Instructions to a Guardian Angel of Dogs: A Pet Loss Poem

Lady:  Border collie 2000- June 3,2014      She belonged to my son, Danny. So  devoted- she lived to be near him and to ride in the truck. I'll write the story of Lady one day.

Lady: Border collie 2000- June 3,2014 She belonged to my son, Danny. So devoted- she lived to be near him and to ride in the truck. I’ll write the story of Lady one day.

Lady 2000- June 3, 2014

Lady 2000- June 3, 2014

This poem was included in a comment of last year by Gerard Oosterman of A number of individuals visit my blog looking for poems about pet loss. So, here is another poem to add to the PET LOSS category.

The last 21 months of Lady’a life, was in my care. She required regular medication and extra attention and that was something that my son could not give her. He did not cease loving his pet. She could no longer ride on the truck so I decided to take over her care. I’m glad that I did. I grew to love her even more after she came to live with me. I can still visualize her looking down the lane as my son drove away in his truck each day. I know that she grieved to be with Danny but she adapted very well living with me. As I often say about dogs, Lady was “more human than most humans.” I think I read that and it is not my original quote.

Instructions To a Guardian Angel of Dogs
By ginger Patton

Hello. I’ve been expecting you for quite some time.
Here, come sit beside us for awhile .
and let me tell you about this old friend of mine.
She might look tattered or maybe old
But I won’t say goodbye until you’ve been told.
She had the brightest eyes I had ever seen,
And wore a beautiful fur coat that would out shine a queen .
She was never prissy but walked with an aire ……
And oh so polite, you could take her most anywhere.
She could run like the wind and could catch anything she chased
But she protected and sat with me when I had problems to face.
You could not find a friend nearly so dear.
Because no matter the trouble she always stayed near…
She has never asked for much from me;
Just to love and respect her and I think you’ll agree .
To give her a good meal plus a nice warm bed is not much to ask ;
When she has given me all her love and to her this was no task.
Now I understand you have a schedule to keep.
But I have a small favor before she nods off to sleep.
Please fold your wings around her and let her feel young while in no pain ;
Dear Guardian Angel of Pets ,
please keep her safe and happy until I see her again.

By Ginger Patton

Tagged ,

37 thoughts on “Instructions to a Guardian Angel of Dogs: A Pet Loss Poem

  1. hayley says:

    I have a predisposed fondness toward Border Collies but those photos of Lady are lovely and suggest to me that she had a beautiful nature. It must have been very hard when she finally passed, even if it was a blessing in disguise given her unwellness. We never had pet dogs when I was growing up – we lived on farms so my father always had working dogs which are a bit different. The one exception was his last dog, Bud, who retired from working life when my parents retired from farming life. They moved into the local town and he became the family pet. Whenever I visited them, I went to see him before anyone else. His death was a very sad time for all of us. It’s been nice remembering him – thanks Yvonne.

    • What a sweet story about your Dad’s dog. I was raised on a farm too but our dogs were watch dogs. Yes, Lady was a very sweet dog. She was a pet and never trained to be a working dog. She did not even like toys. Never played with a ball or chewed on things. She just loved my son and went just about everywhere with him. A one of a kind dog.

      I suppose the Border collie is my favorite dog as well. My best dog is Puppy who is about 11 years old now. Half BC and 1/2 Australian Shepherd. Very smart.

  2. She sounds as beautiful as she looks, Yvonne. I will seem like some martian to you but I. Don’t. Like. Animals.

    There, I came out of the closet. Totally understand if you unfollow. =)

    BUT I actually became fond of buddy, a big dog about the size of Lady years back when I stayed with a family for two weeks. I saw how intelligent, knowing, and endearing dogs are and how they become family.

    A lovely, bittersweet post.


    • Diana. I will not unfollow you and I surmised from one of your posts when I first began reading your blog that you do not like animals. You had written something such as, “no, son you will not be getting a dog over my dead body” or something to that effect. I thought it was hilarious. Of course there are people with all kinds of quirks and you and I are at the extreme opposite.

      You need not comment on these animal posts and I am just fine with that. Animal blogs are not for everyone even if “they” like animals.

      ~yvonne x

      • HA ha ha. Sharp memory. And great sense of humor, Yvonne. I commented here bc I wanted to. =) Lady was too beautiful not to pipe in about and she brought back warm memories of Buddy. I was saddened to hear he passed some yrs later.


        • <em Thanks Diana. AT LEAST YOU LIKED ONE DOG. Sort of strange that many years ago, to like a dog. Perhaps having an animal is one less thing to grieve in life. I find your feelings thought provoking- no joke.
          ~yvonne x

        • Ha ha. Nothing too mysterious. They were always so…ODD to me. Too tired to explain, but as I mature I have second thoughts, you’ll be happy to know. They’re wiser than many people! They know when to eat, sleep, feel it when they need exercise. The animals in the wild know what to eat and when and don’t give themselves hypertension or cancer. But back to the point, I considered mentioning this in a post one day but I was chased by a pack of dogs when I was a girl. Very traumatic. I’m also a germaphobe. The deal breaker, right there. =) If they won’t put their shoes on in the house, I’m not signing on the dotted line. Don’t care how cute you are.

