I lost my special heartdog Tasha 7 months ago today on April 5th.

When she was euthanized, my wife and I held her. When she passed over to the Rainbows Bridge, the vet gave us her collar and leash for us to take home with us.

I knew this day was coming. Someday. I just did not know when it would be. 

But today I am giving Tasha's collar and leash to Tasha's first mom.  Tasha's first mom and I adopted/rescued her from the Humane Society and raised her together for 2 years along with our other black lab and 2 cats.  She loved Tasha deeply also. We decided to divorce. On very friendly terms. And I remarried 8 years ago.

My wife and I are moving to Asia in 3 weeks. We plan to continue our retirement there for many years. We are taking very little with us other than clothes as we begin this new chapter of our lives. Our house is sold.

We wanted to take Tasha with us, and go there about 3 years ago, but we solicited the opinions of various vets about putting her in a crate, in the dark belly of the jets, and flying her 2 flights of about 12 hours each. She was 8 years old at the time. The consensus and the American Vet Assoc's opionion was: do not subject her to this, she'd be too afraid, and it is too long.  So we did not go with her. We waited until she had lived out her full life here with us. 

Tasha's first mom was upset with me that I did not have Tasha's ashes saved in an urn for her to keep. I did not consult with her on this decision at the time, I had no idea this would be important to her.  She was very happy to hear me offer her Tasha's collar and leash yesterday.

I put the collar and leash in a beautiful urn today.  Her collar still smells like her today, even though it went through a cycle in the washing machine.  I felt very close to Tasha as I held her collar for the last time and smelled her familar wonderful smell for the last time.  Tasha, you will forever be in my heart. I think about you every day and probably will for many years. 

For the 1st time since losing Tasha, I went to the local Humane Society's web site yesterday. And looked at many dogs waiting for loving people to rescue them, love them, and give them a life. As I had done with Tasha.  For the 1st time since losing her, I now believe I willl need to rescue another dog and enjoy joyful times with them just as Tasha did with me for 10 incredibly wonderful years.  I will need to wait until we complete our move and we buy a house.

Tashas Dad
Thank you for Loving Me.jpg 
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What a loving and selfless gesture.
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Hi TashasDad,
Such a beautiful post! I know that even though you set Tasha free she will live in your heart just as my dog, Bailey, will always stay in mine. I think it was a wonderful gesture to give her collar and leash to her first mom. I'm also happy to hear that you are thinking of rescuing another dog. He or she will certainly be very lucky when that time comes! I also think that Tasha will be smiling down - so very proud of her loving dad! ❤️
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Tasha’s dad:
So happy you waited to follow your dream. Putting Tasha in that crate would have caused much anxiety and fear.
What a selfless kind thing to do giving her collar back to Mom 1. I’m sure it meant a lot to her.
Safe travels and I know there’s a baby waiting for you to love. Some lucky baby will be so glad to have you.
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Tasha's Dad...
What an amazing thing you did, so thoughtful and touching. All of it, from the adoption of your sweet and precious Tasha to sharing with her first mom.

I wish you much happiness in your new start in life, and one day, when you are ready, with a new sweetie to enrich their life, and yours.

Best of luck to you and wishing you a future of love and happiness.
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I am getting the smell of dog as I read this.
It is a nice smell...bittersweet and not too heavily "doggy" (how does one describe a smell?) A friendly scent.

Don't forget Tasha is not bound any more by all those things. She is free to be with you wherever you are. Now she can easily travel to you, without having to be in the cargo hold of a plane!

Hold the love like a little light. It is all you have, or will ever have, to find your way home.

Misty's Blog..a Dogfight with Cancer http://www.mistysblog69.blogspot.co.uk

Misty's life after death: http://www.dog2spirit.com
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This was the only photo of Tasha's collar I could find on the Internet. Sorry the photo is so small. 

They don't sell it any more I guess. It says "Love" about 8 times on it.  We bought about 5 of these maybe 7 years ago. Because of the word on it. And because it was a very padded collar (she always loved to pull hard whenever she saw a squirrel or anything else exciting). Whenever she'd wear one out, we'd put on a new one.

She was always very loved!


Tashas Dad
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Thank you very much for your reply.

I agree totally with you, Bailey and Tasha are both free now, and they will both live in our hearts forever.

I am sorry for taking so long to respond. We are selling our house in 7 days and then moving to Asia. It is a strange busy time in our house as we get everything ready.

I do hope to rescue another dog in Asia after I buy a house. The reality is that the 4 best friends I've had in my lifetime were all dogs, especially Tasha by far. Humans have so many faults. But your dog's friendship, companionship, and love are unconditional. 

Tashas Dad

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Kim (William's Mom),

I am sorry for taking so long to respond. We are selling our house in 7 days and then moving to Asia. It is a strange busy time in our house these days. 

Yes, we wanted to move to Asia 3 years ago. I had announced our plans to my parents, siblings, and close friends 3 years ago.

