Need some advice...I wasn't sure where to post.

Discussion in 'Rainbow Bridge - Dog Memorials' started by CreatureTeacher, Feb 6, 2005.

  1. CreatureTeacher

    CreatureTeacher New Member

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    I wasn't sure where to put this, so I hope this is an okay spot. I need some advice on human behavior. I've got dogs down, but people are tougher....

    Here's the reason I put this in this forum. Growing up, my best friend was an enormous red Doberman named Nikki. She was beautiful and brilliant and I miss her desperately even though she died almost 10 years ago. She had been in training to be a police dog, but she was afraid of guns and wouldn't bite people, so they had to give her away. We were lucky enough to get her. I believe very strongly that every person has the chance to come in contact with "the one", that occasional very special dog that comes along and changes your life. Nikki was mine. My heart didn't just break when she died, it shattered. She was really my sister; more so than my real sister is. I think about her often. One of the most painful things about her death is that when I was young we were very poor and didn't have a camera (this was before the disposable ones), and so I have no pictures of Nikki at all. I haven't forgotten her face, but I feel like I've never really been able to heal because I have to make such an effort to remember her all the time. And I feel guilty in a way for not making more of an effort to get her picture taken. I have thought long and hard about getting another Dobe; I understand that I can't replace Nikki and that I can't expect to get the same dog twice, but I also feel that having another individual with those goofy Dobe mannerisms (crossing the front legs, putting the butt up on the stairs, moaning, etc.) would help me to reconcile with Nikki's death. I've known many Dobes, and I have fallen completely in love with most of them.

    I have had a live-in S.O. (significant other--"boyfriend" seems inappropriate somehow) for almost 6 years now. We might as well be married, we're just too lazy to go and do it. :) (Besides, I want all the bridesmaids to be dogs, and he's having trouble with that.) He's not crazy for all things canine like I am. He's very accepting of my dog obsession, and he's enjoyed the company of our dogs. But he has a problem with Dobes. We've never had one because he has had that stupid sociatal bias against them implanted in his brain. It's not that he's frightened of them (he trusts my training and behavior instincts and is himself a biologist), it's that he's worried a Dobe would bite someone and we'd have to pay for it, with money and possibly with our dog's life. None of my dogs have ever bitten anyone, but it's that prejudice that people have against these particular breeds that's planted this idea in his head and made him so apprehensive about getting a Dobe.

    He's never had that "one" dog, so he doesn't really understand what it's like to share your heart with an animal in that way. So I don't think he understands quite how badly the loss of Nikki wounded me, and how it would help me to have another, different dog of the same breed.

    I'm tempted to just say, "Screw you" and go rescue myself a Dobe, but I certainly don't want to jeopardize our relationship. I would love to take him to meet some Dobes, but there isn't a rescue near us, and it isn't exactly appropriate to bring him along when I train one. We have had many wonderful dogs grace our lives, but he still hasn't met "the one" and can't understand what I'm after. I really want him to experience that sort of relationship. Has anyone else had a similar problem? Why is he scared to have a Dobe when we've had several Pit Bull mixes and even a Rotty with no problems? Does anyone have any advice for bringing him round? Should I even try, or should I respect his apprehension and not push it? I'd sure appreciate any thoughts.
     
  2. poodlesmom

    poodlesmom New Member

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    That's what happens until one becomes a "certified dog lover". He has learned to appreciate them but he hasn't really gone around the bend yet.

    I would suggest printing off a copy of what you posted here (minus the 1st sentence of the last paragraph ;) ) and giving it to him to read. I have a funny idea he will then really understand just how important it is to you.

