The life of Shadow (called ‘Shady’) with photos and video.
Table of Contents
On the evening of August 8, 2013, on our way back from a bike tour near the wind turbines in the northeast of the Aghios Ioannis peninsula – shortly after Vrouhas on the road that leads down to Plaka – we found a dog that had been hit by a car on the side of the road. Of course, we carefully picked up the dog and I put him on the passenger seat, where he threw up to make matters worse. With the bike and two dogs in the back of the Jimny, we headed back to Elounda.
The first impressions from local animal welfare officers were very devastating and did not give the dog many chances of survival, but when I unloaded the car, the animal suddenly disappeared from the passenger seat. I found it close to the car and in this way it showed its will to live.
Fortunately, a vet from Thailand was staying that weekend as a guest at the ‘Corali Studios and Portobello Apartments’ in Elounda, where I was living at the time. As it soon turned out, he provided the femal dog with the most necessary care over the weekend and in the coming week.
I then went to the vet in Heraklion, who wanted to amputate the dog’s leg. However, I didn’t agree to this and asked for time to think about it. A short time later, I visited the vet Kalliopi Pantouli for the first time, who was surprised by the diagnosis of her colleague in Heraklion and did not want to amputate the leg. It also turned out that the thin and skinny female dog was also carrying around eight puppies. As it seemed impossible for me to bring them through, they unfortunately had to be aborted during the upcoming operation and sterilization. Shadow was estimated to be about 2 1/2 years old, so she was born in March 2011.
We were delighted when Shadow started to walk slowly again after a week. My dog DuDi and Shadow became best friends until the end and were practically inseparable. On walks and hikes, Shadow in particular always made sure that DuDi was close by and followed her.
Shadow was also the reason why I had to give up my comfortable life in a hotel and moved to a large house with a big garden a few months later.
She was a very good-natured and usually very reserved dog who hardly attracted attention and got on well with practically all other dogs and people.
Unfortunately, Shadow had only one weakness: cats and sheep. She soon proved her tendency to chase cats, even though she could do them no harm, and immediately whimpered when the cats struck her nose with their sharp claws. As a presumably former herding dog, she was also unable to control herself around sheep and liked to chase them around when she came across some in supposedly ‘safe’ areas. In over ten years, however, such ‘accidents’ only happened perhaps three or four times, and she was always quickly caught when she stood exhausted by her sheep, which she had never harmed in any way.
Unfortunately, this was probably also the reason for her loss on October 10, 2023, when she made her own way back during a hiking tour on Kalydon while I was collecting a lost water bottle. Unlike the other dogs in the pack, she did not follow me, but must have decided to walk back. In doing so, she must have come across a sheep, which she followed until she had an accident or got heatstroke.
Despite a week-long, daily search for the lost dog – including feeding stations with infrared motion cameras and drones – there is unfortunately no trace of her so far on the Spinalonga peninsula, which is not too big but very confusing and difficult to walk around, and where there is hardly any water even at this time of year.
The life of Shadow in the video
Photos of Shadow
The most beautiful photos from Shadow’s life, in chronological order: