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Author Topic: Chicken Soup for the Rescued Bichon Lover's Soul  (Read 29249 times)
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Maurice
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« Reply #60 on: September 05, 2007, 05:15:01 PM »

Here goes Maurice's story.

My husband and I had been working for years traveling around the country, so we could not properly give an animal enough attention that they need.  So when I retired....time for an animal to love.  Still, my husband tried to keep putting me off, telling me that we would be tied down with caring for an animal...so I said nothing, but continued to search the papers and visit (horrors) pet shops and look at bulletin boards about an animal.  One day I came across an ad about a Bichon, so I called, and the lady said the dog had just been brought in and would not last, due to its breed.....so I told my husband we were going for a drive (no, I did not tell him we were going to go look at dogs).  We arrived at the center and were taken outside to some cages to preview several dogs.

There in one cage was this dirty, matted, scared dog...didn't even look like a Bichon.  To tell you the truth, I was not impressed and was ready to leave, when the lady asked us if we would like to see him up close (as she was opening the door)...she handed him to my  husband and he held Maurice...and there was really no connection. (as Maurice was so scared). Then he went to put the dog back in the cage and Maurice started to wimper....well, hello!!! the heart was melted in that instance.  We still looked at another dog down a few pens (one growled at my husband), so then the lady said he would be $300.....well for a rescue, I thought this was high...and they only took CASH.  I don't know about you, but I don't carry around that much cash normally.  As we stood there looking at this dog, Maurice looked into my husband's eyes and my husband would have sold the house to get this dog, his heart was melted so much. 
 
After admitting to one another that we each had "stashed" some money away, we each came up with $150 and now he is equally ours.  So into the office we go, to sign papers...then she pops us with his rash.  He was so stressed and had such bad allergies that he had licked his pen** raw, the entire lenth...what a mess he was...besides being dirty.  Maurice came with all his papers (he is registered) and all the vet visit papers, medication, his kennel, a brush, and a pillow.  Now to have all Maurice's papers does say something about his previous owners...but to give him up???  I just can't imagine it.  I would give my life for this boy.

Next day we take Maurice to the groomer (first one we thought of) one of the larger chains...he went in a brown dog and came out a white dog.  I did not even mind that they did not groom him properly...but he was so changed.  He was cage dried...ugh, please tell me no!!...but he was washed and clean.  Still you could tell his heart was broken because he was in new surroundings with new people.  It took time for him to become adjusted, but now he has seperation issues when we leave.  He now knows he is HOME and even though it changes from time to time...we will always be there for him.

Maurice was and is the most mellow boy I have ever seen.  He just loves attention and to be next to you.  He is not fond of strangers and needs to be told that someone new is okay, so he can sniff for a while...he has never shown his teeth or been agressive at all.  He will share his food with any other dog...just not a chew bone!!!

We take Maurice back and from from Nevada to Indiana twice a year and to many places in between.  He is the best traveler...NOW....we have learned not to feed him in the a.m. when we are on the road and he is just fine...in fact he loves to travel in the car.  I have a traveling tea cozy, tea & Red Hat business where we travel all around in our 5th wheel or car and he just loves to go with us.  He used to bark when he heard a doorbell....but since we do not have a doorbell at either home, he no longer barks....but he does bark when he hears a car coming in our driveway now.  One of his favorite things to do is ride in our golf cart on our 3 acres....he will do that for hours.

We had Maurice for one year, when during a vet visit, the Dr. said he had a cataract and the closest vet to handle it was 4 hours away (one way)....so off to Indy we went....where it was confirmed that surgery was needed.  The cost is not cheap if you have ever had it done, you know.  We had the surgery done after about 4 pre-op visit, then the after visits....I know we put a ton of miles on our car during that time going back and forth.  The worst part of it was the night of the surgery when I knew Maurice was in pain with him whimpering...so I held him to try and console him....I swore then that I would never put him through that pain again and no one would ever hurt him. 
 
