Dear Ms. O’Shaughnessy,
Beatrice came to us as “Belle,” a huge 90+ pound, furry Airedale (who I’m not sure had ever been groomed) with very few manners and that strong Airedale attitude. She had bounced from several homes, though her exact path was unclear. I know that she broke through fences, attacked small dogs, and spent most of her day in a cage that was too small. A SOAR volunteer had our name as a possible foster placement and called stating that this dog needed to be placed immediately – so we took her in. Very little was known about her before we fostered her, but she needed help and we weren’t going to turn her down! It was our plan to train her as needed, groom her, evaluate her character, and get her ready for an appropriate placement for her forever home, but we fell in love! She was a ball of excitement, 90 pounds of pure unadulterated zest for life! She needed quite a bit of training to learn some basic manners, but eventually, she fell into our routine and became part of our family. She loved our oldest daughter, took good care of our old man Airedale, Tucker (she definitely kept track of him and made sure he was in line!) and even tolerated the cat, which for her was an incredible feat of self-control. It was true that her prey drive was strong but she knew that “no kitty” meant serious business! Each day she was the first one up in the house, waiting patiently for everyone else to join in her fun, usually anticipating the crack of the door for her favorite eight-year-old to come downstairs. Any time we left the house we knew when we returned we would be greeted with kisses, wags, jumps, and shivers (her whole body would shiver and shake with excitement!) whether we were gone for five hours or five minutes. She was our little busy body, but the sweetest character that just needed to be loved. She even welcomed our newest addition nine months ago with just as much joy as the rest of us. Once she learned that all the new squeaks and squeals were ok, she watched over our sweet baby like it was her job too. I could go on and on about her sweet nature, strong will, and silly antics but it would fill the pages of a book.
Sadly, we noticed she began to lose weight and after several visits to our vet, it was determined that she was in the advanced stages of stomach cancer. There was nothing we could do to treat cancer and she was suffering, so we did the only thing we could to bring her peace. It is the worst, most miserable decision a family is ever faced with in caring for a dog and all I can do is pray that it’s true that all dogs do go to heaven…because if so, there are angels chuckling now!
I did want you and the SOAR organization to get at least an idea of how much we loved her, she found her home with us, and she made our home a better place. She is sadly, sadly missed, our home is empty and not the same without her, but I am so grateful for the joy and love and laughter (she was a silly thing!!) she brought to our family. Below is a message by our eight-year-old daughter as well.
Sincerely, Jessy and Brian
Dear Lynn O’Shaughnessy,
Beatrice was the best dog I could imagine in the entire world. She always played with me and played with my little sister. She was so cute! Miss Beatrice usually liked to play outdoors. She loved to take car rides and hikes with our family. She would usually come up to my bedroom to listen to the story my mom would read, we called it “storytime.” She always protected me and my family. She was a foster dog but a little while after fostering her we adopted her. She loved to train with me outdoors. Sometimes in the summer, she would be outdoors with us whenever she could while we were in the pool. She would greet me at my door when I came downstairs in the morning and greet us when we came home from anywhere. She was an intelligent dog too, I guess the training paid off. She was the best dog anyone could ask for!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!