Little Prayers

Dusty Puddles

New Member
The following is a true story of the events of last week. I posted this in another forum I frequent and received favourable responces. I thought I would share it with y'all.



I gaze down at his brown terrified and now watering eyes. “Please mister, I didn’t mean it, I’m sorry, whatever I did, I promise I won’t do it again!. Please, please stop the hurting”.

Another wave of anger overwhelms me. My fists tighten again, my knuckles are white, my face is bright red, yet I have nowhere to direct my rage. Come on Ted I tell myself “this is not helping anything”, so I take a long deep breath and force my tensed muscles to relax.

Carefully, I reach down and pick up his limp, listless little body and cradle him in my arms. With a syringe fashioned from old model building junk and some surgical tubing, I force a teaspoon of pedialite down his throat being very careful not to let any go in his lungs. Gunner does not like this but he is now to weak to resist. I did this an hour ago and I will do this yet again in an hour until he pulls out or “please dear God, no”, I pray, I reach down and pick up the lifeless body his sole is no longer in need of.

For three days after Gunners arrival all was well. Gunner quickly adopted Oscar, another rescue as his big brother. They played endlessly, Oscar ever so careful with his little charge. Then on Monday, day four, I started noticing a change in Gunner. By 6:00 pm that evening I knew something was terribly wrong. I called for Cheryl to come out and quickly we recognized this illness. Parvo and his partner the “Grim Reaper” had come to our little Dachshund rescue. Parvo marches right in while the Reaper loiters in the shadows, just outside the door, waiting for Parvo to perform his “black magic”, and then he can come in and claim his prize.

My wife, Cheryl, and I both have always had dogs but we didn’t fall in love with the Dachshund breed until some eight years ago. We rescued and adopted until we had a full house and then we rescued some more. In the summer of 2009, when we decided to move back to Lubbock, we agreed we would find a place in the country and open a rescue. Dusty Puddles Dachshund Rescue would be our name.

The evening we diagnosed Gunner, we had already fallen in love with the little fella. Standing in the kitchen, her heart breaking and crying, my wife Cheryl tells me that if we lose this little guy, we can’t keep doing this, we can’t continue rescuing Dachshunds. It hurts far too much. We hug for a long time. I say nothing, in part because I know her breaking heart that’s talking now, but mostly because I am also crying.

It’s 2:00 am on Wednesday morning of this fight, Cheryl will handle the fluids and the watch for a while, and I need some rest. As I did when I was 4, I kneel by my bed and I say another little prayer, but this time it ends “if he should die before I wake, I pray dear God his sole you’ll take. Sleep comes slowly and in the darkness I see the Rainbow Bridge. This verse has brought me and many others solace in their times of pain. I can’t help but wonder, Gunner has danced this earth barely 100 days. He’s never gotten his master. He hasn’t received his forever home, will he be ok? I pray again to God to let him be with me when I go. As if on cue, Max, my longhair best friend nuzzles my arm. As I am trying to ease Gunner’s suffering, Max is trying to ease mine.

For five days the fight continues, Gunner grows weaker each hour. On Saturday afternoon, Cheryl wakes me from my nap with “Ted, we’re losing him”. I race outside, open the kennel and kneel down to his almost gone body. “Its ok honey, he is just tired, we have to let him rest too. He’s gonna be ok”, I lied. I look over and see a shovel leaning against the shop wall. Will I have to dig his forever home? "Help me God" I pray, "should I end his suffering now?" I know I have the means in my hands to end his pain and suffering, but do I have the heart? "Tell me God, please, what do I do?" The kennel becomes quiet with a surreal silence, no barks, no fans, nothing. Then behind me I hear Cheryl, quietly, almost a whisper, praying “Our father, who art in heaven………”I join in.

Its early Monday morning, one week since Gunner fell ill. I walk out the door and a cool prairie breeze blows across the porch and refreshes me. Oh, what beautiful day God has made and then, my thoughts return to Gunner. How hard he had fought. How he never gave up. His love of life and it’s then I look over at a small patch of yellow grass, I know a little water will revive it, nature is so resilient. I think to myself, this must be where the Grim Reaper stood and waited, waited for his prize of little Gunner’s life. The reaper left in the wee hours of Saturday morning.

I turn the corner and gaze in Gunner’s kennel, there looking back at me are two small brown beautiful bright eyes and a tail wagging to beat the band, almost as if saying, "Hey mister, what are we gonna do today?, You want to bark at birds? You want to play chase: You want to rub my belly? You can, really, I’ll let you!"

Running this rescue is a constant challenge. We try to take from each experience a little knowledge forward to better prepare for the next challenge we face. Was it the steady fluids, was it the pedialite, was it Gunner’s strong will to survive that pulled him through or was it “Little Prayers”?

