Tonka the Wonder Dog
One golden afternoon my daughter came in carrying a fluffy black and white morsel of squirming puppy, weeping that the man down the street was going to kill all the puppies he couldn't find homes for. Her younger brother promptly burst into tears too, for they had been told we couldn't get a dog as our new home had no fence. My husband and I, also captivated by the creature's charm (although skeptical of the "killing the puppies" part), knew we were goners. We contacted a fence builder and began a lively debate about what to name the newest member of the family. I wanted to name him "Quadpod," but was resoundingly overruled. His name became "Tonka" because he was a tough little toy for the kids. (Only a few days later--before the fence was completed--he was hit by a car and lost a front leg. Had he been named Quadpod, we would have had to change it to Tripod, creating who knows what kind of canine psychological havoc!)
Tonka was a beloved member of our family for ten years. He never got over his astonishment that we left and returned, and never failed to greet us with hysterical barking and howling, and his "happy to see you" dance--whether we had been gone ten minutes or ten days! It took us many years to consider getting another dog (mainly because they all had too many legs), but finally Tonka was succeeded--but not replaced--by Hasbro, a scruffy but lovable miniature schnauzer.
Tonka the Wonder Dog, we miss you.
Rosey, AUG 29TH, 1996
This is Rosey, my dog. The best dog I have ever had. She brought joy to all who knew her. Always there to greet me when I came in from a long and stressful day at work. The house will be empty without her, but my heart will always know that she was special and full of love for my best friend. Rest in peace my sweet baby girl. There is no more pain and you are surely one of God's special angels. I'll see you in Heaven when I get there. I know you'll be there to greet me like you used to meet me at the door waging your tail and waiting to go for a walk.
Mom and Dad
Bogart is going to missed by all who knew him. He lived a full life of 9½ years old, but it never seems enough. Bogart achieved Companion Dog status, Agility, and Tracking training. He was smart; too smart at times. He loved to run free, and would take any opportunity to escape the yard.
Bogart died after collapsing on our vacation in Cape Code on 6th of August, 1996. We miss him so, so much. He leaves us with a big hole in our lives and our hearts. I hope wherever he is, he is able to run free. That's what he liked the most.
Elio, Emerenciana, and Gracie
Bandit Gibson (1991-1996)
Bandit was my beloved cat and my very dear friend. He was with me through good times and bad and I miss him dearly. Bandit was the kind of cat that everyone loved. Even people who professed that they didn't like cats liked Bandit. He was a very sociable cat and was loved by many family members and friends.
Bandit's favourite pastimes included helping make the bed, wrestling with Steve, gardening, sleeping, cuddling, and "monster mash". Bandit's most famous tricks were playing catch with his green fishy and dropping a rubber ball down the stairs and chasing after it.
The end came quite suddenly for Bandit. Early one morning, he started to scream with pain. My husband Steve and I rushed him to the vet. It turned out that Bandit had had a weak heart all his short life (he was a week away from his 5th birthday), and he was suffering from a massive blood clot and heart failure. There was nothing that could be done to save him. We decided to have Bandit put to sleep, to prevent a long and painful death. It was a very hard thing to do, and I can only hope that we did the right thing.
Bandit, thank you for bringing us happiness and love, you will be missed, and you will be remembered with love. Steve and I will always love you and we will never forget you.
Kerry Gibson and Steve Lamontagne
Julia, our loved hamster, has sadly left us for a better world. On the morning, July 8 1996, she took her final breath and faded away, never to return. She should have had another year. We miss her.
Asa and Joakim.
Opie 10/16/83 - 6/24/96
You were one of five kittens born at 2:00 am that night, each one a special little gift. You and your brother Gumby decided to spend your lives with me and your siblings found good homes with close friends. Over the years you remained independent but loving. With your almost pure white coat spotted with large patches of orange and graced by your slightly crossed eyes you burned your image deep into my heart. During your life I met my wife and now I wonder if it was you who cinched the deal. You so much enjoyed the spring, spending long hours late into the night sitting in "your" chair on the screened in porch until I had to come and get you in and lock up.
Monday was just another normal night, you ate your supper and headed out for the porch to watch the moon come up but something was oh so wrong and without as much as a whimper you came into the house and layed down and and closed your eyes forever. You didn't die little guy, you were just returned to the manufacturer. We miss you Opie-Steuben and Gumby does too. I know there's a place in heaven for kitties and we hope to see you there. X X O O. Sadly missed by your "Mom & Dad".
