~ We Miss Our Sweet Girl
This video (click here) was a couple years ago, after Cabela had had her teeth cleaned and a small growth removed from her eyelid. Ella (our middle kiddo) was all about taking care of her.
Thank you so much for chatting with me, I’ve found comfort in sharing our memories of Cabela. Like you, I feel like it was just yesterday that you were emailing me to tell me her miraculous birth story. She is so very missed.
I know we can relate to the loss or the fear of the loss of our beloved Weimaraner. No one is ever prepared to say goodbye. Cabela had the best possible family and life–for that, we are ever so thankful.
Her family knows she cannot be replaced, but Caleb (the gray male they got from us some years ago), needs a new sister. So, soon Clover (another Blue Female) will join this family. We are honored to know them, and touched by their loyalty.
~Part Two (not alone)
I just heard from a friend that her dog Bruno, Cabela’s buddy from puppyhood passed last week as well. Gives me some comfort that she had a buddy for her journey home. They were our neighbors for a number of years…we built our houses together while our pups frolicked around! Cabela was known to steal breakfast right off their coffee table if they left their door open and she would often make her way to their house (with us chasing her) and eat Bruno’s food out of his bowl! 😆
I am sure everyone will enjoy this memory along with the news that Cabela has her old friend with her for the journey over the Rainbow Bridge.
It is with great sadness that I write to let you know that our sweet Cabela, our very first baby, has passed away.
We are greatly saddened, but so thankful for the wonderful memories we had with her. I am so thankful that she passed when she did, after a weekend together, filled with playing outside, eating horse poop (her, not us!), and stealing donuts off the counter. She had been declining and I had been preparing myself for a couple years now, but of course you’re never completely prepared for the day that it finally happens. She passed in her sleep, after enjoying a dinner topped with leftover mac & cheese and tuna sandwich scraps (she had become a bit of a picky eater).
As a family, we laid her to rest yesterday evening, overlooking our creek, where she loved to splash around and explore. The kids wrote her letters and Ella blew bubbles for her. Hunter also gave her his certificate of achievement from school for his math test. And of course, they both gave her a stuffie to take along on the journey (she loved to steal their stuffed animals!). As sad as we all are, I am grateful for the lesson of saying goodbye to a family member in such a beautiful way.
Thank you for choosing us to be her people. We will forever be changed by the way she enriched our lives.
Love to you,
You might remember I mentioned Cabela in a recent blog–click here. I remember Cabela’s arrival like it was yesterday–and all that occurred after she arrived left an impression on our hearts. We entrusted into your care, and here we are many, many years later celebrating her life–grieving her departure.
Isn’t it the truth that these wonderful creatures make us better humans? I believe it is true. Thank you for the photo array of Cabela–each snapshot speaks volumes. Our hearts ache for you and the family’s loss.
~ A few Thought
I wanted to share a bit more about our life with Jake. It has taken me awhile–I was still having a hard time when I think about him. We just went up to the USA to visit my family for the first time in 7 years. We arrived home yesterday. Such an empty feeling came over us when we walked into the house. It wasn’t like we forgot he was gone, but it still feels really odd not to have him here. He held such a special place in our lives and we are absolutely heartbroken. I could have never imagined it would be this hard not to have him around. On our holiday we had heaps of family around and ‘doggie babies’ for my kids to have time with but, the kids would tell me quietly afterward – “that dog is not as good as Jake mum”
Jake had an incredible ability to sense the energy of everyone around him and adapt his personality to suit. He was the most fun loving dog you would ever meet. He absolutely loved Christmas and would go berserk when we started to get the boxes out from the attic each year. He loved decorating the tree. He would proudly wear his antlers and the light up Christmas collar the kids put on him and join in with every activity. Especially opening presents on Christmas day.
He always had an incredible nature with the kids and was the most patient dog you ever met. He put up with sharing his rawhide bones and being poked, prodded and used as a pillow. He had the most joyful personality. He was always up for whatever you wanted to do and would let you know he was incredibly disappointed on the occasion he was not going to be included. I could never imagine what a great friend and partner he would turn out to be, especially with when I was coping with the move to New Zealand. then when the kids came along he was just as willing to love and accept them as he did me. we are all missing him so much still. but we will be eternally grateful for the friend you gave us.
We did post the news of his passing–Click Here to read that and to see more photos. We feel the loss with you, as do so many readers. Thank you, for giving him such an excellent life.