So when we were in Las Vegas and I went to see another specialist about the other eye, he confirmed that the retina had detached from the eye we had the surgery on and yes, the other eye was getting a cataract....which eventually, if not fixed would make him go blind.  After many hours of prayer and talking and back and forth...we decided that we now had  a blind dog.  #1 the vet could not guarantee that if we had another $5,000 surgery for the new eye that the retina would not detatch....so we decided not to have he surgery.  We were told he could function just fine with being careful with him.

This boy trots out just like he owns the world....he has learned that if I say to him "over here" to slow down and change direction because there is something in his path.  He also knows to step up or down when I use the word "step".
He came to us being trained, as he is so well behaved and knows how to sit, lay down, shake, sit pretty, and now I have taught him to roll over and play dead when I go..Bang-Bang.

The only "problem" we have had with him is that he "marks" everything...no matter where we are, so we have to keep an eye on him or put him in diapers to avoid being embarrassed.

I am like others here, in that I cannot imagine my life without this loving, gentle little boy.  How anyone could have given him up is beyond my understanding...I am torn between wanting to shoot his former owners and sending them a million dollars for the gift they allowed me to have and that is his love.  He takes everyone's heart that meets him, as he is such a love.

Then came Winston as a puppy into our lives....what a whirlwind he has been.  We got him to be a "guide dog" for Maurice....but Maurice is the Alpha dog and he leads where the two of them go, right or wrong.  Winston has been a wonderful companion to Maurice...they play like any two dogs would, maybe even more so...they love playing tug-of-war with one another with a stuffed toy.   I believe someone could see right away....Winston  is a clown...he is an "in your face...I want attention and I want it NOW" sort of boy...and the fact that these two boys love one another is the best thing in the world, and that I get to share their lives is a blessing.

I will stop now, as I could go on for hours and hours about my boys.  Thank you for listening to our story.

Sharon...Maurice & Winston
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« Reply #61 on: September 06, 2007, 01:16:32 PM »

Sharon, Thank You for taking the time to share Maurice's story with us! Blow Nose

It must've been FATE nodding..... that day when you saw the ad and subsequently visited the shelter.  Who knows Oh My what would've happened to Maurice (I wonder thinking what the lady meant when she said he wouldn't last "due to his breed" Don't Get It) if you & your husband didn't have the cash that day.
(is it common practice unsure to be "paying" for a rescued dog at the shelter? Mellow)

I'm nodding with you in that I don't understand Don't Get It how his previous owners could have given him up after having had him for 3 years (assuming he only had 1 previous home).  Maybe it was his marking issues shrug... but like you said, their loss thumbdown, your gain thumbsup.  And it's so sad sad that Maurice contracted cataracts at 4 (a young age considering this breed's lifespan can hit the mid-teens).  There was another member here before whose Bichon had cataracts at 2 (she had surgery, on both eyes I believe, and is doing well actually). 

Like I mentioned in your introduction post, it's amazing clapping isn't it..... what we can learn from these flufferbutts Wub.  Maurice may be blind in both eyes Cool 2, but like you say, he trots out Kicking like he owns the world.  He sure has taken everything in his stride swing, including a younger fur-brother under his wing clapping.  You & your husband are angels innocent, having done what you did for this special boy Wub.  I hope come November this year, we'll be able to celebrate partyhat his 7th happybirthday with him Hug (in other words, do stick around flowers).

Bichon Hugs Hug & Kisses Kiss to Maurice fluff


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« Reply #62 on: September 06, 2007, 01:24:44 PM »

Del, when we adopted cat Abby from the municipal shelter they also were a "cash only" operation and it was $200 for a cat that had not been seen by a vet, spayed, or treated for the numerous iinfections she had Mad The "due to his breed" comment was most likely because small dogs, particularly small fluffy dogs tend to get adopted rather quickly (as opposed to larger dogs like shepherd mixes, rotties, and pit bulls).
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« Reply #63 on: September 06, 2007, 01:39:04 PM »

Thanks for the info Danielle.  Over here in Singapore, our SPCA just requires that the adopter pays for the furry's spay/neuter surgery (just a little over a hundred Singapore dollars, which is about 60 or 70 U.S. bucks, depending on the fluctuating exchange rate).  And oh, that the WHOLE family must be present during adoption thumbsup.

Okay blush, back to topic topic about our precious rescued fluffs Hug.....




