After having owned a wonderful Westie for 16 years I was hesitant to get another as I figured it would never live up to the goodness of my first one. But then in summer 2002 we were treated to a meeting with a litter of 8 week old furry white balls. They were all adorable, but it was hard to keep track which was which as they all ran around my living room. Ultimately we picked one of the males in the group because he had a little tag on his collar that said “fixed,” so we could differentiate him from the pack He was very friendly and very curious. So he moved in that day and was named Casper, after the friendly ghost. I spent the first two nights of his new life with us sleeping on the floor with him to help him adapt to his new home.
Fast forward a year and Casper, now reasonably well trained, especially about stopping at corners to wait for the “ok to go” sign, decided not to wait just that once. He suddenly darted into the street and into the wheel of a moving car. Fortunately he hit the car rather than getting run over. He was badly battered and bruised, but thanks to Campus Vet he ultimately recovered almost completely; however he lost an eye in the encounter. As dogs do, instead of moping around feeling sorry for himself, he simply learned to live life as a one-eyed white dog. He’s quite well known in the neighborhood.
From that day forward Casper has never gone into the street until told he could. And the rest of the love and training he got as a puppy has paid off as he is incredibly sweet and mostly obedient. He has regularly boarded with Campus Vet technicians, so he’s spent a lot of time at the clinic and loves all of them as much as they do him. He deftly protects our house from UPS, FedEx and the post office. And, any time he’s given the opportunity, he’s my-copilot on trips in the car and can’t get close enough to me on the couch or chair I’m sitting on. He’s very good about telling time. Every afternoon between 2-3 he starts following me around very closely to make sure I don’t go out on a walk without him. He truly is my buddy.
In January 2013, while ridding the backyard of those pesky squirrels, he cut a corner a little too sharp and torn his ACL. Before that I hadn’t ever thought about the fact that dogs had knees. A surgery and months of rehabilitation have returned Casper to almost his pre-injury form and we are once again safe from the squirrels and the delivery people.”
Likes: Belly rubs in the morning, sleeping in the sun, sitting on the back of the couch watching the world go by through a picture window, rides in the car, and “puppy camp”, his favorite boarding facility where he plays with puppies two or three times his size, nonstop.
Dislikes: Squirrels, delivery trucks (but only if he’s inside), cats, baths, fireworks and thunder, and being ignored when he wants attention.