Atlas of Rimrock
September 12, 2002 to December 5, 2015
Born September 12, 2002, Atlas of Rimrock, was probably the most exceptional collie we have had the privilege of sharing our lives with. Atlas came into MWCR on June 6, 2005 while I was holding the office of MWCR President.
I got a call on the MWCR hot line from a party in central Wisconsin that had a collie who had been hit by a car and they did not have the money to get his leg fixed. So for six weeks poor Atlas was limping around with a compound fracture of his right forearm. I put out a call to our members and we got Atlas transported to Joan Lindberg’s home in Esko, Minn. We placed Atlas with Joni because I had a good friend with a vet practice who’s specialty was orthopedics, and his practice was in Cloquet, just down the road from Joni’s Colliewood. I started a fund raiser and we raised $2,000 from the membership for Atlas’ surgery. Atlas stayed with Joni for several months during his recovery period.
During Atlas’ recovery my veterinarian friend from Cloquet, brought Atlas to our lake cottage in Vilas County, Wis., for a visit. This was the first time I saw Atlas, and when he got out of the car and saw the lake he ran down the hill and jumped right in and went swimming. It was at that moment I knew that I had to adopt Atlas. So on August 11, 2005 My wife Tamy and I adopted Atlas.
Atlas had a “happy go lucky” personality. He was sort of a goofy guy. He barked constantly when we went for a ride in the car or on the pontoon boat. He was happy, and playful and got along perfectly with our other three collies. In all the years we had Atlas, I never saw him show and kind of aggression. He loved everyone and he loved life. He was Happy, Happy, Happy! He claimed me for himself and followed me everywhere. Atlas and I were attached at the hip. His love of water perfectly matched my love for the same, and his happy fun loving personality made him a joy to be with. He was a sturdy, well built collie! A real manly fellow. He had a whimsical look about him with his right ear tipped backward and a constant smile on his face. For 10 wonderful years we had the privilege of sharing his life. He was healthy and energetic up until this year when he started slowing down. His back legs were getting weak and he could no longer climb the stairs to the second floor where he usually slept in our bedroom with us. So we moved his bed to the first floor but he insisted on sleeping at the bottom of the stairs waiting for me to come down and greet him every morning. This past summer he was finding it hard to walk down the hill to the lake. But even so he would make the trek up and back so he could go wading in the lake; he so loved the water. And his bark had become very weak now.
In November I noticed Atlas seemed to be having trouble swallowing and I thusly examined his neck. Much to my dismay, I found his lymph nodes were the size of walnuts. The biopsy that was performed came back positive for lymphoma. I could tell he was getting much weaker starting on December 1st, and on the morning of December 5th when he went out to potty, he did his business and then dropped to the grass and was too weak to get up. I helped him up and took him into the house. He laid on the floor and rested peacefully. I held him and I looked into his eyes and I could tell he was saying he couldn’t go on any longer. He was asking me to please help him. He did not appear to be in any pain but his body was shutting down. I called the vet and we said our last good byes to our beloved Atlas. And at 11:30 a.m. on December 5, 2015 Atlas went to the Rainbow Bridge. I carried his lifeless body out to the Vet’s car and Atlas went for his last car ride. OH HOW HE LOVED TO RIDE IN THE CAR! Tamy and I have had six collies over the past 20 years and saying good bye to them has never been as difficult as saying good bye to Atlas. I will cherish the time I was blessed to have with Atlas for the rest of my life. There is a huge empty hole in my heart now, where Atlas of Rimrock used to be. – Collie Hugs, Bob and Tamy Galanter