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Like the beagles that come into our lives, your pals at Big On Beagles like to stay positive. We make a point of being as upbeat as a rescued beagle's tail. After all, laughter is contagious and we want to always make you laugh or at least smile when you read our messages. But, I suppose, smiling and laughing wouldn't feel nearly as wonderful if we didn't know what it felt like to be sad sometimes. That's life. We laugh and we cry. There is beauty in both.

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 Our Beagle of the Month:  A Memorial Tribute to Rex
Devoted Servants: Deanna & Andrew
 
 
All About Rex as told by beloved BOB Board Member, Deanna, on July 17, 2013...
 

 

 

This email is written with so much sadness.  Early yesterday evening, Rex passed away.

 

Last year, he had been diagnosed with heart disease and with the aid of pills, we were able to keep his heart healthy and strong.

 

Last November, he was diagnosed with lymphoma and my vet thought at most, 2 months, as it was well advanced and had turned up suddenly.

 

Rex, the stubborn and sweet soul that he is, could not be deterred and said no, I want to live and enjoy life and to hell with any timeline.

 

In the spring of this year, his lymphoma advanced to a rare skin lymphoma, in which he developed lesions on his paws, ears and face.  He lost much of his fur, but never, ever, his feisty attitude and will to live.

 

Over the past month or so, he had been slowing down considerably.  No longer having the energy to walk to the park, but he enjoyed a romp around the backyard and to sit on the front porch and watch the world go by.

 

He would also enjoy his neighbourhood car rides and would partake in them 2-3 times a week and even give the odd howl as he saw fellow woofies that he knew.

 

Two weeks ago, his howl faded from the wonderful baritone voice to barely a squeak.

 

Always with a wag in his tail, a light in his eyes and a good appetite in his belly....yesterday morning he said he had had enough.  He was weak and listless and it was time.

 

He was loved so very, very much and he gave his heart back ten-fold.  If I could design a poster illustrating the definition of what a beagle is, he would be that ambassador.

 

Rex filled our hearts with such love and such joy and we will never, ever forget him.

 

Deanna

 

 

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You will be missed...

Mr. April:  Biscuit

Biscuit's Life Changers:  Our Friends, Arnie & Anita

In their own beautiful words, this is Arnie & Anita's story of Biscuit ~ this is what unconditional love can do: 

Biscuit went to sleep for the last time on the afternoon of Friday March 22, 2013.

He originally came to us through an older couple who found that beagle energy was just a little too much for them to handle. They themselves had gotten him just a few days before from a woman who lived in an apartment and worked 12 hour shifts.  Because of her long hours at work, Biscuit (then called Max) lived in a kennel in a corner of her apartment. Worried that the neighbors would complain about the barking, she hung a blanket from the ceiling in front of the kennel so that's where he lived for most of the day - in a dark kennel, in the corner of an apartment, all by himself.  The only other thing that we know for sure is that she had adopted him from Animal Services.

The original plan was that Biscuit would stay with us until his forever home was found through BOB. Even though he was featured on the website for almost a year, we just couldn't let him go. It took no time at all for us to fall in love with him and realize that we were actually his forever home so he became a part of our family along with Belix and Jack.

He wasn't the cutest beagle ever. He limped on his back leg (and sometimes didn't use it at all), his tongue always hung out of the right side of his mouth because his jaw was deformed and he breathed loudly and snored.  The BOB vet checked him over, and suspected that he had been hit by a car because his pelvis and jaw had been broken at some point in the past. His teeth were a mess and he had sinus damage. We prayed that it wasn't the other possibility that he had been severely beaten as he also showed signs of possible abuse. 

When he first arrived, he wouldn't go into our bedroom because, we think, that's where the cage was.  He didn't like to be touched in certain places or to be hugged and would let us know by curling his lip and showing his teeth.  He was head shy, so bending down towards him was also out of the question.  He slept curled up in a tight ball in the corner of the room or under a chair or table.  It took almost a year for most of his fears to vanish, and then he took over the house!

With a backyard to play in with his two new brothers, the limp quickly disappeared (he and Jack quickly became play buddies). All he needed was some exercise! He worshiped the sun and would follow it around the house as he napped. He would sit on the steps by the back door, bathed in sunlight and just watch the world go by. He's the only beagle that we've had that loved the water - we even bought a kiddie pool for him to lie in to cool down in the summertime.  When he rolled around in the grass he took so much joy in it that you wanted to get right down there and roll around with him.

