When Janette and Will Morrison took a trip to the pound three years ago they were taken with one particularly striking, handsome young pup.
A Great Dane/Rhodesian Ridgeback cross who had been languishing in the shelter for months stuck out like a sore thumb among the dozens of "cute, little fluffy dogs".
The Morwell couple fell head over heels for the "clumsy, goofy and long-legged fellow" now known as Murphy.
"When we first met Murphy ... he had no skills whatsoever, but he sure had a lot of energy," Janette said.
"He jumped into our car as if to say 'let's get out of here', and we were on our way."
Murphy and the Morrisons were faced with some growing pains in the early months.
"The shelter assured us he was an adult dog [but] we had our doubts. He seemed to increase in size by the day and in six months his weight increased by a whopping 16 kilos," Janette said.
"We were [also] faced with the challenge of trying to socialise, train and calm a highly anxious dog. He had never walked on a lead, travelled in a car or socialised with other animals."
Now a model canine citizen, Murphy has graduated to level three in dog obedience training and enjoys daily 10-kilometre walks to keep him fit and busy.
His larger-than-life attitude and zest for adventure have certainly rubbed off on Janette and Will.
"Being a big dog he has a big personality. He loves people and loves adventure," Will said.
"He makes sure we're outdoors and going for walks and finding new places and fun places."
Some of Murphy's favourite haunts include the rail trail in Boolarra and the track at Toners Lane in Morwell but he is also a café lover and enjoys kicking back with a dogacino.
"Life pretty much revolves around Murphy and adventures we can share with him," Janette said.
"He goes everywhere with us. We even bought a ute to transport him around because he is too big for our main car.
"We can happily say that while Murphy is far from perfect, he is perfect for us."
The Express is looking for passionate Latrobe Valley pet owners who would like to tell the story behind their pets and why they matter in their lives.
If you would like your pet to feature in a future edition of this weekly column, email firstname.lastname@example.org with 'You and Your Pet' in the subject line.