R.I.P. Mongo

It is with a heavy heart that we report a few days ago our beloved Mongo passed away in San Diego, California.

We love you Mango (pronounced ‘Mongo’ in english)

He died of Thrombocytopenia, most likely caused by an undetected case of Ehrlichiosis.  Mongo had survived this tick-borne disease earlier in the year, along with being poisoned, and countless street fights. He was one tough cookie. But, sadly, I think this last bout of sickness was just too much for his little body.  It happened so fast, so unexpectedly.  It’s so hard to accept, but maybe it was just Mongo’s time to go.

We found out yesterday, and I’ve been crying for nearly twenty-four hours between then and now.  I am deeply saddened by this loss.  It’s hard for me to find the right words at this point to express my love and grief.  I’m too overwhelmed to think straight.

I’ve been struggling with his death for many reasons, but I realize it’s mostly because I tried so hard to make sure that he would live a long life. We all did.  I wanted that so badly for him, but from the day I met that rascally boy, he seemed hellbent on dying young.  He chased cats into oncoming traffic, brawled with giant German Shepherds (sometimes two at a time), stayed out all night at the local bars, and was routinely sighted having illicit public affairs in broad daylight. Mongo was the King of Huanchaco, and he sure as shit lived like it. In response to my constant fretting for his safety, Tree once said, “Honey, Mongo came into this life for a good time…not a long time.”  And, he was right.  I realize that it was my plan to make Mongo live to be a hundred in doggy years, not his.  Despite my failure to achieve my goal, I find solace in knowing that Mongo accomplished his.  He lived life to the fullest, loved unabashedly, and brought a smile to even the grumpiest of faces.  He had a charm like no other, and he could cuddle like nobody’s business.

I love you Mongo.  You will be missed beyond measure.

My heart goes out to everyone who was ever touched by Mongo, especially to Ursula in Huanchaco, and Matt and Malia in San Diego.  Someday we will have a toast together to celebrate his life.  xoxo.


Words from Malia, Mongo’s Mama in San Diego:

Before we got Mongo, Matt and I laid out a couple of rules: No processed human food, and he was not allowed on the couch or our bed. We were going to be good, disciplined doggy parents. Then one morning Matt left for work and Mongo hopped in bed right next to me. He just nuzzled into the open spot like it had been his forever. It was so cute that I broke the rule and just hugged him and went back to sleep. I could feel his tail just wag, making a small noise as it hit against the comforter. I came home every day during lunch to spend some time with him. The first day I found him laying on the couch, he lowered his head and wagged his tail. He knew but he didn’t move. And I didn’t yell because there was that tail again. Just wagging away. And I felt so happy that he was happy and I didn’t want that to stop. Mongo gave to us that great joy. Even in death, he wagged that tail. Our friends who cared for him while we were gone told us that as they swooped him up to take him to the vet, he laid there, barely moving his head. But that tail, it wagged away as soon as he saw them coming for him. He reminded us every day what passion for life looked like and how unconditional love manifests itself when we finally let go of ego and expectations. He gave us that individually. But he also gave Matt and me something as a couple. Matt and I found new parts of ourselves to share with each other now that Mongo had uncovered this deeper part of our hearts and souls. It was in the middle of our honeymoon when we found out he passed away. We were left to grieve with only each other on a remote island in the South Pacific. But because I saw how Matt had taken care of Mongo these past few months, I knew that he would take care of me in just the same, loving, compassionate way. Now that we are home, we get to grieve with the world. Because Mongo wasn’t ours. He was part of us all, all of you. When we understand that we are no more than energy operating at a high frequency, we understand that love is not separate from that and you are not separate from me. Instead of feeling like Mongo has left us, I feel that he has just grown deeper into us. He was not separate from us or from you. He’s just added to our love pool. We can take each day now with that more expansive part of ourselves and be kinder to strangers, be compassionate in this world, and have a shitload of fun doing it. That’s how Mongo did it and I want to keep that spirit in my life and in this world.

Palabras de Ursula, Mango’s mama en Huanchaco: 

No tengo palabras para resumir tanto amor y compañia que me hiso mango
hoy estoy muriendo con el. Mi vida se me cayo al enterarme de su penosa muerte
fueron 1 año y medio que luche por el luego  junto con stevie y todo su amor el
conocio a sus nuevos papas.
Solo quiero decirte mi amor (MANGO) te amo te di todo lo que estubo a mi alcance
 y posibilidades. Disculpame si no puede quedarme para toda la vida contigo
pero alla en ese lugarcito donde estas ahora. Pronto nos volveremos a ver y jugar
como lo haciamos aca en la playa de huanchaco.
Tu amor, fidelidad, compromiso hacia mi.. nadie me lo dio.
Te amo mi amor. Mi rey de huanchaco.
Te fuiste y te llevaste mi corazon.
Gracias malia y stevie por ser sus angelesy lograr aunque sea sus ultimos minutos de vida logro tener
 una vida digna  como else lo merecia. muchas  gracias.
Por el amor desinteresado de ustedes y todas laspersonas que lo quieren y aman sin concoerlo.
Dios  ahi te envio a mi mejor compañero. !!Some of Mongo’s past Sprinter Life stories… 

This just in… Flying a street Dog is NOT easy!

