"Beauty seen is never lost..."

Over the years, we have been blessed to share our lives and hearts with some wonderful dogs. 
Each one has left their indelible mark on our hearts...where the story of their lives is written.
Although it is inexpressibly sad to bid farewell to a beloved companion...we would not have sacrificed a moment with these wonderful friends, in order to spare ourselves the pain of good-byes. 

Old age has it's privileges.

Peaceful Old Age.

This is "Gemma" (Rimarti Sea Gem). She was our first Boxer girl...and came to us from Martin and Rita Wyles of Rimarti Boxers in Warwickshire, England. She was - and always will be - my most special girl. I always said that when Gemma died, I would have to learn to walk all over again...she was ALWAYS a half step behind me. In her lifetime (just short of eleven years), I never took a single backwards step...I'd have fallen over her! My husband used to refer to her as my "familiar"...I THINK he was kidding <g>!

Gemma taught me a lot about love and devotion...and utter selflessness. She was my best friend...and my defender. Of all the dogs I have been owned by, I have always believed that it was Gemma who would have given her life to defend me...or would have laid down to die beside me had I been sick or injured.

When it became clear that old age and illness would soon take her from me, I prayed and prayed that she would be allowed to die peacefully in her sleep...that I would not be forced to make the decision to end her life. It was not to be...and I held her in my arms on the evening of December 27th, the vet "helped her to die". It took me a long, bitter time to be able to see the blessing in the way she died. She did not die alone...possibly frightened...but rather, she felt my hands on her...and my voice was the last thing she heard. I was allowed to hold her as she passed from this world...and that is as it should be. For how else can we even begin to repay a lifetime of devotion? 
I miss my Gemma every day. She was everything you could wish for in a companion.  She possessed of the heart of a lion, the pride of a queen...and the gentleness of a lamb....
Rest well, sweet girl...

Gemma and Henry


This is "Henry" (Rimarti Tom Collins), who also came to us from Martin and Rita Wyles. Henry, Henry, Henry...what can I say about Henry <g>! He was such a funny old guy...even as a pup, he seemed "wise beyond his years". Many's the time the fur on Henry's neck served as the pillow to absorb my tears...his solemn brown eyes the serene pool into which I gazed in moments of quiet reflection.

Don't get me wrong...Henry was ALL Boxer! He was such a clown. His favorite game to play - especially if he sensed that we needed the distraction - was to come and stand in front of me...and growl very softly. He would keep it up until I said my 

"line"...."Don't you sass me, Henry" which he would begin his enthusiastic barking...while spinning in circles...until he made me laugh! 

Our Henry lived to the age of thirteen. The following is a poem that was written by my dear friend (and fellow obedience trainer), Wayne Gile, when we knew that our remaining time with Henry was running out...

From Henry to Mom and Dad

    My time is short, but no regrets
    I have a family I'll not forget.
    As I look back through the years,
    There's been lots of laughs and now some tears.
    Through it all life's been good
    For I've been loved as I should.
    Because I have been a true and faithful friend,
    And will remain so 'till the end.
    Time is close - I can tell,
    Mom and Dad aren't doing real well.
    But when the time comes that I must go,
    They will have the strength, this I know.
    Bubba and Folly, they'll miss me too
    As I will miss all of you.
    But before I go, I've got one thing to say
    My life's been good because YOU made it that way.

We helped our Henry on his journey to the Bridge on August 31st, 1999...where we know he was reunited with his best friend...Gemma.

Rest well, dear Henry...



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Text, photographs Barbara Potter, DBA GemStar Kennels

Design, graphihcs Alice Savoy, All Rights Reserved