Flashback to the June of 1999. My fiance and I are on the way to the hall to finalize our wedding menu. First we are going to his parent’s house for supper. On the way there we find a new store that sells only pet food and supplies. I remind him we need food for the cat’s so we decide to check it out.
It’s a great store, not a pet store but everything you need for your pet. We find what we need and we are all done. I am at the cash paying when I notice this man come in with the cutest puppy. My fiance is ahead of me. I hear the man say to the cashier ” Do you know anyone who wants to buy a puppy? We can’t keep this one as there is no one to take care of her during the day and she is too little to be left alone.” I feel bad to tie her outside all day so I want to find a home for her.” I froze on the spot. I called to my fiance who was now almost out the door.
I went to him and told him what was going on. We had discussed getting a puppy when we moved into our new home. We lived in an apartment on the third floor and were moving at the end of that month. I asked him if we could just talk with the man and take a look. He knew by the look on my face where this was headed. So we approached the man and talked with him and played with the puppy. I was in love with her. I know all puppies are cute but this one there was something about her that just got me.
So after an hour and my famous line which my husband will never let me forget. ” Please let’s get her. She can be my wedding present and I’ll never ask you for anything else ever again.” The man sold her to us for $50.00. We left the store with puppy food, puppy bowls, puppy toys and a huge dog crate because of her breed we knew she would be big, and of course with this new puppy. We managed to get everything into our two door Saturn and were on our merry way to his parent’s house for supper.
We showed up on their doorstep and introduced them to our new addition. It was the first time we ever asked them to babysit but certainly not the last. Oh and did I mention that we thought the puppy was a male? So we were thinking of boy names all the way to and from the Hall where we were to be married at the end of the summer. We got back to his parent’s and had decided on a name. Well it was short lived because his mom informed us that this pup was not a male but a female. I guess my husband did not know where he was looking.
We took her home that night and her name came to me as most names do somehow. I wanted to call her Molly. It just fit.
The last 11 and a half years with her have been awesome. She followed me around like a mother hen when I was pregnant. She welcomed all four of my babies home from the hospital and guarded them so fiercely. She was truly a great dog.
It was with great sadness that we made the decision to euthanize her two weeks ago today. She had been having trouble with her hips. She was on medication for arthritis. Two weeks ago she went downstairs in the afternoon in our backyard and would not come back up. I called her and called her. She lay in the snow and I thought she was just being stubborn, wanting me to go out and play with her. I got dressed ready for a snowball fight but to my surprise she would not move.
I came close to her and realized that she could not stand. My first thought was that she had broken something because that morning she had been fine. It took me over and hour to coax her step by step to come in the house. I brought her in the side of the house where she could go down the stairs. I had to use a towel under her tummy to help lift her. No easy feat when you have a hundred pound dog. I finally got her in.
I called my husband at work and made an appointment at the vet that evening. It was so sad, we told the kids that she was not doing well. They all cried and hugged her and begged us not to bring her to the vet. I hoped for the best but knew it was not going to be good news. To my surprise my husband came back with her and new medication. He said nothing was broken. The vet suggested we try this new medication for 48 hours.
She thought there was something else going on as well as her breathing was not normal, perhaps a tumor in her lungs. I wasn’t sure what to think but I was willing to try the 48 hours to see if it could improve. Well sadly it did not improve.
She could not walk. Her eyes would follow me and they had that look to them. It’s like she knew. So we spoiled her rotten. She had chicken and steak and all the things I never let her have. She was hugged and loved, scratched in all the right places. We sat with her on the floor. If we were in the kitchen, my husband would carry her in the kitchen so she could be with us. He would move her from room to room.
I called the next day and made an appointment with the vet. This was not the life I wanted for my dog. I wanted to be selfish and not make this decision but I made a promise to my pets a long time ago that I would make sure they had the best quality of life. And if they got sick I would have the courage to make the proper decision. The vet said we could try other things but she was old and in the end it would not change her problems with her hips. It was really goodbye this time.
We brought the kids to my mother in law’s house and my husband and I went to the vet with our Molly. We were brought to a softly lit room with a blanket on the floor. She was given a shot to relax her and we were left alone with her for a little while until the vet came.
My husband and I talked about all the things this wonderful dog had done over the last 11 and a half years. The trouble she caused, the holes she dug in the yard, the times she was sprayed by skunks, the times she ran away to swim in the lake down the street only for me to find her rolling in the mud and stinking like a swamp.
How she would take food off the counter when we weren’t looking and have that guilty look all day that dogs get. How she slept at the foot of our bed for years and how we would trip over her in the dark. How she would comfort my mom and never leave her side when she was having her chemotherapy. The love she brought to our family and to everyone who knew her.
The time she got her tail stuck in the door and they have to shorten it. The time I took her for a shave in the spring and the girl accidentally used the shortest blade. She looked so funny and I would not take her for a walk because I thought for sure the other dogs would laugh at her. So many memories.
We laughed and cried, petting her and talking to her. Then the vet came in for the second shot and in a little while she was gone.
I will never forget how this dog changed our lives, how she gave so much of herself to us unconditionally. She will be missed. I know she is at Rainbow Bridge.
I also know that it was a fair trade. I know she was loved back just as much by all of us.
As my husband and I drove to pick up the kids. I reached for his hand. ” Thank you.” I said to him.
” For what?” he said.
” For getting me the best wedding present ever.”
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….