Mekhi Passes Over the Rainbow Bridge

Mekhi passed away July 17 from Lymphoma.  He was with us for seven years. He was six when I adopted him. He was a loving golden who earned the love of family and friends. He was with me through my husband Kennedy’s fight against cancer, and the last four years after his death. My devoted friend and companion throughout so many changes.

I now am in Maryland on a family farm that Mekhi loved.  I thank God for Mekhi and all at GRRAND for all you do to enrich the lives of so many dogs and people are alike.

Elizabeth Helm

Very Special GRRAND Dog, Cooper, Passes Over the Rainbow Bridge

Cooper Morton McClelland Mohre

We lost our Cooper almost a year ago.  I thought it would get easier with time, but my heart is still broken, and I feel like a huge part of me is missing.

I lived in a condo downtown, worked sixty hours a week and traveled all the time. I didn’t have a yard, was never home and hadn’t even cared for a fish.  But I knew something was missing – a companion to spend time outside with, something to get me away from work, a reason to be a fuller person.

A friend suggested adopting a dog with GRRAND. Shannon Baker visited my home, introduced me to her golden boys and told me all about rescuing with GRRAND. Two weeks later I walked into Sara Fick’s house in Lexington and met her 10th GRRAND foster, Cooper. I sat on her living room floor, and he came right over and laid his head in my lap. I knew right then I’d found what was missing and took Cooper home that night –I didn’t even have a bed for him, so he slept on a kelly green cotton quilt from my guest room.

Cooper absolutely loved living downtown. I took him everywhere I could – bars, trails, roof decks, the firehouse, my office, shops and even Morton’s Steakhouse – people said it looked like he was always smiling thanks to all the affection and attention in the city. He made me want to leave work earlier, he motivated me to spend time outside, he was immediately my most loyal companion and I knew we made each other happy. Cooper loved kids, following me everywhere, road-trips, eating paper and attending parties.

Four years after rescuing Cooper, I met my husband and we moved to Cape Cod. Cooper gained a dad, a big yard, an ocean view and a cat-brother. He sailed, swam in the ocean, rode with his new dad in his work truck and ate sandy crabs. He learned to share my attention when we had his new human baby brother, Mac. Watching Mac and Cooper play together for a year brought me the most joy.

Then, right after Mac’s first birthday, Cooper became sick and I had to make the toughest choices.  I am grateful for tremendous support from my GRRAND friends and our vets from Cincinnati and Cape Cod who helped me know it was time.  Cooper was my something missing, helped me become a fuller person and prepared me to be a caring wife and mother.  Next to the blue ocean on a sunny day, I was able to hold Cooper in my lap wrapped in the green quilt he slept with since the night I brought him home.

We love and miss you, Cooper Morton McClelland Mohre

Angel Dog, Ramsey, Passes Over the Rainbow Bridge

I wanted to share with the GRRAND community the passing of Ramsey.

An angel, with an easy going, loving nature. He was truly a gift, who’s life with us and memories of him we will always cherish. We were so fortunate and thankful that we found him and he picked us with the help of the dedicated people at GRRAND. Although our time with him seemed so short, we are certainly better for the time we had.

In loving memory….Steve Grey

Adopted December 2014. Crossed the rainbow bridge August 18, 2017.

Sweet Prince Passes Over the Rainbow Bridge

Dearest GRRAND friends,

It is with great sadness that I report to you that my sweet Prince went to the Rainbow Bridge on Monday morning. He wasn’t feeling well Sunday night and didn’t move from a spot on the living room floor all night, very unlike my boy who has followed me from room to room for the past 14 years. In the morning, he was still laying in that same spot and wasn’t himself, I could see his heart racing out of his chest and his breathing didn’t look quite normal. He couldn’t stand up so my husband carried him to the car and off to the vet we went. I was hoping his arthritis was just acting up but had to prepare myself that it could be worse news given he was 15 years old. Sure enough, all it took was a flash ultrasound that revealed he had large masses on his spleen, liver and in his bladder. The vet suspected he’d been happily living with cancer for quite some time until he likely had an internal bleed that was causing a low blood pressure, fast heart rate and dehydration. He was just running in the yard two evenings before that but now we were faced with only one choice, to let him go. The cancer had taken its toll and the vet and I quickly agreed that it was his time. No suffering.