Charlotte Bruels 1991-April 24, 1996
Charlotte was an albino guinea pig who came to us when we moved to our new house and our daughter was 9 years old. She lived in a big cage in our kitchen and loved to eat carrots and celery tops. She would squeak and coo whenever we came into the kitchen, and she loved to be brushed. She would sit on our laps and flatten herself out while being groomed, and we used to call her "Flat Pig." She would sit, fat and flat, while we used a small comb to groom her, while she cooed and purred (yes, Guinea Pigs DO purr!). When we introduced her to our dog, Fletcher, he knew right away that she was another family member and not dessert. He would nose her gently, and she would place her little foot on his face and nose him back. Fletcher was always so gentle with her.
She started going to the kennel with Fletcher whenever we were on vacation, and she loved it there. They kept her in the office and played with her as often as they did Fletcher, and let them see each other once a day. Every year for five years Fletcher and Charlotte went to the kennel together. She loved Tony, the kennel manager.
She had started to sleep a lot over the last year, and we knew she was getting old. I think she was old when we got her. I'd come into the kitchen and she would sleep through all the rattling pans and cooking noises instead of squeaking her welcome. She looked tired, and I guess she was.
When we left to go on a week's vacation in April, we told Tony that Charlotte wasn't as active as she had been, but she still loved to be held and groomed. We left after nuzzling her and listening to her purrs and squeaks. The next afternoon we got a phone call from the kennel saying that Charlotte had died in her sleep. We were devastated. Our "Flat Pig" was gone.
They kept her body in the fridge until we returned so we could give her a proper burial. We all cried, adults and kids. Charlotte was a big part of our lives for five years, and Fletcher can't figure out where she went. He keeps nosing around the corner where Charlotte, The Flat Pig, used to live.
Her marker reads: Charlotte: A Flat and Happy Pig. We Love You.
We are moving out of the area as of July 15, 1996, and we want her memorialized here, as the new owners of our house will probably pull up her daffodils. My daughter wants to take the headstone that we made for her, so what better way to memorialize Charlotte A. Pig than here?
To Our Flat and Happy Pig, Charlotte.
The Bruels Family
Diana, 1990 - 31 May 1996
You have always been the best. You have always been good with everybody, like the others have always been happy with you. Still now, you are always with us during the days and our walks. In the case you will change your mind, remember that you are always welcome. We love you. Ciao.
Sei sempre stata la piu' buona. Sei sempre stata bene con tutti, cosi' come noi siamo sempre stati felici con te. Anche ora sei sempre con noi durante le giornate e le passeggiate. Nel caso ci ripensassi, sappi che sei sempre la benvenuta. Ti vogliamo bene. Ciao.
A Lasting Tribute
March 1979 to June 12, 1996
Ralph came to us in March of 1979 after our cat Cookie died of a stroke. I did not want another cat, but, in a moment of weakness, I said O.K.. He was the cutest thing, a handful of orange fluff. Trouble from the start, I knew I was in for it when he jumped out of his carrier and promptly ran right up the drapes. I was told "it's a girl," but after careful inspection, well, boys are different!
Ralph was the love my daughter's life. He could do no wrong. Many were the days when my daughter, then 10 would be wearing long pants and long sleeves--she was, after all, trying to hide the "love bracelets" he had given her. The terror of the neighborhood, I would have to put him in the garage before the kids would come in to play.
One day he chewed on a lamp cord, and I found him under the sofa. Dazed, but apparently unhurt, he recovered. One day I found him slumped on the floor, with something running out of his mouth. He had chewed on a difenbachia plant, but again he recovered. His bladder backed up into his kidneys, and it was touch and go for several days, but again he recovered. He was locked in an abandoned house for several weeks, while we frantically searched for him. Although very thin and quite hungry, he barely survived, although he was not the same old Ralph as before. He no longer desired to roam, choosing instead to stay close to home. The furthest he would go was to the end of the driveway.
While he was growing older, so was my daughter. She had left for college and a new life; he no longer loved her. I was his new love; I fed him, tended to his needs, and was always there. The few times my daughter came home, Ralph was not interested. She picked him up to say goody and he turned his face away.
Over the years many things had changed and so did Ralph. Initially, he was called Tiger because he had the tiger markings. We chose to call him Rotten Ralph, after the cat that won the Glamour Kitty Contest. A big gray cat, Rotten bit the contest judge, and so prompting us to change Tiger's name to Rotten Ralph. In his youth, Ralph would jump fences, jump on the unsuspecting neighbors, jump into open cars, jump on the counters and even into the dryer.
Now that he is gone, there is an unusual and peculiar quite in the house. No longer hearing the familiar howling in the backyard, I wonder if he's doing the same thing in Kitty Heaven. Many people have asked me if ther will be a replacement, and, right now I have to say no. His picture is on my desk, and he won't soon be forgotten.
