Charlie

Discussion in 'Rainbow Bridge - Dog Memorials' started by smkie, Feb 20, 2005.

  1. smkie

    smkie pointer/labrador/terrier Staff Member

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    I would like to write a tribute to the best dog I ever had,and i betrayed him. If i could go back in the past I would take every bit of bad, and hard, and painful, if I could just undo this one mistake.
    Charlie was a Blitz and Bows bb pup. He was my second labrador. I needed no leash, he obeyed every command, i could leave him sitting in front of the grocery store, do a quick shop and come back, there he would be. I wasn't worried about anyone stealing him, for he wouldn't have allowed that. We field trialed for 7 years. He didn't always place, but he always finished with a least a merit. That is a big deal considering sometimes 20 or more dogs would be entered and only 4 places plus a handful of merits were given. I could take my car keys and throw them in the nearest cornfield (i was a show off teenager) and he would bring them back. He was my protector was well. I lived alone in a small house behind a hospital. I was 17. I had received phone calls that day from someone telling me "i see you hanging up your laundry..and then proceed with what he would like to do to me" He called and said I see your car is wrecked outside..i was scared and young. I tried to call my friends but no one was at home. I turned off all the lights and called the police. Charlie was so "up" that when the police came they said with that dog I wasn't going to have any problem and left. Whoever it was did show up. I hid behind the sofa When he yelled in the door that he was here for me, Charlie attacked the door (it was a cheap panel, that shouldn't have been an outside door) ate his way through it, chased whoever down brush creek. He came back a half hour later, winded but happy. The landlord said a dog couldn't have done that and I must have taken an ax to the door. I will never know what happened, but I figure he saved my life. That was the first time, the second was when we lived in the old farm house. We were the serfs to the main house...my ex was suppose to care for the livestock. Charlie loved that farm so much. 240 acres to roam, and a fresh spring water pond to swim in anytime he wanted. He would float out their like a big ol hippo. It was hot in the farm house and I was very pregnant with my daughter. I decided i couldn't take it anymore and would take a swim in the pond. I should have paid attention to all the warnings never swim alone. I got out there and cramped so bad I was drowning for real. I hollared but no one heard me, except my dog. He pulled me out, and saved my butt again. He was my hero, my best friend, and my protector.
    When I could stand my marriage no longer, and had to leave becuase of abuse, i went home to "mother". She ran a daycare in the home and wouldn't allow my big dog upstairs or out with the children, though he would have done them no harm. He had to stay in the basement room, little, and concrete and alone. I had a newborn and didn't know what would happen to us. I felt so guilty making him stay in there, tho he never complained. I had to be upstairs becuase I took care fo 4 other babies, besides my own to earn an income. That is why I decided that I needed to find a good home for my love since I could no longer provide him what he needed. I thought I was doing the right thing. He was a good hunter, and a beautiful muscled dog..now I know what i did was the worst possible thing ever.

    A man (a microsurgeon) and his three sons showed up.They had a large farm with a lake. I thought Charlie deserved a good retirement, he was 8 years old and had plenty of good years left. I thought if they paid a lot of money for him they would be sure to take good care of him. They gave me 800 dollars. I didn't take the money for the money at all, it was just to make sure they understood he was a valuable animal. I told them all about him, showed them his "room" of trophys, silver goblets, silver trays and loads of ribbons. I told them the one thing they absolutely cannot do is kennel him. He was a house dog, a member of the family. That is the part my 21 one year old mind didn't hear...a member of the family!!!!!!!!!!!! It tore my heart out to see him leave, a part of me died that was never the same again..i did it out of love.
    They called a year later and said that he was no good for hunting anymore and if I wanted him back I could have him. My situation was no better than a year before, it was hard starting out from scratch with a baby. When he arrived I saw that his front leg had been broken in a couple of places, unset, the points had over calified into hedgeapple sized lumps all around the leg. A shard of bone was protruding out of the shoulder and the skin had healed around it. When I tried to put him outside he woud climb the 6 foot fence using his three good legs and land on his head and chest since he couldn't catch himself, so he could no longer go out alone. He cowarded at the slightest sound. This was a dog that drooled when he heard a rifle crack. He didn't know me, his mind was gone. Never ever again will I trust anyone with a member of my family. What i did was so wrong..and it is the guilt I will carry with me to my grave and beyond. It happend a long time ago and hurts as bad today as it did then. I have told him how god awful sorry I am, but that doens't fix a thing does it. We could have toughed it out together, we could have made it work...i didn't have faith in myself or the future. I had my brother take him to the vet and put him down. I didn't even do that right.
    I should have been with him, forever and always. So this is my tribute to the best dog that ever walked the earth with me, I hope he knows I didn't mean it, I wanted him to be happy, and how god awful sorry I am.
     
