Monday, June 04, 2012

Jake at the Rainbow Bridge

This is Jake lying in the back of the Prius as we drove him to the vet's to be put to sleep today.  He could still lick his kong, but he could no longer stand up for more than a few seconds without collapsing.  He had been through two major seizures in the past 12 hours.  His quality of life had finally taken a turn for the worse.

He had done well for the past 8 weeks on the anti-seizure meds and steroids.  As recent as last Saturday, he was fetching his kong in a neighborhood park.  His appetite had never waned, although today he was down to 49 pounds.

We came home and sadly went through all the dog paraphernalia collected over the past two decades of having big dogs in our lives.  The house seems so still and empty of paws.

My son Dan stumbled upon the following poem on the website of Jake's breeder, who cared deeply for all her dogs.  Even if I don't believe in heaven, the idea of a Rainbow Bridge is enchanting.  Who knows?  Maybe we will see our beloved pets there someday.

 Rainbow 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... 


Blogger e said...

I got tearful reading this post...I know Jake brought you and your family much joy.

Hugs to you,

2:42 PM  
Blogger lacochran's evil twin said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. He sounded like a very sweet dog and I know you gave him the best possible life.

3:53 PM  
Blogger Kristin said...

I'm sorry for your loss, Barbara, you and your family of which Jake was a part. Thinking of you and wishing you peace.

4:36 PM  
Blogger Gary said...

Barbara, I am so sorry to read about Jake. I know what you are going through and it is a tough time. My thoughts are with you. When our dog Nelly died in March 2011 we were devastated and a friend of mine sent me The Rainbow Bridge. I didn't know it at the time but I did find it surprisingly comforting. Those we love are never totally gone. Take comfort that you showed him love to the very end and made him one happy pup. I am glad I got to play kong fetch with him that sunny day in May. He was a sweetie. xo

7:01 PM  
Blogger Judy Kramer said...

Dear Barbara and David,
I'm so sorry to hear about Jake. He was a wonderful dog, who was well-loved and very loving. He'll be missed,

8:43 PM  
Blogger Steve Reed said...

I'm so sorry to hear about Jake. I'm glad you got a few more months with him after that scare in April. Losing our dogs was one of the hardest things I've ever been through...I haven't read the Rainbow Bridge before, but I admit I had similar thoughts at the time! I'm thinking about you and David and your family.

3:48 AM  
Blogger Kevin Wood said...

I'm so sorry to hear Jake's gone. He seemed like such a great dog and I always enjoyed reading of his exploits and challenges. It's hard to lose a pet, but eventually the pain will wane and you'll have a all those wonderful memories of him.

9:22 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm so sorry to hear about Jake. I've been wondering how he was doing. I'm glad you were blessed with precious time with him after the scare a while ago. You two gave each other so much; I hope those memories are a comfort when your heart is grieving.

This Sunday will be a year since my partner and I called the vet to our home. I'll be thinking of you and your family and Jake, too.



5:39 AM  
Blogger WW said...

Dear Barbara....I send hugs to you an yours. I too know what it's like to loose a dog "before his time"....before he just falls asleep and doesn't wake up. I truly fear losing our pup. But again, to you and yours I send hugs and sympathy. Jake knew he was loved.


9:46 PM  
Blogger Pauline said...

Oh that awful empty feeling! The best of us is brought out in thoughts like those the poem expresses. So sorry you had to lose your Jake.

7:04 AM  
Blogger bulletholes said...

So long Jake! I've enjoyed reading about him over the years. I decided to look back at some of your Jake posts, and found this marvelous dialogue between Jake and ol' Dylan:
J: How ‘ya feeling today?
D: My hips hurt and I can’t see much of anything, but other than that I guess I’m OK.
J: If I can work this lock, want to make a break for it, you know one more fling out in the wild?
D: Sure, do your thing and let’s go before she opens the door again.

All dogs go to heaven, Barb, yes they do!

10:52 AM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Thanks to everyone for your parting sentiments about Jake. Bulletholes reminded me of a time a few years back when we learned just how smart Jake was as he plotted one daring escape after the next, just to prove he could. He was quite a dog!

10:00 AM  
Blogger Reya Mellicker said...

Barbara I am so sorry for your loss. May he fly high.

11:55 AM  

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