    Now on the other hand, even tho my hubby was always one for saying "NO", I was always stubborn enough that I would just go ahead and either get a furpal without telling him first or I would just ignore the "no". Then after he realized we had a new furpal I'd have to listen to him moan & groan for about 1/2 hr and very soon thereafter he'd be smitten and one would think it was actually his idea! :rolleyes:

    I hope you are successful and able to realize your dream! :)
     
  3. smkie

    smkie pointer/labrador/terrier Staff Member

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    Amen to everything you said about your dobe....and even though you can't pull up a visual, I bet if you close your eyes, you can feel the weight of his head on your hand, the feel of his nudge, the weight of his body when he leans on you..the silkiness of his coat. I will bet when you close your eyes you can feel him in motion when he runs and just about almost but not quite hear his bark.
    I have been blessed by he heavens to have had three "ones". Bronki wasn't just my dog,or even my best friend, he was a large part of Me the best part as far as i was concerned. I had a significant other for 12 years...he was always jealous of my affection for Bronki. Jim wanted to be my "one"..he didn't understand that the closeness I had with my dog I could never have with a human. I trusted Bronki with my whole heart. I could never do that with a people, especially a man..maybe you of all people can understand what I mean. I dated two other men after Jim passed away and they reacted the same way. Apparently because he was my "special" they felt threatened and had to act like they liked Mary more and would shun Bronki when he came around. It was so **** stupid because he didn't understand it at all why they didn't like him. They just didn't understand that i could love them as my man, but never as my dog. It is just different. One doe not decrease the other.
    I hope that this makes sense because I don't really know how to put it in words. I do believe that you cannot make that "one" come to you, you will be found by that "one". Somehow somewhere there will be a dog that calls to your soul and you will come and the two of you will walk down the road together. If an animal chooses me, I am very superstitious because two of my three did things to get my,and my alone, attention. Keep your eyes open and I hope this happens really soon. I don't know if it is karma or destiny. I don't know what to believe in this world except that I haven't a clue. I can only follow what feels right in my heart.
    I was lucky with bronki because i had him from the second he was born. Vic looks so different, and at first I didn't know how to "read" him.He was hyperactive, didn't like to cuddle or be held, seemed to have a on and off switch. Running around like crazy or asleep. I wanted him to be like Bronk and nothing could be further from the truth, but 6 months down the road I am learning that Vic has many layers and it was me that had to clear my head to see what this dog is made of. We had to get past all the damage done by spending two of his first 5 months in the pound or rescue kennel. Maybe, just maybe the heavens have smiled again on me...we will see but I am beginning to see that i have more to learn and i think Vic is going to teach me what I need to know. Time will tell.
    i think you especially deserve to have the one that shines.
     
  4. Thea

    Thea New Member

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    First, I'm so very sorry for the loss of your good, good friend. Losing them is SO incredibly hard, and I think that you need to do something to give yourself some closure on her loss...what about planting a bush in memory of her, and then, during the growing time when it blooms you will know that perhaps you're friend has taken another form, and can still fill your heart? They can, you know. And they do. I really do believe that. I also believe that the beings we share our lives with today, bring us to the beings that will share our lives tomorrow, and YOU are meant to have another Dobe.

    As far as the SO goes, I would think that once you meet the next one, he'll relent. Because it was meant to be...

    Thea
     
  5. CreatureTeacher

    CreatureTeacher New Member

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    You are all so sweet!

    You probably all know me well enough by now to know that I don't and won't mince words; I've told The Boy exactly what I've told you. I think true "dog love" just can't really be explained to people who don't know it for themselves.

    Since I began my training business, lots of dogs have passed in and out of our home. We've had three unwanted senior dogs that I brought home at the ages of 10, 13, and 14, all of whom passed on within a year of coming to us. (I see part of my mission as being a "doggy hospice" to give those who need it all the love and happy living they can stand in the last months of their lives.) Circumstances give us unwanted, abused, or neglected dogs. I work with them and butter them up until they are good kids, then someone or some family always comes along who needs them more than I do. I'm just sort of a pooch halfway house. So I don't blame the S.O. for not getting attached to them, because they are never with us for long. And when they first come to us, they aren't typically pillars of canine virtue. What I'd like to do is go out and purposefully adopt a Dobe to be my dog. Maybe I just will!

    PS - He's a cat person...I should've known there was something wrong with him! :D
    Thanks to everyone for listening, and for the encouragement and advice.
     
  6. Saje

    Saje Island dweller

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    LOL There is nothing wrong with cat people! Of course I'm an all-round animal person. My special dog was a horse. :D Her tragic death broke my heart.

