In Memoriam


It is said that when our beloved pets die their passage to heaven begins at the Rainbow Bridge. These dogs were rescued by us and, while under our guardianship, they passed away. And though they never found their forever home, they were well loved and cared for by the kindhearted volunteers of All Border Collie Rescue. This page is dedicated to the memory of the ones who went to the bridge before their time.



  
  
  
  
  
  
    
    
    
    
    
   Piper TN RIP 
 Dahlia TN RIP Rosie3 TN RIP Kellyn TN RIP 
 Penelope TN RIP Cinch TN 
  
 
 
 
 
Rainbow Bridge - Stella Violano 
Rainbow Bridge © Stella Violano

The Rainbow Bridge

~Author Unknown~
 

Just this side of Heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge. When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge. There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together. There is plenty of food, water and sunshine and our friends are warm and comfortable. 


All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor; those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by. The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing: they each miss someone very special, someone who was left behind. 

They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent; his eager body begins to quiver. Suddenly, he breaks from the group, flying over the green grass, faster and faster. You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into those trusting eyes, so long gone from your life, but never absent from your heart.


Then you cross the Rainbow Bridge together...



The Rescue at Rainbow Bridge

~Author Unknown~


Unlike most days at Rainbow Bridge, this day dawned cold and gray, damp as a swamp and as dismal as could be imagined. All of the recent arrivals had no idea what to think, as they had never experienced a day like this before. But the animals who had been waiting for their beloved people knew exactly what was going on and started to gather at the pathway leading to The Bridge to watch.


It wasn't long before an elderly animal came into view, head hung low and tail dragging. The other animals, the ones who had been there for a while, knew what his story was right away, for they had seen this happen far too often.

He approached slowly, obviously in great emotional pain, but with no sign of injury or illness. Unlike all of the other animals waiting at The Bridge, this animal had not been restored to youth and made healthy and vigorous again. As he walked toward The Bridge, he watched all of the other animals watching him. He knew he was out of place here and the sooner he could cross over, the happier he would be. But, alas, as he approached The Bridge, his way was barred by the appearance of an Angel who apologized, but told him that he would not be able to pass. Only those animals who were with their people could pass over Rainbow Bridge. With no place else to turn to, the elderly animal turned towards the fields before The Bridge and saw a group of other animals like himself, also elderly and infirm. They weren't playing, but rather simply lying on the green grass, forlornly staring out at the pathway leading to The Bridge. And so, he took his place among them, watching the pathway and waiting.

One of the newest arrivals at The Bridge didn't understand what he had just witnessed and asked one of the animals that had been there for awhile to explain it to him.

"You see, that poor animal was a rescue. He was turned in to rescue just as you see him now, an older animal with his fur graying and his eyes clouding. He never made it out of rescue and passed on with only the love of his rescuer to comfort him as he left his earthly existence. Because he had no family to give his love to, he has no one to escort him across The Bridge."

The first animal thought about this for a minute and then asked, "So what will happen now?" As he was about to receive his answer, the clouds suddenly parted and the gloom lifted. Approaching The Bridge could be seen a single person and among the older animals, a whole group was suddenly bathed in a golden light and they were all young and healthy again, just as they were in the prime of life.

"Watch, and see," said the second animal. A second group of animals from those waiting came to the pathway and bowed low as the person neared. At each bowed head, the person offered a pat on the head or a scratch behind the ears. The newly restored animals fell into line and followed him towards The Bridge. They all crossed The Bridge together.

"What happened?"

"That was a rescuer. The animals you saw bowing in respect were those who found new homes because of his work. They will cross when their new families arrive. Those you saw restored were those who never found homes. When a rescuer arrives, they are allowed to perform one, final act of rescue. They are allowed to escort those poor animals that they couldn't place on earth across The Rainbow Bridge."

"I think I like rescuers", said the first animal.

"So does GOD", was the reply.


 



On the Death of a Dog...

 

 

 

The late Ben Hur Lampman (August 12, 1886–March 2, 1954), one of the most beloved Northwest writers of his era, joined The Oregonian staff in 1916 and enthralled two generations of readers with his graceful poems and poignant essays. The following originally appeared in The Oregonian in 1926 and later was included in the author's book of essays and poems, "How Could I Be Forgetting." He served as Poet Lauteate of Oregon from 1951 until his death.


Where to Bury A Dog

A subscriber of the Ontario Argus has written to the editor of that fine weekly, propounding a certain question, which, so far as we know, yet remains unanswered. The question is this -- "Where shall I bury my dog?" It is asked in advance of death.

The Oregonian trusts the Argus will not be offended if this newspaper undertakes an answer, for surely such a question merits a reply, since the man who asked it, on the evidence of his letter, loves the dog. It distresses him to think of his favorite as dishonored in death, mere carrion in the winter rains. Within that sloping, canine skull, he must reflect when the dog is dead, were thoughts that dignified the dog and honored the master. The hand of the master and of the friend stroked often in affection this rough, pathetic husk that was a dog.

