A Piece Of Our Hearts Is At Rainbow Bridge

For the past thirteen years my Dad’s constant companion and shadow has been an old border collie called Sonny who was rescued by the old fella when he came across him being thrashed by an impatient farmer for failing to nip the heels of the sheep but clearly no amount of beatings was going to change this poor dog’s submissive behaviour. My Dad being a canny old fella knew there and then that the fate of this young pup lay in his hands as most failed sheepdogs are usually despatched with a bullet from the farmer’s gun so waving his walking stick in the air he approached the farmer saying “Now then fella m’lad, that’ll be enough of that” and promptly took the young dog off the farmer’s hands right there and then without any further argument from the farmer.

My mother was less than impressed when this fairly bedraggled and smelly dog was brought into her pristine kitchen but had become accustomed over the years to my father bringing home various waifs & strays so begrudgingly set about finding something to feed the poor animal. After an overly-enthusiastic bath and groom the bewildered animal settled at my father’s feet, which is more or less where he has been for the past thirteen years. We often joked that Dad probably loved the newly named Sonny more than the old dear. It took some time for Sonny to gain confidence even the cats knew he was a complete pushover and whilst the farmer had not appreciated his kind temperament everyone who met him was charmed. I am always amazed by the good nature of animals in spite of the poor treatment they receive from those that should know better. Sudden movements and loud noises still frightened him and the fact that he never barked were signs of his former abusive life but the old fella loved him dearly.

In fact they were seldom apart, every time I cycled up to the allotment Sonny would be contentedly laying on a blanket in the sunshine watching his master with adoring eyes, who would be toiling amongst his beloved dahlias.

The saddest thing is that as both old boys have fought their health own battles they have been separated when they when both needed each other’s comfort the most. It’s been hard watching them both deteriorate and I’ve come to terms with the fact that the old fella will never be coming home as the brain damage is just too severe for him to cope with the smallest of tasks. I’d also been in denial over Sonny so with a reluctant heavy heart made the decision to help him take the journey to Rainbow Bridge where he passed away in my arms as the person he loved the most on this earth could no longer remember his name.

I truly believe it’s possible to die of a broken heart but I am comforted that Sonny will be waiting just on the other side of the bridge to walk the old fella home when his time comes.

Sleep well bonny lad

Sadly the only pictures I have of Sonny and the old fella have been lost or damaged so I thought they’d both approve if instead I posted a picture of Handsome Benny who Blind Dog Rescue UK are trying to find a UK home for as regrettably his other one fell through. I sure would appreciate it if you could share beautiful Benny’s story so he can find his forever home just like the old fella’s boy.

 

Benny

23 thoughts on “A Piece Of Our Hearts Is At Rainbow Bridge

  1. You really do touch the heartstrings. We have a situation up here at our cabin in the mountains – a dog arrived and began to hang around more and more. He is no youngster but he is very well mannered and gentle. A local told us that his owner is very ill and dying so it looks as though the old fellah is seeking contact/companionship from wherever he can get it. We are not around all the time but he is very welcome to share what we have when we are.

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  2. Oh dear Tink….I wept as I read your words. I’m so sorry to hear Sonny has passed and it breaks my heart to hear that he and your Dad were apart but glad too, that you were there to comfort and soothe Sonny on his way. Yet again, you take on the burden of doing the right thing for those you love, with the strength and grace of an angel of mercy. Hugs to you and your father dear friend…and RIP dearest Sonny.

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  3. Okay, you got me. Now I’m a mess and tearing into my tea. Thanks for sharing this personal story, Dallas. I hope it helped you to write it and everyone who reads it. Love from California.

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  4. Oh gee this was a sad one to read. I’m so sorry that you could not have taken Sonny to see your Dad but I reckon that would have been gut wrenching. They each gave the other love that only they know about.

    Border Collies are special dogs. My son and my daughter have each had a very special border collie come into their life when they needed it the most. I also have had the privilege of having one in my life. I miss Rocket a lot even though I have other dogs. I would love to find one again someday.

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  5. How sad to have to bid a good friend farewell after so many years together. My heart goes out to you as you have to bear this loss on top of all the other emotions which must be overwhelming you at the moment. Hugs to you and your Dad, dear Dallas. xx

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  6. How incredibly sad that they couldn’t be together at the end. Sonny was rather the lucky dog though, having you Dad to thank for so much. As you say, Sonny will give your Dad a great welcome when the time comes. Here’s to Benny finding that home soon.

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  7. I truly believe our beloved pets that have passed on before us will be on the other side to greet us when we get there. I never tell them good-bye, just that I’ll see them later. Many (((hugs))) xo

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  8. This truly broke my heart. It reminded me so much of our little poodle and how he mourned my hubby when he passed. ‘Dude’ was up there in years and going deaf and blind and he would roam around the house searching for his loved master. At times he would lie under my desk and whimper. Finally, when he quit eating, I figured it was time to send him off to join hubby. I think they’re both happier that way, but it’s such a very, very sad thing. Sending you warm, loving, comforting hugs across the seas.

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    • They both had one master didn’t they? I always think of that Yorkshire expression “one man & their dog” when I saw them together and their devotion was unquestionable. I think that they were all lucky to have found each other in their lifetimes, don’t you?

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      • I might add that, though your post brought back some heartache, it also launched down memory lane with images of the two of them dancing in my head. Hope you find more and more of those as you go along, too! ❤

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  9. It is remarkable how deep the bond is that can form between a human and a dog. It is good that your father and Sonny had each other, even though their time probably did not feel like enough. I am sorry for your hard times.

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