    Have you ever just said something like: this is something I really need to do for myself to help me come to terms with the loss of Nikki. I will understand if you are adamant about not getting a dobe but I've had my heart set on it for a long time. I've thought it through. Is there any way you can support me?

    Who could say no? LOL

    My opinion is that you have probably already brought him around as much as you can. Ask him what he'd do if you came home with a Dobe one day. If he says he'd be long gone- well than you'll have to think about that.

    What about fostering one if that's possible?

    That's about as useful as I can be on this subject. :D

    I'm really sorry you lost your dog and really happy you had her for the time that you did.

    Saje
     
  7. CreatureTeacher

    CreatureTeacher New Member

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    Now don't get me wrong, I love my horses tons and tons, and I...tolerate...my cats. (They have been very rotten lately!) But I can really carry on a conversation with dogs. The best I can seem to get across to my horses is, "Gosh you're pretty. Want a cookie? Let's play!" and I seem to be accidentally telling my cats, "Please scream all night and keep me awake. I sure like it when you launch off my chest onto the dresser while I'm sleeping! It's important to me that you hit my terrified dog every chance you get!" :rolleyes: But I really do love every animal I meet. I had a fabulous lizard once, and after him a very intelligent praying mantis. But nothing quite gets me like dogs do, and no dog quite gets me like a really smart Dobe. (More than anything, I value intelligence in a dog. And man are Dobes smart!)
     
  8. Saje

    Saje Island dweller

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    Ha ha ha. When I first got my dog Maverick I only had Mini my little cat. She was the boss of the house and wasn't going to let that change. She tuned Mav into the rules right away. Of course, he was a slow learner as he was a puppy and wanted to play with the nice kitty (they are almost the same age). I had to get her a cat tree so she could teach him the rules from a more elevated position. He learned. To this day he won't push past her in the hall. I've seen him stuck between two cats and my bf will have to go and 'rescue' him so he can come back into the kitchen. What a goof. Mikey's the opposite. He and Mini will probably never decide who's boss. She's queen bee over all the other beasts though. LOL Including us I think.
     
  9. Sakasha

    Sakasha Sheltered

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    I sympathyse with you.

    I've had more animals than I can count in my life. A black lab, 5 Rotties, a Golden, a small Terrier X, a Husky, 6 cats, an albino rattlesnake, an iguana, 5 lizards, 2 birds, 3 scorpions, a guinea pig, countless fish, and of course Dutch. Yet there was only one animal I ever connected with as it sounds like you connected with Nikki, and he wasn't even officially mine.

    Some of you have probably heard this story already, but I'm going to tell it again, mostly because it makes me smile to remember him ...

    When I first started at the shelter last year, there was one dog who caught my eye. Trevor. Trevor was a magnificent German Shep X, just over 2 years old at the time. He had been in the shelter since he was about 6 months old. He was an absolute maddog in the cage. Spinning and snarling at anyone who walked by (including me). My reaction was quite simple, I stood infront of him and barked back. I have no idea why I did it, just seemed right at the time. And what amazed me (and my coworkers who saw this) was that he stopped. All of a sudden he was completely silent, head cocked to one side, looking at me with a mix of "you must be crazy", and "please get me out of here" in his eyes. I was in love.

    Trevor and I were inseperable from that moment on. Whenever I had a spare minute, I was with him. My lunch hours were spend running in the outside pen, taking long walks, eating pizza in the grass (no one knew about that one). After a few months, I decided I was ready for a dog in my new appartment, and I prepared myself to bring him home. The guy I was seeing at the time (James) was completely against me addopting him. I believe Trevor scared him, though he never told me that. Whatever the reason, he put up a heck of a fight. And in the end, I succomed. Dutch came down with Parvo, and I ended up taking him home instead. But at work, Trevor and I never missed a beat. A few more months passed, and I still couldn't get over the feeling that I needed this dog to be mine.

    I had distanced myself a bit from James ever since the Trevor/Dutch argument. He likes dogs, but I wouldn't call him a "dog person". We don't agree on training methods, and he couldn't understand why I would wan't a dog with "problems" like Dutch. So you can immagine how well it went over when I told him that I was bringing Trevor home. To appease him, I arranged to foster Trevor, with plans to adopt. I had him for a month. It was the most wonderful month of my life.

