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HAMISH, THE TOTO LOOK ALIKE

My daughter wanted a small dog for her 16th birthday. We found a litter of Cairn terrier puppies on line and agreed to go get one of them. We naively did not recognize what was really a puppy mill with various breeds of puppies running in and out of the barn. The Cairn mother looked awful - the sellers claimed she had lost most of hair from hormone imbalance but now I suspect she had been over bred. A small puppy came running out, truly the ugliest puppy I had ever seen. My daughters loved him. Then his father walked out and he was spectacular. Hamish came home and grew into a darling sweetie who loved our 6 year old Airedale, Max. 8 years later when Max died, Hamish grieved for months and our new Airedale never measured up to Max in Hamish's eyes. Hamish loved the beach but not the water. Loved to chase the ball but not to return to the thrower. Loved the dog park when he lived in NYC for 5 years with my daughter but did not like to play with the little dogs. He was great at flying under the seat with my daughter as she regularly flew home. A great mouser, we had no rodents ever while he was on patrol. He lived his last many years back in our house, barking at the yard crew, chasing the squirrels and sleeping snuggled up next to me. A month ago, at age 18 we had to let him go. I envision he is now playing with Max in doggy heaven and is still adorable and dear. We miss him a lot.

Anonymous
PORTLAND, OR

My Best Friend Bear

My wife and I adopted Bear from the Columbus County Rescue in NC in April of 2004. She was a wild thing, part chow, golden retriever and yellow lab. As a puppy she would shred my arms as I played and fought with her on the ground, she loved to steal roses from a basket where we had just cut them or directly from the bush, thorns did not matter. She loved her big fenced in back yard but also love living in the house. She was full of life and loved every minute of it. We both adored her and she quickly became the center of our everyday life as well as our whole world. She would run towards me in a chair and just dive into the air, almost knocking my breathe away, I never told my wife about the time she stole a plate of doughnuts from me, mainly because I wasn't supposed to have them in the first place. Bear was with us for 14 years through good and bad times, she loved them all and was always there with a lick and wagging tail. She became 'addicted' to her doggy treats in later life. But as life goes, she developed various tumors, tore her left rear ACL, which the surgeon advised against the surgery at her age, got bad arthritis in her hips, was taking monthly shots and a once a day pain medicine, had cateracts and lost most of her hearing but still did her best to play, love and protect us from any knock at the door. Sadly she crossed the rainbow bridge today, 4-20-18, but to a better place for sure. Bear we love you and will miss you forever, and I thank my lucky stars that I had 14 years with the best friend anyone could ever have. Goodbye bear you will live forever in our hearts.

jim p
wilmington, NC

Baby Savage

This bundle of fur picked me out at the local SPCA. He came out of his cubicle and climbed onto my shoulder and pretended to be a fur collar to my shirt. Needless to say my wife and I adopted him and he has been with us for almost a year. He is only 3 years old but he loves curling up on the footrest of my recliner when I am sitting there.

Martin J Smith
Gloversville, NY

My cat is a prolific typist

I am a retired film editor, and being retired means I have to fill my time. I do so with a lot of hobbies. Among my many hobbies, I am a writer. But I have cat, a beautiful Tortie named Scout who has little patience for my sitting at the computer. She wants all of my attention and is more than willing to edit my work by walking across or plunking herself down on the keyboard. Here is a verbatim sample of her work. (Hers picks up when it starts not to make sense. But I'm sure you already know that.)

"And it doesn’t help that the paper’s online presence is just another news feed sp 09imt.,c-]sdbe,a'kkkkkkkkkkkk" Like I said, a prolific typist, but a lousy editor.

Burton Weinstein
Simi Valley, CA

My Adams

When they were about 1 year old, in 2005, my husband and I adopted a brother-sister pair of Maine Coon cats from the local Humane Society. He named them perfectly: Adams and O'Keefe, after Ansel Adams and Georgia O'Keeffe (I didn't realize we'd spelled it wrong for years). O'Keefe was the Investigator, the bold one who always went right up to visitors expecting to be petted. Adams was the Shy Boy, quiet and unassuming, staying in the background. My husband died in 2006 and my two kitties were such solace. When I retired in 2011, I grew to love them more and more. Gradually, Adams came out of his shell. I give O'Keefe a Royal Brushinating daily, but it was months before Adams decided to jump up onto the Brushing Hassock and try it out. Over months, he went from allowing only a few strokes of the kitty brush to jumping right in there if O'Keefe didn't answer the call immediately. He and I grew more and more bonded as he showed more and more of his golden heart.

Then, in October 2016, he died. He was happy and healthy (his annual vet exam a couple months earlier showed him to be in the peak of health), and the next minute, literally, he was gone. The vet said it was most likely a stroke. It was such a shock, I'm still mourning Adams. I have a file on my laptop of hundreds of pictures of our cats and sometimes I just page through them to watch them all do their cat things again: napping, sitting in boxes, playing together, watching birds out the window. And then I came across this photo. I don't even remember snapping the picture. But it is the perfect portrait of Adams. Gentle, loving, calm and beautiful. It is Adams. He was an excellent little soul. I'm glad we were able to give him 11 years of love and care. And he will be in my heart forever. O'Keefe is still with me, and I treasure every moment with her.