Help Save Mongo’s Life

Mongo gets poisoned Part 1

Mongo gets poisoned Part 2

Mongo survives street life

Getting Mongo healthy

Mongo joins Sprinter Life pack, for now

Hanging with Mongo





  1. so sorry guys. this is terrible news. 🙁

  2. So sad. Poor Mongo. Made me cry. 🙁

  3. I’m gonna miss you Mongo. Keep living the dream. Keep living like a rock star. Light that next life up bud. See you on the other side.
    Suerte, TREE

  4. Rain Valdez says:

    I’m sorry Stevie… he looks like such a sweet, fun boy. RIP Mongo. xoxo

  5. This makes me so sad! He did end up with so much love though, from you guys and then his new family and that makes me happy. I’ll miss you, Mongo!

  6. Mick Evans says:

    That’s really too sad, but wow, what a difference you two made in his life over the last year

  7. yo vi un perrito igualito muerto en la carretera de huanchaquito no se si era el pero yo pense que estabaa muerto hace tiempo , sorry por ti uchi pero asi es la vid

  8. Paula Villacorta Lopez says:


  9. Freida Whiddon Cox says:


  10. Ådam Thomas says:

    Do not grieve for what was lost. Rejoice for what was given.

  11. Steve Cox says:

    WTF…..both him and Sam seemed so healthy and full of life?!? My condolences to you and Mongo’s adopted family. I am sure he and Sam are sharing the beauty of the after life.

  12. Uxchiiii, espero que estés ok. Ese perro, tan hermoso, tan lindo, amigo de todo el mundo, FAMOSO de Huanchaco – le extraño tanto. Pero tuvo una vida increíble – mejor de los perros! Uxchi estoy pensando en ti amiga.BESOScxxx

  13. mangito vs jacinto… era una verdadra mecha de perros

  14. Tara Palmer Benoit says:

    So sorry.it’s so heartbreaking to lose someone you love. I lost one of my dogs in may and I was devastated. Just remember how much love you gave him when he was here.

  15. So sorry, thinking of you both….dogs add so much to our lives.

  16. Oscar Sosa Reina says:

    So sorry Guys.

  17. que penita

  18. Vanessa Díaz says:

    🙁 siento mucho q manguito ya no este,pero se lleve en el corazon el cariño de quienes tuvieron la alegria de quererlo!

  19. Pobresito 🙁 vamos a extranar….pero ahora esta es spiritu y en nuestros corazon ♥

  20. Elise Hillinger says:

    Oh shit. I never met the pup, but I’m crying at my desk right now.

  21. RIP Mango Wow!! I’m So Sorry To Hear That!!

  22. Renee D'Antoni says:

    I’m so sorry to hear that. Condolences.

  23. Jeanine Alexander says:

    Im very sorry for your loss my cousin. Xoxo

  24. Melinda Casady says:

    So sorry we lost our dog two weeks ago and it’s heartbreaking when they are such great friends.

  25. Teri Hogan says:

    I am so sad to hear this news….Thank you Stevie,Tree and Kiki for taking him in as part of Sprinter Life, caring for him, loving him and for only wanting good for him to the point of finding him a home in San Diego. Thank you Malia and Matt for taking him into your family and loving him too. I never met Mango aka The King, but I feel like I knew through countless SprinterLife blog posts about the boy. I helped him get to San Diego with a bunch of other people. Guess Tree was right, he was here for a good time not a long time. It still makes me sad. Adios Mango.

  26. Dave Adair says:

    Oh, I’m so sorry to hear that. Mongo was such a great dog-character. He was living’ it, full-on. Something to aspire to. I love Malia’s stories about Mongo’s brief life north of the border. Sad and beautiful, all at the same time…

  27. Mark Tisdale says:

    🙁 So sorry…

  28. Kalena Ranoa says:

    He’s beautiful. 🙁 xo

  29. Andrea Patterson Hall says:

    Mongo was happy to have shared a path with you for his time, I am so sorry for your loss, Stevie…

  30. Mylene Pocorni says:

    So sorry to hear that. But he was loved and you had a lot of adentures with him.

  31. Victor Manuel says:

    Murio de Erliquia, mis mas sentido pesame.