My long journey with golden retriever rescue (both in Cincinnati and Florida) started with Prince in June of 2003 when I rescued him as a skinny, scrappy, hyper, ill-mannered one year old who was meant as a companion to my perfect 3 year old golden, Kenyon. Somehow, opposites attracted with these two and they instantly bonded. A year later, when I adopted Logan from GRRAND, Prince immediately took this scared, abused puppy under his wing. The 3 became my 3 musketeers. Kenyon was my honorary GRRAND representative who came on all my home visits with me to show how amazing goldens are (Prince’s wild ways only allowed him to go to a few and Logan wouldn’t even think of coming out of hiding to meet new people!). Prince handled the many fosters and dog sitting charges I took on over the years with such happiness. He was with me since I was 23, young and having fun, through grad school, many jobs, moving to Jacksonville, attending law school, more jobs, losing Kenyon, marrying my husband (who came into my life of 3 goldens never having been around dogs), moving to Tampa, losing Logan, adopting a new crazy golden pup Darcy, and having my two girls in the past 2 years. Through it all, Prince was my constant, taking on every life event as if it was no big deal as long as we had each other. In his older age, he became my representative for Golden Retriever Rescue of Mid-Florida as I volunteered and served on the Board. He was so wonderful and gentle with my daughters, even in his old age. He never stopped following me to every room, no matter how long or short a period of time I was there, with children or without, until he got sick on Sunday night. Arthritis was the worst health issue he had until this cancer was revealed on Monday.

I can’t thank GRRAND enough for being the wonderful organization that it is with the greatest group of people. It’s been a glorious 14 years with my GRRAND goldens and I don’t plan to lose my connection even though I’m in Florida and both my GRRAND dogs have now passed on. I will be making a donation in memory of Prince very soon.

With lots of love,
Abby (Lee) Katabaro

Sweet Maggie Moo Will be Missed!

Maggie #24 aka Maggie Moo, The Mags, Moo Moo or just Moo. Senior GRRAND Rescue with no known birth date – August 7, 2017. It is with a very heavy heart that I must share that sweet Moo crossed to the Rainbow Bridge today. Recently diagnosed with Degenerative Myelopathy, she developed a limp in one of her front paws. Turns out the limp was unrelated to DM. Xray of her shoulder showed a large tumor in the bone. She could barely walk today, obviously in much pain. Options were surgery (out), chemo and radiation (not for my old girl, not gonna add misery to your last days), much heavier medication for palliative care (but might not work, much more sleepy, no smiling Maggie) or release her from pain, which I did today. She is pain free and the pain went right to my broken heart.

Always a happy girl who made people smile just looking at that sweet sugar face! A pup who loved everyone so much that she clearly told me, “I am a therapy dog!” so we got certified as a therapy team.  We visited nursing homes, high schools. colleges and read with some awesome kids at JF Burns Elementary School and at our local library. She was rescued from a hoarding situation and joined our family where she was treated like a queen. She loved to roll over into her upward facing dog pose for a belly rub, and I could never ignore that request!  She also did this crazy thing when she got excited…rubbing her head on the carpet and wagging her bum around in the air!  A dear friend said that dogs live in the moment so to her, time with us was a full and happy life. Run pain free sweet girl, chase ducks and bunnies, and I don’t know if there is gross stuff in heaven, but if there is, roll away! Always in my heart. My broken heart.

I am so grateful to GRRAND for blessing me with this pup for the past 3 years. Always in my heart, Moo.

Jamie Stewart