I would like to share something very personal with you. I
wrote this letter to God on behalf of my dear friend and pet Abigail Aranha,
who had been a part of our family for 14 years. My 17-year-old son could not
remember life without her.
She came to us via Brenda Franks from an abusive home, and
was always a little afraid of strangers but was just fine with us.
It has taken me since June 9th, to be able to
reread what I wrote the night of the 7th of June, and this long to
share it with you. She lay in her basket beneath my desk as I wrote and at
times I felt almost as if it was being dictated because the words flowed so
Love is a wonderful thing, the love of a pet and to a pet is
immeasurable with joys, but oh, the tears when their time has come.
I hope this letter to God touches your hearts. It was
written because it had to be written. It is shared because I want to share it
with you and perhaps help those who are grieving or have grieved.
I booked my ticket to heaven, but they said that I would
have to wait a while…
The Rainbow Bridge was full as puppies and dogs are being
So I had to stay and wait my turn, and lie upon my bed… My
human cared for me lovingly and stroked me and told me that she loved me…so did
the rest of the family, one of my young humans, who cannot remember life
without me, slept beside me on the floor last night. he said "nobody should die alone".
I would open my
eyes, but couldn’t really see them, you see, I am drifting somewhere in wait.
In wait for a gentler and softer place
than earth where I will become young and active again.
Their love and gentle voices make me feel safe and good.. I
am an old lady; a cross pot cake and I have lived with these same humans for
over 14 years. I don't see well at the best of time, but they just don't move the furniture so I can find my way around.
They rescued me, you see, and I have given them all my love,
devotion, and trust, and in return they have loved and cared for me faithfully.
I was the fastest runner my humans had ever seen. My Human
said that if I had a fancy American Indian name it would be “one who runs like
the wind”…well, those days were over a couple of years ago… I could also jump
very high on to everyone’s beds… I never would use those special steps that my
human brought for me, as I got older, too degrading !, and I found them too
narrow. No, Siree, my humans can just lift me up and put me on their bed, a
much better and happier solution for my old bones. I sit on their beds in pride...my territory!
As I got older I became a feisty old lady, and every bit the
Alpha Dog of the family. I have lived such a long time that I outlived several
of my “brothers and sisters” (Who looked nothing like me, and weren’t my
siblings, but there go my humans again….). Most of my canine “siblings” were
scared to walk past me and would stand in the corridor and bark for one of the
humans to come and walk past me with them so that I wouldn’t take a little nip
out of those young whippersnappers… It made me “doggie-chuckle” inside to see
how frightened they were of me, good joke!
It really has been the perfect human – canine arrangement.
The only glitch is that we canines live less time that the
humans, and so we are ready to pack our earthly bags and go to Rainbow Bridge
to wait for them to come to us. This is so very hard for humans to understand.
They have a bad habit of looking at everything in human terms, even us dogs… we
are different, we sleep more, we love more, we make more noise, and we are
totally honest with our affections and totally unconditional…now, show me a
human that comes even near to that, I say, there are no humans who embody all
our canine attributes. We do not fear death, as humans tend to, it is a natural process, as is life, we know that we are going to a better place.
You know, God, there are people who say that we dogs have no
souls. How can anybody say that about us? Do you think that it’s by accident
that Dog spelt backwards spells your name? We are such pure and uncomplicated
beings that I would think that we are just about the first ones you want to
have around us, because we do not know how to be hypocrites or how to lie, or
cheat, or steal…or, or, or…I could go on all day: But, I’m tired…
Love, licks and wags
Abbie passed away two days after this was written in the
month of June.
Her beloved vet. Dr. Val Grant, had to help her on her way,
as all her organs had shut down save her heart. She no longer moved, had lost
all her cognitive skills, and was barely breathing.
She had been battling Melanoma cancer since January 2009 and then had a stroke in February. He decline was gradual but steady, we as a family, gave her all the mental and physical support we possibly could. But I guess nobody and nothing can live forever...
It was a tremendously difficult decision to make, but for
sure the right one for her.
Rainbow bridge was ready to receive her, and she is there
with all the other pets we have owned awaiting our crossing over.
In honour of our love for Abigail we have adopted two street
puppies from the Bahamas Humane Society. Not to replace her, but because we
loved her so much we want to continue loving and saving dogs in her memory.
Next week there will be an article about Garmin and Bella
and how they have settled in with Buddy and Chief.
I cried when I reread this…I hope you don’t
About the author:Kim Aranha grew up in the
Berry Islands with her first dog, a beloved potcake named “Friendly” (who was
anything but!). First educated at home, and then in boarding school in
Switzerland, Kim moved to Rome, Italy in 1974 to pursue a career in the
dramatic arts and ended up working as an interpreter. She moved back to The
Bahamas in 1980, and now lives in Nassau with her husband Paul, and their two
grown sons. Kim has 4 dogs, 2 goldfish fish,
11 fresh water turtles, 1 Asian box turtle and 3 Budgerigars.
Her idea of relaxing is being home to take care of all her pets. Kim is
President of the Bahamas Humane Society, and serves on the board of BREEF, and
is co-chairman of the Bahamas Sea Turtle Conservation Group. Kim can be
contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org