Pets are as much a part of our family as people, and we were all heartbroken when we lost all three of our elderly dogs within a two-month span. Then, we gained a new one.

My canine companions crossed the Rainbow Bridge, and I believe they are happy and healthy and running around playing together until we meet again one day.

 

Gizzie

I knew the end was near for all of them. My husband told me to prepare myself. Gizzie's eyesight was failing, he had begun to lose his teeth (despite my best efforts), and he was slowing down. Tragically, it was not his advanced age that claimed his life, but an unfortunate accident. At the time, I was devastated. In hindsight, I know he is much better off.

 

Big Sam

Our Big Sam, who we rescued from a shelter when he was two-years-old, had been ill for about a year. He had quite a personality and, as with most labrador retrievers, was very intelligent. He "spoke" to us with his eyes and a quirk of his head. He enjoyed fetching his tennis balls until a few weeks before we had to make the difficult decision to help him go to meet our Gizzie. The vet gave us some wise advice. If your pet's quality of life is not what you want for him or her, it's time. Big Sam was in pain, he was sad, and it was time for us to let him go.

 

Sammy

Sammy was a special dog. He had three-and-a-half legs. He was born with a short arm, and hopped around on his full front leg. We rescued Sammy from a shelter as an older dog. He had been returned by two previous owners. He was one of the kindest, gentlest dogs I ever met. After our other two dogs passed away, it was as though Sammy gave up. He stopped walking and eating. We had to carry him outside to potty. I took him to the vet and we tried steroids to boost him. And then one day, I was visiting with him outside and telling him I loved him. About 15 minutes later, I was in the house when my daughter came in and told me he was dead. I was devastated, but knew he was tired and ready to go meet his buddies.

 

Lil Bit

My cat Lil Bit, the oldest of that bunch at nearly 19, is still alive and thinks he rules the roost. He sleeps with us every night. I think he's right, but don't tell him I said so.

 

 

 

Harley Mae

And now we have Harley Mae. She's a nearly 12 pound yellow lab puppy. I'm not sure who actually found whom, but we are so happy to have her as part of our family. She can't replace the beloved pets we've lost, but she most certainly is filling a space that feels empty without them.