It is National Pet ID Week
April 15-21, 2018
We embrace the microchip concept for our OwyheeStar puppies. Every pup leaves with the AKC Reunite Microchip implanted. All our puppy family must do is to register their chip (pay a small lifetime fee) with AKC Reunite. Honestly, if you don’t register the microchip is probably not going to do much good.
Let’s not forget the 4th of July and the hoopla associated with it fills shelters to the brim. These hardworking folks do their best to get every pup back to their family; however, it is an arduous process. This one step does more than anything to get your pup back to and along with the ID collar increases your odds of return astronomically.
Did you register the microchip? We sincerely hope you did. Here is more information from AKC Reunite. Our experience has been positive–they are accommodating.
If a neighbor finds your dog, a pet ID tag is the fastest and most efficient way to be reunited with your pet. However, ID tags can fade or fall off, or your pet’s collar can be removed. This is when an enrolled microchip with up-to-date contact information links you and your pet to help ensure you are reunited with your lost or stolen pet.
Save $2 on replacement collar tags and dog collars with coupon code Tag2 through April 21, 2018.
~ Part One
The last two blogs (Roxy’s story) and (Olli who lost his fur brother) have dealt with the loss of the Weimaraner. There are simply no words to cover such a loss. We can agree on this one thing—what we want to do is to push off the inevitable as long as possible.
This heartfelt desire begs the question of what we can do to make a big difference. We have some thoughts. Our suggestions cover the unexpected accidental loss as well as avoiding potential health issues. Our hope is for every OwyheeStar puppy to arrive at the Rainbow Bridge’s door late in life.
Accident Related Loss
Every few months we get a note about a Weimaraner who has lost their life due to an accident. These events vary–by nature each is unique; however, the underlying cause is similar. Some of the standout scenarios are listed here along with suggestions on how to avoid this type of thing. Eating or ingesting various non-edibles is a common theme. There are other dangers too, but we often forget the Weimaraner will eat anything.
1. Toys — Even rubber toys lose their integrity. Depending upon your Weim’s chewing strength, you may need to (always) supervise their chewing. Other toys have squeakers that can become an issue and the rope bones, which are a good choice, don’t work for every Weimaraner. Bits of ingested string can build up in and along the intestinal wall leading to a blockage or irritation. A blockage can happen fast and be hard to discover in time to save your pet. Vomiting and not passing a stool are indicators–but these two symptoms are not a sure sign. The same signs for other ailments and sometimes are just mean it is an upset tummy. It is best to get your Weimaraner checked if this is a prolonged event. Taking their temperature (rectally) might not seem all that pleasant, but it can help you determine the seriousness of the event. (The normal dog temperature is 101.5°F (38.6°C). A rising temperature is alarming –-you need to know the standard temperature for your pet because it is much higher than for humans.
2. Medications and things sink side — One of the most heartrending stories involved a Weimaraner that ate someone’s medication–kept at the kitchen sink for convenience. The counter-surfing Weimaraner nabbed the bottle and ate it, and the contents. By the time they got him to the Vet office, it was too late. The Weimaraner might eat anything it seems–we have had others report sponges, dishrag, food, food-scented trash, etc. Sponges and the dish rag could lead to a blockage. Food has all kind of potential risk–bones can puncture the intestine wall, and some food (even the most innocuous kind like the avocado) are potentially toxic.
3. Around the House –There are many things to mouth and ingest. Some are shocking to us. One such item happens more than you might guess. Certain Weims are so obsessed with you and your scent that they may raid your laundry basket. Undergarments have the strongest scent, and some Weims will ingest these–another potential intestinal blockage issue. More often than not, they will pass, but you might discover something hanging out the back end. A hankie, undies, or the sock that made for a quick snack. (oops)
4. In the Fenced Yard –These are multifaceted. The Weimaraners are known for ingesting rocks; sometimes they pack them around in the mouth, and this is hard on their teeth. Pica (ingesting items such as rocks) seems odd to us, but it happens a lot. Marble-sized rocks to those the size of a large plum (such as river rock) are ideal. Rocks sometimes will travel through without a hitch; other times (all too often) they cause an intestinal blockage. Sharp edged rocks can irritate or puncture the intestinal wall. Rocks are not the only culprit in your yard. There are a plethora of toxic plants commonplace. Ones we would never suspect. Anything in the yard (including your house siding) could be chewed. We have known of a Weimaraner left in the yard that dug up a sidewalk, and she ingested bits of concrete. While we are discussing the backyard, some Weims can open gate latches. Others dig and can tunnel out of the yard. Then there are those that if they want to get out to explore, they can easily bound over a 5′ fence. Another danger is a collar that would catch them and strangle them. One extreme dog lover tied his and his brother’s dog to a tree. They didn’t have a fence, and they were only going to the corner store for a moment. Both dogs climbed the tree they were tied to–the young men came back to find the Weimaraner’s collar had caught on a branch she slipped, and you can guess what happened. This haunting experience will never be forgotten (the young man is a practicing Veterinarian). May this serve as a warning to others who think to tie their Weim for a few moments would be the safest solution. It didn’t work out in this situation.
