Drawn to the Shelter

Since Ducky joined her sisters and brothers at the Rainbow Bridge, I have said I wouldn’t be getting another shelter dog anytime in the near future. Mainly because it wouldn’t be fair to that dog to have to deal with hubby’s dementia episodes on top of the challenges of just settling into a new life. That has not changed. I’m not sure I’ll ever be emotionally ready to adopt another shelter animal. So, you might be asking yourself, what is she leading up to?

Well, for most of the last two weeks, I was feeling drawn to the shelter in search of a dog that looked like Ducky. I resisted every urge to drive over there in fear I would find one and want to bring her home against my own better judgment. I could not understand why I was feeling so drawn to the shelter when I knew it wasn’t time yet.

Well, on Sunday afternoon I went on the shelter’s website – again drawn to finding a Ducky lookalike. And, I actually found one….

I won’t share her photograph here because I don’t own the rights to it (the shelter does). And it wouldn’t be right. I won’t divulge the name the shelter gave her, either, even though it’s cute. Let’s just call her “Sissy”, as in Ducky’s little sister.

She is approximately 2-1/2 years old. She could not look any more like Ducky at the same age if they were identical twins! The ears, and the eyes!! My doG, she is adorable! And she even weighs about the same as Ducky did at that age! I wanted to run over to the shelter and play with her right then and there. Luckily, the shelter is closed to the public on Sundays. 😌 I fell in love with her image. Just as I had fallen in love with Ducky nearly ten years ago.

All Sunday afternoon and evening, and then Monday morning, I kept going back to the picture of little Sissy. And talking to my sweet Ducky. I decided to call the shelter to see if she had been adopted yet. If not, I was going to bring Ducky’s two smaller beds to the shelter and ask that they be given specifically to Sissy.

When I called, I was told by a very nice lady that Sissy had been adopted. A wave of relief flowed over me. But I also felt hugely happy for her. Happy that she had found her forever family very quickly. (Poor Ducky spent most of her first 7 months of life at the shelter before we adopted her.) I hope – and have to trust – that they will love Sissy with their whole hearts and give her all she needs for the rest of her life. After I hung up with the shelter lady, I told hubby “we’re going to take Ducky’s two smaller beds to the shelter and put them in the donations bucket, in honor of Ducky’s life with us.” So, we stopped at the Atlanta Bread shop for a late lunch and then took the beds to the shelter.

Once the beds were in the donations “bucket” and we were back in the car, I felt happy. Happy that Sissy had been adopted; and happy because I knew Ducky was proud of me. I could literally feel her smiling at me with that special smile she always reserved for me. It was a huge healing moment for me.

There will still be tearful times when I need to feel Ducky’s fur on my face or her body leaning into mine; but I know she’s always in my heart. I can look at her sweet face in the countless photos on my phone or in picture frames. And in the photo pendant I wear around my neck every day.

Photo pendant that I bought from an Etsy seller.

Memories

Last night was six weeks since Ducky joined her sisters and brothers at the Rainbow Bridge; so as I do almost every day, I went looking through all my photos of the last couple of years. I found this one for today’s Wordless Wednesday blog hop post….

I love you, Baby Girl, now and forever.

And this one where she was wearing her happy face….

Hi Mama! I love you too!

I will forever miss my baby girl, my soulmate. About the only thought that makes me feel better at times is knowing that she is whole and healthy again; and playing with Callie, Shadow, Radar, and Bogie while they all wait for me to join them. Truth be told, Radar is probably waiting for hubby. But that’s ok…they had an instant soul connection, like Ducky and me.

Happy Wordless/Wordy Wednesday everyone. Give all your fur-kids some lovies for me. 💗

Thankful Thursday

This past Tuesday night was three weeks since Ducky left us to be reunited with Callie, Shadow, Radar, and Bogie. I’ve been struggling in my attempts to adjust to life without her.

Let’s play Mama!

I’m still struggling. Ducky was the one who always helped hubby and me deal with whatever life threw at us during the nine plus years she was with us.

