In Memory of Lady

“I’ll meet you at the Rainbow Bridge”

Lady, a black and white Border Collie mix, passed away on April 27th of this year with the gentle assistance of Dr. Jennifer.

It has taken me over 6 months to write this memorial for our dear dog.    The sadness is getting better, but not a day goes by where we are either thinking about her or talking about her.  Lady was a trusted companion for our teenagers, a faithful running buddy for me, and walking partner for my husband.  She was truly a cherished member of our family. 

We adopted Lady from a kill shelter 14 years ago.  Sadly, she was days from being euthanized.  I was instantly taken by her intelligent eyes and her enthusiast energy.  We took her home, gave her quality food to help her gain weight, and helped her regain her health.   No words can describe what an incredible dog she was.  I called her my marathon dog as she helped me train for 15 full marathons, 8 half marathons, 2 ironman, and several other running and triathlon events.    She was in such good shape that her heart rate was 60 her entire life.  This is very low for a 67 pound dog.   In fact,  the vet was a bit alarmed but soon gave a little chuckle when I told him her activity level.  I told him that she was running and walking about 50 miles a week.  We also discovered, after doing a hip x-ray when she was 13 years old, that she had 34 buckshot in her left leg!  Apparently, she was shot in the leg as a young pup before we adopted her.  Again, the vet chuckled and made a statement about what an amazing dog she was.

Lady was not only a gifted running dog,  but also my husband’s ever ready walking partner.  He and Lady walked in snow, pouring down rain, and all kinds of weather.  She was hardy and loved being outside by Greg’s side.    She often sensed when he had a hard day at work.    Her answer to bad days were to sit by his side and lean on him.  Then she would bark at him as if to say, “let’s go on a walk!”

She continued to amaze us through her long life.  She was not only a physically strong but also intelligent.  She went on several family vacations and has stayed with us in many vacation homes and hotels.  She has even stayed at the Marriott in Whistler, BC!  She had it all figured out that if she behaved in new places and new situations that she got to go with the family.   
During our children’s teenage years, she was a source of strong comfort for my son and daughter.  She always had a sense of when my teenage children had a hard day.  Her answer was to follow them up to their rooms and dole out comfort by sitting by their side or to nuzzle under their arms. We give her lots of credit for helping our teens through those tumultuous years and often called her the third parent.
So, my dearest Lady, we will always love you.  You have made an impression on our lives and on our hearts.  That impression will last a lifetime.   Therefore, I  will not say goodbye but I will say, “see you later at the Rainbow Bridge.”  It has been, beyond, a privilege to adopt you and have you for 15 years.

– Cheryl Conrad, Tigard, OR