....Milo was in a family for three years until they got divorced.  Mom took the kids no one wanted the dog.   sad  He was then turned in to Small Paws and fostered in PA for almost a year.  The family had 2 bichons who were ganging up on him and not getting along with him.  He was then sent to a foster home in VA for a month and we adopted him!   Laugh and Bounce  He is so sweet, I have no idea how anyone could give him up!  I also have come to realize that Bichons are not dogs!!  original
I realize Doh I had missed Karen's post/story on the preceding page blush2.  How true about 'em not noway being dogs! Laughing  Bichons Rule 

Kudos rock to you for rescuing too Karen.  I hope you & Milo fluff come back and visit us sometime original.



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« Reply #64 on: September 06, 2007, 02:31:14 PM »

I will stop now, as I could go on for hours and hours about my boys.  Thank you for listening to our story.

Sharon...Maurice & Winston


blush Oh, I loved your story Hug .. especially the part where Winston was supposed to be the "guide dog" for Maurice - but it's the other way aroundLaughing  What an amazing little guy Maurice is! Wub  It is always such a great "pick me up" to read stuff like this  bouquet thanks for my cup 'o "Chicken Soup" for today! blush
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Sallie & Tory
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« Reply #65 on: January 31, 2008, 10:46:09 PM »

Ok, here is the Tory fluff story from the verrrrrrrrrrry beginning. Rolled Eyes On Jan 31, 2001 I had to send my beloved friend, Maui(Gordon Setter/cocker mix) to Rainbow Bridge angelwings. I got him as a puppy & he was just short of 18yrs. I thought I would never be able to replace him nor did I want to. Well a year later I just couldn't stand one more day of coming home with no one to greet me. sad I had heard of a pet store that would take in puppies that no one wanted so a friend & I went to have a look. I found a darling, aren't all puppies darling, Dalmatian/chocolate lab mix. daisy They gave me 24 hours to make up my mind & get all my supplies. Something kept bugging me all night & in the morning I went for a long walk. Not only did I decide not No to get it but a voice said "get a Bichon" fluff. The interesting part of that is I knew no one with a Bichon nor did I know where to get one. I did know I wanted a rescue so I went online & got a phone # of someone that had a show Bichon.I asked if there was a rescue organization for Bichons.  He told me there was no such thing  thumbdown as a rescue Bichon(he obviously didn't know about Small Paws). I eventually got the number of another person that showed Bichons & she had just received a litter from an elderly couple. They had bought her at a pet store Bichon & didn't know she was pregnant. I was so excited Clap, however, she said they were too young to be seen & to call back. Long story short she kept putting me off & I never saw them but during this time I kept looking in the paper. I just knew that if I supposed to have a bichon I would. One Sunday morning I was looking in the LA Times & there was an ad put in by Lifeline for Pets for a 2 yr. old Bichon. I called & was told he was in a kennel about 45 min. from me. I went up that day & met this scared little boy covered with newprint.  hidden I knew immediately that he was the one. I called immediately to tell the lady that I wanted him & was told that I would have to make an appointment for her to bring him out & inspect my house. I named her the "doggie social worker". As the story goes this little man was found December 1, 2001 paralyzed in the street.  Injury He was taken to a local vet clinic where they tried to find his owner but he had no identification. The vet kept him for 6 weeks while he healed. They also gave him all his immunizations injection , neutered him, cleaned his teeth & named him Popcorn. fluff When he was ready they turned him over to Lifeline & he was kenneled for another 6 weeks & his name was changed to Cassidy as he still has some problems due to a compressed disc so he has a little hop at times. Here is where I entered. I guess I was the first of 35 people that called about him. As I said I was meant to get him. He arrived on February 28, 2002 in a crate  New Here & I passed the test  yahoo although the "doggie SW" was a little apprehensive  unsure about the 2 steps to my porch. Tory wasn't concerned at all. Yeah  I chose Victor Victorious as his name since he had been victorious over his injuries. Anyway it is all history now. He did spend the first few days hiding  hidden behind & under furniture as he is definitely a "den dog". When he came his little behind was so weak he walked with a swish. He has gained 5 pounds since then & you would never know that he had been injured. He still can't jump but that is sometimes a good thing. He lets me know when he wants up on the couch, bed or whatever. As my friends say he fell into the honey pot. woohoo  We are members of the mutual admiration society. I hope I didn't bore you with this lengthy history. I truely believe There Are No Accidents!  Love Eyes I have inserted a picture(I think) of what he looked like when he first came to his forever home.
« Last Edit: May 06, 2008, 02:18:43 AM by Sallie & Tory » Logged

