Rainbow Bridge Memorial - Until We Meet Again!

Rainbow Bridge - April 29, 2004

Dear Angel Winnie,

On May 16, 1993 just after our 5th wedding anniversary, we decided to get
a Yorkshire Terrier.  Something was missing in our lives.  I loved the look of Yorkies
~ the beautiful blond head and dark eyes.  I had never had a pet before in my life. 
I knew for years that I wanted a Yorkie.  Well that Sunday it became urgent that 
I get a dog.  We found you.  You were a wiggly little spaz of a puppy. 
You kept nipping at our hands and wouldn’t even let us pet you.


What could we name you?  I had no clue.  Then I thought that Winifred 
sounded English and quite proper.  So you were named Lady Winifred of York. 
WINNIE (also Cherub, Chipmunk, Pippin)

I had lots of rules set down in the beginning.  You would not sleep in bed with us, 
you would never be fed from the table, you would be the perfect little companion 
and come with me everywhere in the car, you would be my lap dog.

We got you home and walked you on the grass where you wouldn’t do a thing. 
We brought you in the apartment and the very first thing you did was to start
barking at us and poop on the rug.

You stayed in the crate maybe half of your first night home.  The ear piercing 
demanding yip became too annoying so up on the bed you went.  Where you 
curled up and slept like a perfect little doll.  Score one for Winnie.

I took you for rides in the car.  Many of them.  Again, that yip started in ~ you just didn’t want to be in the car.  Score two for Winnie.

But one thing I got from my list of demands (as if for one minute I was in charge)
was a sweet little girl who would sleep on my lap.  And of course, 
you were generous with love and kisses.

You were teething and nipped at our feet and our hands all the time.  You wanted 
constant attention.  If you didn’t have a hand to chew on, you chewed the wall, 
the rug, anything but the many toys we gave you.  We had to leave you alone all 
day because we were working.  I felt so guilty.  I read that dogs live longer with 
a companion.  Daddy found Max for us.  The Biggest, dopiest Yorkie on the planet.
 He was so scared when Daddy brought him home.  You welcomed him by 
latching on to his ear and dragging him around and tormenting him for months.

Maybe it’s wrong to feel this way, but Max took so much of the pressure off.  You 
had a buddy, a partner in crime.  To see you two snuggled up together as puppies 
was such a gift.  It gave us so many smiles.  Your new brother Max had been 
neglected and he was hungry, very very hungry.  There was no more opportunity for 
you to pick at your food for hours or to be picky about what we fed you.  You ate 
what we put down or it was gone in a flash.  You learned to gobble the food right up.

You and Max got into your share of mischief.

 A whole lot of fun was had...paper everywhere!

About a year later, Daddy surprised Mommy with a little white dog, Mitchell. 
Miss Winnie now had two partners in crime although you were always the boss.

You have brought us so many smiles and so much laughter over the years. 
You have always let us know what you wanted in your demanding, adorable way.

Daddy loved holding you on his lap after breakfast.  I loved your after dinner 
Winnie wiggle on the couch.  Where you would deliberately get yourself tangled
under the blankets and kick your way out.  Showing up with major bed head. 

And of course the way you would take my fresh towel every time I took a bath. 
I’d  put a used towel on the floor for you and you would come to the side of the tub
and pull down my fresh towel with your front paws.  I got wise to you and would say,
“you can’t have my towel” and play a tug game.  You’d stand there and make a huff 
noise, I’d finally give up and you would yank it down set it up and curl up for a nap. 

You liked to nap any old place with your brothers too.

Max got sick in June 2002.  He was not well at all.  He had diabetes. I started a 
journal for Max.  Tracked every reading, made charts.  Joined a support group 
online.  Learned as much as I could to save your brother.  He lost his sight.

 Read Max's Diabetic Story

When we got your brother feeling better there was no stopping him. You became his 
toy.  He pestered you and followed you around and humped you and licked your 
head.  At times it looked like someone had poured a bucket of water over your head. 
If I picked you up to rescue you, Max would go crazy and cry and bark.  Sorry 
Winnie but it was payback time from the puppy days.  I mostly let him bother the
hell out of you.  But you have always been smart.  You tried to hide from him 

On the coffee table . . . .

Under the bed . . .

Max gave you the best gift of all.  We found the most wonderful vet for him.  The 
first time we brought Max to meet Dr. Tammy in November 2002 she marched in 
the exam room and said “Hi There, Someone keeps excellent records”.  We loved 
her right away.  Dr Tammy asked us how our other two little ones were coping 
with Max’s need for extra attention.  I said, “Mitchell is fine.  Winnie only cares
about food.”  Dr. Tammy smiled and said, “I’m the same way”.

The following January, you had a growth coming out of the pad on your paw.  I
had seen you licking it, but didn’t think anything of it.  Then I noticed that it was 
red and ugly and it was hurting you.  I called Dr. Tammy and asked if we could 
bring you in with Max that night.  Well Miss Winnie, someone couldn’t look at 
your paw or listen to your heart because you kept kissing her and wiggling around. 
You wormed your way into another heart that day.

It was melanoma.  Lots of doctors met you.  And you met the most wonderful 
woman Sandy who gave you radiation once a week and enjoyed your kisses
and your wiggly ways.

We were given more precious time to love you little girl.  To watch you 
run through the yard with the wind blowing your beautiful blond fur back. 
Always in search of the reward treat for doing the right thing.

When you started to throw up and have diarrhea in early December 2003, 
we thought it was a bug and it would pass.  But it was the beginning of your 
five month fight. You showed what an amazingly strong little girl you are. 
Your true bright spirit came through.  You tried so very hard to stay here with us.
 It proved that you loved your life.

After 11 years you finally learned to tolerate car rides because you knew we had
to do it and that you were going to a place where so many people loved you. 
People who did everything possible to cure you.

Dr. Tammy had an extremely special bond with you.  She used all her skill and knowledge to bring you back to us over and over again for five months.  She 
shared in our joy at seeing you well.  She wept with us when we knew you 
had to leave.  She helped us send you somewhere better.

And Winnie, you had so very many prayers from caring people all over the world.
 People who never even met you, but knew you  and cared so very much about you 
through my messages.  People all over the world cried when you had to leave.

You were our first pet.  You never did what was expected.  Not in your actions 
over the years, not in your illness at the end.  You were spoiled and bratty, yet 
so very loving and sweet.  And stronger than we ever could have imagined.

You will be buried on Sunday May 16, 2004, 11 years from the date that we 
first brought you home.  We will plant a pink tree on your  spot.  Something 
beautiful and strong like you.  It will bloom every spring to remind us of the 
time your came into our lives and of the time when we had to let you go.

In time you will be remembered with less tears.  You will always be remembered
with love and smiles.   Your incredible spirit will surround us always.

You are badly missed my little cherub, Love forever,

Mommy Annie & Daddy Sal & Brothers Max & Mitchell

PS ~ Tonight your Aunt Karen sent me this picture from her backyard.  She had 
never heard of the rainbow bridge, but she knew it was a sign from you Winnie 

And your special Friend Connie in Scotland sent me the other side of 
your rainbow the following day  . .

Now I know in my heart that you found your way.  Thank you for sending us a sign.

And here’s your tree . . . . .


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