I Will Meet You at the Rainbow Bridge

His eyes showed weariness, but they never stopped following me whenever I entered the room. At thirteen years old, he was diagnosed with prostate cancer, but we had time remaining and both of us wanted to spend every possible minute together. The year before, I lost my sheltie, Houston, so knowing time was limited with my lab, CoJack, gave me every reason to spend as much time as possible with him.

In his last year, it was no longer possible to take long walks or play fetch in the back yard. On rare occasion, he mustered enough energy to show a sign of his younger years and would give a playful bark or prance to show his good mood. We would delight in being outside together when it wasn’t hot. He would lie in the shade or snoop around and I would work in the garden. As long as we were within each other’s sight, all was well in our universe.

As time passed, my dear friend took longer naps, thumped his tail against the floor, rather than getting up when I arrived home, and became an extremely picky eater. The ability to keep his taste buds tempted became my greatest challenge, but I worked diligently and until his last two days on earth, I managed to keep him eating. My promise to him was to never let him suffer and I kept my word, but it was devastating the night I heard him cry as he lay on his bed.

The next day I made an appointment with my vet and we took that dreadful and final ride together. I knew he was ready to go, but I could never be ready to say goodbye. Life has its unforgettably painful moments, but I don't believe we should ever make anything that concerns another’s well being about ourselves, so I did not.

CoJack’s ashes now sit on my mantle, along with the ashes of Houston, and one day my horse, Chesapeake, will join them. When it is my time to go, it is my request for one of my relatives to distribute our ashes in my favorite place on earth-the point in Hatteras, N.C. My wonderful four legged loves and I shall once again fly into the ethers from which we came. Until then, I know my faithful and loving friends shall be waiting for me at the Rainbow Bridge- a place just this side of heaven where our animals that have passed are healthy and strong once again, and patiently wait for our return. Please know my beautiful boys, Mama loves and misses you daily. I hope one day I will be the half the awesome person you believed me to be.

Houston-10/31/98-11/11/11

You were always boss of your big brother, even though you only weighed 10 lbs. Rest in Peace, my little man.
You were always boss of your big brother, even though you only weighed 10 lbs. Rest in Peace, my little man.

CoJack 2/27/99-12/4/12

You tolerated so much to make me happy....even letting me dress you as Woody on Toy Story for Halloween. Rest in Peace, my big man.
You tolerated so much to make me happy....even letting me dress you as Woody on Toy Story for Halloween. Rest in Peace, my big man.

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Comments 31 comments

lrc7815 profile image

lrc7815 3 years ago from Central Virginia

Pickles, I am so sorry and I know that nothing anyone says can help ease the loss. They give so much and ask for so little in return. As horrible as it is to make, the decision to end the suffering is the most kind thing we can do for our four-legged friends and, more than we are allowed to do for ourselves. I share in your grief and have no doubt that your beautiful CoJack is happy and healthy again. Hugs!


picklesandrufus profile image

picklesandrufus 3 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va Author

thank you so much Ird7815. I would love to be as awesome as my dogs, but that might be a life long project! Appreciate you stopping by.


TL 3 years ago

This made me cry! So sorry you had to go through this, but so glad you had the love of two such wonderful pals. Nothing beats the love of a dog. Beautiful story.


picklesandrufus profile image

picklesandrufus 3 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va Author

The old saying,"Better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all," is certainly true when it comes to our animals. Thanks a lot for stopping by TL.


Mhatter99 profile image

Mhatter99 3 years ago from San Francisco

After seeing those beautiful faces what can I say?; but thank you for sharing your sentiments.


picklesandrufus profile image

picklesandrufus 3 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va Author

and thank you for stopping by to comment Mhatter99.


Eiddwen profile image

Eiddwen 3 years ago from Wales

Oh pickles what a touching and beautiful tribute. They become our friends; our children don't they and they give so much in return for just their basic needs to be met.

They love unconditionally and without mind games like some humans.

My best friend when I was small was my Lassie and I have never forgotten the bond we shared; the same as the treasured bond you obviously have with your dogs .

CoJack is looking down;at peace and proudly watching over his Mom.

I loved your words:-

Until then, I know my faithful and loving friends shall be waiting for me at the Rainbow Bridge- a place just this side of heaven where our animals that have passed are healthy and strong once again, and patiently wait for our return.

This is truly beautiful and I vote up,across and share all around.

Lots of love for you from my little corner of Wales pickles.

Eddy.


picklesandrufus profile image

picklesandrufus 3 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va Author

Oh thank you Eddy for such a beautiful comment. Yes, they become a very integral part of our lives and are so missed when they pass on. So appreciate you stopping by.


Eiddwen profile image

Eiddwen 3 years ago from Wales

You are so very welcome pickles.

Eddy


travmaj profile image

travmaj 3 years ago from australia

Thank you for sharing this. Having been there several times I share your pain and the tears well up. What joy our four legged friends give us, what welcomes, always there for us, patient and attentive and knowing. Oh dear, so sorry, but glad you had the years with them, that's special.


picklesandrufus profile image

picklesandrufus 3 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va Author

Thanks for the comments travmaj. Yes, they are truly our best friends. I really appreciate you taking the time to read my hub.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 3 years ago from Chicago

"As long as we were within each other’s sight, all was well in our universe."