  32. Daniel Rodriguez says:

    Si lo conoci a mango guauuu que pena

  33. Manguito! Lindo Amiguito Jugueton como simpre asi lo recordaremos todos amiga. Gracias a ti por cuidar de estos seres maravillosos q solo saben darnos Felicidad.

  34. pequeñito fuiste feliz y nos hiciste feliz a todos el tiempo que estuviste con nosotros, gracias por darme tu amor y confianza. Fuiste complice de muchas travesuras y estuviste muchas veces velando nuestro sueño. Recuerdo mucho la primera vez que te metimos al cuarto de uxchi para que pasaras la noche con nosotros, te prestaste por completo para que nadie se diera cuenta que estabas ahi… siempre seras el mejor recuerdo de mis dias en huanchaco. Nunca olvidare la primera vez que nos conocimos y que te ayude en lo que pude. gracias por ser un buen paciente y dejarte curar por nosotros. amigo te extrañare “mi pequeño mango”

  35. Shannon Petrello says:

    I’m so sorry. What a beautiful dog.

  36. Jennifer Cornett says:

    I’m so sorry Stevie. I’m sending you love and kisses. I bet Sam and Mongo are playing right now 🙂

  37. Steve Scherrer says:

    sorry to hear. 🙁 new family member on the way! 🙂

  38. Alexander Roberts says:

    Mongo, meet: Sasha, Cassie, Missy, Napolean, Daisy, Pup. Prince, Oso … and a few dozen more of my friends. Looking forward to hooking up with all you guys (and gals) again one of these days.

  39. Oh you guys… I am writing this with tears streaming down my face. Mongo became part of ALL of our lives through your stories of him and your incredible effort to give him an amazing life. Tree was absolutely right, he was here to live live balls to the walls, but not meant for the long term. Our hearts go out to you!!!!

  40. Lo que importa es que tuvo calidad de vida, es muy doloroso cuando se van, pero solo queda la esperanza de que ahora son más felices de lo que eran en este mundo :D, Mucha fuerza

  41. Carmen Cita says:

    povrecito el manguito, que lindo perro. Siempre me acuerdo de cuando yo estaba haciendo futin el vendria y correr a mi lado y jugar por un tiempo …. rest in peace xx

  42. Carol Hiller says:

    so sorry and very sad.

  43. Judy Shuman says:

    Thinking of you and your precious darling and wishing him an exciting New Adventure! ~ My two sweeties, Brutus and Ruger are sure going to enjoy meeting their new friend! ~ ♥ ♥ ♥

  44. Oh I am so sorry Tree and Stevie. I love you both and will keep you in my thoughts.

  45. mamatuyas says:

    Mongo lived fiercely and with joy. You gave him love, and a year of Grace. And we are all better for having shared in his story. Thank you.

  46. I am reasonably sure that Mongo was the reincarnation of Sid Vicious. RIP Mongo. For a dog, you made a difference. As have you Stevie and Tree, well done. Well done.

  47. Shinpaugh says:

    Definitely a rock star.

    Happy tails Mongo ; (

  48. Tim Wilson says:

    sorry for your loss.

  49. Jene Fielder says:

    Awh, R.I.P Mango,,Stevie he’ll be forever your Mango”..

  50. Tanya Diaz says:

    So sad to hear the news and that you guys to have to go through this, You gave him so much love and he gave it right back. I love that he lived life to the fullest, we should all take a lesson. Un abrazo fuerte!

  51. Sam Drevo says:

    oh my gosh… Sorry- sad… He didn’t get to meet your daughter:(

  52. Sean Vierling says:

    It’s the time u have together!

  53. Karen Widmer says:

    so Sorry…You guys sure did love that dog, what a blessing you were for each other

  54. Justin Gilbert says:

    RIP Mongo. Sorry for your loss.

  55. Carolyn Rose Ward-Schulman says:

    I am so, so, sorry. Our little furry friends are such a blessing. When they are gone we miss them and never forget.

  56. Cathy Fanandakis Alexander says:

    What happened that is awful, so sad after all the care you took to help the him:-( That sucks so sorry! RIP Mongo!

  57. Cate Brubaker says:

    I am crushed. 🙁

  58. He is not apart from you; but part of you.

  59. Aunt Debby says:

    Tree, Stevie and & Kiki,

    We are so sorry to hear about Mango. I was so happy to hear he had found such a nice new home in San Deigo. I’m sure he is hanging with Shadow right now and they are looking down and sharing thoughts about what a wonderful adventure life was for them and how much they help us human folks grow and understand unconditional love!

  60. For a Lady living in the mid-west that only wishes she did half of the things you have done, are doing and what your adventure holds for you in the future, I want you to know that from the depths of my heart I feel your lose and pain. I grew to love and respect Mongo and enjoyed learning of his escapades! Love to you.
    Kathy Mueller Hansen

  61. Cindy Chischilly says:

    🙁 So sad. Thank you for caring for Mango and sharing him with us. We love you Mango, see you on the other side.