As he became more comfortable with us and realized that he was in his forever home, his reserve changed to love, a LOT of love. He loved to give kisses and had this way of nipping your earlobe as he gave them.  He was a "loud panter" because of the previous damage to his mouth and nose, so much so that if he was beside you while watching TV, you had to either turn it up or give it up. He was the beagle equivalent of a "morning person". As soon as I started stirring in the morning (that state when you can easily fall back into a full sleep), he took it as his signal to begin the day. Of course, it wouldn't be any fun if it was by himself so he insisted that I get up with him by breathing in my face, pulling the blankets off or even taking one of my fingers in his mouth and tugging on it to pull me out of bed. It's as if he was saying "C'mon Dad.... C'MON DAD.... It's going to be a GREAT day so LET'S GET GOING!". I have to say that I was a lot grumpier about it than Anita, who had it even worse later on when it was her turn to be woken up.  On top of what he did to me, he would jump all over her to get her up and going.

Even with his deformed mouth, he loved to carry things.  He dragged his fleecy blankets upstairs, downstairs, and outside.  When you'd come home, he'd be so excited that he'd grab something, anything, and bring it to you at the door.  His blankets, toys, books, shoes, or the TV remote (CRUNCH)!

There are so many memories.... I still remember the first time he leaned into me for a scratching and realizing how much he had changed in his time with us. He had come to love to curl up with us on the couch or stretch out so much that there was no room for the humans to sit.  He went by many names besides Biscuit; Junior, Little Buddy (Gilligan), Munchkin, and Anita also called him Yo-Yo.  Everyone who met him, fell in love.

He started throwing up infrequently about a year ago. By the late fall, it had progressed to weekly and was increasing. In February, we had an ultrasound done and the diagnosis was stomach cancer. We decided that the invasive cancer treatments that were available would be too much for him - he had been through so much in his life that we did not want to torture him any more. I had so hoped that he would make it to the spring so that he could have a few more days in the sun in the backyard but it wasn't to be. When he stopped eating and we couldn't get him to take his pills even with the tastiest of meat or treats, we knew that he was telling us that it was time. 

Friday is still too close for me to write about how absolutely agonizing the decision was. Suffice to say that Anita's and my hearts were shattered and many tears were shed.  Belix and Jack were AMAZING through the day and were lying on the floor beside him the end.

Biscuit was a brave and special little guy and touched us as few other living creatures have. On one hand, the house is emptier without him but on the other hand, I can also still feel him all around us. While the first half of his life was not the best, we hope that his time with us erased all of the bad memories and left only the good ones.
 
I can't help but remember the pets that have gone before Biscuit: Whiskey, Brandy and our cats, Percy and Mowgli who are now all playing together at the Rainbow Bridge.



Thank you for reading and sharing our memories.


Arnie

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4 years ago, Obama became President of the United States. But, this side of the border, we voted for someone else. No campaigning necessary for this guy. He won by a landslide...with a single look. A girl could get lost in those big dark chocolate brown eyes, especially when accompanied by the innocent bat of those flirtatiously long blond eyelashes.

 

In celebration of the election, we named him Dwight D. Eisenhowler.

 

Dwight was a lemon & white beagle of small stature.

Dwight was President of his backyard.

Dwight was digging a hole to China in that same backyard for the sake of future business trips - cheaper and better for the environment than AirForceOne.

Dwight ruled my heart.

 

When I'd introduce our little canary in a coalmine to people, I'd always proudly start with "He's the most expensive rescue case to date!" It was the truth then and it's still the truth. The mighty Dwighty had been picked up as a stray by our friends at Scarborough pound. He had a customary examination by the shelter vet upon arrival. She had concerns there was something neurologically wrong with him. The roughly 8 year old beagle walked like a drunken sailor, criss-crossing his back legs. I didn't know what I was in for when they called me to see if Big On Beagles could take him.

 

A trip to our vet was followed by a trip to the neurologist at VEC which was followed by a trip to the lab for a cat scan which was followed by surgery to remove a cyst from Dwight's spine which was followed by several months of re-hab involving slow but steady walks to strengthen his muscles. He loved the sympathetic attention one scores as a rehab patient. 

