Our "big girl", Shadow was loving to all, big and small, endlessly
patient with her yippy "little sister", JinnJinn, enduring of all her
various medical problems, intensely loyal and protective of her family. She taught us
unconditional love, patience, uncomplaining perseverance, graceful endurance and loyalty.
We will love her and remember her forever. She was a "good girl."
Shadow rests now in peace with her true owner, the Divine Master of us all.
We will be united with her again some day in love.
Shadow, a black lab-and-possibly-German-shepherd-mix, was a "poundling",
adopted from the County Animal Shelter at the age of about 2 by Steve's
brother, Jerry. Frightened, but lovable, she quickly demonstrated
her intelligence and great heart. Jerry found that she was
incredibly easy to train--no doubt partly due to her gratitude at being
"sprung" from "jail." Her shelter name was India, as in "India
ink" due to her intensely black coat, but, since she faithfully followed
her new master around everywhere he stepped, Shadow seemed a more
How clever she was! She could nose open doors, and
close them on command. She loved to chase balls, clobber people
with her frisbee, and jump into any body of water large enough to hold
her. And boy, was she sneaky, walking nonchalantly past a
snack-laden party table, tongue streaking out quickly to nab a treat
left too close to the edge when no one was looking. She loved to
lay in doorways, keeping tabs on everyone who tried to come and go, and
loved to be (literally) underfoot. Nothing went on that Shadow
didn't know about.
Shadow was first introduced to a wild bundle of fur we
call JinnJinn about 8 years ago. JinnJinn, was only about 6 or 8 months
old at the time, and the size difference between the two was a little
worrisome at first. We didn't know quite what Shadow's reaction
would be--would she think JinnJinn was a snack and try to eat her?
Our apprehension at introducing them melted away in minutes when they
began to play. JinnJinn could hardly reach Shadow's elbow, and
nipped at her, trying to get the ball. Shadow, overjoyed at having
a playmate, pranced around proudly, ball in mouth, teasing JinnJinn as
the tiny bundle of fur tried to jump up and get the ball.
From that moment, they were best friends, or perhaps,
mamma and baby. Shadow showed endless patience toward her little
ward and never once tried to hurt her. Since JinnJinn, a Sheltie,
is a herding dog, she would nip Shadow's legs while they played, trying
to "herd" Shadow into giving up the ball. Shadow never lost her temper,
never nipped back, never even growled--not even when JinnJinn yanked on
her ear and gave her a hematoma!
Pals Forever--JinnJinn and Shadow
A year or so later, Jerry had to move and could not take
Shadow with him. Since we had all been living on the same piece of
property, we weren't about to let our "big baby" go to anyone else, so
Shadow officially became our child.
As the years went on, Shadow and JinnJinn grew
closer and closer, always together, getting frisky and wild after each
meal playing with each other (we never figured that one out), chasing
the balls--although Shadow would hog them all--and rolling on the floor
with JinnJinn riding on top of Shadow's back as if she were a horse!
Shadow was so large that JinnJinn could stand right under her!
Shadow loved her "puppy massages", doggie snacks, and stuffing 2 balls
and a frisbee in her mouth and prancing about. She loved
"stealing" any loose ball that JinnJinn didn't have in her mouth. And,
when Mom sat on the floor at the living room coffee table in the
evenings, stringing necklaces or making earrings, Shadow decided
Mom's lap was just the perfect place to lay her giant head to get
petted. Inside that giant body was a little lap dog!
As Shadow aged, dysplasia and arthritis set in. At one
point, the vets said she would last about another 6 months. We
were devastated, but determined not to give up. At 111 pounds, her
arthritic back, hips and rear legs could not support her weight.
She had developed a stubborn abscess on one front leg that kept
recurring. And she had become severely allergic to most dog
Placed on a strict diet of a fish-based dog food
rich in anti-oxidants and number of supplements (our eternal gratitude
to the folks at Solid Gold), Shadow lost weight, her coat grew shinier,
and the constant itching that had caused her to chew relentlessly at hot
spots when they periodically appeared, miraculously vanished. Four
years later--3 1/2 years longer than the vets said she would last-- at a
shiny, sleek and slender 76 pounds--just 2 pounds over her shelter
weight--she was still chasing balls and playing with her favorite furry
pal. The new vet (a total of 6 vets had treated Shadow), said it
was a miracle that she could stand up by herself. Although her
rear legs had little strength and were used mostly for balancing, she
would still leap off the back porch to play. It would make our
hearts stop when she did that!
Well, dogs just don't live as long as humans, and time goes all too
quickly in this world. We knew that her time was coming, and
worried constantly about her falling and breaking a hip or leg when we
were not at home. Fortunately, she was rarely left without human
company, and never left without her doggie companion.
She was our black beauty, our baby and our guardian. She fell
asleep one night in one of her favorite spots, stretched out as if
dreaming of running. While she was sleeping, God whistled for her.
Obediently, she bounded to Heaven.
We will meet again, old girl. We love you. We miss you.
We remember you.
Please nose the gate open for us when we see you again.
Love, Mom, Dad & JinnJinn
And all the family
Shadow at a heavy 110 pounds--with JinnJinn under foot!
Shadow modeling designer dog beds
. . . and her little pal, JinnJinn
* * *
I thought I asked for a PINK frisbee!
* * *
Always together . . .
* * *
Godspeed, Shadow. Rest in Peace.
We'll see you soon.