I am moved to tears by your loss of your beloved CoJack. I know what this is like. It hurts.

Thank you for sharing his story. God Bless You.


picklesandrufus profile image

picklesandrufus 3 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va Author

Yes it does James, and so sorry if you have lost a beloved pet. Thank you for stopping by to comment. Wishing you a love filled 2013.


mary615 profile image

mary615 3 years ago from Florida

Gypsy, I could relate to this Hub! We lost our beloved Shih Tzu after she gave birth. It just is heartbreaking when you lose a pet that you cherish. I never saved my dog's ashes, now I wish I had.

Everytime I lose a pet, I swear I won't get another one, but I always do.


picklesandrufus profile image

picklesandrufus 3 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va Author

thanks for stopping by Mary. I still miss my dog, but the love of a canine may be something I can't live without. Time will tell. Appreciate the comment!


DDE profile image

DDE 3 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

Losing my dogs happened to me twice and since then don't want to go down that road again, it is very painful and unforgettable experience.


picklesandrufus profile image

picklesandrufus 3 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va Author

Hi DDE, thanks for stopping by. I still miss all three of my dogs and lost one 20 years ago. Still, I will probably bring another one into my home for so many good animals need a home. I really appreciate the visit!


Vinaya Ghimire profile image

Vinaya Ghimire 3 years ago from Nepal

I can relate this because I have lost so many friends. Loss is a sad thing.


picklesandrufus profile image

picklesandrufus 3 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va Author

Thanks for stopping by to comment Vinaya. Yes, loss is sad, so I try to remember all the good years.


MartieCoetser profile image

MartieCoetser 3 years ago from South Africa

It is so unbearable sad to lose our dearest pets, and not to talk about our dearest beloveds.

You have all my empathy, Pickles!


Eliza57 profile image

Eliza57 3 years ago

I can not relate, not having a pet of my own. But, my heart goes all out, and I am sorry for your loss, and the pain you have to go through with loosing your pets. They are just like children - your babies - and to have to go through something to that degree - so close together.


picklesandrufus profile image

picklesandrufus 3 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va Author

thanks for your comment Martie. Yes, we do love our devoted friends, don't we! I miss him daily. Appreciate the visit

Hi Ann, I am definitely one of those people who make my animals my children. He took care of me just like I took care of him. Thanks so much for stopping by.


vocalcoach profile image

vocalcoach 3 years ago from Nashville Tn.

With tears in my eyes I feel so deeply your loss. Last year I lost my Clancey after 13 yrs. Like you, I held him in my arms as the vet injected him "to sleep" . Our "children" are everything to us. I, too have his ashes on my mantle which will be scattered with mine one day.

I know that he and "buddy" the yorkie I had before Clancey will wait for me and eagerly be ready to greet me. You are beautiful! Thank you and hugs.


picklesandrufus profile image

picklesandrufus 3 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va Author

Thank you so much for your comments vocalcoach. Your experience was so much like mine and many others I am sure. I still miss my dogs so much. I really appreciate your visit.


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 3 years ago from United Kingdom

A beautiful tribute and like vocalcoach I too have tears in my eyes....

Sending hugs your way and thank you for sharing.

Best wishes Lesley


picklesandrufus profile image

picklesandrufus 3 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va Author

Thank you so much Lesley. I appreciate the comment. Our animals are so dear, aren't they? I still miss him so .


Darja1981 3 years ago

Me and my mom, had a cat 17 years, we have save her when she was just a kitten. Last year she has pass away for kidney dysfunction, so i know how sad loss can be. I have another cat now with my boyfriend, but my mom doesn't want to have another animal.


picklesandrufus profile image

picklesandrufus 3 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va Author

Thanks for your comment Darja1981. For some reason I wasn't notified you had left a comment, so I am late in responding. I hope you get a lot of enjoyment from your new cat! They are such a comfort, aren't they?


btrbell profile image

btrbell 3 years ago from Mesa, AZ

So sad and so beautiful. Our pets are our babies and our family. Just this evening some teenagers randomly chased one of our cats off our porch and around the block. It was so strange and she was (is still) so frightened. I haven't felt this much anger in a long, long time. I an so sorry for your loss. This was a very touching memorial.


picklesandrufus profile image

picklesandrufus 3 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va Author

I really appreciate your visit btrbell. I am like you in that I get infuriated when I see an animal mistreated. They count on us for everything and trust us until we show them we can't be trusted. Sorry about your cat's experience. Appreciate the comment


Shyron E Shenko profile image

Shyron E Shenko 2 years ago

Pickles, you caring heart and your description of CoJack made me sad, but I know that you will all be happy at the Rainbow Bridge. Then you will meet our beautiful Trixie and Pudsie (Pigeon), they are probably playing with CoJack and Houston.

Voted up ABI and sharing.

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