College of Veterinary Medicine

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Heidi's Memorial
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A donation was made in Heidi's memory by Doctor's, Staff, and Student's at the WSU Teaching Hospital. Her memorial was created on 10/23/2013.
Never was there a sweeter, gentler, more loving and devoted little creature on our planet than our Heidi, nor will there ever be, I know. Heidi came to us as an older dog, we believe somewhere around the age of eight years of age. She was placed with us through the Northwest German Shepherd Rescue organization, and we suspect she had been a backyard breeder’s dog, as she had not been spayed, and showed evidence of having recently given birth to pups. But what a generous, kind-hearted, quiet and even temperament that little girl brought to us! Despite whatever unfortunate captivity, abuse or neglect she likely had to endure through in her earlier life, she showered us with love and affection from the first moment of her arrival. She was a bit stand-offish with our other rescued dogs, and preferred to den by herself in her plastic crate in our living room (presumably out of habit from a life spent in a crate), but when we were in the room she would emerge and find us. When I sat on the sofa nearby, she would softly appear and sweetly peck at my chin for attention.

Whenever I would leave our house, Heidi would go outside and lay next to the fence at our driveway, waiting for the first sight of my return. My wife recounts many times when Heidi would lay there all day in the rain, or into nightfall, and she had to be led back into the house if I had yet to return. I am so very deeply touched, honored and grateful for this dog’s choice of me to place her trust and love in.

We were shocked when two months ago little Heidi suddenly lost the ability to stand-up on her hind legs. We took her to the WSU Veterinary College for an MRI and it appeared she had a possible infection affecting her spine, or alternatively, a damaged spinal disc. We chose to see if medication might alleviate the suspected infection before attempting more invasive treatment, so little Heidi endured a month in our house being hoisted-up in a sling whenever she was escorted outside, and she did this many times daily with great grace, patience and without complaint.

When the month-long treatment with multiple foul-tasting medications did not improve her condition and she still could not walk, I drove her back to the Veterinary College to try the surgery on her spine. We shared a Subway breakfast sandwich on the nearly five hour drive to Pullman. I then said good-bye to her in her temporary kennel at the college, leaving her with my most heart-felt expression of good luck for her outcome of her surgery. The next day, we were stunned by a call that our little Heidi had suddenly collapsed; another call ten minutes later brought the terrible news that CPR had been unsuccessful. My heart was shattered, and wracked with pain that I had not been there for her when she passed. Our consolation was that she was with wonderful, capable students and doctors who did all they could for her in the weeks and days before her death, and in her last moments.

O Heidi, dearest little Heidi
Nibble my chin, nibble my chin
How my heart pines
To know your kisses again

You left us far too soon (you were only just ten) – we had so much more love to show you. Goodnight and beautiful dreams our sweet Little One; know that we will miss you forever, but you will always be among us – your loving family, Holly and Mike and the dogs and cats.

Mike & Holly A. and family

Other Family Members

Robert NadjaGustavRubyNigelOttoHenry

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