Just this side of Heaven is a wonderful place called
When a beloved pet dies, it goes to wait for us at
There are meadows and hills for all our special friends so they
can run and play together.
There is plenty of food, water and sunshine.
Our dear friends are warm and comfortable,
All the animals who have been ill and were 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 gone by.
Our beloved friends are happy and content......
except for one small thing....
They each miss someone special to them...
Someone who has been left behind.
They all run and play together until the day when one suddenly stops
and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent,
suddenly he begins to run from the group,
flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster.
You have been spotted.
When you and your special friend meet you cling together
in joyous reunion,
NEVER to be parted again.
The happy kisses rain upon your face,
your hands caress the beloved head
and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your dear pet,
so long gone
from your life but never absent from your heart.....

Then you cross RAINBOW BRIDGE and enter Heaven together.

Author Unknown

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They were born days apart, in different parts of the city, from completely different backgrounds. He would grow up to be tall and slender, she would be shorter and heavier. His "kind" was reported to be tough and at times, mean. Her heritage was one of gentle kindness with a love for all mankind. He was black, she was brown. Toby was a Doberman Pincher and Drea was a Labrador Retriever. They werenít what you would call your normal, everyday lovers but their love was strong enough to last longer than a lifetime.

Toby and Dreaís first meeting was at puppy kindergarten. Drea was ready to get down to the business of learning, Toby just wanted to play and have a good time. It was here that they first fell in love. There was just something about this gawky puppy that appealed to the more sedate Drea. As for Toby, he thought Drea to be the most beautiful canine to ever cross his path. They were able to see each other at class, once a week, and their love grew as the weeks passed. Puppy school soon came to an end but as luck would have it they were able to start obedience school together and their love grew deeper and stronger.

Love does not always run smoothly and it soon became apparent that Drea had a knack for this learning business while Toby still just wanted to have fun. Drea continued with her education while Toby stayed home and played. They no longer got to see each other once a week but their love did not die. Even though they were separated by great distances their love continued. Then as luck would have it, Drea was invited to spend the weekend with Toby. Cupid had not let them down. They had a wonderful time playing during the day and snuggling together at night, this was how it was supposed to be.

Being with the one you love is not always easy. When Drea came home after her fun filled weekend she discovered that she could barely walk. She had worn blisters on the bottoms of all her feet as she and Toby had run and spun across the concrete patio. It took her a week to recover but when the invitation came asking her to spend 2 weeks at Tobyís house she was ready.

The two lovers spent a glorious two weeks. They played in the yard, napped in the sun and cuddled together at night. It was a heavenly two weeks and passed far to fast.

Drea soon entered the world of obedience trials, continuing her education and going to shows. She had less and less time for Toby and soon he became only a memory. New dogs entered her life, she got a new sister and soon nieces and nephews dogged her footsteps. Once in a while her dreams would take her back to her two weeks of Heaven and she would wag her tail as she dreamed of her Toby but she was not to see him on this earth again.

As October came in crisp and clear Drea found herself slowing down and at eight and a half years of age she noticed that walking was painful. When she went to see Dr. Dan and Dr. Ted they discovered that she had an advanced case of bone cancer in one of her rear legs. She tried to make the best of it and keep on going but she just hurt so much. She remembered her show career and all of her nieces and nephews and then she remembered Toby. She remembered how they played at school and all the fun they had when they were kids. She didnít want him to see her like this, she wanted him to remember her the way that she was when they were both young and healthy, but she wanted to say good-bye. She invited Tobyís parents, Judy and Walt, over to the house so that she could say her farewells and they took her good-byes back to him.

It was now time to leave for Rainbow Bridge. Drea gathered with her family at Dr. Danís office, ate some Haagen Daz Rocky Road Ice Cream, said her good-byes to her loving family and departed for The Bridge. She was at peace and no longer in pain.

Six months later, Toby found himself slowing down and at almost nine years of age noticed that walking was painful. When he went to see his Doctor it was discovered that he had an advanced case of bone cancer in one of his rear legs. He tried to make the best of it and keep going but he hurt so much. He remembered Drea and all the fun they had when they were kids and he longed to be with her. Toby gathered with his family at his Doctorís office and after saying his farewells he left this world knowing that Drea was waiting to welcome him to Rainbow Bridge. He was at peace and no longer in pain.

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When Drea woke up she found that she had been sleeping under a giant maple tree much like the one in her backyard except that this one was much bigger and was at the top of a beautiful little hill. As she looked around her she discovered many wonderful things. The air was soft and sweet with the gentlest of breezes just tickling the grass and flowers at her feet. There was a little stream laughing its way down the hill where it met a bigger stream then flowed off into the distance. Just on the horizon she could see where the stream turned into a very large river which flowed under a wonderful Bridge that looked as if it was made of gold and many rainbows. She could not see what was on the other side of The Bridge but she could see a glorious light and could just hear the Heavenly music that flowed from that side of the river. It was enough. She stayed where she was contentedly looking about her. Soon she noticed something very strange, she didnít hurt anymore. The terrible pain that she had been in just a short time ago was gone, she felt young again. She stood and took a few tentative steps, then she started running. This was indeed a miracle. There was no pain at all and she knew that she could run as fast and as far as she could and never get tired.

When she finally stopped running she heard the voices of dogs barking joyously. She continued toward the sounds and saw many dogs running and playing or just resting under the trees. They all ran to greet her as she came over the hill and she was made welcome at Rainbow Bridge.

She went swimming then played tag and ate dinner. After dinner she rested. She knew that she should have been completely happy but there was a part of her that felt empty. As wonderful as this land was, she missed her family, the gentle voices, the soft hands and the kisses. These were what she had lived for. As the days and weeks went by, she missed her earthly family less but she never forgot them. She knew that they would all be together someday and was comforted.

When Toby woke up he found himself under the same giant maple tree. He stayed where he was contentedly looking about him. Soon he noticed something very strange, he didnít hurt anymore. The terrible pain that he had been in just a short time ago was gone, he felt young again. He stood and took a few tentative steps, then he started running. When he finally stopped running he heard the voice of a dog barking joyously, he looked up and saw Drea running towards him. This was joy indeed, they were together again.

Toby knew that he should have been completely happy but there was part of him that felt empty. Just like Drea and all of the dogs that came before him, he missed his loving family. But with Drea beside him, the emptiness started to fade. Just like Drea he would always miss his earthly family but he knew in his heart that it was for only a short time and then they would all be together again.

The years have quickly passed and Toby and Drea spend their time together. They play ball, swim, run or just rest under their maple tree. They have each other and that is enough for now. They know that at some point they will have to part again for a brief time when one of them is joined by a family member and crosses The Bridge into Heaven. But they also know that just as their lives on earth were bound together, so is their future and their love will last through all the ages and nothing will ever keep them apart again.

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If you would like to see more of Doris' writing we invite you to click on
"The Straight Poop"

All material on this page is from WET WINGS & OTHER THINGS
by Doris Engbertson
1997-1998 by Doris Engbertson


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