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« Reply #66 on: February 17, 2008, 09:36:59 AM »

Here i go.....i had been thinking of rescue after reading the BICHON RESCUE SITE, i toyed it over and thought long and hard ....about what i had to give to a wee fluff.
I contacted Diane and we talked and talked,she told me fluffs were few and far between in this part of the U K .
i was going to the USA to visit my son and daughter inlaw ad would cotact her when i returned.
I returned on the 8th Jan and she called me that weekend to do a home visit....that went well


Last sunday Diane called to say she had an 8mnth old girl in need of some TLC,would i like to come and see her....so Mr Harry and i hightailed it through to Edinburgh...thr moment i saw her my heart melted, oh the wee soul was indeed in need of TLC...i brought her home called lainey to tell her .....honestly i was soo up and down ....worried about my boy and this wee scrap of fluffness...

was that just a week ago ............no surley not ...........Miss poppys been here a life time inlove  inlove


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Libby
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« Reply #67 on: February 22, 2008, 06:22:18 PM »

These stories are so inspiring and heartwarming.  God bless you all for sharing your stories.  Thank You 
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« Reply #68 on: May 06, 2008, 01:36:13 AM »

Well here is Luna's story.

I decided in December that I wanted a dog, I have four kids and 2 cats and my husband said no way. But it didn't take him long to see I had my heart set on it so he gave in. begging In the meantime I had been researching breeds and breeders. I had spoken to a lady at breed rescue (not bichon) and she gave my info to a breeder who had a show dog that the testicle had not dropped so she needed to find a forever home. Pictures and emails went back and forth. A telephone interview and If I could pick up the guy in person (11 hour car drive each way) he was mine. I could.. original nodding hyper

Then..

She wanted to know if I might be interested in a rescue instead. I said no I have my heart set.

Then..

the night before we were going to leave she hit us with an email bomb that I might not have found until after we got home from a long drive. The dog was losing huge amounts of fur and she figured it was low thyroid. I called. Would she run him to the vet in the morning and get him checked. NO she couldn't afford to. This was a woman showing champion dogs, and she wasn't vetting them.

So.. my husband said what else is not true, is he really good with children or not. Has he really been properly socialized. important for this breed. sad

We didn't go.. I cried myself to sleep,  :crybaby:I had worked and waited for six weeks.. I only slept two hours that night.

The next morning my husband took me to many shelters.  angel We were looking for a medium sized dog. I didn't even look at the smaller ones until the next to the last.

The shelter was kinda dark, a cinder block building with small high windows. The dogs wher two and three in a small kennel run. and watch were you step!!!! There were drainage ditches on each side of the walkway down the middle.

We thought there's no dog for us here. Then I asked "is this all", and they said there was another building for small dogs, I said lets go look. When we opened the door the yapping was loud and echoing. And these little dogs were jumping at the kennels too. All except this cream color girl, she was sitting in the back and quiet. We asked to see her, her time for being held as a stray had just expired, so we took her out to the grassy area and she was more interested in us then being outside. (all the other dogs were more intrested in trying to break out then us)

Luna came when I called her, I asked about kids and she pulled at the Luna's fur and skin and said she'll be fine, I said what about cats.. so off we trotted into the cat room and first she took out a cat that liked dogs and they were fine together then she took out a cat that doesn't like dogs and Luna hid behind me.

So as not to make a rash decision,  Laugh and Bounce we left her there and went and looked at other shelters. We also selpt on it over the weekend. The shelter was closed Sat and Sun anyway.

I spent Saturday exchanging large dog toys, crates, collars and leashes for small.  blush

So bright and early Monday morning I took my oldest and youngest (17 & 3) down to the shelter and brought Luna home.  swing First we took her to the grassy area agin to make sure her and the littlest would be ok.