 

That same month, we had our BEAGLE BASH. We raised a whopping $4,000! Dwight spent the entire wad. It was almost as though he planned the whole thing.

 

 

Do you want to know what just one BEAGLE BASH can do?

 

Everything.

 

Whether it's just for one homeless howler or a flock of them.

 

 

I don't have to tell you why Dwight was worth it. I think you get the picture. That's probably because you've had a Dwight of your own and, like me, you probably have a list a mile long of all the silly little things that makes your beagle worth the last dime in your pocket. Silly little things like somehow managing to dreamily drift off to sleep on a warm summer day...even with a rock for a pillow.

 

We were hoping for more than a 4 year term for our foster boy turned perma pup (we officially adopted Dwight after his lengthy rehab given how attached we'd all become), but wishing something doesn't make it so.

 

We lost our most expensive beagle in BOB history to cancer last Sunday. He never got to finish digging that hole to China. But we're keeping the excavation site open for the next foster beagle or two or more howl bent on spending the money we raise at this year's BEAGLE BASH FOR CASH.

 

As I prepare for the biggest, bestest FUNdraising event of the year, I'm thinking fondly of you for being there with us every pawstep of the way, supporting our work on behalf of daydream believers like Dwight.

 

I'm also thinking of Dwight, my wilful little beagle, my inspiration to keep campaigning for beagles meant to be leaders.

And so I'm dedicating the 7th Annual BEAGLE BASH FOR CASH to the best President ever to rule our hearts ~ Dwight D. Eisenhowler

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Becky - May 22, 2011

On May 24th, I got the email I knew would come eventually. It was from Becky's foster parents, Leanne & Guy, otherwise known as the Pet Repair team. We couldn't fix Becky's worn out body as she went into kidney failure, but when our sweet girl pawed her way into heaven, that heart of hers was as fit as a fiddle. That's because of her foster family. They filled her heart with more love than I'm sure Becky ever thought possible. All my love goes out to you, Leanne and Guy. You really did fix our Becky in the most important way and now she's sharing that happy heart making heaven even more heavenly. 

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St. Nicholas - July 12, 2011

On July 12th, I received an email from our friend and Nicky's devoted perma-foster mom, Catherine. She wrote to say that Nicky is with the angels now. Do you know that one dog in your life you'll always cherish most of all? That was Nicky to Catherine. Both our hearts are raw with sadness right now, but I've asked her if she'd like to write a little something in his honour for our site when she's ready. In the meantime, I just want to express how much Catherine means to me and to all the dogs she holds so dear to her heart. She is a special and unique individual, running her own palliative care rescue for terminally ill dogs at her beautiful country home. Somehow, she always finds space to include one of our beagles in need of such specialized care. Nicky was one of those beagles yet Nicky soon became one in a million. There will never be another Nick. And there will never be another Catherine. You are so special. All I can say is thank you again and again for giving Nick and all the others a little heaven right here on earth.  

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Clark - July 15, 2011

A week after losing my Elizabeth, we said goodbye to our Clark. It was time. His little body was worn out as he went into heart failure. But that doesn't make it any easier to let go. My deepest gratitude and love go out to Beth, his devoted perma-foster mom. She is the reason Clark was our superman. Because of her, Clark lived a beautiful life spending summers at the cottage where all the neighbours knew and loved him. He's gone from one heaven to another because of you, Beth. 

