The life of Mary Marvel.
Mary was wild and crazy from the start. When she was merely seven weeks old, she ran away from Mum and siblings for a little exploration.
Mary: See you later!
When Mary first came to us she wanted to hunt everything.
Sofia: Calm down!
Mary: A car! A runner! A cat! A horse!
Sometimes she went completely mad and ran round and round in the house, whith her jaws snapping like a sewing machine.
We had to sit down and hold her until she calmed down again. At the most, it took fifteen minutes.
Sometimes she ran in under the house and pretended that the pipes were an agility course. When Dad called her she merely ignored him.
Alexander: Mary! Come out!
When Mum called she came - and then she bit my butt.
Later, we did some simple protection exercises with a baby sleeve, and Mary learnt that you can't bite Mum any time you like.
We had to remove the mirror from the bedroom.
Mary: Wohoo another puppy do you wanna pla...
She couldn't play with the mirror puppy, but Pietro wanted to play all the time. Sometimes we had to put an end to things so Mary got some sleep.
Pietro: Come on! Don't sleep! Play!
Mary: Uh what?
When I started doing tracking exercises with Mary, she became so enthusiastic that she screamed. I was embarrassed and afraid that someone would believe that I was beating up the puppy.
Logan thought it was great fun to have someone to play in the snow with.
In the mornings, we often let Mary out so she could run around while we drank coffee and read the newspaper.
One day our neighbour told me that Mary used to come over to their place in the mornings and play with their dog.
Sofia: But how? We've got a high fence?
It turned out that she had stretched out one of the holes in the fence, enabling her to crawl through (although her doing so looked completely CGI:ed.)
Mary constantly destroyed her toys. Fortunately, grandpa was a fire inspector with access to fire hose.
When she was X-rayed at age two, an extra, assymetrical vertebra was discovered in her spine.
This increases the risk for future spinal problems, but we didn't give it much thought.
I had planned to compete in various sports with Mary. In the end, I thought that work took too much time and energy - I couldn't be bothered to train as systematically and with other people as is required for a sports career.
She didn't become a tracking dog or search dog, just a hippie dog. But she was happy anyway.
Mary would walk on her hind legs in pure enthusiasm on the rare occasions that we met another dog on our walks. For a period of time, we would regularly go to Östermalm and practice to heel past other dogs. But when I didn't have the time to do this any longer, she fell back into old habits.
Once, we gave Mary a "boomer ball". It was meant to be used as a soccer ball by dogs. Mary pushed it into her mouth anyway, and almost destroyed her teeth.
Mary: It must work!
She also chewed up a metal fetching stick.
Mary and Pietro loved each other, and often had real make-out sessions on the couch.
Mary liked to race big, fast sighthounds, and sometimes got to do that in the White Hill Park.
Once when Mary was playing by herself in the yard during breakfast (we had a new fence by then) the septic tank man came. It was a new guy, who couldn't find the tank. He entered through the dog fence to look for it.
Man: Might it be in here, perhaps?
Mary became thrilled and tried to make him play with her. Great guard dog! She was also happy whenever the chimney sweeper, a washing machine installer and so on came to our house. New friends to play with!
However, Mary often played like this:
Mary: Throw throw throw throw throw?
Sofia: Okay [after ten minutes nagging]
Mary: Hahaha you can't touch it!
Mary considered herself friend of all cats.
The cats didn't agree.
When other dogs wanted to pick a fight with Mary, she could be really tough and scare them off.
Mary: Get out of here!
Dog: Okay sorry.
She was also really brave on the working dog club's mentality tests.
Before Mary, I had no idea how many mittens, gloves and even hats people lose.
Mary: Look Mum! Another one!
We used them for search exercises. I used to hide them over at least 500 m2.
Mary loved to train. Once when she was tracking, she accidentily got one hind leg entangled in the rope, but she didn't even notice.
Sofia: Stop! I have to disentangle you!
Running with Mary was like bringing a personal trainer.
Sofia: Huff... puff... a little break perhaps?
Sometimes we did a little bite-release-guard in the yard too.
Mary loved to swim as well!
For a long period of time, she was super fascinated by babies and wanted to kiss them.
Mary: Here you are! You get my best bone!
She became really happy when she got a little "cousin" to cuddle with.
She thought it was great fun to be out camping.
Mary loved our blue Ford. No dog who didn't belong to the family was allowed to go near it.
For a while, we didn't understand why she nine times out of ten didn't react to fireworks - only to bark her head off the tenth time.
Mary: Don't touch my car!
But it was because she didn't want people to fire towars the Ford!
When we exchanged the Ford for the Red Skoda, it took some time for Mary to fully accept it.
Mary: I'm sceptical.
One day when me and Alexander were watching a movie, someone unexpectadly knocked on the door.
Girl: My little brother is afraid of dogs, so we figured we should go here and practice.
(Note: Completely unfamiliar children.)
At first, things amazingly went well.
Boy: She seems pretty kind. She only wants to play...
Boy: Do you want to play tug-of-war?
Then the children went home. I don't know what came out of this amateur CBT.
Mary had musical talent. She liked the band "Severe Illusion". She also used to sing along when we listened to music in the car.
When we had seen a TV show twice or thrice, Mary would learn the final music. Then this happened:
Mary: Come oooon! Let's get out and do some super hard exercises!
The very second the final music began to play she exploded.
Mary was also incredibly cuddly. Sometimes she'd climb up into the couch with us, although she could barely fit there.
One night, I dreamt that I wore Mary on my head like a hat.
When I woke up, she lay like this. After this event, she was nicknamed "Hat".
Mary loved to be out in the archipelago, and did her embarrassing screams of enthusiasm whenever we were to board a boat.
Mary: Yeeeah! Archipelago here we come!
Once at the island of Fjärdlång, she had to climb a ladder to get over a fence. But she did just fine.
A sheep also came up to say hello, to Mary's big surprise.
Mary: What's this?
When we were at Nåttarö the next summer, Mary became such good friends with two boys that they gave her their ball.
Early this summer, we were out on what would prove to be Mary's last hiking trip. She must have had a pretty wrecked back already, but it was impossible to tell.
Mary: Can I swim?
When Mary thought our snack break took too long, she fetched sticks and beat us over the head.
Mary: Come on!
A couple of weeks later, she managed to pull her cruciate ligament in a freak accident.
Surgery was scheduled. We did hard-surface tracking in the mean time, since she wasn't allowed to run or walk far.
We went to the island of Öland on vacation. We swam in the sea each day.
When we got home, Mary got a urinary tract infection. She was put on antibiotics, but then she lost all bladder control. We had to sleep out in the yard.
Mary was put in hospital, and an entire battery of tests were done. It turned out that she had a ruined disc in her spine, and extra bone growth around it, which squeezed certain nerves. The urinary tract infection was caused by the fact that she hadn't been able to completely empty her bladder for some time, and now all control was lost. Her hind legs also began to be affected. The prognosis for a spinal surgery was not good - and she'd still have the knee to fix after that. All in all one year without being able to move normally - and with slim chance of a full recovery.
We took a final short walk in the woods with Mary. She played in the beginning, but then she slowed down. Perhaps her back had finally caught up with her apparently sky high pain tolerance.
One thing is for certain - Mary lived her life to 120 % all the way to the end!
Mary (roughly): Full speed until you pass out!