  62. Karin Stronkhorst says:

    I think Tree has it right, he sure lived life to the fullest, I bet he has plenty to brag about up there in dog heaven

  63. RIP Mongo, so sorry to hear this news. Hugs to you.

  64. Alexis Collette Mobley says:

    Condolences for losing an important part of your pack……:(

  65. Stevie and Tree….Not being a poet- a transformer of the calamity and the grace into language, I thought I would offer something from my favorite poet- Mary Oliver. She has written a number of poems about her dog, Percy. This poem gave me a sliver of solace when Sophie died, too soon, at about the age Mongo was he died.

    “I Ask Percy How I Should Live My Life (Ten)”

    Love, love, love, says Percy.
    And run as fast as you can
    along the shining beach, or the rubble, or the dust.

    Then, go to sleep.
    Give up your body heat, your beating heart.
    Then, trust.

  66. Ohhhhhhh que noticia inesperada!!! que penaaaaaaaaaaaaaa por sus amig@s que quedan tristes :S no se como tomarmelo porque no sè que hay despues de la muerte pero miràndolo por el lado positivo, seguro esta manguendo por ahì con la misma cara de la foto. Mango eres ùnico! Te queremos y consideramos y aquì lo demostramos. Gracias Ursula tienes un espiritù muy especial.

  67. Peg Lalor says:

    Sorry to hear of his passing!

  68. Julie Belknap says:

    🙁 I’m sorry Stevie:(

  69. jacinto esta apenado

  70. Anonymous says:

    A sad day, indeed, but like Abe Lincoln said, “It’s not the years in your life that count, it’s the life in your years.” Mongo lived his years to the hilt; I mean, how many Peruvian street dogs have wangled their way to California?

  71. Just coming back from our own loss last month- Hang tough. So sorry for your loss.. I feel privileged to be a part of the Mongo lore. I feel very happy to know he found his people, and that he can move on.. knowing someone had his back. I checked out a local dog shelter a few weeks after we lost Jack, and it hit me hard. All those dogs just wanted a place they could call home. I am glad Mongo reached that goal. Take care, and good luck to your big day!

  72. Hey loves. I’ve been doing some good bedtime reading- I just open up one of the six books on my bed stand and have a go. I came across this last night, and thought of you. In bell hooks, “all about love”, the chapter on loss, she writes……
    “Sometimes it amazes me to know intuitively that the grieving are all around us yet we do not see any signs of their anguished spirits. We are taught to feel shame about grief that lingers. Like a stain on our clothes, it marks us as flawed, imperfect. To cling to grief, to desire its expression, is to be out of sync with modern life, where the hip do not get bogged down in mourning.
    Love knows no shame. To be loving is to be open to grief, to be touched by sorrow, even sorrow that is unending. The way we grieve is informed by whether we know love. Since loving lets us let go of so much fear, it also guides our grief. When we lose someone we love, we can grieve without shame. Given that commitment is an important aspect of love, we who know love know we must sustain ties in life and death. Our mourning, our letting ourselves grieve over the loss of loved ones is an expression of our commitment and communion. Knowing this and possessing the courage t o claim our grief as an expression of love’s passion does not make the process simple in a culture that would deny us the emotional alchemy of grief. Much of our cultural suspicion of intense grief is rooted in the fear that unleashing of such passion will overtake us and keep us from life. However, this fear is usually misguided. In its deepest sense, grief is a burning of the heart, an intense heat that gives us solace and release. When we deny the full expression of our grief, it lays like a weight on our hearts, causing emotional pain and physical ailments.”

  73. Angela Polito says:

    The lesson from Mongo – Live Life FIERCELY and with Joyous Abandon. Thank you, Mongo.

  74. Donna Clary says:

    I second what Angela had to say and add that Mongo was blessed to have you in his life! Whatever time he had, the best was due to you! Be consoled with that. Beyond that…I fully understand your “heavy heart”.

  75. Oh Mongo…you will be missed even by those who never met you in real life but have been touched by your story of survival.

    Condolences to all of his people family and to Kiki.

  76. 🙁

  77. I don’t know whether it’s just me or if perhaps everybody else
    experiencing problems with your blog. It appears like some of the written text on your content are running off the screen. Can someone else please comment and let me
    know if this is happening to them as well? This could be
    a issue with my browser because I’ve had this happen before.

We want to hear from you! You may comment as 'Anonymous' to hide your identity if you don't want to leave your name. We look forward to hearing from you.

Speak Your Mind

Your comments make us happy.

Leave a comment, get a kitten!