No rash decisions here Laugh Hysterical Laugh Hysterical

We brought her home and called petsmart and they wouldn't groom her because she hadn't had her rabies yet. She had thrown up in the car so I bathed her myself and when I was done I thought she's lighter then I first thought with darker socks and muzzle. I found a groomer the next day that only works on one dog at a time and she said bring her right in. I asked her not to cut more then neccessary to get the mats out. she reccommended that we shave her but I was like no. She she washed her took mats out did her ears and nails and glands and then a feet, face and fanny. Her fanny she did have to buzz. Poor Luna looked like a target on our walks for weeks.

She told me Luna's all white, not much if any poodle, and explained staining to me. We bought some Spa facial scrub, treats and food with no chicken, wheat or corn and were on our way.

Our groomer was right about having her shaved though she was so choppy I ended up going back in and having it done before her spay.

Luna would mouth me when ever I brushed her, now she tries to tuck as much as she can underneath her or mouths the brush.

She has learned some basic commands, we had a trainer come to our house.

Is not so fearful, and she is teathered to me while working on housetraining.

whew.... sorry so long but it's still so fresh in my mind, like it happened just two months ago.

wait it did. rock
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« Reply #69 on: December 03, 2008, 01:40:13 AM »

Somehow I had never noticed this thread before.  I just read through all the wonderful stories, and now I will share ours. original

My 12 year old son had been asking for a dog for about as long as I can remember.   However, I really did not feel ready to take on that responsibility when the boys were younger.  There was also one other glitch -- my younger son (now 10) was very afraid of dogs.  He has had several fears, and I know that he only overcomes them when he is ready to tackle them.  Finally, he announced that he was ready to have a dog.  This decision led us to a quick and ill-advised adoption of a young, very active, very mouthy large breed dog.  He was not here more than a few hours before my son sobbed that he had made a mistake and was NOT ready for a dog.  He was terrified of him, and spent all of his time sitting up on the back of the couch out of his reach.  I told my son that we needed to give him a chance and that he could learn how to behave.  However, over the next two days things only got worse.  His nipping escalated to the point where he very nearly broke the skin, and left me with a bruise that took months to heal.  As a first time dog owner, I did not have the experience or confidence to help him learn appropriate behavior.  We were on the phone to a trainer almost constantly, but things only got worse.  After the second night, when he basically kicked me out of my own bed and growled and snapped at me when I tried to take it back, I knew this was just not the right home for him.  I was scared of him, and he knew it, and try as I might, I just couldn't fake it.  We could not give him what he needed, and I really did not foresee the situation getting better.  We felt it was better for him to go back to his foster home before developing an attachment to us.   With me in tears over the guilt and sense of failure, my husband called the rescue and he was returned to his foster home later that day.  When he left, my son, the same one who had sobbed the night he arrived, the same one who was still terrified of him, now sobbed because he was gone.  It's tough being a kid.  It absolutely broke my heart, but I knew I was making the best decision for the safety and well-being of my family.

In my heart of hearts, I knew that we needed to try again, but that we needed to do it right.  We needed to research breeds and choose one that would be a good fit for our family.  We needed to work with a rescue that would make a real effort to place the right dog in the right home.  We needed to do it over the summer, when the boys and I would be home more.  However, my husband was quite reluctant to try again.  Assuming that I would eventually convince him, I began researching dog breeds online and after visiting many, many sites I decided that a bichon would be a great fit for our family.  I bought a book on bichons.  I spoke with a neighbor who owns a bichon.  I was more convinced than ever.  I slowly worked on hubby.  Finally, one day, my son announced to me that "Daddy said okay to a bichon!"  I was so happy!

