Mum's the word on dead dog dilemma

By Patsy R. Brumfield/NEMS Daily Journal

SALTILLO – Amanda Morphis isn’t talking about what, if anything, may be in the works to solve the mystery of her champion dog’s death or his mixed-breed puppies.
“I’d really rather not say,” Morphis said Tuesday, when called for an update on the situation.
Last September, the Daily Journal reported on Don and Amanda Morphis’ struggle to deal with the death of Bailey, their 3-year-old Clumber Spaniel, which was the nation’s top specimen of his breed.
In addition to being their pet, Bailey was a potential big money-maker as a champion breeder.
The stocky dog with his fluffy white coat, which looked like it was sprinkled lightly with cinnamon, was valued at about $75,000 and could have fetched $2,500 per breeding.
Bailey died more than a year ago, apparently of heat stroke, in the custody of his professional handlers in South Carolina.
The dog’s sperm harvested by an Oregon lab reportedly was used to breed with the Morphis’ female Clumber, but when the puppies arrived, they were part-Labrador retriever, their veterinarian said.
Spokesmen for the lab and Mississippi State University’s Animal Health Center, where the female was artificially inseminated, insist it wasn’t their fault.
“Our vet calls them Lumbers,” Don tried to joke a few months ago, talking about the situation. “Or maybe they’re Clabradors.”
Whether they’ve taken legal action against anybody isn’t clear, although last September they said they’d retained a family friend as their attorney.
“We’re just waiting,” Amanda said Tuesday.
For what wasn’t clear, either.
Contact Patsy R. Brumfield at (662) 678-1596 or patsy.brumfield@djournal.com.