    Then, on Dec. 24th, Trevor was due back at the shelter for a routine check-up. He bit one of my coworkers while he was there. (I'm skipping all the depressing details here). He was put to sleep the next week.

    James still dosen't understand what that dog meant to me. He was comforting afterwards, listening to me scream and whiping my tears, but he didn't quite see what was so special about Trevor. He was upset because "you loved that dog more than me". I've never been able to explain the difference to him, I'm not sure the feeling when you find the "one" can be put into words, weather it's a dog OR a person.

    Well, now that I've written a novel, I guess I'll get to the point. My oppinion is, if you feel like you need to get another Dobe, then do it. It sounds like your SO stands behind you in what you do, so perhaps he will be ok with the idea, even if he isn't overjoyed. I wouldn't give back that month with Trevor for anything. If James had threatened to leave me over it, I would have let him walk away. Sometimes in life, there are things you just need to do, and if it's meant to be, then you and your SO will get through it together.

    *Sorry for the long post*
     
  10. smkie

    smkie pointer/labrador/terrier Staff Member

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    have you read the book about the lady that trained search and rescue dogs? I don't remember the title of course, but she knew what she was looking for. She tried one that she got in the states, and though it was a perfectly nice dog, it wasn't the "one" she went to Germany next. I found her honestly about the one not being right open and fair. I think everyone is right..you need your dobe..maybe he/she is calling you and that is why it is so prominent in your mind.
     
  11. Renee750il

    Renee750il Felurian

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    Emma, I think you've gotten some very good advice about dealing with the SO. I had one for twelve years who was very jealous of Bear. He even tried to tell me to get rid of Bear on a couple of occasions. You can imagine where THAT went! What he never would tell me was that he had been afraid of big dogs ever since he was a child. His sister clued me in on that. It didn't change my stance on keeping Bear; he died in my arms when he was around 14 years old - ancient for a 110 pound Shepherd/Akita, but I did work harder on reassuring the guy. Like you when you lost your Nikki and Smkie when she lost her Bronki, and so many others here, I was shattered in a million inconsolable, bleeding pieces. I didn't think I could ever feel so utterly devastated again - until my Buffy died three years ago this coming April, from poison. Just a baby; she had turned two years old on Valentines' Day.

    Both times, I waited with an open - and eager - heart for the right "One" to be sent to me. Bimmer was definitely 'sent' and so were Shiva and Kharma. I had to wait and wait for Kharma; I just knew Buffy wouldn't leave me without sending me an heiress, so to speak, from her line. That ego of hers just wouldn't let that happen, lol! Twice, the breedings between Calliope and Gamble didn't take, and I was afraid it wouldn't happen, but finally Kharma's litter was conceived and the biggest, most precocious female was a fawn, complete with the little "button" on the left side of the top of her head - just like Buffy's and Gamble's. She's the only one with it.

    I guess what all this maudlin rambling is about is that all you have to do is ask, with an open heart and no reservations, and the right One will come to you - and I'm betting Nikki will see to it that your One comes as an irresistable little mite, all legs, eyes and nose that will completely win over your SO before it starts to grow up. One day the SO will look at the adolescent Dobe sitting there, bright eyed and attentive, just waiting for the next game to start, and completely forget he ever entertained the smallest belief in any of that stupid bushwa about Dobes.
    As I told my Mom after I'd been seeing Charley for awhile (she hated his predecessor - everyone did); it's hard to find much wrong with a man who loves big dogs and fast cars.
     
  12. smkie

    smkie pointer/labrador/terrier Staff Member

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    This thread has been very good for me to see..I thought it was just me that SO responed to what i loved most with disdain. I don't get the concept. Jim loved his Harley...I said enjoy enjoy, he loved to fish..I said go have a good time. They all reacted to my artwork the same way as my dog. That is why I have basically completely given up on the relationship thing. Anybody out there got somebody that wants their SO to have what means the most to them, what they need to walk this life happy?
     