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(Published in the August 2011 Issue of Beach Metro Community News)
This is the story of Elizabeth: The Girl with the Angelfish Tattoo. Only, it’s not her whole story. I missed the beginning and the middle, and a good chunk of the end for that matter. 
While some folks wouldn’t see the point of tuning in so late, there are others like me who figure the story isn’t over until the curtain falls. Until then, there are still scenes that just might take your breath away.
That was the case with Elizabeth, but I never would have had the good fortune to follow her cute yet rickety tail-end if I hadn’t been filled in on the last part I missed. It was a heart-wrenching scene in which Elizabeth’s owners surrendered her to a shelter in Manhattan because they were moving. Elizabeth, or rather Sissy as she had been called, was sixteen at the time and blind for gosh knows how long.
I’ll never understand the use of the term “surrender” for this kind of thing. To me, “surrender” suggests giving up your most cherished possessions because somebody has a gun to your head. But this wasn’t a gun-slingin’, shoot ‘em up, spaghetti western. If the story had stopped there, it would have been labeled a tear-jerker. But it didn’t stop there and that’s how this story took its twist and became a triumphant tale of the canine spirit. Our rising star just needed a little help getting out of the pickle she was in first. 
Elizabeth aka Pickles aka The Queen played out her inspirational role to the end with me, her biggest fan honoured to sit front row center. Late to arrive or not, I was witness to the performance of a lifetime.  
Her character may have been subtle by nature but impossible to ignore, always in the background of my spotlight-stealing beagles. She was the quiet beauty that set the stage and lit up the backdrop. Her most memorable scenes included sleeping gloriously on the fluffiest of dog beds, eating earnestly (once I successfully chose food fit for a Queen), and exploring her world stage which spanned the entire house and yard. In our house, the things that went bump in the night were almost always associated with Elizabeth given the fact she used her hard little noggin’ as her cane. So, her walkabouts were more aptly dubbed knockabouts and that was just fine by her and tolerated by us. 
As for the angelfish tattoo, it was what set her apart from the rest. She was born with it - a distinctive spot of white fur on her backside. I fancied it her royal beauty mark. I’ve never seen one like it before and I doubt I’ll ever see one again.  
Try as I might to stop the curtain from falling, it fell as it always must. At the time of writing this article, it had been ten days since I last admired the one and only fur-born angelfish tattoo in the world. At least, I got to admire it and the dog who wore it so well for almost two years and that’s far better than never.  
We tale-chasers know how to keep the best tales alive in our hearts even after the curtain call. We may not always expect it to be as good as the original, but it never hurts to give a sequel a chance. Come to think of it, there’s an adorably chubby eight-year-old beagle with health problems to overcome and a character to adore at a shelter only a couple hours east of Toronto. His caregivers are calling him little Willie Nelson. I can see it now, the title to Elizabeth’s sequel lighting up the screen (the one I always arrive at late) ---- “Willie Nelson: The Boy with the Ragged Red Bandana.” 
This article is dedicated to my eternal Elizabeth and to all the senior dogs out there worth tuning in on despite missing their opening act. Whether the tail-end of their story lasts one year or ten, it doesn’t matter. A great performance is a great performance and you never want to miss a great performance.

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BEAGLE OF THE MONTH

In Loving Memory of...

Arthur

Arthur joined the BOB family back in January, 2007. He'd been banished to the confines of a cold garage in Batavia, New York when his owner's new boyfriend came to live with them. The new boyfriend didn't like dogs and for some reason, his demands were met. At least, his owner had enough sense to contact us for help in finding Arthur a new and loving home. We found that new and loving home in the time it took for Arthur to wag a shy tail in their direction. Jenny and Mike had been the devoted parents of our beloved BOB grad, Elwood, until his passing just a month or so before Arthur came into our lives. They didn't know if their hearts were ready...until they met little Arthur. It was love at first sight. They helped each other heal. It is with sadness that we now announce Arthur's passing on New Year's Day. We cannot thank Jenny and Mike enough for giving him the life he so deserved and it is our honour to post their own special memorial to their little boy below...

 "On that snowy night in January when Arthur was released from his prison, it was as if a great weight had been lifted from his shoulders. This was the best day of his and our lives! That night, Arthur couldn’t believe he was allowed to sleep on the bed with Mom and Dad (as well as the couches & chairs)!

Arthur, Mom and Dad treasured each day more than can be imagined; Mom and Arthur had their special time together including the two times every work day Mom came home to see & let Arthur out, as well as making Dad’s dinner in the evening together.

Dad and Arthur shared breakfast every day and always had lengthy conversations wherein Arthur listened intently.

Every night and weekend was family time when we all loved being together. Of course, every day there was at least one walk where, like any Beagle, Arthur’s nose went into high gear!

We loved Arthur and he us, more than words can explain, but there is one time that proved the incredible bond we shared better than any other...

