Sunday, December 18, 2011

Red Devil

On Christmas Eve 2011, it will be three months since I lost Devil. Smiling Red Devil with Boots of Silver, my D, my favorite. Thus far, I have not been able to write any piece of this end story, as the hurt runs so deep. We lost Flare last spring, then Willy the cat, then TinkerBelle, but when we lost D, something broke inside of me. He was my second Siberian, and he filled our house with so much life. We never knew him as old, although he was at least 11 or 12. He was always just our D, our policeman, our favorite. This is the dog who had dozens and dozens of near death fights with Sparky, my first Siberian and the spoiled rotten king of the house. I have written of when they met. And now, there will be no more fights, no more shouting at each other, no more growling and carrying on with each other. There is something terribly amiss in my household, with my Devil gone. That fateful day, the last thing he did before he was led out of the exam room, was to pull back from Rhonda, and shove his head between my legs, to say goodbye, or to say, "I don't want to go!" I replay that moment where I loved him up for the last time, feeling that big furry neck once more between my hands. I asked Rhonda if there was anything to worry about, but of course not. He was fine, except for those mineralized ball bits in his stomach that were making him sick, and except for the terrible damage done to his neck and spine over the years from those awful fights. But he had just played with his ball, he gave us toothy kisses, he barked like a seal for his dinner. He policed the house dogs and came over to me for loving. D was another one of my dogs that did not like you to pet him too much. He enjoyed some good head rubbing and wooling was fine, but stay away from my hips and legs, and never, never touch my feet. D never came home. After a successful surgery, he began to bleed, and we could never get that bleeding to stop, even after three transfusions. We had to say goodbye at Tacoma Pet Emergency, and it was a very long goodbye. Devil was tired, and by then, I guess, he was ready to go. All I wanted to do was put him in my truck and take him home. He would be fine, he was always fine. Not this time. His leaving was as difficult as he could be under the best conditions. Horrible, awful nightmare of dying. Don't ever believe it is easy, it is not. Leaving this world can be as much of a struggle as coming into it. After he was gone, his crate became his shrine. D loved his crate and was well known for hiding all manner of things in the back of it. We talked to him constantly, and still talk to him. He was such a huge presence in this household of 27 Siberians. A gentle giant, it was true. Noble, handsome, intelligent, stubborn, loving, and had issues:)) We have allowed Tenzing to move into D's crate, but the other dogs have chewed on Devil's bed, so I gave it to Ibis, who was my foster that came in with cancer, and will leave me soon with cancer. But she does not know that. D knew though, and so did I. I now think of he and Tink playing as puppies once again in the green fields and snowy pastures across the Bridge.

I also think of that last goodbye. And await our final hello, when I too cross the Bridge to take the team back once again.


  1. I struggle to read this as I feel your deep loss...I can only offer you comfort from afar...and I leave you with, in honor of Devil and Tinkerbelle:

    North of The Rainbow Bridge
    by MakWa4me

    The time comes. A Siberian Husky lifts up its head. There is an untested adventure beyond. Time to go.

    Across the Rainbow Bridge is a place for all dogs. A river runs wide and shallow with tennis balls that fly with their own wings; that is the place for a Labrador or Golden to await its master's arrival.

    The Siberian is not content here. Northward is its trail....

    There are soft pastures for Aussies and Border Collies, with sheep and geese to pen. Agility equipment grows like trees amid Frisbees and flyball.

    But the North continues its sure wild call, and the Siberian's journey continues....

    Now the air is colder. Now the moon is always full. Now the light is silver and it breaks and shimmers on fields of bright snow. Now there are no roads, no walls, no pens, just endless space to run. This is where Siberians gather, North of the Rainbow Bridge.

    They wait in this beautiful place, happy, but not complete. Suddenly, a howl begins, as one dog senses someone coming, someone very special. All the Siberians raise their heads and join in the ancient chorus. They dance like moonbeams and sing like winter winds.

    There are red ones like dawn streaks, black ones splattered with many colors and silver ones like the first strange hour before light. They line up as if in harness and run together, in a scintillating, many-colored streak. The leader of the team guides the others past the fields and river, with racing feet and racing heart. They rush to greet the new arrival at the Rainbow Bridge, where the leader is rejoined with its beloved person, never to be parted again.

    The glory of the reunion is celebrated by all the Siberians dwelling beyond the Bridge, a glimmering, multicolored team leaping and whirling with joy. The light from that scene is what we see on magical evenings in the northernmost parts of this Earth: The Aurora Borealis, the Northern Lights beyond the Rainbow Bridge.

    Run free and play together North of the Rainbow Bridge, Devil & Tinkerbelle. You will always in your family's hearts.

  2. Heartrending-we have Two Siberian Huskies-who own our hearts, our homes and our souls