I’m thankful that God allowed us to be her Daddy and Mama all this time. And thankful that He didn’t let her suffer too much that night he gave her the angel wings she so richly deserved. She was an angel with paws, my special angel, and it hurts to not be able to love on her.

I’m thankful for all the lessons Ducky taught me. And, believe me, she taught me more than I ever taught her. I’m thankful for all the wonderful moments we shared. I’m thankful for all the moments that were hard on us but which helped cement the bond between us. I’m thankful for her unconditional love that allowed her to forgive me for all those times when I was much less than the ideal mama she deserved.

This is the perfect chew toy for me, Mama!

Again, we’re thankful for all the love, kind words, and emotional support we have received from family and friends, both offline and online, many of whom we have never met face-to-face. And I’m thankful for the sweet, thoughtful gifts from three of my fellow bloggers – you know who you are.

We’re thankful for our wonderful vets and staff at Haywood Road Animal Hospital who so lovingly and compassionately comforted us and handled all the final details of making sure Ducky would be coming home to be with us forever.

We’re thankful for the St. Francis Pet Crematorium staff who made sure Ducky’s earthly form was treated with the dignity and compassion she deserved. And her cremains returned to us with heartfelt expression of sympathy for our loss.

My Heart Dog Awaits Me in Heaven

Oh, Ducky, Daddy and I miss you so much baby girl. You were and always will be Daddy’s little princess. You were my constant companion, my little protector, my helper. You were and always will be my soulmate and my heart dog.

You left us so suddenly eleven nights ago that I didn’t have a chance to tell you, again, how very much I love you and to kiss your sweet face. I didn’t have a chance to get a last kiss from you, or to give you a belly, chest, and ear rub. Or just to see you smile at me.

Play With Me!

One day soon I will write another blog post about you. Right now though I can’t. Losing you and Bogie so close together is just too unbearably hard to process. I’m struggling with not having you here physically to love on and play with and talk to all the time.

Happy First Heavenly Birthday Sweet Bogie

You were taken from us way too soon, sweet boy! Daddy, Ducky, Uncle Doug, and I miss you terribly. Daddy, Uncle Doug, and I still have tearful moments. And Ducky still looks for you multiple times a day. Sometimes, I’m sure, she senses your presence.

Last week I wrote a list of some of the things I miss about you. I thought it would help my shattered heart. So, here goes…..

Things I Miss About Bogie

His goofy smile…

His sweet, loving nature.

His innate ability to sense when his Daddy needed him.

His affectionate nature. He was all about giving “kisses” and climbing into my lap – in the chair – or laying next to me on the couch with his head in my lap.

His pestering Ducky all the time.

His stealing Ducky’s Kong Bounzer out in the yard.

His stealing paper towels and tissues off the tables in the living room whenever he had the chance.

His love of life.

Zoomies!

His love for us and Ducky.

His physical presence.

His wanting to be with us all. the. time.

Everything.

A Trainer’s Tribute

Back when we had our first appointments with our current vet, I asked for a recommendation for a dog trainer for Bogie. The young man they recommended highly is now our friend as well.

Like everyone else who had met our precious boy, James fell in love with Bogie instantly. On Tuesday morning he sent me the following tribute with a request for permission to post it on his business page. At the bottom of this post I will include James’ info.

————-

“He never got to see the snow.

“A day short of seeing and running through it, feeling and tasting it in the wind.

“He was beautiful, and he was just beginning to see the world as all dogs do at that age. He wasn’t yet a year old.

“In just a short time, a matter of almost a couple of months, I saw him grow and his heart expand, and the potential growth both as an incredible student and a wonderful family dog.

“Our last session together we began to work with him on his leash. He was so curious and eager to see the world around him. I knew the next steps would be a milestone for him, the next session a new achievement.

“When you’ve been doing this as long as I have, you can see deep into their eyes sometimes, and see a spark of light into what an incredible future is just a pawprint or two away.

“When my client messaged me, myself now a day into the snowstorm, I had to read it over and over again to understand.

“The gate was open, it happens. It happens to all dog owners sometime in their journey with their dog. Gates open, it happens.