BUT then the research on what the ordeal would have been like for Tasha in the dark belly of a plane for 2 (two) 12 hour flights just really scared the dickens out of me. There was no way I was going to subject her to that. So instead we concentrated on enjoying the 1st 3 years of our retirement here in the US, Tasha and I always continued to  maximize our quality time together. It came to us both naturally, just like she was my best friend or my daughter. 

FYI: The official policy or opinion of the American Veterinarian Association is that dogs should be moved by car whenever possible and not transported on airplanes whenever it can be avoided.  The main reasons are intense anxiety/fear (read this to mean it is traumatic for dogs to be in a crate in the dark belly of a plane not knowing and understanding what is happening and where they are going) and respitory problems and even respitory failure. And they are warning about flights within the US that are 1 to 6 hours in length. 

Truth be told, I had major anxiety issues myself just trying to research and understand what her flights would have been like for her. I had trouble breathing myself just thinking about how she'd make out. 

You are absolutely right, there is a new baby dog waiting for me to rescue then in Asia. The rescue needs for dogs there are much, much higher than here. And many many street or homeless dogs. 

Thank you for your supportive words, Kim.

Tashas Dad


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Thank you for telling me: "You can have no regrets about the life you gave Tasha and one day another lucky dog will join your family." I agree with both parts of your sentiment.  I loved her so deeply and gave her a wonderful life. And I will do it again when I am able to do so.

I apologize in advance to you for my emotion in my following sharing . . . 

But the why as to why I don't have Tasha's ashes is a real issue for me, going back to the beginning of this topic's post. I am sincerely, very happy you have your beloved pets' ashes. Though I am jealous actually. 

Tasha's age issues and then sudden major medical problems caught me totally unprepared for them both. I guess I was a fool or just a total loving dog daddy.  When the need began to become obvious, I was so focused on whether I choose to help her with her severe pain ... could I go actually go forward and ask the vet to euthanize her to end her pain.  

I called and spoke to the vet's wonderful staff. I told them it was time. They then began asking me many questions like did I want to wait a few days to be certain, did I want to bring her in and have "another" appointment with the vet to discuss (fictitious) treatment options, did I want to keep her ashes and have them returned, and would I like an urn for these ashes, . . .   I was just unable to talk. I was too numb. I was also crying and not breathing at all normally. I did not respond to any of their questions.

My wife had to take the phone from my hand, and speak for me. For US. And tell them that: It was time, and it was necessary, and could we please just bring her in now because we both knew we needed to help her now. They said yes, and had us come in immediately. 

I filled out all their paperwork and signed it. But I just could not speak. To anyone. To the different people who spoke to me and tried to ask me questions.  I just could not talk.  

If I could go back in time, I would certainly have asked to have her ashes returned to me. I just could not listen, could not think, and could not answer any questions at the time on that day. With the gravity of what was occurring to my beloved Tasha's life . I was never so numb in all my life.

I am very happy that you have Bonnies and Randy ashes in urns, along with their collars.

I again apologize to you for all of my emotion here. But this indirectly brought on a watershed moment/issue for me. In this reply / sharing . . . 

Tasha's Dad

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Peggy / Shattered_Heart,

I am very behind on responding to all of you wonderful people here at the Rainbow's Bridge forum. See a few above responses from to today as more as to why.

Yes, adopting Tasha, rescuing her just 1 day before her being put down by the shelter to make room for "more adoptable dogs" is one of the most important moments of my life.

She turned out to be, by far, the most special and important best friend of my entire life. 

Tasha's 1st Mom loved her deeply too. Just like me. And her 2nd Mom, my beloved wife of 8 years now.  :)    Everyone said said Tasha was so lovable, pretty, adorable.

Little children, only 3 or 4 years old some of them, in my neighborhood cried when I walked her each morning because they "wanted to pet my puppy" and they wanted me to stop walking past them so they could pet her.

My "Giant Puppy" as I called her was 65 pounds of very solid muscle (half black lab and half terrier of some unknown type ... rat terrier, pit bull, other?, ...).  She was 11 years old, very loving to everyone, but also very, very high strung and defensive/protective of herself. She had no child/kid experience.

So I always apologetically told them that = my "Giant Puppy was not not used to playing with children".  I told them I was sorry.  

They had no idea what I said or meant of course. But I was polite, and I always acknowledgde these wonderful little kids' words and wishes many mornings, who loved Tasha just by sight. Every day as she walked by them for over 3 years in this last very nice neighborhood we lived in together.

Tasha was very pretty. She was really beautiful. She was always so happy. Joyful.

She was really just majestic. I understood these little kids who wanted to pet her.  But she had no children experience and she was 65 pounds of muscle so I protected the children and her. 

Tasha, I will never forget you and or stop loving you. You are in my heart FOREVER. 

Tasha's Dad

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