We would say to the Ontario man that there are various places in which a dog may be buried. We are thinking now of a setter, whose coat was flame in the sunshine, and who, so far as we are aware, never entertained a mean or an unworthy thought. This setter is buried beneath a cherry tree, under four feet of garden loam, and at its proper season the cherry strews petals on the green lawn of his grave. Beneath a cherry tree, or an apple, or any flowering shrub of the garden, is an excellent place to bury a good dog. 

Beneath such trees, such shrubs, he slept in the drowsy summer, or gnawed at a flavorous bone, or lifted head to challenge some strange intruder. These are good places, in life or in death. Yet it is a small matter, and it touches sentiment more than anything else. For if the dog be well remembered, if sometimes he leaps through your dreams actual as in life, eyes kindling, questing, asking, laughing, begging, it matters not at all where that dog sleeps at long and at last.

On a hill where the wind is unrebuked, and the trees are roaring, or beside a stream he knew in puppyhood, or somewhere in the flatness of a pasture land, where most exhilarating cattle graze. It is all one to the dog, and all one to you, and nothing is gained, and nothing lost -- if memory lives. But there is one best place to bury a dog. One place that is best of all.

If you bury him in this spot, the secret of which you must already have, he will come to you when you call -- come to you over the grim, dim frontiers of death, and down the well-remembered path, and to your side again. And though you call a dozen living dogs to heel they shall not growl at him, nor resent his coming, for he is yours and he belongs there. People may scoff at you, who see no lightest blade of grass bent by his footfall, who hear no whimper pitched too fine for mere audition, people who may never really have had a dog. Smile at them then, for you shall know something that is hidden from them, and which is well worth the knowing.

The one best place to bury a good dog is in the heart of its master. 

 

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Donald McCaig's "Passports" from his small book "A Useful Dog" ...


"Moose died here, where twelve years ago he was born and he's buried in the graveyard on the hill where I hope to be buried someday...We carried him to his grave on his sheepskin bed and set his letter underneath. My wife, Anne, writes a letter for every one of our dogs and I have never asked her what she writes. She says it's a passport and I like to think of Moose coming to the last river he will ever cross and offering the boatman his letter,

'Oh, yes, I was a very good dog.'

"But it may be, it just may be - all our dogs waiting on the far side of the river that Anne and I must one day cross - those letters may not be dogs' passports. They may be ours."

 

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The Greatest Gift

By Karla M. Bertram 11/23/96
 


I always knew this time would come, from the very instant our eyes first met.
How I loved you then!
How I love you now!
I made a promise then and I keep that promise now...
You will not suffer from a pain that will not heal;
You will not know the loss of a life remembered, now gone.
It is for me alone to make this decision, 
the price for the bright joy and pure laughter you brought me during the time we shared.
I am the only one who can decide when it is time.
When my hope dies, and my fears ride high, 
just when I need you most, I must let you go.
It is for you alone to tell me when you are ready.
For without your guidance, I will not know when to lay my grief, my guilt, my anger,
my sorrow and my selfish heart aside and give you this last gift, this greatest gift.
Your eyes will speak to mine, and I will know.
The pain of this moment is excruciating.
Tears stream down my face in a river of sorrow, 
and my heart drowns in a pool of grief.
For you have spoken, and I have listened, 
and unlike other decisions I have made,
this one brings no relief . . . no comfort . . . no peace.
For if there's one thing you've taught me, if there's only one thing I've learned...
Unconditional love has a condition after all,
I must be willing to let you go, when you speak to me
I must be willing to help you go, if you cannot go alone.
And I must accept my pain so you can be free of yours.
Go easily now, go quickly now,
Do not linger here, it is time for you to leave.
Go find your strength, go find your youth.
Go find the ones who've gone before you.
You are free to leave me now, free to let your spirit soar
Rest easy now, your pain will soon be gone.
I pray I will find comfort in my memories...
In the dark and lonely days ahead.
I cannot say I will not miss you,
I cannot say I will not cry.
For only my tears can heal my broken heart.
But, I promise you this: 
as long as I live, you will live, alive in my mind, forever in my heart.
So I give you this last gift, all I have left to give,
and this will be my greatest gift . . . sending you away.
It is the measure of my unconditional love...
For only the greatest love can say,
"Good-bye, go find the bridge, we'll meet again,
loving you has been the greatest gift of all."

 

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Prayer of the Shepard's Dogge

By D.J. Jones Crossley


Oh Great Creator of the Universe; Maker of Heaven and Earth;
I ask you hear my humble prayer.

I protect my charges; be they four-legged or two.
I attend their every sound; whether a cry or coo.

For they are my flock, and I protect them from harm.
Whenever there is danger; I sound the alarm.

Although they are willful and often unwise;
I love them always, and keep watchful eye.

But I am a mere Shepherd’s Dogge, and I serve at thy will.
If thou shouldst call me; I shall come and be still.

So if I should die, before I wake;
I ask you watch over my beloveds, ‘till another take my place.