A Tribute to Our Beloved Shy

On a beautiful day, 6 November 2021, we adopted Shy from LHS. Shy jumped into our car and was so excited to be going home. She sensed what was ahead. She barked and kissed us all the way to Ft. Collins. You see, being a senior dog, Shy had just spent the past six months under the care of LHS, waiting for her forever home. Her drive to Ft. Collins that day took her to her forever home. Shy did not look back, only forward.

Shy was bonded to us immediately, as we were to her. Shy had an amazing exuberance for life, and for every person she met. She just asked, with her bark, for love and kisses from anyone who would stop to greet her. For the first few weeks with us, Shy had this thing about bringing both small and large sticks home from her walk. I think she was bringing them to our house to show she belonged. We still have some of those sticks today and will keep them forever.

After a few early medical issues that popped up when Shy came to us, Shy settled into a comfortable life, each day being a happy day for her and us. Shy enjoyed her home-cooked meals of lean meats, fish, vegetables, fruits and grains. She cherished her meals, and her time in the kitchen when we prepared her food. “Don’t back up, Shy is right behind you”, we would say to one another. Shy happily walked a few miles per day, and could not wait to go on those big walks. In the evening, Shy would stare at us when she wanted to go upstairs to her bed. Once we settled into our bed, only then would Shy go to sleep.

In the fall of 2022, Shy began to lose some mobility in her back legs. It became apparent that Shy had degenerative myelopathy. So we started treating Shy with more frequent vet care, acupuncture, water therapy, and chiropractic adjustments, plus giving her various supplements and lots of exercise and love. The amazing thing is that Shy remained happy through this entire time, loving life and loving us. Shy even had special boots to help her on her walks and to get around the house. Shy kept going, day after day after day.

We did all we could possibly do for Shy, but sadly she crossed the Rainbow Bridge on 30 October 2023, one week short of two years after we adopted her. We were so blessed to have had Shy, even if it was for this short time. We like to think Shy had her two best years when she was with us. Words cannot describe the happiness and joy she brought to our home.

We write this story about Shy Shy (her nickname) as we do not want Shy’s life to go unnoticed. Shy was a dog that showed deep love every single day of her life. One of Shy’s doctors wrote us a very touching note when Shy left us. In that note he told us that he always felt Shy’s middle name was Joy, because she brought Joy to everyone that crossed her path. Shy was always so happy and resilient, even as she dealt with her disease.

Shy’s loss has been very painful. But we know in time we will once again feel the joy that Shy brought to us each and every day. Shy was a gift to the world. Shy was a special dog in so many ways. Shy now lives in our hearts forever.

Dr. Steven and Barbara Rutledge
Ft. Collins CO

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