It felt like something was missing. Rick and Kyle’s dog had just passed away, and their family simply felt…incomplete. They still had their dog Ellie, but even she felt the void.
And so Kyle found herself at the Connecticut Humane Society, wondering if she’d find the pooch who’d fix her broken heart. Then she spotted Murray.
The 3-year-old Australian shepherd mix was a bit nervous and could be timid around people. But when Kyle heard his story, she knew this was more than a chance meeting. This was the dog meant for her family—especially her husband.
Murray and Rick had both just been saved from life-threatening heart problems. Rick had received heart bypass surgery and now needed to ease into daily exercise. Murray had been saved from heartworm and now needed a home.
Rick came to meet the pup, and everything fell into place. When he needed to head to an appointment, Kyle and Murray made the drive home together.
“I put Murray in the car and talked to him on the way home. I said, ‘Murray, I know you had heart issues this year, and so did my husband. I think you guys really need each other,’” Kyle recalled.
And amid February’s celebrations of love and hearts and Valentines, they can’t help but look back at how Murray’s changed their lives.
After his adoption, he settled into his new home as if he’d always been a part of the family. Even Ellie loved him. And he became Rick’s walking partner—their daily walks together were essential to Rick’s recovery. In his own special way, Murray has kept his dad’s heart healthy and strong. And it’s helped Murray, too.
“Murray was standoffish to other people at first and lacked confidence. Now he’s like a different dog, and I attribute that to my husband,” Kyle said.
And when Murray’s with mom, he’s a 50-pound lap dog—and he won’t move until she needs to get up, even if it’s for hours.
Rick says the pooch helps him appreciate the little things in life and that somehow, they just understand each other. Murray's a good friend, he says.
"I wouldn't trade him for the world," Rick added. "He and I just really bonded right away."
Do they think it was all meant to be? Kyle answers without missing a beat.
“I do. Some people asked if we were trying to replace the dog who passed away. That’s impossible, and we didn’t want that. We wanted a dog who was completely different. Murray is. He looks different from every other dog and he is a character,” she said. “He’s just what we needed.”