  13. smkie

    smkie pointer/labrador/terrier Staff Member

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    I know it is tacky to post two times in a row but I forgot to say thank you Renee for your unwaivering faith. I don't know what to believe and am afraid that I will just believe what makes me feel better, not what is. That is how I was raised. Still, there have been so many old souls in my life, and experiences..like learning something you think you'll never use again and then further down the road it is the exact skill u need to build on...that make me think there might be something else out there...Thank you for expressing your beliefs. I would like to think it was Bronki that led me to the computer to look at petsavers where Vic was just waiting for me. I didn't have any money to "purchase" a dog, even from the pound, but my artwork was my money I was able to "trade" as I do for my vet services. I would like to think i had Bronki's blessing.
     
  14. Renee750il

    Renee750il Felurian

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    Oh, Smkie, it's often an issue of fragile ego with them. How could you possibly be interested in anything other than them or their interests? Is there a possibility you love something more than you love them? Find something else more fascinating? Might ignore them and their needs? That makes you happier than they can? :rolleyes: And it's a real threat to some men if you do have interests that differ from theirs, especially if it involves doing something that you're very good at, Smkie, and you don't need anything from them to be able to do.
     
  15. EliNHunter

    EliNHunter New Member

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    CreatureTeacher:
    Your post really hit home. I am a MAJOR doglover and was in a serious relationship for the past 3-1/2 years. I really thought we were to be married. Only one problem... we didn't see eye-to-eye on my love of dogs. In hindsight, I really compromised my belief system with him. I thought I could make it work. He even has a dog of his own that he loves! (a little one, though, and I've got BIG ones ;-)

    Anyway, after a phone conversation where he was b*tching about everyone wanting to bring their dogs to his house for Thanksgiving (not my dogs, just everyone elses), and I reminded him how this shouldn't be a time of stress and how my home opened up to all and their pets at holidays while growing up, he snaps "YOUR DOGS RULE YOUR LIFE!!!". That's when I lost it and hung up on him and we're no longer an "item". The one thing I learned from that relationship was to NOT compromise who I AM... for anyone else. I'm so glad, it could have been worse (good lord, what if we had gotten married?). Also, your S.O. sounds like he doesn't have an issue with "big, mean, dogs". Sounds like he's got a problem with you choosing a dog over him or him not being in control of where your love lies (not that there can't be both, geesh!). He feels threatened by your deep love for a dobe... I just know it! Good luck and let us know what's going on...
    Amy + Hunter
     
  16. Love4Pits

    Love4Pits Playful Husky Pup

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    I know how you feel and i think the advice given before me was great.I think if you explain how much this all means to you you could probley get yourself a Dobe it sounds to me like you need that void filled.

    I have had boyfriends in the past and each and everyone of them absolutly hated my dogs :( . They thought that they were annoying and I paid to much attention to them. Infact my last boyfriend and I would constantly fight about my dogs and he said that he was always about ready to try and find homes for some of my dogs because they were a drain on a financial issues. And when i got home one day my boyfriend told me that He had found possible new homes Nera, Baby, and Hitch!!!!!!! Now there i really went off told him I did'nt want him in my life and kicked him out :) . And of course Nera, Baby, and Hitch went no where.

    Right now im getting "involved" with an old friend. He knows how much I love my dogs and knows that this is my livelyhood. He has three dogs of his own an Akita named Buzz, a lab/colliex named Spicey and a GSD/ St Bernard named Hulk and has had issues with his love life and pets in the past. So im hoping that this one might work out.

    Good Luck
     
  17. Renee750il

    Renee750il Felurian

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    What these men need to understand is that it's not a matter of whether or not we would choose the dog over them (the dog wins in that case, of course -explanation following); the issue is that a man who truly loves us, heart and soul, would never ask us to make that choice, understanding that the love we have for our creature companions is an integral part of our being and cannot be separated from who we are without compromising the basic integrity or our soul, and in the end, destroying us.
     
