Saturday, March 5, 2011

In Memory of Charlie (who found his angel)...

I am so sad to report
that I received the following letter from Charlie's Mom,
(who was surely his Angel)...Mel, thank you for everything you did for Charlie.

Eulogy to Charlie

Charlie died Friday, February 4, 2011. He had nodules on his spleen, one had ruptured and he was bleeding internally. Malignancy was probable. Surgery was expensive...but more importantly, would involve a painful recovery time with a poor prognosis for lengthening his life. After much thought we sadly decided to send him to the bridge.

Was I Charlie's Angel? The first time I saw him I was surprised and, I'll admit, a bit disappointed. He was small, thin, narow-hipped and limped. If given a choice, I probably would not have chosen him, but I had no choice. Charlie came into my life as though he belonged there. From the moment he saw me I was his. When he was brought to my house he was instantly "home". He stood in the doorway and watched his "foster mom" leave, but showed no interest in wanting to go with her. And from that moment until his death, he knew nothing but love and kindness. He'd been neglected and apparently received some abuse...his last four and a half months were probably among the best of his life.

In just a short time he felt safe, secure, loved, and wanted. He had come to expect two meals a day, and a constant supply of fresh water. He soon had HIS place in the bedroom, complete with his own bed, and he made it quite clear that this spot belonged to HIM. He also had a purpose in life, to guard his domain and protect his human.

His physical appearance also changed. He weighed 92 pounds (he previously weighed 66 pounds), and was getting stronger, the limp in his hind leg having greatly improved. He could get in the car with a minimum amount of help (he previously had to be lifted), he'd stopped whining and chewing himself. He was getting the best care the doctors and I could give him. Why couldn't it have lasted longer?

Charlie was one of the sweetest and best dogs I have ever known. Everyone who met him talked about what a good boy he was. Thank you Charlie, for bringing happiness into my life, even though it was for such a short time. I will always remember you and love you.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Heaven Sent...

Hey everybody, it's me, Charlie...and I might have some pretty good news! I've been staying down here at Hy Hopes until my foster mum gets back from England. I haven't minded it at all...I have my own bed, and I've enjoyed the quiet time to stop and catch my breath after all that's been happening in my life. I am being a very good fact, I overheard Pat (the boss-lady here at Hy Hopes), say that i'm one of the best behaved rescue dogs who's ever been here.
Anyway, on Friday I met someone really special...and I think she thought I was pretty special too. Everyone was very surprised (and some people cried, but I'm not tellin' who), when I liked her as much as I did. Yup, I sure did like her. We were both smiling alot and she was giving me the best ear-rubs!!! I put up quite a ruckus when she left, yes I did. I hope everyone was listening because I was telling them that she's the one...she's the one!!!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Hi everybody, I'm Charlie...and this is my story...

I'm a senior German Shepherd Dog. Not so very long ago I had a family (seniors just like me), and I lived with a cat and a Mom and a Dad. I think Mom liked the cat better, and sometimes Dad was pretty strict with me, but he took me for walks, and all-in-all I was pretty happy. Then one day everything changed. Something happened to Mom, she went away and didn't come back...and then things seemed to change with Dad, he didn't remember things so well anymore, and suddenly he was gone somewhere too, I heard it was to a place where people could take better care of him. I was alone for a while, and pretty soon I started to wonder who was gonna take care of me.

I missed my family alot, and got pretty sad and scared because there didn't seem to be anybody around to take care of me or the cat very often. Then one day some people came and took us to a place they called "the shelter". Dogs and cats there didn't stay together and I don't know what happened to the cat. Nothing was the same anymore, there was lots of noise, the food wasn't so good and was different all the time, there were lots of strange smells, and an energy in the air that made me really scared. And there were lots of other dogs, something I wasn't used to at all.

So somewhere along the way (mostly because I was scared I think), I developed an attitude about these other dogs that says, "Don't mess with me". I have't made up my mind yet whether I'll stay that way or not. Anyway, days and days went by at the shelter, people came and went...and sometimes dogs left with the people...but I noticed that most of the dogs who left were young, or small and cute. I began to think that maybe being a "senior" wasn't such a good thing. And then I started getting the feeling that something bad was going to happen, the people who worked at the shelter didn't look me in the eye anymore. I didn't understand, but they kept saying something about how my time was getting short.

But then something wonderful happened...a lady who had come to see me a few times before, came and talked to the people at the shelter and said she'd TAKE ME OUTA THERE before anything really bad could happen to me!!! Before I could go home with her tho, I had to get this operation...I don't remember much about it, except that it was scary too, and now my "boy parts" are gone and stuff down there is kinda sore. So many scary things have happened to me lately. Anyway, I thought this nice lady was gonna be my new Mom, but when we got to her house there were other dogs there. I'm still not sure how I feel about other dogs, and all these changes have made me kinda moody...and I won't kid ya, if I had my way I'd have the nice lady all to myself.

But I sure am happy to be out of that place. I still wonder what's gonna happen to me, and I want a family of my own again...but I'm having a really hard time getting used to these other dogs who live where I'm staying now, and sometimes I just don't get along with them. And I've learned there's another kind of Mom, something called a Foster Mom, who takes care of you and keeps you safe until another family finds you.

So here I am, waiting for someone to come along who has patience for an older guy who's been thru alot, someone maybe who's older like me. I'm not used to kids and my Foster Mom says it would be best if my new family didn't have any. I'm very healthy...and really lucky to not have those awful things called heartworms (I'm on preventative). I've had all my shots and, like I said, my boy parts are gone, so that's all taken care of. I could use to put on a few pounds and will need plenty of good quality food until I'm a healthy weight. Oh, and of course I know to ALWAYS do my business outside, and I don't ever chew anything or get in the garbage. I do have some trouble with one of my back legs, I'm not too keen on stairs, and need some help getting in and out of the car.

But I get very happy when my Foster Mom gets out the leash, I just love to go for reminds me reminds me of my old life.

So, that's my story. If you know anyone who is looking for a nice German Shepherd boy, who won't ask for much except a soft bed, a nice walk once in a while, and a home without kids or other doggies, please tell them about me. They'll need some patience and understanding, because I've been thru ALOT.

Friday, August 13, 2010

at the shelter...

This is the picture that brought Charlie to the attention of the Michigan German Shepherd rescue community. He'd lost his family to death and severe illness, and suddenly found himself at the Livingston County animal shelter. He was there for quite a see Charlie is a senior German Shepherd, and seniors are often overlooked when it's time for adoption. But just when his time was growing short, things changed for Charlie. Someone who loves German Shepherds, and helps those in need, saw his picture and posted it to the urgent section of When his time grew even shorter, that same someone became Charlie's foster mum, giving him what he needed the most...the time to find a new, permanent family for his "golden years". If Charlie could talk he'd thank his foster mum from the bottom of his heart.