On Arthur’s last day, we had a great morning together but Mom and Dad had to go out of town for a New Year's Eve party. This is when he fell ill. His babysitter gave him a pain pill which should have comforted him and made him drowsy enough to fall asleep, but he resisted the urge. Insteady, he remained restless for 4 hours until we rushed back home to him. That's when he immediately climbed into one of his beds where he curled up & fell asleep with Mom and Dad on the floor sleeping at his side.

We can honestly say Arthur was the best companion anyone could have had; he was loyal, affectionate, had a personality like no other and will always be a beloved member of our family.

We miss Arthur now and forever, we appreciate and treasure the great time he shared with us. It was the best time of our lives and we know it was his too!"


 

Georgie - In Memorial

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Fall, 2013
  

There are no words to express my appreciation to everyone who made a contribution towards Georgie's emergency veterinary bills. You are all so very special to me for taking time out to do what you could, despite the sad outcome.

 

In total, the medical costs incurred in an effort to save Georgie's life came to $3,436.44 and that was with discounts kindly provided by our vets at Beaches Animal Hospital as well as the specialists at the Central Toronto Veterinary Referral Clinic. Still, it hit us hard.

 

All that money and no happy little dog to show for it.

 

Please know that I'm beyond grateful for the donations that poured in. We've received close to $3,000 from some very kind and generous people, many of you I know already and love dearly but there were others I've only just met through this dear little dog.

 

Unfortunately, Georgie hasn't been the only medical emergency we've had recently. Annie's vet bills are souring as we try to resolve a severe infection to one of her paws - so severe that she may lose one of her toes. This is the second medical emergency she's had since her arrival in the spring. We can't help but wonder if these issues stem from the horrible conditions in which she lived before rescued from the garbage dump that served as her backyard. And sweet old Bubba was rushed in today when his permanet foster parents noticed a concerning lump on his gums. Xrays revealed a cancerous abdominal mass likely related to the mass in his mouth. He's undergoing surgery tomorrow and we're all hoping and praying for the best. Bubba is very much loved by his forever foster family. There are more stories, but I'll stop there for your sake.

 

Altogether, we've incurred over $7,000 in veterinary costs in less than one month. It's unprecedented.

 

It may seem like an uphill battle right now but we want you all to know that we refuse to give up and we have you to thank for keeping us so stubborn, aside from all the beagles that constantly serve to inspire us. Somehow, we'll get through this. But for the time-being, we will not be able to take any new beagles into our care. We need to recover from the incredible hit to our funding.

 

I'm hopeful that we will have a huge success with this year's BEAGLE BASH FOR CASH on November 24th. We'll be sending you details on our signature event, proudly in its 8th year, very shortly.

 

But I'm also hopeful more donations will come in to help us in the meantime. I'm hopeful that many more of you will consider joining our family of monthly contributors. You would be amazed the impact each monthly gift has on our little beagle rescue. If we just had a few more folks sign up to give $10 or $20 each month, we could recover from this crisis sooner and be in a position to once again reach out to the next beagle in need.

 

You see, we're in the business of fixing broken down beagles. Such repairs don't come cheap. And sometimes, the repairs are not enough to fix the beagle in the end. We understand that. Our hearts are in the repair shop about as often as these beagles. But we don't want to stop trying. There are too many happy endings that make it worth suffering through the heartaches.

 

 

 

 

 

When you really think about it, even the heartaches are worth it. They remind us that we're only human and sometimes love is all we can give in the end. It's a good reminder to get once in a while.

 

 With all our love and appreciation,

  

Marna Gale & The Rest of the Crew

 

at BIG ON BEAGLES (BOB) Rescue

 

 

 

 

Dallas the Cowboy - In Memorial

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Sundae - In Memorial

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PEPPER - In Memorial

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Elmo - In Memorial

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Clementine - In Memorial

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JAKEY - In Memorial

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HARVEY - In Memorial

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TRUMAN (IN MEMORIAL)

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BRIAR - In Memorial

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RUDY - (In Memorial)

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HUCK - In Memorial

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VADA (In Memorial)

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IN LOVING MEMORY OF WALTER

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IN LOVING MEMORY OF VADA
June 9, 2009

We lost our Vada to Cushing's Disease. In her sudden absence, we are sad. But we must remember one very important thing. In the last 1 1/2 years, Vada was incredibly happy. We have her natural beagle disposition to thank for that. We have her foster parents to thank for that. And we have YOU to thank for that.
 