To Kotek (1984 - 1996)
NO MORE TEARS
"No llores por mi
deja que me vaya"-
your eyes were telling me
the words of the song
we were hearing each day.
Don't cry after me,
it's time for me to go-
twelve years, like an instant,
left memories, a few snapshots
and your purr, which I hear
in my empty home.
No more tears will be shed,
I know you'll be waiting;
you and I together again
when it's time for me to cross
the rainbow bridge.
No more tears will drop,
happy memories must prevail
until we meet again -
I saw it in your eyes
when they were saying:
"no llores por mi."
Stefan and Yvonne
Georgie Dubois 194?-1995
My Congo African Grey, Georgie, lived to be approximately 50-60 years old (we could only trace her life back to a certain point). For 30 years of her life she lived in a small cage without human touch and fed nothing but sunflower seeds and two peanuts a day (very bad diet). I first met George at my avian veterinarian (Dr. Hays) clinic. They were looking for a good home for her. I jumped at the chance and she came to live with us. I got her a huge cage, which she adored, and fed her a good diet (favorite: sweet potatoes) and was paid back a thousand fold. I miss her cuddles. I miss her chasing my husband to bite his feet. I miss her talking and whistling. I miss her intelligence. I miss her. She was the most wonderful bird in the world. She will always live on in my heart.
You snuck into our home and hearts
and took us by surprise;
We couldn't help but love you,
since your soul was in your eyes.
You made us fall in love with you,
- we don't know how or when;
The last time that we lost a pet
we both said "never again . . ."
But then you came along one day
and chose us for your own;
How could we say no to you
after all the love you'd shown?
We miss you, but we know you're
looking down from above,
And, thanks to you, we have open hearts
and two new cats to love.
Chingma and Chingpa
Oh, Bo. I will never forget the day you came into my life. You were a belated birthday present in November of '95 and a huge surprise. You were presented to me wrapped in a cream colored blanket. I had recently been forced to give up my 2 adored cats that I had loved for 11 years. And I was annoyed that you were presented to me as some type of "consolation" cat, so I immediately resolved to take care of you but I didn't plan on getting attached to you.
Well, my resolve was short-lived. You became so special to me, coming into my world at a time when I didn't have a lot to smile about. You gave me great comfort during my months of chemotherapy treatments. Your sweet nature and loving disposition was an inspiration to me and I needed you just as much as you needed me. You were such a good boy from the very beginning. I will miss hearing you beg loudly for milk every time I open the fridge. I will miss your senseless scratching of closed doors. I miss your loud purring in my ear and your rough little cat tongue on my earlobes and my toes. I miss the clean, sweet smell of your damp kitty fur after one of your frequent "lick downs". I miss the funny little bow-legged way you walked, the little crook in your tail and the way you always shook your head. (Those stubborn earmites!!) I miss the way you would greet me in the morning at the coffee maker...flopping over onto your back so I would scratch your fat little belly. I miss seeing your darling orange spotted face peering in through the french doors, and most of all I miss having you in my lap while I watch tv or use my computer.
You were the best gift I ever received....truly a gift from God. You helped me through the roughest times of my life and now you are in Heaven helping somebody else. I regret that our time together was so brief. And I will always regret not checking underneath my Jeep but I had no way of knowing....
Oh, Bo. The pain right now is immense but I wouldn't trade my time with you for _anything_. The grief is tempered by some wonderfully bittersweet memories. Yes, you died a horrific death, but at least I held you in my loving arms as we said good-bye. Scooter the dog is also grieving...she has been watching for you at the french doors for days.
I love you, Bo-Bo Bear, my dearest Kitty-Bo. You be careful during your next 8 lives.
Blue Dott S.
registration number T-54,558, Appaloosa mare
Foaled May 3, 1963--Died April 1, 1993
The most wonderful horse in the world!
"Blue" was a college graduation present from my parents. I had known and ridden her for 3 years before I became "her owner." We were friends and partners for 27 years.
True to her breed, she was a versatile horse. I used her for riding lessons. I cow cut on her, gamed on her. She was a roping horse. I showed her. I trail rode with her. She packed elk. Anyone could do anything with her. She was extremely sure-footed and always gave you 110%.
She was a rather plain-looking horse, not much of the prized Appaloosa "color," but I'd have taken her over a prettier, more colorful horse any day.
She never let me down. Little kids rode her. Adults who didn't know much about horses could ride her in comfort. She could give an experienced rider his or her money's worth. She didn't have a mean bone in her body.
I rode her up to a week before I had to have her put down. A friend of mine told me later, "Blue was my horse's mentor."