5. Road Dangers—
A six-acre yard and a well-trained Weimaraner should not be a problem; however, the devastating loss of their family member proved them wrong. A deer or something spurred the Weimaraner to give chase. Later they found him on a road even though they lived in a remote Northern Idaho location. The inherent desire to give chase (also known as the prey drive) is always lurching in the background–even when you have achieved the seemingly unfailing recall. Traveling with the Weimaraner is not without risk either. Some folks believe it is OK to have them ride in the back of their pickup–some tie them in, so they won’t fall out. Others let them roam free. More than one Weimaraner has seen something that sparked their sudden urge to give chase, and over the side, they went. Not everyone lost their life, but some did. One Christmas Eve in warm Arizona a woman was traveling with her Weimaraner. She had the windows down–the breeze blowing in their faces. She was on the way to a family dinner when her Weimaraner jumped out the window. He rolled down a bank breaking several bones. He lived, but they spent the night at the Emergency Vet Office instead of having a family dinner. He had traveled with the window frequently open; she had no reason for concern until this happened.
Others types of accidents happen but are less commonplace. Day two–we will discuss the other random things that may well shorten your time with your beloved friend and family member. The Weimaraner’s human must look out for their well-being on every level. A watchful eye for the seemingly puppy-like nature and the dangers to this breed are required. We thank you for your vigilance.
~ Shela and Cliff
PS: We bemoan the lack of photos; however, we were at a loss for which one to put here. We also didn’t cover things like Holiday Mishaps–and the dangers posed by the 4th of July and such. It was a lengthy post, and we have written on these topics many times.
~ He has never known life without Rudi
Yesterday we made the difficult decision to put Rudi down. He was 14 and his back arthritis was worsening. It was the right thing to do and one of the hardest decisions we have ever had to make. It was our turn to love unconditionally and he is now stalking rabbits with his buddies.Olli has not yet figured out the permanence of the change. He knew something was going on and that Rudi was not doing well. He wanted to snuggle with him on Rudi’s bed but Rudi was not having any of it. Re picture below is one we took several months ago in the distillery. Two very different temperaments and we love both of them dearly for their personalities and joy that they bring.Hope you and Cliff are doing well. ~Mary
PS – when we got Olli we started both dogs on Nuvet. Rudi had horrible allergies but they steadily improved over the last 2 years to the point of not needing any medication. Coincidence? I think not. We are sold on the benefits.
Eventually, something is going require us to let them go. This gut-wrenching experience is a personal one. A loss is never easy–it affects each of us differently. We process it in our way–honor them in a way significant to us. Some folks grieve for a long time and cannot entertain the thought of getting another. Others feel free to move forward. They are almost driven to find another and begin a new journey. Their take is the departing Weim would want nothing less for them.
Most of us want to extend the journey together as long as it is feasibly possible. With insurance knee replacements, hip replacements, and other major surgical procedures are within reach.
How Long Do We Have?
That is a good question. No one can guess. There simply is no guarantee you will get 14 years, or even 11. The only way to approach this risky relationship is to count every day as a special blessing.
From Our Side
If you sat where I sit you would feel what I feel. I read notes from people all the time; ………not always OwyheeStar people. In fact, these are usually not from our clients but people who are seeking and searching for other than what happened to them. They look to avoid whatever health issue took their fur baby away. I am quick to tell them that anything could happen. It scares me when we place a puppy with someone who writes me that they lost their last Weimaraner to a rare form of cancer. I secretly fear that rare cancer could strike again—even many years ago when it had never happened. Honestly, I only remember once it happened –cancer of larynx took a client’s six-year old Weimaraner. She got another from us, but it didn’t replace the first OwyheeStar in her heart.