  2. NewYorker

    NewYorker Lhasa Lover

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    Stop beating yourself up, things happen in our lives that we have no control
    over, it's just the way life is. You need to know in your heart that your dog
    has forgiven you and is running free at the Rainbow Bridge waiting for the day
    that you will be united. Just by you keeping him in your thoughts for all these
    years shows how much you loved him, he's forgiven you and you need to do the same. ;)
     
  3. smkie

    smkie pointer/labrador/terrier Staff Member

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    I have tried so hard with every dog that i have had since to make it up to him..to treat them with my very best, to never "regret" like this again. I wrote this so other people might read it and never make the mistake of parting with an animal that is their soul mate..without checking up on them if their lives have come to the point where they have to be seperated, or to place trust in the future never doing it in the first place, oh there is no way not to beat one's self up about something like this, only to learn from it and make d**** sure it never ever ever ever happens again. That is all I can do.
     
  4. Renee750il

    Renee750il Felurian

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    You and Charlie both had parallel lives - even when you were apart. I can't imagine anything more frightening or isolating than the situation you found yourself in, and with a new baby, no less. Charlie's out there, still looking out for you. Maybe Bronki was Charlie's way of letting you know that. Dogs don't blame for the big things; it's one of their special graces.
     
  5. Renee750il

    Renee750il Felurian

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  6. nicco

    nicco Wolfpack

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    That's such a sad story. It made me cry. I'm really sorry for what happened. But it happens...:(
     
  7. Rose's Gal

    Rose's Gal New Member

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    I kinda know how you feel. When we had puppies and they were old enough to get rid of (that 'get rid of' part sounds kinda harsh but.....) we placed an Ad in the newspaper for free puppies. Out of 10 puppies I only know what has happend to a couple. We kept Rose,
    Barry went to the people we got Blackie from (and as far as I know, he is still happy and thriving),
    Brendle went to our Pastor (and is happy and thriving),
    Zeb went to somebody else from our church (Zeb is now dead, or stolen. He wandered off one day and never came back),
    Jewels went to our neighbor and is a beloved family pet.

    George (my Mom's favorite puppy) I can't remember.
    Sam (my 2nd favorite puppy after Rose) went to this one lady who seemed nice. She was getting him for her son.
    The other pups that didn't have names (and if they had names, I can't remember them), who knows. I can't remember.

    But I feel sooooooooooooooooooo bad because I don't even know if the pups have good homes. We had an 'oops' litter, and we weren't even able to place the dogs responsibly.
    I still wonder what has happend to Sam (if the had a good home or not) and I'm afraid one of the pups who didn't have a name, had a very horrible life. A dude came to get a puppy and the whole intire time he was here, Blackie was barking and barking at him and was acting aggresive towards him. (He had NEVER done that before.) Mom didn't like the dude, but she was afriad that if she didn't give him a puppy, he'd do something to her. So he got a puppy and I'm afriad the pup was probably used as bait in a fighting arena. :( Or something even worse.
    I was only 6 at the time so I didn't know how to responsible place a dog, and neither did my parents. Now that I know more about responsible dog owning, the thought of the puppies and if they have good homes haunts me to no end.......
     
  8. smkie

    smkie pointer/labrador/terrier Staff Member

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    im so sorry too...these "things" maybe have happened a long time ago, but we never forget do we. I only hope that forums like this can help spare the lives of future dogs..our parents didn't know..mine certainly didn't and I try to teach my children from my experiences, i don't know how much soaks in. Thank you Renee for your gentle post, i learned my lesson, but at a terrible cost. I gave Bronki the absolute best life i could, as Mary and Vic now. Cindy's story broke my heart all over again. Hopefully the web will change this at least for some dogs..I know I found Vic that way..and last month a man gave my car a tow for free, even tho i had tow insurance, he told me of the 5 dogs he had found on the web, rescues, every one of them. I will hope that Cindy's dog faired better than mine.
     