I'll never forget scooping little Vada up from the Niagara Falls Humane Society that wonderful day. Making her happy was all that mattered because happiness is not measured in hours but in moments that can last forever in our memories. I'll remember you, Vada. How could I ever forget?

Walter
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IN LOVING MEMORY OF WALTER
March 15, 2009

How do you keep a wave upon the sand?
Sooner or later, we have to let go.

We had to let go of our Walter yesterday. Try as we might, we couldn't fix him. His heart was just too tired. But even though the mechanics failed, there is no doubt that love healed his heart in every other way. If only we could have kept this beautiful fleeting wave upon the shore for longer than a few months. We had so much more love to share with him. To Natasha, his devoted foster mom, and to the rest of her family, there are no words good enough to express all that we feel. You gave Walter the greatest gift any of us have to give. And he gobbled it all up, like the little love vacuum you described him to be.

We wish Walter a safe journey home. And as we stand at the shore whispering our goodbyes, we wait in anticipation of the next wave. In anticipation of Lulabelle...because the nicest thing about love is that you never run out of it.
It is an honour to share with you below some special words to Walter from his foster mom and family:

Dear Walter,

Like it so often happens, I am afraid that I didn't have a chance to let you know how grateful I am to have had you come into my life.  From the very first night that you came to visit us at our house, slightly hesitant, slightly shy, but extremely affectionate and eager, I fell in love with you.  There was something so gentle, so good and forgiving inside those beautiful brown eyes of yours.  Oh don't get me wrong, I knew you could be a handful but I always knew you were trying your best to be good even when you were at your naughtiest.  Who could resist your complete bewilderment at hearing the words "No! Walter!".  You taught me about how big hearts can be.  Big enough to forgive being abandoned, living in a cage, and being condemned to death.  Your heart was big enough to always focus on the good.  You would jump up and try to put you head on the lap of whomever was sitting on the couch. And you would make that human feel loved, needed and special.
Many of my clients have cried upon hearing that they will no longer see you greet them at the door and have you sit beside them.   I love you Walter and I miss you terribly.  I have your paw print not only on a plaque but deep inside my heart. I only wish all humans could have hearts as big as yours.

Thank you again, my dear, kind, gentle loving friend.

Love always,

Your foster Mom, Natasha and the Grassel family.

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In this heart lies for you
A lark born only for you
Who says only to you
My love
My love
My love
I'm waiting for you
For only to adore you
My heart is for you
My love
My love
My love
This is my grief for you
For only the loss of you
The hurting of you
My love
My love
My love
There are rays on the weather
Soon these tears will have cried
All loneliness have died
My love
My love
My love
I will have you with me
In my arms only
For you are only
My love
My love
My love          
   "In This Heart"
Sinead O'Connor

 
 
 
Last week (Sept 2010), we lost the oldest beagle I've ever known. His name was Huck. It's taken me a while to let you know because this little old fellow, who was barely bigger than a thimble, packed one powerful punch to my heart and to the hearts of his forever foster family. He was supposed to live forever. At least, that's what we imagined. But that was just a fairytale.
Huck was older than the moon and could no longer defy nature.
 
I'll always remember the day I met Huck. A volunteer from the distant animal shelter where he was abandoned by his owner kindly brought him to us. He pulled up in his car after hours of driving. And out came Huck, fresh as a daisy, bouncing more than walking. His driver followed behind him, leash in hand and his pet parrot on his shoulder. They were quite the sight, the 3 of them.
 
That was a few years ago now. Huck was supposed to be about 18 then.
 
It's because of Huck that I met two very special people who I am so honoured to call friends. John and Laura were Huck's forever foster parents. They loved him, diapers and all. Both musicians, Huck was well versed in all kinds of music but his favourite was the Blues. That's how he came to be known as their little Blues Hound.
 
You'll never be forgotten Huck. That would be impossible.
 

In celebration of Huck, we're dedicating the month of October to him.


       

Henry Lee - In Memorial

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LUKEY - In Memorial

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BONNIE PEARL - In Memorial

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ELIZABETH - In Memorial

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BECKY - In Memorial

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CLARK - In Memorial

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NICHOLAS - In Memorial

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CHRISTMAS - In Memorial

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