Jasmine and Tae

I have loved animals since I was a little girl. When I was around five years old my dad brought home a puppy that a man was giving away in the street, that we named Poochy. My mother was not an animal lover and had no patience for a puppy who was chewing everything in sight. One day she called the ASPCA and a man in van came to take Poochy away. I remember the man saying “why do you want to get rid of this dog, he seems like such a good dog?”. I don’t really remember my mother’s answer but I can tell you that watching the man take Poochy away haunts me to this day. I’m crying as I write this and it is forty years later. I knew from that day on that I would never treat an animal as just object that is disposable. A year later my father brought home another puppy we named Cinzia. I’m very happy to say that even though my mother did not want an animal in the house my father and I would never let what happened to Poochy ever happen again. Cinzia lived to be 16 and died of old age. When she died we were heart broken, even my mother, but we were grateful to have her for 16 wonderful years.

When my kids were 4 and 6, my husband surprised us on Valentines Day by going to an animal shelter in the middle of a huge snowstorm and brought home a shepard mix puppy. I still remember her little tail sticking from under my husbands jacket as he walked through the door. My daughter named her Jasmine after the princess in the Disney movie Aladdin. Jasmine was the best dog. She got along great with our four cats, she was always there being happy and cheery when things were good and bad, she was a true and loyal friend and a wonderful part of our family.

When Jasmine was 12, my daughter and husband were at the local chain pet store to buy dog and cat food when they saw the store had brought in animals from a shelter for adoption. There were lots of puppy’s who were so cute that, they were being adopted very quickly . But there was this one dog that was older and very sad looking. He was black and white with matted fur and just kind of straggly looking. No one paid much attention to him. My daughter and husband called me while I was at work and told me they were bringing home this dog home because there was just something in his eyes and they weren’t going to leave him there. I was all for it but I was concerned because my mother had come to live with us after my father died and she was always complaining about our cats. I knew she was going to give us a hard time by bringing home another animal. When they brought Tae home he immediately looked at my mother and melted her heart. Jasmine was so sweet to him and welcomed him instantly. The next day I had called the pet store to have him groomed. Initially the grooming department were a little snooty. They had no available appointments for three weeks. They needed the dogs history like has he ever been groomed before, what kind of dog is he, how old is he etc. I obviously did not know the answers so I said ,look my husband just adopted him yesterday from in front of your store and he is just a mess and needs a bath and a haircut. The woman on the phone asked me if he was the sad looking black and white dog, I said yes and she told me she had seen him yesterday and felt so sorry for him. She told me to bring him right in and she would take care of him.

That was four years ago. Tae is just the best, we love him so much. The vet thinks he was probably about 1 ½ years old when we got him and he looks like a poodle mix. He and Jasmine got along great. It was great watching them play together. My mother adores him. Jasmine had developed an aggressive tumor about a year after Tae came home. We kept her as comfortable as we could but the cancer had spread to her head and face. The tumor was pressing on her eye and it was obvious she was in pain. We made the decision to put her to sleep. We were all with her when the vet put her to sleep. We all held her and pet her as she her closed eyes in peace. We couldn’t stop sobbing but we were grateful for our dog. We had her cremated and her ashes are in an urn in our family room.

Seven and half months ago my daughter brought home a toy poodle who was only six weeks old. A friend of a friend had these puppy’s and obviously she could not resist. Bruno and Tae are so cute together and I’m glad she brought Bruno home for Tae.

Sometimes when I look at Tae I get emotional because I don’t want him to get old. We also have three cats now, the original four are all gone. One was hit by a car which crushed us. After that all our cats are indoor cats. The rest, I’m happy to say have passed from old age. Whenever I think of any of my past pets, including Poochy, I get teary eyed. They have truly left an imprint on my heart forever.

Carla from NY