Terry Hickman
Omaha, NE

Louie Reese - Heart Healer

My sweet Louie - (black and white tuxedo kitty) was adopted in June of 2010 as a fur-rend to me and a companion to Scott Joplin (black kitty). For 8 years I had Scottie's mama Lucy and before being spayed, she had given us 5 adorable kitties including Scott's brother Brahms. 3 kitties were adopted to good homes and Scott and Brahmies and Lucy and an older kitty Gussie Cat remained as a precious family. In a short period of time Brahmies disappeared one day, I lost Gussie to old age, Lucy to a sudden illness. Our hearts were broken and Scottie was alone. 3 weeks after Lucy passed away, I adopted Louie Reese in 2010. After a minor adjustment period, he and Scottie became beloved friends and he and Louie's antics make everyone laugh. Scottie tries to boss but sweet Louie stands up to him in the cutest wasy.. 8 years later, they are still together...

Anonymous
Traverse City, MI

Cooper owns the couch

Cooper came to us as part of a stray cat litter eight years ago. We were able to get all of his siblings adopted, as they were lovable little fur-balls. Cooper, on the other hand, had an attitude. He would fit in the palm of your hand, and when you picked him up he would go into full on hiss and swat mode. Nobody wanted the "devil cat".

We knew if someone did take him, it might lead to a shelter life, so we decided to adopt him and give him a good home. Little did we know that over the years he would claim EVERYTHING in the house as his, including the couch and TV remote

.

At least his attitude has improved!

Stu
Denton, TX

I called him Streak

After some rough years, I wanted to have a small partner to spend time with. So I went to an adoption event at a nearby pet store. There was a little male tuxedo kitten sitting all alone. He looked up at me, and I melted. Only about 6 weeks old, he went home with me that day.

On his first day with me, I sat down to play with the little guy. He liked to play with my hair, and he also got spooked easily over absolutely nothing at all. Well, he got spooked and jumped over my head. I saw his tummy patches of white against the charcoal gray of his coat streak by, and I knew what his name was. Streak!

Streak was a real trouper. He ultimately travelled with me across country twice, travelled up and down the California coast, and moved with me to five different places over 9 years. At every place, he found himself at home. Streak taught me a lot. He was remarkably patient with me as he taught me, through trial and error, how best to treat him. He also taught me to love again. Several bad relationships had made that necessary. He was patient and kind that way, too. He knew I needed to be taught that it was possible to love again. He did that by making it easy to love him, and by loving me. We were near constant companions for 17 1/2 years. In his last summer, he was diagnosed with severe renal failure. In a relatively short amount of time, he deteriorated. Finally, that fall he let me know that it was okay to send him on his way. When he was about to be put to sleep, he touched my hand gently, as if to say, “it’s okay, Daddy.” I love you Streak. Wait for me over the Rainbow Bridge.

Brian Ray
Ty Ty, GA

My Champion

This is Honeys story. She was a puppy mill dog sold from a pet store to someone who didn't know what they were doing. By 2 years old she came into rescue. The mother told her girls to take the dog into the desert and tie her up. The girls went through a park and called out free dog. Someone grabbed her and brought her to Rescue a Golden of AZ in which I volunteer. She was adopted out twice and brought back quickly. So I adopted her, I told her I would never give up on her. We went through many and all behavior problems, that took years. At about 6 years old we decided to try agility. We love it! She got her first championship at 11 1/2 years old, she just got her second at 12 1/2! She is now retired but will still do classes like hoops or barrels for fun. She was the best teacher for me and I love her very much!!!

Lynn
Paulden, AZ

Rosie - the sweetest girl

When my Mom passed last August part of my inheritance were her pets. Rosie a Japanese Chin and Sir Thomas Cat. Both were rescues.

Today with many tears I brought home Rosie’s ashes. She had been suffering from heart failure for the last few years. With the help of her vet Rosie left us.

Rosie had lived an interesting life. She had run away from home 8 times. Two boys found her and brought her to my Mom’s house asking if the little dog was hers. She took Rosie in and called the animal department. The female officer recognized Rosie right away. She told my Mom her story and my Mom said to notify her if she went up for adoption. My Mom got the call a few days later.

When they brought Rosie to her my Mom said, “That is not the right dog. The one at my house was black and brown.” They told her they had given her a bath and she was now white and tan.

Anyone that met Rosie loved her. She tended to have a one sided smile, a tail that never stopped wagging held high like a flag, and a little prance as she walked or ran.

I was very blessed to have had her with me for the last 8 months. She was 3 months short of her 16th birthday. When I knew she was failing I carried her for a last walk on the warmest day, I sat on the floor next to her and talked to her when she ate, I petted her and told her how much she was loved as she crossed over the rainbow bridge to once again be with my Mom. Please adopt senior animals it is well worth it. I miss my sweet girl.

Marcia Borell
Traverse City, MI
Surf to Sand Embroidered Tunic
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