Home > Family Life, my bad ass dogs, parenting > Please wait at the Rainbow Bridge

Please wait at the Rainbow Bridge

When I got home from the girls’ bus stop yestereday morning, instead of pulling in and immediately closing the door with the remote like I usually do, I got out of the car and moved a couple things out of the garage for bulk trash pickup… one of those items being the airline grade kennel that Beau busted out of earlier this year. Like, literally… he popped the door right out, then broke Roxie out of hers. I gave up kenneling him after that (it was the second kennel he’d destroyed) and reinforces the door & all corners of Roxie’s kennel with zip ties.

After I put the items at the curb I headed inside, and closed the garage door from the wall switch and simultaneously opened the door into the house… Roxie was right on the other side and rushed past me so fast I couldn’t even get a hand on herand as I stood there screaming Roxie NO and praying the garage door would close FASTER… she dodged under it. I’m standing there with the house door partly open (I’ve got one of those door stops at the bottom for when I’m carrying in groceries and it fell down) so while I’m slapping the wall switch trying to get the garage door up and clearly NOT THINKING about the door from the house not being fully closed, Beau damn near knocks me over. I couldn’t find them before I took Tyler to his bus stop, and drove around a little afterwards but there was no sign of them. I went on to work, not wanting to call my boss and tell her I was going to be late two days in a row because of my badass dogs.  Initially I wasn’t worried; half the time one of them gets out, the errant dog is waiting for me at the front door when I get home from looking for them. Both their collars have our home phone & full address AND my cell phone, and they’re super friendly. But as the day went on, there was no call.


rainbow bridgeJust 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 andplay together. There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable..

All the animals that 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….

When I got home there was a card in my door from a department of agriculture livestock inspector (there’s a small “farm” at the end of my street) with a note on the back to call about a “dog problem.” I’m wondering if they went after his animals or something… but that’s not usually the direction they head when they get out and I walk them by there all the time and the only animals they ever show any interest in is an occasional stray dog.

I returned the call right away, and left a message. I had Tyler go around the neighborhood on his bike while I checked Pets911 lost and found section. Every time we hear a dog bark (often, in our neighborhood) we’re leaping up to check the yard.

But then I got a yahoo news alert for South Phoenix on my phone. Two dogs killed after attacking livestock.

Needless to say we are all devastated… poor Reggie is wandering around the house, clearly wondering where the rest of his pack went to.  I’m having a really hard time keeping my composure for the kids. I have my own thoughts about Mr. Farmer’s actions, but ultimately, keeping those dogs secured was my responsibility, and I failed Roxie and Beau in the very worst way. Anyone whose known me or followed my blog for any length of time knows how I feel about responsible pet ownership and my passion for rescue pets. I just feel such a crushing guilt… I let myself be complacent because they always come right back home. I realized too late that as much as they loved the kids and I, what brought one of them home right away was the other. See, one or the other has slipped out from time to time, but they’ve never both gotten out together.

Roxie and Beau should have died peacefully in their sleep like Ramie did. She was my first rescue, who died three months short of her ten year anniversary, and was at least a year old when I rescued her. That’s a damn long time for a Shar Pei. I try to comfort myself that Beau was an old dog who lived eight months and three days with me after I took on the powers that be at Animal Control who claimed he was aggressive and were going to put my sweet old gentleman down… but that doesn’t lift the crushing guilt from my chest. And even though there’s no guarantee Roxie would have found another home, she wasn’t even two years old.  She should have been chewing carpet and linoleum off the floor and jumping through screened windows for at least another ten years… there is no comfort in her loss.

Halle and I got up early yesterday morning and walked the dogs, in hopes of curbing Roxie’s urge to scale the fence and take a stroll… After a summer of hiking Rio Salado where almost every walk was two miles long. I could tell they were thinking… “you’ve got to be kidding me” when I tugged the dogs back towards the house.

I should have called into work yesterday.

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  1. Becky
    August 26, 2009 at 9:48 PM

    Girl, I shed many tears over those babies last night and I didn’t even know them. I do know how much I miss mine every day, still. If there is anything I can do, let me know. I am thinking of all of you and sending much love your way!! *hugs*

  2. August 26, 2009 at 9:55 PM

    Girl, I am so sorry for you and the kids. My heart is breaking for you all. I can only imagine how you feel. Big hugs to you!

  3. Johanna
    August 27, 2009 at 12:00 AM

    Oh Desert Flower! There are no words. A friend of mine handed me a copy of the Rainbow Bridge Monday night, after having to say goodbye to her best 4 legged friend. I read it for the first time ever & such a sadness welled up in my heart. Less than 48 hours later I am reading it again as you have had to say goodbye to your babies. My heart truly goes out to you & your children. While the following may or may not bring you comfort, it reminds me of how your 2 babies were fully alive til the end. “when death finds you, may it find you fully alive” African Proverb.

  4. christie
    August 27, 2009 at 5:42 AM

    OMG Cyn, I am so sorry!!!!! I’m in shock; I can’t even imagine. How unreal. ((((((((((HUGS)))))))))))))) to you all!

  5. Melanie
    August 27, 2009 at 6:18 AM


    Words cannot express how saddened I am for you and the kids. I can only imagine how you feel and I am sending much love and lots of hugs to all 4 of you.

  6. August 27, 2009 at 6:58 AM

    I am so, so sorry!!!

  7. August 27, 2009 at 10:28 AM

    I am so sorry, Cyndi!!
    {{HUGS}} to you and the kids!

  8. Rabeia
    August 27, 2009 at 11:25 AM

    I hope you find peace through the storm. My thought and prayers are with you and the kids.

  9. August 31, 2009 at 11:41 AM

    I can really empathize with you. My children have a bad dog that I worry about constantly when he leaves the house. He seems oblivious to the fact that cars are dangerous, I’m frightened that one day… Well, I won’t even mention it because should that day come, my poor children would be absolutely devastated. My heart goes out to you and the little ones.

  10. Ei
    September 1, 2009 at 6:02 AM

    I’m soo sorry Cyn. This happened while I was away from my computer and I missed it entirely and I feel like a totally crappy friend for not even knowing. 😦 Im sorry for you and the kids and I’m sending you all love, love, love.

  11. September 1, 2009 at 9:48 AM

    Don’t feel like that Ei… but thank you for the love!

  1. September 1, 2009 at 8:47 PM

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