* Brynn Brockhoff 1996-2008
Jerry’s little “PeeWee”, our serious little 12-year-old Brynn, was helped to Rainbow Bridge the evening before Thanksgiving.
When we were called to rescue two dogs in dire need, we didn’t know why the elderly Afghan breeders had one single untattooed greyhound- perhaps they coursed their Afghans and got Brynn for that purpose. A single greyhound named Brynn was found in the family’s veterinary records, listed as 7 years old in 2003, so we assumed it was the dog we were picking up. She undoubtedly lived in the cement kennels ringed with dozens of crates, beneath their stilted Shelter Cove home for most of her life. The caretaker for the Alzheimers- stricken couple said that when he’d arrived two years earlier, the two dogs were ankle deep in feces and he’d carried out one dead dog.
Rather than call a rescue organization then (“You wouldn’t have wanted to see them- they were nothing but skin and bones.”) he effectively kept them in sensory deprivation under that house for two more years until reported. Little light crept around the barriers year round, though winter dampness and temperatures surely did. The only sound they heard (one which might seem like music to our own ears) must have been long-term torture for these two dogs: the ear-splitting and relentless crashing of ocean waves mere yards from their kennel. The caretaker told us he’d quit going into the enclosure to feed the dogs because they jumped on him.
Covered in filth and frightened to extremes of the first human contact in years, Brynn’s teeth were rotten and she’d been “de-barked” so as not to disturb the neighbors. She had a sloped rear end that affected her stability and the end of her tail was at right angles to the beginning of it; both, undoubtedly, from some previous and unknown injury. This little girl was no beauty.
From the moment I handed Jerry the leash so I could capture the Afghan that day in 2003, and he led her into green grass and sunshine, Jerry became Brynn’s god. She was velcroed to his knee from the moment she came home - it was a serious responsibility for her to follow his every step, so this loss is particularly difficult for him.
With time, all the aging and returned greyhounds we adopt do come around to being real companions, and Brynn was no exception. Within little more than a year of her arrival, Brynn discovered joy and comfort and trust with Jerry and me, and the change would bring tears to our eyes just watching her run across the yard or play with a toy. Strangers continued to frighten her, though, and for years, Brynn would leap up snapping those toothless jaws at newcomers who tried to greet her from above. Thus she had her own racing silk embroidered with, “Pet Somebody Else!”
We marveled at how that homely little pipsqueak could come to seem so beautiful despite being deaf and toothless for the last five years…
Of all the “Designer Dogs” I use in NCG’s jewelry, the little gallivanting “Brynn” is one of the most favored. As the design for this little dog evolved, scampering with head up in the air to sniff the breeze, naming it “Brynn” was a natural- its the image of what love and good care can do, and a symbol of a greyhound’s resilient and forgiving nature.
Now, this little silver image carries more meaning than ever before. We’ve adopted 29 available, aging or unwanted greyhounds since 1991, but only the 11 year old, one-eyed Billie found wandering in KS and our Brynnie, have been true rescues.
She’s gallivanting in greener pastures now. With Billie. And Dave. And Alice… and…. and…
Cara & Jerry Brockhoff
Zinnia, Stu & Stella, Deuce, Sammie and Fabian