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GUNS Magazine Digital March 2011 - Page 16

• M I k E “ d U k E ” v E N t U R I N O • tHANk yOU tEXAS COLLIE RESCUE! God bless ’em. Mike “duke” venturino Photos: yvonne venturino his column will be very difficult for me to write but I’m going to give it a try. Many times I’ve bragged that my life is perfect: perfect wife, perfect home, perfect job, even the perfect dog. That last was named Brennan. He was a huge tri-color collie and my constant companion since adopting him from our local animal shelter in December 2005. He traveled with me to all the BpcR Silhouette shoots here in Montana and was a fixture at whatever spot well behind the shooting line where I set up my equipment. We were not master and dog, but partners. T Brady made himself at home on the couch after Duke brought him back to Montana from Texas. How such a wonderful dog as he could end up in an animal shelter is another story and doesn’t reflect well on human beings. The police found him on the streets here trying to get in cars with people. They turned him into the local shelter where Yvonne works part time. After his adoption I engaged in some sleuthing over a period of months, obtaining his American Kennel Club registration papers and even a photo of his win at a dog show. Friends and strangers alike often commented on how close Brennan and I were. To which I always said the A friend snapped this photo of Duke in his office with Brennan only hours before Brennan’s accidental death. he was Duke’s constant companion. 16 following, “Yes we are. I don’t want to have to outlive that dog.” Now I must, for on Sept. 9, 2010, in a horrible freak accident in our driveway I killed him. No words can describe my grief—and my guilt. Yvonne thought it was going to kill me, too. And to be honest I almost wished it would. In an effort to do something positive in my despair, I got Brennan’s AKC papers out and attempted to trace his bloodlines. My thought was perhaps a puppy of his linage would help my state of mind. For reasons too long to detail here that path went nowhere. Yvonne being far wiser than myself said, “Why don’t you check out collie rescue websites? Maybe you can rescue another collie like you did Brennan.” I replied to her, “Yvonne, there couldn’t be enough abandoned collies to justify rescue organizations for them.” With a stern look back at me she said, “Duke, you are so stupid. I bet there are dozens of collie rescue organizations.” With that she googled “collie rescue” and proved herself correct. Nationwide there are perhaps hundreds of collies ranging from puppies to elderly ones, all desperately needing homes. I wasn’t totally sold on the idea but being unable to sleep much one night, I started perusing collie rescue WWW.GUNSMAGAZINE.COM • MARCH 2011

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