-Ted -aka Dusty Puddles


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Beautiful! Rescue is sooo hard sometimes, but then the little miracles happen. Gunner is one lucky boy. We've lost many to parvo, but the ones that survive? Miracle babies.
Today Gunner went to his forever home. It was kinda bittersweet watching him leave but we know he'll be safe, warm, and loved and that's really all we wanted. Goodby Gunner.
Awe Happy for him, but sad for you! these little "special cases" the ones we have to fight so hard for are the hardest to adopt out! Hopefully the adopters will keep you all updated!
Yes, it's difficult but I do know the adopter and her husband quite well. In fact, I suppose it's a happy ending in itself.
Things don't always work out exactly the way we planed. About 3 weeks ago my son came out to visit Cheryl and I at our rescue. His mom asked him if she could come too......:D
I never knew that there were so many Dachshunds in need of homes. They seem like such the perfect breed. The size, their character, loyal. Thank goodness people like you are willing to take them in so they will get a second chance.
I thank you all for your kind words but I'm not certain I deserve any of it and here's why.
I'm a 56 y/o type I diabetic, 41+ years. I was able to work long enough to earn a pretty good retirement before my eyes failed and I was forced to retire.
So I can go home, safe and sound, and bored? :(
It's true, the good Lord dosen't close a door on you without opening another. All you gotta do is look around and you'll find it.
There's a whole another story goes here but we'll save it for later. Anyway.........
I found my opened door.:)
Sure nuff, there are times when running a rescue tears out your very heart and soul and stomps it in the dirt, but, 98 percent of the time........
..............I'm surrounded by Dachshunds (right now our 7 plus 5 visitors plus 2 aparently discarded doxie/beagle? pups), all happy just to be warm, fed, and loved.
I remember a video on youtube, "Waltzing in a Weiner Wonderland".
I spend my days now picking up dog poop. I imagine that from a distance if you were to look I would appear to be waltzing as I manouver through and clean the puppy mine fields.....
Truth is, if you get close enough, you can see I really am waltzing...... my little Weiner Wonderland!:D

The first picture is our 8 full time residents. L to R Molley, Daisy, Charley, Sadie, Max, Sully, Fritz, and Pepper (the ugly Dachshund)
2nd Pic. Another Gunner (not from the story) We call him G2. He was fixed yesterday but I think if you asked him he'd say they didn't fix nuthin.:mad: The owners didn't want him cause he barked n marked. 11 months old.:(
3rd Pic. I got my son to drive me the short distance to a neighbouring town and we rescued him late one Thurs. He was to be euthanized Fri. morning. We named him "Lucky".:D ......and then the next day we neutered him?:eek: 2-3 years old. BTW, both boys are sweet and good natured.
I don't suppose I'd mind one bit going out of business cause I couldn't find any pups to save.
Sadly, I know it ain't gonna happen.:(
To the admin, I'm not trying to adopt out these two rescues here. I'm just showing what some people throw away. I hope that's okay.


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In my little story I thought of The Rainbow Bridge and I asked;

He hasn’t received his forever home, will he be ok?

I finally found the answer.

A Rainbow Bridge Story

Unlike most days at Rainbow Bridge, this day dawned cold and gray, damp as a swamp and as dismal as could be imagined. All of the recent arrivals had no idea what to think, as they had never experienced a day like this before. But the animals who had been waiting for their beloved people knew exactly what was going on and started to gather at the pathway leading to The Bridge to watch.

It wasn't long before an elderly animal came into view, head hung low and tail dragging. The other animals, the ones who had been there for a while, knew what his story was right away, for they had seen this happen far too often.

He approached slowly, obviously in great emotional pain, but with no sign of injury or illness. Unlike all of the other animals waiting at The Bridge, this animal had not been restored to youth and made healthy and vigorous again. As he walked toward The Bridge, he watched all of the other animals watching him. He knew he was out of place here and the sooner he could cross over, the happier he would be. But alas, as he approached The Bridge, his way was barred by the appearance of an Angel who apologized, but told him that he would not be able to pass. Only those animals who were with their people could pass over Rainbow Bridge. With no place else to turn to, the elderly animal turned towards the fields before The Bridge and saw a group of other animals like himself, also elderly and infirm. They weren't playing, but rather simply lying on the green grass, forlornly staring out at the pathway leading to The Bridge. And so, he took his place among them, watching the pathway and waiting.

One of the newest arrivals at The Bridge didn't understand what he had just witnessed and asked one of the animals that had been there for awhile to explain it to him.

"You see, that poor animal was a rescue. He entered rescue just as you see him now, an older animal with his fur graying and his eyes clouding. He never made it out of rescue and passed on with only the love of his rescuer to comfort him as he left his earthly existence. Because he had no family to give his love to, he has no one to escort him across The Bridge."

The first animal thought about this for a minute and then asked, "So what will happen now?" As he was about to receive his answer, the clouds suddenly parted and the gloom lifted. Approaching The Bridge could be seen a single person and among the older animals, a whole group was suddenly bathed in a golden light and they were all young and healthy again, just as they were in the prime of life.

"Watch, and see.", said the second animal. A second group of animals from those waiting came to the pathway and bowed low as the person neared. At each bowed head, the person offered a pat on the head or a scratch behind the ears. The newly restored animals fell into line and followed him towards The Bridge. They all crossed The Bridge together.

"What happened?"

"That was a rescuer. The animals you saw bowing in respect were those who found new homes because of his work. They will cross when their new families arrive. Those you saw restored were those who never found homes. When a rescuer arrives, they are allowed to perform one, final act of rescue. They are allowed to escort those poor animals that they couldn't place with families on earth, across The Rainbow Bridge."
"I think I like rescuers", said the first animal.

"So does GOD", was the reply.
To the rescuers; We've never met, never shook hands. We've never really talked.
But still, I know you/y'all.
I find the last line embarrassing and I didn't post this for some feather in my hat.
But I'd be more than happy to stick one in yours!
That story always makes me cry. I think we all know someone who should get a feather in their cap! People often tell me I am awesome for taking in the unwanted, the disabled, the unadoptable... I always tell them that I deserve no special tanks or cudo's, I do it for selfish reasons... I like them better.