College of Veterinary Medicine

In Memory of Our Beloved...

Daisy Mae

  Daisy Mae

Daisy Mae
In Memoriam of the Golden Paw
Daisy Mae was a champion golden retriever with a beautiful golden coat, the sweetest personality, and most loving nature of any dog I’ve known.  A retriever, who was completely uninterested in retrieving, she was the 12th puppy in an 11 puppy womb and the runt of the litter, born with a club foot. Her left front paw had apparently been wedged up against the backbone of her mother, and the paw had not formed fully.  It was curved and crooked and the breeder and vet thought that she should be put down because “it (the paw) will never grow” When my brother called and told us about her, he said she was special and could not bring himself to put her down, and did we want her?  We said absolutely yes, and six weeks later, Mom and Dad flew to the east coast to bring home our precious girl.  Since that time she has been our loving family dog. She has moved with me three different times, and has grown to run and jump and play like any other dog.  Much to our surprise, the paw grew and was quite expressive.  She would use it to hook you when she really wanted your attention on something.  I would take her to the park and people would see her and ask about the club foot wanting to know “what happened to the poor dog?”  I would always say she was born that way, but had no knowledge that she had any kind of physical challenge.  To her, the paw was business as usual and she could move like a locomotive when the need arose.  It was only us humans that saw her paw as a problem.
She was my protector, and my loyal companion.  A kind and gracious host, she loved to have play dates and sleepovers with her doggie friends.  She knew all my secrets and lived her life as close to human existence as possible. She had the run of the house…when people asked me if I crated her, I would say yes, she has a 2600 sq ft 1 story crate, with two televisions and multiple beds.  She understood my words and phrasings and had a repertoire of stuffed toys that one could find in the discreet corners of the house she liked to frequent when the mood struck her.  (I am still coming across headless stuff toys).  She most loved the outdoors and in particular loved to garden.  She would wander in and sit between the rows of corn stalks and bean poles, eating green beans off the vine and trying to pull down the stalks so she could devour the young corn as it grew.  I could never grow broccoli, because she would pull out the stalks and eat them before they became mature. Gardening was her very favorite thing to do with me.  We were a pack…she and I and our two cats.  Dubbed “the girls” they were a close knit little family that got along surprisingly well for two cats and a large dog.
When she was diagnosed with cancer, she had a very large tumor on the shoulder of her good paw.  She stuck it out for three months, stoic and in good spirits up until the end when the big paw was no longer able to navigate, and she was using her club foot to do all the walking. The night before she died, I lay down in front of the Christmas tree (a favorite spot) with her and gave her a good pet.  She gave me lots of loving herself, licked my fingers, and pressed her soft velvet nose up against me, breathing in my scent, as she always did.  I told her that night that this next bit of the illness was going to be tough, and painful, and that if she wanted to skip it, it would be ok with me, I wouldn’t mind.  I told her I loved her, and I would meet her at the rainbow bridge one day, and that she should wait there until I came for her.  That night I prayed to God to take her before she had to suffer any further pain that would make it necessary for me to have to put her down.  My mother had died 6 short months before, and I could not face the thought of having to take my dear dog out of the world myself.  The next day, she was moving slow and slept most of the day with her back to a door in a rather cozy corner of the living room.  I pet her couple of times, gave her the usual meds, and she fell asleep…I was in the kitchen when I heard her fateful yelp…I was about 15 feet from her.  I reached her side in seconds, but she was gone.  My dear girl had suffered a massive heart attack within the blink of an eye.  Right before it happened, she looked hard at me that deep look of love that she always gave me…in retrospect, it was goodbye…I told her to relax and rest, and as always she obliged, but this time for good.  The hardest moment, was wrapping her in a soft golden puff to take her to the vet for end of life care and cremation.  Harder still, was coming home for the first time in 11 years to an empty house with no doggy hug or waggling golden plume to greet me at the door.  Every so often, since her passing, I see that golden plume out of the corner of my eye.  I look eagerly to see if she is there… to no avail.  Gone but not forgotten, loved and immortal in my heart…I will see her again at the rainbow bridge, when the time is right.
Daisy Mae Rhynedance
August 11th, 1996 – November 27th, 2007

Gwynne R.

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