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Pet Memories

Pet MemoriesThis page on our site is dedicated to preserving those special memories that only our pets can bring to our lives. Although our site is dedicated to dogs, if you have lost any kind of pet we’d be honored to share your story.

To do so, just contact us.

Below you will find the stories of others just like you that have dealt with the pain of losing a beloved pet.  We hope that in some way it helps with your own healing as well but first, a tribute to all pets…

The Rainbow Bridge

Just this side of Heaven is a place called The 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 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 or 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 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 to each other 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…

“Butkus” The Great Dane

Butkus The Great DaneIn 2007, my husband and I were searching for an adult Great Dane that was in need of a good home. Our plan was to give a dog in need some compassion and a great home in which he could feel safe.

After six months of searching we ended up finding a 3-month-old puppy who had the same needs at an unexpected age.

On St. Patrick’s Day in 2008, we had our Brindle Boy flown from Kansas City to our home in Las Vegas, NV. He was so scared and tiny (28 pounds) in his travel crate. I pulled him out and carried him from baggage claim to our car in the parking garage.

He was sick. . . very sick.

Our little boy ended up in the hospital for 4 days after some unethical vet signed off on his Air-bill that the puppy was healthy for flight. Our boy was the “underdog” from day ONE.

Our loving veterinarian wasn’t sure if he would even make it but she nursed him back to stable condition then sent us to an ophthalmologist. The puppy had underdevolped eyes: blind in one and cataract in the other.

I cried and cried trying decide if I should put his poor creature through a cataract surgery which would make him COMPLETELY blind for 2-weeks while he healed. I opted for “NO”.

Finally our little baby Butkus (named after Chicago Bears Hall of Famer, Dick Butkus) was home and part of our family. He never had an accident in the house and was given free roam of our home and yard within three weeks of arriving.

A far cry from the barn where he lived in Kansas.

Butkus had allergies (pine, wheat, down, feathers, horses, mold, wool . . . the list goes on) that required medication and testing. He couldn’t see very well at all and he had dietary issues. The point is, he needed us.

It took a few months but we got on a routine and good allergy meds and food. It was A LOT of work but Butkus was thriving in our family. He taught us compassion and love on a level neither my husband nor I had felt before. He had a way of making every morning special by nudging you awake and playing like a baby giraffe – huge, leggy and awkward.

Everyone that met him LOVED him. We were so proud of the life we helped to save.

Butkus grew to be 38″ tall at the shoulder and 145 pounds. He could look OVER our bar-height counter, could look into the kitchen sink, could greet us in our SUV buy sticking his nose in the window . . . he was HUGE.

He was so tall and beautiful that frequently people would stop their cars while driving by to ask about him. Kids would yell out, “Look Mom! A tiger dog!”.

He was special.

Butkus was mild mannered and loved to keep to himself. Other than his family he only really loved three things: His queen sized bed in the den with clean sheets weekly, going for a morning walk (but not too far because he liked to go home best) and finally, McDoubles.

Yes, we know you shouldn’t give your dog hamburgers but this little guy was on such a strict diet due to allergies that sometimes, it just felt good to let him devour a hamburger. He would buck and kick when he smelled the McDonald’s bag. (Pizza was a close second to McDonald’s)

I don’t want to describe every detail of the day that Butkus died, but it was horrible . . . and later wonderful.

We were on our morning walk when I threw the ball for Mariposa (our 8-yr-old Dane). She ran to get it and I called Butkus to me, snapping so he could follow the sounds since he doesn’t see well. He was happy and joyful as he ran to me with his big, floppy ears bouncing.

He fell at my feet and was gone.

I tried and tried to revive him with mouth to mouth and chest compressions, but he was not there. It was as though God snatched him up mid-stride. I cried and prayed over him, asking my grandfather (another dog lover who passed in 2003) to come get him.

I ran 1/2 mile back to my house to find help and get the car.

There was a man outside my house.

All I could get out was that I needed help with my dog. He jumped in the car and drove with me to the site where my precious boy lay. That man was so compassionate. He cried with me and he carried my 150# dog about 200 yards to the car.

I don’t know how the man did it.

He couldn’t have been more than 150# himself. I dropped the man at our cross street and I drove to the vet, knowing I had to say goodbye to my baby boy.

Friends and family rushed to my side that day while I waited for my heart-broken husband to fly back from work in New Jersey. Butkus was the first pet my husband every had from puppy to death.

The coming days were horrible.

But on day three, we watched the sunrise together and started to feel at peace. We laid Butkus to rest a week after his passing at a pet cemetery.

There are a few strange things that occurred during this time that completely restored our faith in God and confirmed our love for each other.

The one thing that is still unsolved is this: Who was the man that helped me carry B?

I asked my neighbor to contact some workers he had at his house that day to find out but he has been unsuccessful locating the man. I’m not sure if I’ll get to meet this man again to thank him but one thing is sure; on that horrible Friday, September 30, 2011 that man made things easier for me. I’d like to express my gratitude to someone who was definitely an angel to me that day.

Thank you!

Butkus left us doing exactly what he loved that day. He felt no pain. And for a bonus, he got to eat some pizza the night before. That was a RARE treat and he loved every bite!

I could go on and on (and I have) about all the great things Butkus did for us but here is a short list of gifts we received from our baby boy:

Revived Marriage
Restored Faith
Renewed Friendships

We hope we can be good stewards of these gifts that Butkus gave us. We pray that we show the same compassion and love to all those around us like Butkus did.

He was such a good boy.

God’s little angel.

Dustin and Nita Newsom
Las Vegas, NV