Life With a Springer Spaniel: Murphy’s First Love

As Murphy grew from a puppy to a dog, we had to continue to adapt our lives around having a dog in the house. While in the past, my sister and I would leave jackets or hoodies hanging on chairs, or have books on the floor by our beds, we quickly learned to keep everything out of reach of Murphy’s sharp fangs. I learned the hard way one day, when I came downstairs to find that he had ripped up one of my books to shreds! Not only that, the little mongrel had gotten a hold of my brand new headphones and was in the process of chewing them up! I was not very happy having to sweep up papers and an empty book cover. Surprisingly my headphones still worked!

The first shoe that Murphy fell in love with and chewed up! (Credit: Seamus Gallagher)

It wasn’t too long before Murphy found love for the first time. It didn’t matter to him the size, the colour or the smell. He fell in love… with chewing up shoes!

I lost count on the amount of times that we would come downstairs to find Murphy in the process of tearing up a slipper, or a trainer. In my second year of college, I had a part-time job, waitressing in a Chinese restaurant. My uniform was a black shirt, black trousers and black plimsolls. The problem with the plimsolls was that they were cheap; they would only last a couple of months at the most, before the soles were worn down. I remember one time, when I had bought a new pair, but wore the old pair by mistake for my shift. When I came home, I left that pair in the back hall, because I was going to throw them out in the morning. Well…. Murphy beat me to it on that, when Dad came to me the next morning, to tell me that Murphy had torn them up! Ah well, at least they were an old pair….unlike my mum’s brand new high heels!

What was left of Carmel Gallagher’s brand new high heels! (Credit: Seamus Gallagher)

Ah the high heels. And my poor mother had only worn them once! She is a primary school teacher and she decided one day, to wear black high heels that she had bought online to work. In her own words, she had spent ‘an arm and two legs’ on these shoes.

Well, on that day, Mum had come home from work, her feet sore and tired from the day. As was typical, when she got home, she should take off her heels and go upstairs to put on her slippers. Normally, she would leave her shoes by the side of the couch. Or at least, she used to.

Honestly, I don’t know how long it took, but when Mum came downstairs to start dinner, she was met with a horrifying sight; her beautiful little puppy sinking his teeth into one of her brand new high heels! I’m thankful not to have been there, because my mother threw a fit!

At least my dad saw the funny side of it all and had to take a picture of the remnants of the shoe. In his eyes, Murphy had created a brand new brand of footwear:

Jimmy Chew!

In the end, Mum did get over the loss of her new shoes and forgave her little pup. But she was very careful to take off her shoes and place them somewhere that no dog could get their paws or teeth on them!

Getting exhausted and trying to catch a shoe thief! (Credit: Eidhne Gallagher)

Now, Murphy has grown out of his love for chewing shoes, which is a good thing – I had gotten fed up of having to buy new lace-ups from Penneys all the time! That being said, he has never stopped chewing other things – but that’s a story for another time!

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