“He ran, he ran through the gate with everything he had in him. The kind of exhilaration we only find in dreams.

“The driver never stopped. They didn’t even slow down, continuing to fly on the asphalt away from their wrongdoing, outrunning fault and forgiveness.

“Two children across the street saw what happened,, and brought his body to the driveway. A lady, a stranger, stopped in the middle of the road and held up traffic so the children could safely carry him across.

“I wish children had been part of his life’s story in so many, many other ways.

“Out of respect to the deep and open pain the family is still feeling, I can’t and won’t say his name.

“I wrote this because sometimes pain has to transmute to meaning, otherwise it just keeps eating at you.

“He was a good boy. I had only seen him the day before, and had I even a hint of the loss that would have been felt… I would have wished with all I had to give, that he could’ve had one dance in the snow.

“I will miss you, and every student after that reminds me of you, I will hold a part of you as I guide them on their journey; a journey you deserved to see so much more of than you had.

“With All, Sweet Boy❤🐶❤”

———

With deepest gratitude, I now give you James’ info: James Lyon, owner of Ilio Canine Care. Check out his website at http://www.iliocaninecare.com. James also has business pages on Facebook and Instagram.

A Few Words & Photos of Angel Bogie

It was a week yesterday that our sweet boy went to Heaven/the Rainbow Bridge. I cry my eyes out multiple times a day.

I want to write a full post, but I just can’t yet. If you go to the menu bar and click on Bogie’s name, you’ll see the little bit that I could write the other day.

Sleepy Boy in Mama’s Chair
Hi Mama!
How could he have been comfortable??
Bogie and his Dad. ❤️

Run Free Sweet Bogie 💔

Our precious baby boy is in Heaven/at the Rainbow Bridge with his sisters, Callie and Shadow, and brother, Radar. Hubby and I are devastated, our hearts shattered. My brother’s heart is shattered, too.

It hurts so much to write this post so I’m not going to say much now. Bogie got away from hubby at the gate between the back and front yards, and the next thing we knew Bogie had his angel wings. The coward who hit our boy was going so fast that Bogie was gone in an instant. But he didn’t bother to stop to see if he could help. There’s a special place in Hades for people like that. Thankfully, there were compassionate people who did stop. And two young men who saw it happen apologized for not being able to get the license tag number. They also picked up Bogie’s lifeless body and carried it across the road and put him down gently on our driveway by the front door. Hubby and I thanked them and the other folks who stopped, and shared hugs with one lady who was almost as shaken up as us. And one of our sweet neighbors came out to try to console us.

Then my brother, hubby, and I lifted Bogie into the trunk and drove down the road to our new vet. I had called the clinic to tell them what had happened, and to ask if they could take care of things for us. “Of course we can. Just call us when you get here and we’ll take care of everything.” They absolutely took care of everything, including hugs all around. Bogie should be coming home early next week.

Happy Heavenly 16th Birthday, Shadow

Sweet Golden Girl

You came into our lives on December 7, 2004, and you reunited with Callie on August 25, 2019; but like Callie – and Radar – you will always be in our hearts.

This is not meant to be a sad post. It is a celebration of the years you were with us; years that were filled with love, joy, fun, and laughter, as well as tears of devastating sadness. Your presence made all our lives better, just as Callie’s and Radar’s – and Kissy’s before you – did. You all taught us so much that we could not have learned without you.

Today would also be Callie’s half-year birthday. You girls came to be exactly six months apart and came into our lives exactly six months apart. And the bond between you is eternal. It always gave me such joy to witness that bond on a daily basis. It’s one of my favorite memories.

Together in Life and Spirit, Forever

So, Happy Birthday my sweet Golden Angel. I will always love you (and your sisters and brother). Thank you for always watching over Ducky for me.

Golden Angel Girls

This has always been one of my favorite photos of Callie and Shadow. (Callie in foreground.) The memories make me smile now for the most part. The girls will always be with me in spirit.

They really were that closely bonded from Shadow’s first day with us. Callie was only six months older, but she always watched out for Shadow.

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