This one’s been sitting in my brain for a few days now; I originally just wanted to share about our pets – both living and those that have gone on to wait for us at the Rainbow Bridge – but every time I tried to write something I got verklempt and had to stop immediately. Couldn’t even think of a catchy title. But I’ve been getting signs all over the place today that tell me I need to write NOW, TODAY. Emails, conversations, pictures I ran across – so I’m gonna go about it another way and try not to get too emotional. (Unfortunately it didn’t work and I’m a hot mess right now.) But I will continue because this issue (pet adoption and rescue) is important to me. There will be more stories from the Pet Chronicles coming soon to a website near you…. but this is what started me down a slightly different path than I had first planned on: WARNING: Have Kleenex within reach.
“Before humans die, they leave behind their last will and testament – giving all they had to the loved ones they leave behind. If with my paws I could do the same thing- this is what I would ask…
To the poor and lonely stray… I’d give
- My Happy Home
- My bowl and cozy bed, and all my toys
- The lap that I loved to sit in so much
- The hands that stroked my fur and the sweet voices that spoke my name.
I’d will to the sad, scared shelter animal the place I had in my loving humans heart. A place that seemed to have no boundaries.
So when I die, please do not say ‘I will never have a pet again, for the loss and pain is more than I can stand’.
Instead, go find an unloved pet – one whose life has held no joy or hope – and give MY place to THEM.
For this is the only thing I can give – the love I leave behind.”
I guess it kinda goes without saying I needed that Kleenex just to proofread that one. All of our pets have been rescues of one kind or another. Cats we agreed to take care of temporarily and whose owners wouldn’t take them back, the puppy whose nose was scarred (we named him Capone) and who again nobody else wanted. Our lady greyhound Miss Nellie (aka Miss Boo), – with her scarred hindquarters from a gate injury in her racing days. Our epileptic lab Sophie – Doofus McSniff The Chocolate Moose; and Chewbacca – who wasn’t getting along so well with his 1st mama’s younger dogs. (but was in no danger of being left on his own or put in a shelter) Chewy came into our lives literally right before Nellie passed on -via my older daughter’s boyfriend. Chewy was his dog when he lived at home. That’s the Chewch with me on my “About Me” page. Mr. Snuggles. Senor Fluffy Pants. We rarely call our pets by their actual names here at Casa Del Chaos – in case you didn’t notice.
I have funny stories about each of them – too many to share them all now. I’ll save the ferrets (the little devils!) for another time. Capone – who loved my oldest baby so much that he would take her diapers out of the trash, pile them up and just lie on them. ( Eww I know, right? But he never did anything other than lie down on them) Sophie our resident medicine puppy. She always knows when we’re sick and lies down on our feet. And Nellie – I really want to talk about her. Deep breath – here goes…
We adopted her through a greyhound rescue organization when she was 3 and we had her the longest of any of our pets. Our graceful, sweet brindle girl. Greys aren’t normally barkers, but Nellie took her guard duties seriously. And, she could still make it to the fence in under 3 seconds even when she was older. Faster than a “speeding anything except a cheetah” – you betcha! That dog was a beautiful sight when she ran. The girls had rabbits at one point and Nellie kind of reverse imprinted on them. She thought she was their mama and whenever they were in the back yard she would try to herd them. A greyhound who herds rabbits?? Only at my crazy house. She also made a great reindeer with some fake antlers at Christmastime. Nellie flew solo as the family pet for several years and then we got the Soph to keep her company. One winter evening we let the dogs out only to see them stopped dead at the fence. When we went a little closer we saw a very large (read: wolf size) lone coyote on the other side of the fence. And there were Tweedle-Dumb and Tweedle-Dumber – happily clueless, tails wagging as if to say ” Hey wanna come in and play?” I about had a heart attack, and certainly had a conniption – as we frantically yelled and gestured to get them back safely inside – and shoo Wile E. away from a potential meal or three.
We had Nell up till last November. She was 15 -ancient for a greyhound (so our vet says). It happened fast. It seemed like one day she was elderly but OK, & the next she couldn’t get up even with support. My husband had to carry her outside to do her business and it was obvious she was in pain. There was no “decision” to make as a responsible pet owner. It was time. It really really sucks being responsible sometimes. The worst part for me was actually Sophie. She was literally screaming as we brought Miss Boo to the car. I think she knew, and I never want to hear a sound like that again -ever. Please and thank you Lord. Painful and heartbreaking – yes without a doubt. But no one in my family would trade even a minute of the time we had with Nellie (or any of the others who wait at that Bridge) for all the tea in China. Great stories and memories made -bringing laughter and unconditional love. All because we rescued a pet. I highly recommend it -despite the tears (or maybe because of them).