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On 17 April 1999, Kirk writes: "Miles is an orphan from Cleveland, Ohio. His life owner, Barbara, died of breast cancer last Fall. She had asked that all her animals be euthanized upon her death. Her daughter didn't follow her wishes. Her daughter saved and placed the Chihuahua, two Pekinese, the blind Siberian Husky, four c*ts, and several birds that Miles had grown up with in the small suburban home.

"But they couldn't place Miles. His groomer, Jerry, who had cared for him since Miles was 9.5 weeks old, told me that he & Barbara were the only two people whom Miles would let in the house if nobody was home. Miles can have an attitude. He was obviously the master of the house.


"Miles is an Oorang 'Dale from Eastern Ohio. Last week, he weighed in at 90.3 pounds with no fat on him. He stands about 30" at the shoulders. He is gorgeous; a nice tight coat with black saddle and orange sharply-defined legs and head. Massive feet! I spoke with his breeder, and she knew him at once. Barbara used to call her and tell of Miles' antics. Mechanical rat destruction, stealing hard candy from Barbara's coat and sweater pockets (tearing off the pocket to get the candy). He was named Miles because of all the miles Barbara drove to get him as a puppy.

"I think that Miles had trial placements at some homes. Last October, he was returned to his Veterinary Clinic. I think they were supposed to put him down but they couldn't do it. He is a sweet sweet 'Dale once he drops his attitude with you. They tried ads and placements. He became the kennel dog with free run in the upstairs kennel area. In February, they contacted an Ohio 'Dale hunt club, but he was too old for them. One of their members contacted of Sandi with ATRA. Sandi came to his rescue.

"He came to her on February 24 with nothing more than his shots, the fur on his back and an attitude as big as Cleveland. Sandi had her moments with Miles. Miles & Dan mixing it up; Jake & Miles mixing it up. All four of them getting into it. Jake backing Miles into the bathroom. He raided the kitchen at Sandi's and he & Jake had a food orgy that still marks Sandi's kitchen carpet!

" Don't get me wrong. They had lots and lots of fun. Miles can be a blast when he wants to be! He doesn't run out of open doors. He rides in cars very well and waits to be let out. He walks quite well on lead, especially with a choke collar. He sits at curbs and waits to be told OK to cross . . . BUT he can get in stubborn, cross, bitey moods when being protective or over food. I have scars to prove it.

"You see, Miles opens refrigerator doors. Sandi's, ours at home and at the cottage up North. The one at the house, that he is alone with most, is now held closed with a strong bungee cord. Velcro didn't do the job!

"His first morning alone he broke into the fridge and ate 3/4 of a large deep dish pizza, a Chinese dinner, two pounds of ham/turkey/cheeses, bread, and one pound of butter. He went back for seconds in the afternoon! NO, he is not fat. He has a thing about food. He is first in line all the time! He lets the pup Andy IV know this fact, too. Lots of snarling and pushing, but no biting."


Kirk updates in June of 2000. "In August 1999, we finally figured out why Miles was such a grouch! It seems that his lower left canine (fang) was a problem, as he had cracked off the tip when opening doors. Three veterinarians thought there was no problem with the cracked tip. Miles' regular doctor, Sandi's veterinarian who saw Miles when he was rescued, and Miles'' new vet, Dr. Schwartz, all made light of Miles' cracked-off tooth.

"Miles' dentist, Dr. Colmery, suspected right away that Miles had an abcessed tooth. Dr. Colmery surgically removed Miles' tooth, cleaned up the infection on his jaw, and put Miles on antibiotics for quite a while. Gee, can't imagine why he was a grouch. Just because he had a really bad toothache for years! I'd be biting people too if I had a bad toothache like that!"


"We enjoyed a healthy and happy Miles for the Fall. Then, in early December, Miles was playing with his puppy brother Andy. Miles ended up going all fours in different directions on the ice and snow. His left hind leg was sore. Miles reacts very badly to pain. Not your typical stoic Airedale. That night he attacked me out of the blue. I knew what was going on so we rested him and soon the pain went away. Miles had injured his left knee and this Spring was facing very expensive knee surgery to fix a partially-torn ligament in his knee. Then, two days before his surgery, he hurt his right knee. Same thing! In the end, Dr. Degner decided to wait to see what happens with Miles' knees. We have him on aspirin and glucosamine/chondroitin and he is doing great. Back to being a big happy Miles."

On 12 February 2005, Miles crossed The Rainbow Bridge.

Miles shown with the kind permission of Kirk Nims


The Airedale can do anything any other dog can do and then whip the other dog. -- Teddy Roosevelt

If you have a Second-Hand 'Dale and would like to share her/his story, please e-mail me.

Be sure to visit FRIENDS OF AIREDALES MEMORIAL FUND. Your memorial will make a difference in an Airedale's life.


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Thanks to Karen Clouston for the Airedale Graphics

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Remember to bring along your virtual pooper-scooper!

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