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A Tribute to Lehua
by Kareen
Nov 2004

Lehua was a very special girl.

After being dropped off at my gate a terrified, matted, aggressive mess, who the former owners "thought" was about 5.  She had lived in their back yard for 4 to 5 years.

While she was here, she slowly came around to be a really wonderful dog over a period of 8 months, taking special pleasure in her selection of squeaky balls, mixing well with my own house pack.

I will never forget when she got her first hair cut -- she was sooooo proud that she was suddenly "pretty", like everybody else and overnight, turned into a different dog, prancing, leaping with joy in her step. I cried when she left my house with Margret to be delivered to her new home.

Then, her wonderful owner was hit by a truck while he was out with "our" girl only a few months after she started to live with him. After lingering in and out of several different hospitals in intensive care for about 6 months, the gentleman died.

Margret placed our girl again in another wonderful home, but with a soft woman who allowed her to go and kill 8 of the neighbor's cats. Obviously, the neighbor was irate and was threatening to kill Lehua the next time she came onto his property (went over a 6' fence to do this).

Margret got her back again. I had visited in the meantime and really wanted her back because she was such a wonderful girl. Well -- Margret fell in love with her also and the rest is history. She also took her into her personal pack and has given her the best life possible for a Bouvier.

She was diagnosed with cancer 2 years ago and the tumor was removed. She became a certified therapy dog (and this is from the girl that initially greeted everybody with bared teeth), did agility and became a fat, happy camper, a real ambassador for what could be accomplished with a castoff dog somebody didn't want.

Two weeks ago, she was diagnosed with diabetes after having terrible seizures suddenly. With insulin injections, she also came back from that.

We thought Lehua was about 5 when she came here. Turns out, according to all vets, she was probably closer to 8 or 9. So now, at age 12 - 14, she has had a recurrence of the cancer and it has spread everywhere.

As long as she is comfortable, she will live out her last days with Margret luxuriating on her bed, couches or wherever she likes.

She quietly died on Margret's couch.

We will all miss her.

eMail the webmaster, Jan Rifkinson


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