Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge.
When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge. There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together. There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable.
All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor; those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by. The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind.
They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent; His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster.
You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.
The smell of cotton candy is delicately sweet like the personality of a Sammy*.
A Samoyed's love is like the soft fluffy touch of cotton candy fresh out of the machine. The thought of cotton candy evokes memories of carnivals and circuses from days long past; memories so similar to the memories of my first Sammy of a lifetime ago:
- the joy and excitement . . . of the circus coming to town . . . of coming home each day to a Sammy so happy to see me again;
- the thrill and awe . . . of the great feats of skill and strength of the performers . . . of the tricks and games and the obvious intelligence of the Sammy;
- the disappointment and sadness . . . when they packed up and left town . . . when my beloved Sammy took her last breath and quietly died in my arms.
In memory of Princess.
by Alan R. Thompson
*Samoyed (pronounced sam-uh-yed) - a beautiful white (or sometimes biscuit colored) dog with a Dairy Queen tail originally found with the Samoyede people in the Russian Arctic (where there are no Dairy Queens).
Thank you so very much for sharing that story with us. Your words touched me deeply. There's nothing like a "Sammy smile", I know Princess is saving up lots of them to shower you with when you meet up again.
Husband's co-worker had to have his leg amputated and could no longer care for Sam, so we got the beautiful white dog to add to the menagerie. The neigbors were annoyed with Sam digging holes under their mobile home. We found out why...Sam was short for Samantha and she gave birth under their home to 4 puppies.
Sam would sleep peacefully with the cats curled up beside her. But once let outside, the cats would be chased up trees. While my husband & friend were practice shooting a stray bullet killed the neighbors dog. Soon after Sam died. She was poisoned. Assume the neighbor's did it to retaliate for the accident.
We were keeping one of Sam's puppies. The ex (husband at the time) promised the puppies to 5 people and actually went out and got a Free To Good Home puppy as well as given away ours.
Having lots of pet's through the years, means dealing with lots of losses.
Sammies are notorious diggers if they are fenced or tied up. Tundra even figured out how to open a locked gate on a chain-link fenced kennel. I wouldn't have believed it but we have the video to prove it. I thought we'd catch somebody helping him out but he did it all on his own. Sometimes those Sammies are just too smart for their own good.
She was a beautiful Harlequin Dane who came into my life three years ago when she was added to a home that already had another Dane I was caring for.
She was lovingly let go last week after fighting a losing battle with spinal issues that had rendered her unable to walk. Anyone who ever met Charlotte was immediately struck by her gorgeous eyes (one blue, one brown) and by her beautiful spirit. She was truely a gift.
I can't think of a harder decision to make in life than to euthanize a loved pet. I had to do that with Princess who, though not too old and still healthy and strong, developed cancer of the tongue and throat. When it finally got to the point when she would chew her tongue and not even know it plus eating solid food became more difficult to swallow, I took her to the vet. I'll never forget the look of shock in her eyes when the injection began to take effect. Then she slowly closed her eyes and went limp. Although lots of years ago, it still brings tears to my eyes whenever I think about it--like right now.
But I learned a valuable lesson from it that is benefitting Tundra and Prince now. I learned to read carefully the ingredients on everything I feed the dogs and research what some of the clever terms really mean. I learned to never again buy or give my dogs Milk Bones because they are deadly and could very well have been the cause of Princess' cancer in the mouth. They are preserved with BHA or BHT, a known carcinogen. Likewise, I never buy dog food from super markets, Wal-mart, or farm supply stores because there is more junk than nutrition in that garbage. So Princess' death was not in vain. But it still hurts.
So sorry to hear that decision had to be made for Charlotte.
Last July, we had to make the same decision with Prince. It's been six months now and it hasn't gotten any easier; I still break down whenever I think about him. The hardest part was that I believe he knew it was his last day; after passing on breakfast, he went into the front hall, leaned against one wall and let his legs slide out until he was laying on his side on the floor. This had become his way recently because of only having one front leg and arthritis in his back end. I knelt down beside him and saw a big tear in his eye. Not the seepy kind that cause the staining, but a big, clear tear in the corner of his eye.
On the way to the vet's he got his last DQ cone.
He stood up for this.
