How some families remember their furry members…
“They truly leave footprints on our soul when they leave their earthly bodies…we are forever changed by them…” Diane Lippard Tullia
Molly, a beautiful Golden Retriever, was just shy of thirteen when she was diagnosed with cancer. The Marrs family made the tough decision to have her right front leg amputated in the hopes of saving her. She made it through surgery, but then her kidneys shut down and she stopped eating. Before the family said their final farewell, they gave Molly a glorious send-off. They rolled her through the neighborhood on a special cart for her last walk, even stopping by a local church to pray.
One of the best ways to remember a beloved pet is to seek out a creative outlet. After losing her black cat, Max, three years ago, my friend Barbara Castiglia, who writes a pet column for Family Magazine, found that using a kit to make a garden stepping-stone helped her mourn her best friend of nearly 20 years. She appreciates having a spot she can visit or view from a window when missing him. Also helpful was planting bulbs that return each year and provide a sense of the “circle of life.” Her husband, Paul, channeled his grief by composing a loving blog post tribute. Click here to read:
“I think dogs/cats/pets are all extensions of the Holy Spirit, another way to let our Higher Power love us.” Geri Krotow, novelist and animal lover
“We carry both Wyatt and Sherwood’s collars in the RV. I keep all of the tags from all the dogs’ collars in a jar on the bookcase…this Christmas I am going to put all of the tags on one tree. I also put up the stockings from every dog that we have had every Christmas.”
Diane Lippard Tullia
He was eight.
“We have not painted over any of the toenail art that he had done on the wall while sleeping nor have we cleaned the artwork off of the windows either. People may think that it looks dirty, but to us it is a loving reminder of our family’s companion that left us too soon in life. We walk past his artwork everyday, and when we see it then we see him running throughout the house playing and enjoying his life to the fullest until he took his very last breath. That artwork will remain in my house forever!”
From “Magestic and Wild,” Baker Books 4/15/13:
“For Yukon 1986-2001 & Nahanni 1986-2002
We never grew tired of the thousands of trails
We never grew tired of each other.
We never grew tired of God and what he had made.
We were always glad of a life together
and a wilderness shared.”
“Daisy was my live-in friend through Vic’s illness and death, walking with me, staying close, easing my grief with her companionship. Until today, Daisy enjoyed her crunchies, got excited
about visitors, and enjoyed sniffing around the front yard on warm days. Until yesterday, she got out the door with my help, but we’ve crossed the divide.” To read the rest of writer Elaine Mansfield’s essay about her Yellow Lab, Daisy, click here:
…and sometimes our pets go missing and we never see them again.
Betka, missing from Denton, TX since June 24, 2013
Thomas Rodgers’ black cat, Betka, went missing weeks after our family dog passed away in May. Here’s Thomas’ plea for help on Facebook: “Hi Animal lovers! My cat Betka has been missing for two
days. She’s very friendly and will usually go up to any stranger. She has a clipped left ear, a cloudy left eye, and was wearing a red collar with a big gold bell on it. She’s microchipped and registered in Denton. Please keep an eye out for her! She’s one of our beloved kids! We will reward the person that finds her or has any information. She was last seen on Elm and Prairie.”
To read more about her work, please visit her website: www.kathleenmrodgers.com