  9. CreatureTeacher

    CreatureTeacher New Member

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    I'm so sorry to hear about Charlie, Smkie. I've had a lot of dog-related regrets in the past too. One day I was really low, and actually crying over my sweet mutt Joe in the shower, when I had something of a life changing experience. I had been feeling so horrible--something very similar had happened to your story, and I wanted more than anything in the world to apologize to him. I was standing there thinking, I would do anything to go back and do it again, to do it differently. Then very suddenly I felt better, like the whole load of the situation had been just taken off my heart. And standing in the shower, I could've sworn I head paws on the tile in the bathroom. I was without any dogs at the time, but it felt perfectly natural and I KNEW it was Joe. I didn't move the curtain or anything, I just listened. And I will swear until my dying day that Joe was out in the bathroom, where he always sat waiting for me to get out of the shower, and he told me to just quit it. He said he'd never spent a day in his life with regret, even though he'd been through a lot. What I actually felt was a thought like, "Shame on you. The sun is shining and there's a tennis ball in the living room. Why are you crying?"

    I think in his death Joe taught me something very valuable about life. I know he'd want me to be more like a dog, and to think of no day but today. He taught me that sure, a lot of bad things may happen to you in life, but the only real tragedy is a life filled with regret. I know Joe knows I miss him, and I know he misses me. But he would bite my butt if he knew I was crying over what could've been to the exclusion of seeing what is yet to be.

    That afternoon I went out and adopted another dog, Lily. She got all of Joe's old things, including a $300 bed which was WAY nicer than the one I slept in. Up until the last day she was with me, Lily refused to sleep in Joe's bed, even though I had it cleaned and re-stuffed. I think she knew Joe was there, making sure I lived my life like he thought I should.

    For a long time, I would go to bed at night and silently tell Joe, "I promise to be a good dog tomorrow."

    I hope this helps a little, Smkie. I think Joe is waiting for me, and I think Charlie is waiting for you. But they don't want us to waste any more beautiful days or games of fetch. :)
     
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2005
  10. Renee750il

    Renee750il Felurian

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    What a wonderful lesson, Emma! Thank you.
     
  11. Saje

    Saje Island dweller

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    Smkie. Your story made me tear-up. Not that that is hard to do. :) You did what you thought was best. You had the best of intentions and didn't know that would happen. How terribly cruel those people were. Shame on them not shame on you.

    I know that it is hard, probably impossible, to ever let it go. But you were considering what was best for him when you did that. And that is all any of us can do.
     
  12. smkie

    smkie pointer/labrador/terrier Staff Member

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    I just hope that if anyone is in the same place of life, they can read this post and know to make better decisions. If I had checked up on him....I would have found out.
    Now I know to never trust anyone with someone I am the caretaker of. I now know that if there is a God, he has given me this love and I am to be the best caretaker I can be. I made Bronki that promise when I opened his little sack at birth and watched him take his first breath.
     
  13. CreatureTeacher

    CreatureTeacher New Member

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    Very well put, Saje. :)
     
  14. Saje

    Saje Island dweller

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  15. Barb04

    Barb04 Love my pets Staff Member

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    So sorry to hear about Charlie. You did what you thought was right at the time in your heart. We can never know the true side of some people. Know that Charlie is waiting for you at the rainbow bridge waiting to give you doggy kisses.
     
  16. roni

    roni K-9 lover ;)

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    I cannot imagine how bad you must feel BUT I completely agree with Renee and creatureteacher. I can however offer my support and ears. If you ever want to talk about Charlie, please feel free. You had no idea what was going to happen. You actually did the hardest thing of all...you gave him up thinking he would have a better life. How very unselfish of you. Knowing that you never wanted to give him up, you couldn't bare to see him stuck in the basement. You are a kind and generous person. Charlie is waiting for you...you WILL see him again! Take care! You are in my thoughts and prayers.
     
  17. smkie

    smkie pointer/labrador/terrier Staff Member

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    Thank you Roni and everyone for your kind words. I still think he would bite me in the butt for being so d**** stupid. Thank you Renee for pointing out Cindi's story...i had read back in the stories, but I must have not read far enough. It made me sit here and blubber but it helped. If there had been a forum then, or the internet...and I could have talked to wonderful people like you the outcome might have been different. These times they are a changing, and not all for the worse...
     

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