At the vet's, he never got up at all, quite unusual for him as both he and Tundra loved visiting the vet. He died laying in the back of the car with Donna and I beside him.
Prince was unusual for a Samoyed. When I took him from the lady who had rescued him from the Calgary pound, he watched out the back window until the house disappeared behind a hill. The was the last time he looked back though. As soon as we got home, Donna took him for a tour of the house and, despite her effort, he marked the house as his territory when he finished the tour. I'm sure he was very happy to be back when the one would-be adopter brought him back because his new Vietnamese wife was afraid of Prince.
More than Princess of yore or Tundra of now, Prince attached himself to us like glue. Shortly after we got Prince, Tundra broke them out of the kennel one time while we were away and we had to go looking for them when we got home. We didn't find either of them so returned home to find Prince waiting for us in our driveway. Tundra had to be picked up and delivered by a neighbor. A few times Prince got away from us and we'd go chase him down. Running away from us was a game with him, "Catch me if you can."
Prince put his whole body into his hugs. Tundra puts his nose into his to get you to pet him. Prince was happy to be as close as possible to us. After he was no longer able to manuever under my computer desk, he would usually lay down in the hall behind me, just outside the door. And he had the warmest licks of any dog I've ever known.
He loved stuffed animals and would hold them in his mouth, sucking and flexing his toes like a cat does.
He was very gentle with them and other than removing the eyes from the bunny shown above, which was a child's toy, not a dog's toy (a gift from the lady we got him from) there was never any damage to them other than normal wear and tear.
Though he only lived with us 5.5 years, he was very, very close and dear to us. We were always thankful the one person brought him back and no one else responded to our ads when we tried to find a home to adopt him to. Prince knew where he belonged the moment he got here. It just took us a little longer.
Prince was the Sammy Angel of all Sammy Angels. I hope he is playing and waiting for us with Princess. We don't have a clue what most of his previous 8 or so years of life were like. His life with us wasn't without its problems for him (scratched eyeball requiring stitching, leg amputation, and a few other minor physical issues). But we know that he was happy here with Tundra and us. Even after Prince lost his front leg, he'd still try to play with Tundra, jumping up on his back and sliding right off because he couldn't hang on. But as he got older, playing got more painful for him and that eventually stopped.
Following the loss of his leg, both bone chewing and runs in the country became history. This last picture of him taken by Donna while Tundra was following me in the car, shows another of his favorite activities, olfactory exploration of the ground. "To a dog the whole world is a smell." - Unknown
"Dogs need to sniff the ground; it's how they keep abreast of current events. The ground is a giant dog newspaper, containing all kinds of late-breaking dog news items, which, if they are especially urgent, are often continued in the next yard." - Dave Barry
His last affliction, along with the arthritis, was canine dementia. Poor Prince, we hated to see him suffer, we hated to see him leave.
"If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went." Will Rogers
"The dog is a gentleman; I hope to go to his heaven, not man's." -- Mark Twain
This just came to me in an e-mail. It was especially touching because of our recent loss of Prince. It's also touching to know that someone in the Postal Service would do this for a grieving little girl.
Our 14 year-old dog, Abbey died last month.
The day after she died, my 4 year-old daughter Meredith was crying that when Abbey got to heaven, God wouldn't recognize her, and could we send him a letter? I told her that I thought we could, so she dictated these words:
Dear God: Will you please take care of my dog? She died yesterday and is with you in heaven. I miss her very much.
I am happy that you let me have her as my dog even though she got sick.
Ihope you will play with her. She likes to play with balls and to swim. I am sending a picture of her so when you see her.
[Sorry, picture unavailable.]
You will know thatshe is my dog.I really miss her.
Then Meredith pasted several stamps on the front of the envelope because she said it would take lots of stamps on the front of the envelope to get the letter all the way to Heaven. That afternoon, I drove Meredith to the Post office and watched her drop it in a letter box. A few days later, she asked if God had gotten the letter yet.
I told her that I was certain He had.
Yesterday, there was a package wrapped in gold paper on our front porch addressed, 'To Meredith,' in an unfamiliar hand. Meredith opened it.
Inside was a book by Mr. Rogers called, 'When a Pet Dies.' Taped to the inside front cover was the letter we had written to God in its opened envelope.
On the opposite page was the picture of Abbey & Meredith and this note: