Monday, November 10, 2008

Rest in peace, Greta

This has been a very emotional day. We had to put down our beloved dog, Greta, who was 10 1/2 years old and had become very ill very quickly. After a weekend that included a midnight run to an emergency animal clinic and a rapid deterioration of the lovable chow-shepherd who was still often mistaken for a puppy despite her advanced years, today's news was not a surprise. But that doesn't make it any easier, does it?

The kids have been beside themselves with grief all day. They left for school this morning, running to catch the bus with tears streaming down their faces because they had just said good-bye to their dog, something we suggested they do "just in case" because we did not know how the vet visit would unfold. Chiara said good-bye and patted Greta's head before heading off to her nap. When she awoke, the first thing she said was, "Is Greta gone?" The afternoon has been pretty rough -- lots of tears but also lots of reminiscing about our dog, who was very gentle, very friendly, and very patient with children. Everybody loved Greta.

Noah is convinced that there must be dogs in heaven because paradise wouldn't be paradise if something you loved wasn't there. He's got a good point. So we say good-bye to Greta, who sometimes drove us crazy with her barking at the back door but who never failed to be loyal and protective and everything a good dog should be.


UB said...

From William F. Buckley's Near My God, his "Autobiography of Faith:"

"[Fr. Sharkey] had been approached some weeks earlier, he told us, by a devout elderly woman who asked him whether dogs would be admitted into heaven. No, he replied, there was no scriptural authority for animals getting into heaven. 'In that case,' the lady had said to him, 'I shall never be happy in Heaven. I can only be happy if Brownie is also there.'

"'I told her' -- Fr. Sharkey spoke with mesmerizing authority --'that if that were the case, that she could not be happy without Brownie, why then Brownie would in fact go to Heaven. Because what is absolutely certain is that, in Heaven, you will be happy.' That answer, I am sure, sophisticated readers of Esquire dismissed, however indulgently, as jesuitical. Yes. But I have never found the fault in the syllogism."

My condolences to you all. Goodbye, Greta. Hope to see you in heaven.

Michele B. said...

I pray that the Lord finds space in the emptiness of your hearts. I'm so sorry. Blessings.

Grace said...

Mary -

Have you read the legend of the rainbow bridge?

My thoughts are with you.


Anonymous said...

Nobody who has had a pet considers their pet "a pet". Rather, the animal is "a member of the family". Our condolences to you, Dennis and the children on the loss of your loved one. Greta, we'll see you in heaven and it will be a privilege to rub your belly again.
D & D

Roxane B. Salonen said...

I really believe that living things that taught us more about love will be waiting for us in heaven. Greta is no doubt playing ball with Frasier, our yellow lab that left us several years ago. Grieving is grieving. Take care and know that this experience is preparing you all for what is to come and it will all be made good, but for now, tears are healing and necessary. When Frasier left us, it hurt my heart every time I had to clean up the scaps under my baby's highchair. That used to be his job. :) It's the little things that remind us of the hole that is left behind.

Amy R. said...

Those of us who are dog lovers and have had pets of our own, feel your pain. I too, hope Greta is up in Heaven playing with our beloved yellow lab, Wigeon. I can hear them now....."Hey, my mom knows your mom, blah, blah"......see you in Heaven someday girls!