Waiting At The Bridge

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.

Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together….

~Author Unknown

Abby

Abby was my first dog as an adult. Growing up, my family always had a black Labrador around the farm so it was natural that my first dog would be a black lab. As a young dog, Abby was what you would call an “independent spirit” and liked to challenge authority or in many cases just ignore authority. She also became mentor and sergeant to many new dogs as they came into the household over the years. She was a dog that was so “tuned in” to my emotions and was always the one to sit by and lick tears off my face when necessary. Abby loved hiking in the woods, swimming, playing ball, but her favorite activity in the world was going for boat rides. Abby even showed us how “old dogs can learn new tricks” when she entered the obedience show ring at the age of 12 to earn titles in obedience and rally. She battled cancer with dignity and lived to the ripe old age of 13 ½. She taught me valuable lessons about to live life on your terms and don’t put up with grief from anyone. She was my protector and counselor on many occasions.

Blue

I adopted Blue when she was just shy of 2 years old. She and Abby were of similar age and they became hiking, swimming and sleeping on the bed buddies. Blue had an unfortunate start to life as she contracted blastomycosis (a nasty fungal infection) that left her blind in one eye and her lungs severely damaged. Blue loved to go for walks and retrieve her tennis ball over and over again, but her favorite thing in the world was to stand in the kiddie pool and attack the water hose as the pool was being filled. She was an expert snuggler and would often climb her way up into the nearest lap she could find. We battled two recurrences of the blastomycosis as it is known to lie dormant in the body until a stressor triggers it to become active again, but on the third reoccurrence she just did not have it in her to recover again and we had to say goodbye when she was just 3 ½ years old. She had such a fighting spirit and was the happiest girl even in the midst of her health struggles….miss you Boo Boo Bear.

Ellie

Miss Ellie Mae came into my life shortly after Blue’s passing as the household was a bit lonely and Abby was in need of a new playmate.  Abby became the best big sister to Ellie and they became inseparable.  One day I was out hiking with Abby and Ellie on a familiar trail that had just been damaged by an ice storm.  Ellie was around 6 months old and when we came to a large tree downed across the trail, Abby proceeded to walk underneath the tree but Ellie decided to spring over it instead.  My first thought when that happened, was “this dog needs to do agility” and from there the rest is history. Ellie took me and her pack-mates head-first into the world of dog agility.  She loved it from the very first tunnel she took and she ran with pure joy every single time we were out on a course for practice or for competition.  Ellie was also the one who introduced me to canine massage as she was very exuberant even in her aging years.  With the help of canine massage, and at times acupuncture and chiropractic work, she was able to compete safely and do the things she loved.  Ellie taught me how to live life enthusiastically and to find joy in everything you do.  Her passion was playing agility and playing Frisbee, but Ellie just loved being with me whether it was for a hike in the woods or snuggling on the couch.   Ellie passed suddenly of hemangiosarcoma at 12 ½, and not a day goes by that I do not think of this girl with love and gratitude. 


Max

Max came into my life with my husband Dean. As a young dog, Max loved to go for walks and chase his toys around. When I met Max he was 15 years old, blind and deaf. He still had a sassy spirit and loved to “shake up” and wrestle with his toys. He amazed me at his ability to map out his surroundings and put up with three exuberant, large female dogs. Max loved to sniff around the yard, nap in the sunshine and snuggle with his daddy. He lived to be 16 ½ and taught us the art of “growing old gracefully”. He is missed by all.

Sera Kay

We adopted Sera Kay when she was 13 ½ years old. Her family moved to a townhouse in the city and wanted her to live out her life in a country home. When Sera came into our house, she basically looked around and decided “this will do”, she did not dwell on the past she just moved forward with gusto. She was a very spry 13 ½ year old golden who had a sassy personality and loved, loved, loved squeaky toys. She would often wake us up at 4:00 in the morning squeaking one of her toys, which made our hearts sing. Sera went for daily walks with the pack and loved hanging out in the yard in the sunshine. She was able to live out her last year of life with us and in that short time she taught us the true art of staying young at heart, living each day to the fullest, and never looking back.