  18. AndrewF

    AndrewF MIiA

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    There's no magic bullet (perhaps a wrong analogy :D ) for S.O's. Unfortunately, people really do tend to look at what's best for themselves and THEN ask the question, 'should I'. It's a very rare person who can accept someone else for who they are without laying down conditions or having expectations. However, as long as people are respectful of their SO's (and vice versa), and up front with their wants, needs, etc... and consider their SO's opinion, it's a good start...and even then, there's not going to be perfection.

    As an example, my wife brought a cat home from the HS about 5 years ago. She just couldn't leave it there - it would be put to sleep. She then told me what she'd done - and that she had just fallen in love with this cat. I can see why she did it, BUT it was dis-respectful of her to not even give me a chance to weigh in on the matter (I'm the one who isn't especially keen on cats, is allergic to cats, and the co-owner of the house this cat was going to stay in). By the same token, I wasn't about to ask for her opinion, permission or even a thought on the matter when it came to photographic equipment (one of her beefs with me until recently). Somehow though, we've managed to piece together what works for us and we've managed to be happy. MUCH more so, once we clued into the fact we a) have to respect each other as being directly affected by the other's decisions and b) we now know what makes life that much better for us as individuals.

    So, to answer your question, yes, they do exist, but much like any dog, horse, cat or other pet you plan to let wander free....they take training....usually a lot more than any dog out there :D
     
  19. becca_4321

    becca_4321 New Member

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    I really have no advice, my attitude has always been that of a hardnose female who will respect his wishes to a point. If I feel like he's being unreasonable and unfair about something that means alot to me, it was something that wasnt going to cause us to be short money, wasnt hurting a thing for me to have or to do, I just do it. Honestly I havent had any problems. My husband has so many things he loves to do and I am very supportive of him so he is the same of me (except the issue of me wanting another chow but thats another story).
    But now for "the one" for me. Years ago while working I found a 4wk old kitten sitting in the middle of a road(more like a alley). I took him home with me. His eyes matted shut and full of fleas. He was a mess. The vet helped me get him all fixed up and started on his care. I fell in love with this little guy. He was ill all of his life and we knew he would never live to be an old cat. Never in my life would I dream of a cat, of all things, becoming my best friend. It was hard watching him turn into a old cat although he was so young. Each year seeing his illness hit him harder and harder. I kept telling myself he's going to die in the next couple of years, he wont be with me much longer, and I thought I was ok with that. I convinced myself that even if he only lived 7 years it was 7 years longer than he would have had if I hadnt taken him that day. I was so sure I was ready. Then a couple years ago that time came. Nothing was left to be done for buddy (nick name I had for him), he was dying. I made a cozy bed for him on his bench in front of the window where he laid unable to walk, eat, or drink. Gasping for every breath he took. Finally we had to make the decision of letting him die a slow miserable death or to have him put to sleep. Nothing the vet could do for him anymore. I finally after a week of crying and watching him dying in front of me, and pleas from my husband, made the decision to let him be put to sleep. I couldnt go. I had my husband go in with him because I didnt think I could handle watching them put him down and seeing him die right before my eyes. I cried for days afterwards and to this day it makes me so sad when I think I wasnt there for him! I should have held him. I should have let him die at home on his bench. And everyday since I have missed him so very much.
    My husband found this ceramic cat to put Peppers name on it. Also got a snow globe we put his picture in it. So now I have a memory bench. I have plants on the bench, the ceramic cat, and the snowglobe all on this bench. It has really helped me alot. lt almost feels like he's there, sitting on the bench looking out the window. I think I will always feel guilt for not being there when he died, but having this memory bench gives me a little peace. He was my buddy. I will always miss my buddy. No other has ever affected me quite like this although Princess seems to be coming in strong!
     
  20. EliNHunter

    EliNHunter New Member

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    1 dog, 2 cats
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    Indianapolis
    Memory Bench

    That's a very good idea. You should seen mine. It's the top of my pie safe (piece of antique furniture). Now furnished with 3 urns of the 3 babies I've lost within a year: My yellow lab, Yogi; my white cat, Catfish (15 y.o.), and now my sweet golden, Eli. With the most beautiful framed pictures of them all next to their urns. I don't need any additions any time soon, that's for sure. I love to stand and just look at their pictures and think about the good times...
    Amy + Hunter
     

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