I found the Delaware Valley Bichon Rescue and filled out an application.  Over the next couple of months or so I inquired about several different dogs, but it just never worked out.  Either someone beat us to them, or they did not feel we were the right fit for one reason or another.  I was getting very discouraged.  Then I happened to check the website of a local shelter on the off chance that they might have a bichon, and to my shock, they did.  We piled into the car and went to see him.  He was friendly, and adorable, and lovable, and .... already promised to another owner. sad

At this point I am more discouraged than ever.  I decide I am going to go on Petfinder and print out every bichon within a two hour radius of us, and inquire about them, starting with the nearest one and working out from there.  The nearest one was a 7 year old female at the Sean Casey Animal Rescue in Brooklyn, NY, about a 45 minute to an hour drive from us.  I send an email asking for more info, and receive an email back that same evening.  The dog is described as "sweet", "playful but not hyper", their most requested dog to take out on walks.  She had been surrendered a month earlier by her previous owners, suffering from pyometra and requiring an emergency hysterectomy.   But at this point she is fully healed and healthy.  She sounds wonderful, but I am afraid to get my hopes up.  By the next morning the rescue has called my references and calls to tell me we have been approved and that they really think this would be a great fit!  But, we are leaving that day to visit my in-laws for a couple of days, so we make arrangements to meet her and bring her home when we get back.  I spent the next couple of days worrying that somehow she will go home with someone else before we get back, and repeatedly checking her Petfinder listing to make sure she is still there.

Finally, the day comes and we meet our girl. Out walks this scraggly, shaven dog covered in newsprint, who is barely recognizable as a bichon.  She looks like a moldy bologna, with her chubby, pink body covered by only a short layer of fuzz.  And I fall in love.  Things are just about crazy at the rescue.  They actually specialize in exotics, so there are all manner of animals there, including a two-headed turtle.  There is a large bird squawking almost continually as loud as can be.  There is a flock of little birds who get loose from their cage and being flying into the air ducts, requiring a search and rescue operation by the staff.  There is a local who apparently likes to hang around,  reeks of liquor, and decides to start chatting with my son.  There are families from the neighborhood coming in to take some of the dogs for walks.  It was absolutely insane, but that's a Saturday afternoon in Brooklyn for you!  Finally, we get all of our paperwork taken care of and we bring Pippi home.  Wub

And the rest, as they say, is history.  I feel so, so lucky with Pippi, because we really haven't had any major issues to deal with.  She came to us housebroken, though she did have a few accidents in the first few days, which is to be expected.  She is timid and afraid in new environments, but is getting much better.  We have had issues with her being mouthy, but she has never tried to bite or even really nip, and even the soft mouthing has decreased significantly.  I really never understood how much you love a dog until Pippi came into our lives.  We have had other pets, but there is something different about a dog.  And I can't imagine a more wonderful dog than Pippi.  All our disappoinments were worth it in the end, as they led us to her.

(And, by the way, I followed the Petfinder listing for our first adoptee for a couple of months, and finally he was listed as adopted!  I was so happy to see that he had found a home, and I hope that it is his forever family, the family he was meant to have, just as Pippi was meant to be with us.)

I am posting some before and after pics of Pippi.  The first is from the day she came home.  The second is from a couple of weeks ago.  It is really hard to believe it is the same dog!




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« Reply #70 on: February 15, 2009, 11:23:07 PM »

I am new to this site, and I've just spent some time reading these wonderful stories. Each of you is to be commended for rescuing your lucky fluffs. This is by far my favorite thread!  thumbsup
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« Reply #71 on: February 15, 2009, 11:35:34 PM »

blush Thanks for "bumping" this thread up! blush ... I always love to book read through these stories when I am needing a little lift. blush  We sure have a lot of wonderful  angel angels here, don't we! Hug
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« Reply #72 on: February 16, 2009, 12:07:08 AM »

blush Thanks for "bumping" this thread up! blush ... I always love to book read through these stories when I am needing a little lift. blush  We sure have a lot of wonderful  angel angels here, don't we! Hug

I agree! These stories lifted my spirits.
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« Reply #73 on: March 29, 2009, 02:11:17 AM »

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Marsh's Mum (Carol)
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« Reply #74 on: March 29, 2009, 02:42:03 PM »

Oh my!

Thank you, Bree, for posting your / Lucky's story. flowers  I truly enjoyed reading every word of it. nodding  I'm so happy you and your family were able to commit to taking in this precious wee soul. Wub  Funny how a fluff can so easily melt a heart, huh? Love

The kewlpics  were awesome! daisy   Thank You
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