This concern of someone having an untimely loss is only one of the many stressors in my life—I do care. I think when you adopt a rescue anything can happen. Also, when you bring home a puppy things can happen as well. The risk of loving our beloved Weimaraner is huge but worth it.
It is Just a Matter of Time
~ 14 Years is Not Enough
I’ve been thinking of sending you a few pics of this year. She’s such a strong girl – as soon as we start to think this is it, she bounces up like a puppy and proves to be as healthy as ever.
The Beach is Out!
~ This is the Last Trip
This trip to the beach will probably be her last, as she could hardly move when we got home. The vet says it’s that nerve in the hip area that’s ready to give out, so we know it’s just a matter of time before she won’t be able to walk at all. Thank you for staying in touch all these years – you gave us a gift for over 14 years & we’re so grateful.
Dear Friends, if you can say a little prayer for Roxy’s family, we would appreciate it. We all know that eventually, we will face something life-ending with our Weimaraner. It could come as a surprise–out of the blue in a shocking manner that doesn’t allow us to say goodbye. Or, it might require a gut-wrenching decision.
Holly Haffey who is a frequent OwyheeStar contributor (and her mother is Terri Robinson who delights us with her photography) faced a decision such as this with her first Weimaraner, Emma. Emma was a rescue Holly acquired that lead her to the breed. She was able to extend Emma’s life through great sacrifice on her part. I won’t speak to what it cost her personally, and it is most certainly not something everyone could or would do, but it is a testimony to what folks do to extend days together.
The crossroad we all reach (when our beloved lives on) takes us a place no one wants to go. It is a place we celebrate all we have shared and how our life was changed in the process. It is a painful decision that leads us through the valley of loss and grief. It is a very personal decision. If you have not been there, don’t even imagine saying to someone what they ought to do. If your travels include the valley of sorry and the rainbow bridge, then we know you can feel the agony.
Atticus in New Zealand
How did Atticus deal with the loss of Squiggle?…
It was a weird time for us, which probably helped him out. At that time I was doing small animal weekend and relief work in Texas, so I had a lot of free time I was spending with them at home. I knew the time was getting close. Squiggle had major muscle atrophy in her hind ends and was having trouble getting up or going for extending walks. She had a couple of accidents while sleeping. She also had several large masses of her spleen and several other health problems. I spent a couple days with them doing their favorite things, and let her eat a lot of people food. I set up an appointment early in the morning on my day off and I decided to take Atticus with me. Atticus and I were in a room with her and a vet tech. Atticus just laid down while I did everything with her. He licked his paws the whole time but didn’t get visually or vocally upset otherwise. We spent about a half hour in the room with her and then we left. He didn’t seem very interested in her; didn’t go over to her to smell or nudge her or anything.Afterward, I took him to the dog park, had lunch with a friend and then just chilled at home. At this time, when I wasn’t home I was taking them to a dog daycare/boarding place every day I was working. So he had no time to be at the house alone. He was either with me or with the staff and other dogs at the daycare center. He never searched for her or seemed otherwise upset.I’m not sure if this is a normal response, or just him, or what. Hopefully, that helps.Marika
I wonder if Atticus didn’t take his cue from you. Maybe you had resolved this, and while you were sad, you knew it was inevitable. Plus you work with this kind of thing (being a Vet) and help others deal with the loss. Each situation is unique. He was busy with his normal life. You were sad to say goodbye to Squiggle. Nonetheless, you knew there was no turning back. It is beyond sad to lose an old friend.
Honoring Those Who Came First
It has been awhile since I thanked you for this beauty. The sun has shown up a bit this week and she got to explore a lot. If it keeps up this Tuesday we will take her to the beach for the first time. It will be a year since the day we lost our 2 puppies. We thought a great way to honor them was to spend the day spoiling Lily. We can’t imagine life without her now. She is such a huge part of our world. Thank you again ~ Catherine.
In a blink of an eye, through no fault of your own, a loss can occur. The unthinkable is devastating. Eventually, something will come along and claim them before we can fathom letting them go, but a tragedy such as this family suffered hit deeper yet. We were glad to be able to send Lily. She has big paw prints to fill, but she is making a difference. She is not a replacement. Her duties are new and unique.