Chloe’s Story….

We at Atlanta Lab Rescue wanted to share this touching tribute to an amazing dog…Chloe…She was adopted from ALR a while back. As you will read, she and her family had to deal with some “lab things” and overcame them with love and patience.  A bond of love between a family and their dog is a beautiful thing.  When you find “that dog” and you know it, your heat and life will never be the same.   Here is ……

Chloe’s Story ….

Chloe Belle, as Leslie would often call her, was as loving a companion as you would ever find. And the story of how our lives came together is much like a fairy tale.

It was January 13, 2008. Chloe was a rescue, and we were a family looking for a furry friend to love. Leslie would scour the Web look for just the right one. Grant, only three at the time, would sit in her lap and help her look at all the dogs.

One day, she felt she had found the perfect dog. His name was Sport and he was a yellow lab. She showed Sport to Grant and told him we would go play with him on Sunday. And if we were lucky, we might even get to bring him home. But Grant looked at the monitor filled with Brady Bunch squares of all the dogs and said, “Mommy, what about that one? What’s that dog’s name?” Leslie said, “Oh, that dog is Chloe but we’re going to look at Sport and pointed to his picture on the screen.” But Grant remained firm and said, “I like Chloe.”

Sunday came and we headed to the Pet Supermarket where the adoptions were taking place. Dogs lined the entire perimeter of the store. We were able to locate Sport and were waiting behind a number of people for our turn to pet him. Then, Grant started to wonder off on his own. He went right to Chloe and said her name. We all got to know her a little better and realized that she was indeed the perfect dog for us. We passed the home inspection and she was ours. And we were hers. Together, we were a family!

For almost ten years, we would play together and love one another. A constant and faithful companion, her loyalty never waned. She would let the kids love all over her – providing love and affection in the form of kisses and wags. Chloe would wait for Lauren to come home knowing she would burst through the door saying, “Where’s my puppy nug?” and lavishing her with attention. During the day, there was no doubt she was Leslie’s dog as she would follow her from room to room to be near her. She was always waiting to spring into action with her very ferocious bark to protect Leslie and the kids from the evil UPS man or any other suspicious people who would ring our doorbell.

Like most labs, she loved food, and she was always there to help clean up any messes on the floor when the kids were eating too. Always in the center of all the action during dinner, I will miss stepping over and around her as she would lay right in front of the stove while I was cooking.

Chloe had a healthy appetite coupled with an interesting palate. There was the time she ate hidden Easter candy, the time she ate shrimp tails, and the time she ate Lauren’s birthday cake. I still don’t know why she ate a bunch of rocks from the path behind our house. Each of these delicacies was awarded with a trip to the vet, and her file grew quite large over the years. I actually think Chloe liked going to the vet. There were always friends to see, and when went for rehab, she got to swim in the underwater treadmill while licking peanut butter off the glass. Chloe was a friend to all and everyone she met loved her.

Dogs are quite perceptive – especially Chloe. It didn’t take long for her to realize that suitcases meant we were leaving town and she was going to “camp”. I’ll never forget the time she literally laid on top of the suitcase and with her big brown puppy dog eyes said, “Please take me with you in this suitcase!”

Chloe hated the thunderstorms and would often find somewhere to hide the house. Her favorite spot was under our bed, and we’d often find a nose peeking out from under the bed. If we were playing hide and seek, she wouldn’t have been a very good hider because the enthusiastic thumping of her tail always gave her away.

Her tail… Who doesn’t remember the strength of her tail? It could (and did) knock a small child over. Yet she never stopped wagging it right down to the very end.

Her fur… For those who visited our home or rode in our car, you surely left with a lit bit of Chloe on you. It’s hard to believe an animal could produce that much fur! The Furminator was no match for her. I only wish there was a market for dog hair as she would have made us a fortune.

As she aged and her hip dysplasia worsened, her lifestyle became for sedimentary. Mornings were some of her best times, and she would always have a smile on her face when the day started. I will never forget her smile for it was contagious to our whole family, and the thumping of her tail was a signal of excitement and enthusiasm for what the adventures that awaited each of us for that day.

One could not ask for a more loyal and giving friend, and I cannot imagine our lives without her. She will be missed terribly, but we will always be comforted by the memories we’ve shared with her. As hard as it is to lose her, I wouldn’t pass on the joy she’s given to our family ever. God has given us a precious gift in your life with us and we are forever grateful.

Rest in peace sweet Chloe. We will love you always!

The Rainbow Bridge

Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge. When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge.

There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together.  There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable.

All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigour; those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by.

The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind.  They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance.

His bright eyes are intent; His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster. You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again.

The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart. Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together.

– Unknown Author


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