I'll never forget her. She was my horse and I trained her, but she taught me more than I ever taught her. We were more than horse and owner. We were friends.
Sasha, Until We Meet Again In Paradise,
Sasha, a beautiful Samoyed, is my little girl in every way that really counts. She passed away suddenly, and alone, sometime during the night/early morning hours of May 20-21, 1996, at the young age of 5 years 3 1/2 months old.
She was all alone in a kennel at her veterinarian hospital. We had dropped her off at the kennel at 7:45 PM on Friday May 17, because we were going away on vacation early in the morning of Saturday May 18. Although we were excited about our vacation, it was very hard to leave Sasha behind. When we dropped her off, the kennel attendant placed her in an area where she could watch us drive away. I will forever hear her cries as she pleaded for us to come back!
Sasha, you gave us so much. You are the sunshine of our days and a candle in the night! A precious gift from God! A daughter to me and daddy, a sister to Mary and Dino! In the short time that we were blessed with your love, you filled our lives with wonder and joy, and made life worth living, even in the darkest of times. There is no place to hide from the pain of losing you, the memory of you is everywhere, and in everything we do!
Sasha, we miss you and love you more than mere words can describe! Your passing on alone, without us near, is something that will haunt us forever. Please understand and forgive us, you deserved so much more!
SASHA, gone from our lives, always in our minds, forever in our hearts! Until we meet again in paradise, and if there's no place in heaven for a beautiful, loving being like you, I'll take my chances in hell!
Mommy, Daddy, Dino and Mary
I remember when my sister came up with the name Peppy in the car coming back from the S.P.C.A. shelter. You were so hyper, anything other than Peppy would have been wrong. I remember those days coming home from school and letting you in from the backyard. You always ran up and down the stairs inspecting each room for other people, though I was always the first one home and no one else was around. Realizing this you'd come back and hang out with me, waiting to greet everyone at the door when they finally came home. You use to love raiding the trash cans and hiding under the beds with your booty, knowing we could never quite get you out of there. I'm glad you finally outgrew that. You were always up for a game of tag in the backyard or for chasing the ball though you never got a hold of the concept of bringing it back to me. I'll always remember the image of you up on our dining room table chomping away at the left over roast beef (it looked like you were smiling) and stealing away to your underbed hideaway before we could catch you. You were always so fast. Or the time the neighbor's dog came through one of the holes you dug, and you guys decided to party all night, knocking over our trash cans and dragging everything out across the backyard. What a mess I had to clean up the next day. I remember waking up the day after the accident happened. I thought it was a dream, until I saw my stained clothes on the floor. I remember my sister pledging all the money in her bank account for any operation that would save you. I remember opening a little booklet the pet hospital gave me title, "When Your Friend Dies," and having the receipt from the hospital fall out. Though dad always called you "dummy" or "el stupido" and pretended to not care about you, I remember his face when we told him you were hit by a car and we had to put you to sleep. I have those memories, the good ones and the bad ones, but those good ones always out-weight the bad.
Sunny was the kindest, cutest, sweetest dog I have ever known. She was a red miniature pinscher, only 4.5 pounds. Officially, she was registered as Sunny Little One. She was born on November 28, 1994, and died tragically on March 20, 1996. But during that short life, she provided so many hours of sunshine in our lives. After my son Eddie was diagnosed with epilepsy, and almost died, in February 1994, we decided to let our dog Lucky have puppies because we loved animals so much, and the puppies would give our lives a happier focus. Sunny was the smallest one in the litter. The night they were born was very, very cold, and we suddenly had a power failure that lasted for 2 days. We all huddled up and kept blankets around the puppies to try to keep them warm enough. Luckily, they all survived.
Sunny became the focus of our life. She was small enough that my son (7 years old) could carry her around with him, and she, and he, loved that. Every time I sat down, Sunny was in my lap. Especially when I was at the computer, she was always curled up there. The first time I sat down at the computer after she died, and looked down to my empty lap, I started to cry. My son brought me a stuffed Snoopy dog to put in my lap. That was so touching. My name on the internet has always been sunny, because that dog represented everything nice and joyful. We had sunflower shower curtains and rugs and stuffed sunflowers sitting on both PC s, all because of Sunny. Her picture graced our coffee mugs and was wallpaper background for the PC.
She went to the vet only to have a baby tooth pulled, and when we came to pick her up, they told us that there had been a terrible accident. They said some new handler had tried to take her for a walk and somehow she had gotten loose from the self-tightening leash that they used. She ran away and was hit by a car and died. All I can hope is that she didn't suffer, and that she had a smile on her face at the end because she thought she was running to the comfort of her loving home.