        • I completely understand. I compensate by washing my hands MANY times a day. It does get to be a pain. I appreciate your honesty. Thanks.

        • Oh, I meant if you can’t remove your shoes in my house. *very tired*


  3. A beautiful poem Yvonne. So sorry that you both lost such a dear old friend.

  4. Vicky says:

    What a beauty Lady was. There is something so special about an old dog’s face, they just melt me.
    Lovely poem too x

    • Hello, Vicky. Thank you for the the lovely thought about old dogs. Yes, they possess a certain quality and kindness that is not seen in a younger dog. I reckon that we never forget about the pets that were once a part of out lives. Certain things jog my memory and then I’ll remember, Lady, Rocket, Woody, Andy, Dancer, Blazer, Ranger, Prissy, Little Lady. Spotty, Wenna, Jackie, Wolfie, Max, Sammy, Major, Pal, Qeeenie … There have been many dogs in all my years from toddler, to an old woman now. I’ve always had at least 4 dogs at one time.

  5. chatou11 says:

    Hi Yvonne, how sad is le lost of Lady. I am so happy to hear thaht you took care of her until the end if only all pets could have the same chance to be love so much. This poem is beautiful. I hope you will tell us one day about Lady’s story.
    Pain must be still present!
    . .

    • Dear Chatou, that you for the nice comment. It it true that I grew quite fond of Lady and I’m glad that I could step in to care for her. I too, love the poem. It is a beautiful one.

      Best regards, ~yvonne

      • Midi B says:

        I just found your blog by accident and am sorry for your loss, Lady looked lovely. I too lost my collie a couple of years ago and I still miss her. She was so full of fun and mischievous but caring and lovely. I still remember taking her on holiday to a nearby island. There was this tiny little girl who so obviously wanted to pet my dog but she was shy and timid and Midi just did a little dance right up to her and sat so gentle and still and bowed her head and waited the little girl was so charmed she put her hand up and clapped my dog and her mother was so charmed by Midi but that was her she was so good natured except with beardie collies, who she had taken a dislike to. On the same holiday she saw a boxer for the first time the expression on her face was so funny it was like and what are you. She was semi-trained as a working dog and she was good at working close up but not so great over distance. I lost her 6 months after losing my dad (he had cancer) who was a shepherd and I still miss them both. It was a very hard time for our family. Sometimes I like to think they are together. But I enjoyed your poem Btw the photo I use for my email avatar is of Midi.

  6. Littlesundog says:

    I have loved and parted with many beloved dogs in my time. Each one was a gift… and a teacher in my life. Mostly, each was a companion offering unconditional love. No dog ever hurt me, betrayed me, or crushed my trust. I find them to be the best friends I’ve ever known… well, except for that one little deer I love!! 🙂

    • Thank you so much for the lovely comment. You wrote it all so well about dogs being a gift in our lives. They really are the best friend anyone can ever know. Just treat them with kindness and love and it will be returned in ways that one could have imagined. Yes, you are right about Daisy. She is a treasure to you and FD, all because of your wonderful mothering skills and devotion.

  7. shoreacres says:

    I’ve just been noticing that my Dixie Rose isn’t quite limping, but she’s a little tentative on her front legs. It takes her longer to get into the proper napping position! I move more slowly myself these days, and I think that’s all it is, since she’s not having any trouble jumping up onto her chairs or the bed. Still, time moves on, and sharing such poems gives those of us who have the experience of loss ahead of us a little practice in thinking about how we’ll cope — for our sake, and for the animals.

    • Linda, Dixie Rose most likely has some spinal problems such as spondylosis which is a medical term for spinal problems in cats, middle age or older. I have several cats with spinal problems and all are doing OK with the exception of one of my most favorite cats, Nellie.

      In the spring of this year, one day, Nellie could not get on the bed, was wobbly, weak and acted as if she had had a stroke. She was having difficulty standing up. I rushed her to my vet who took an x-ray of her spine and then he pointed to several of the lumbar (lower back) discs that were partially fused. He also pointed to several hard stool in the lower colon. He then said that he had seen this very thing in a few dogs that were dragging the rear legs and seemed to have had a stroke. I was very skeptical and had him take her BP which was fine. He prescribed lactulose by mouth which he said would resolve the problem. Additionally he suggested and enema and subcu fluids but I did not have a helper at that time of day.(I was too ill at the time with the afib thing to handle her solo) His techs gave her a warm water enema with some lactulose, subcu fluids and then I gave her Lactulose 1cc (ml) orally when I took her home. She went to the bathroom and expelled large amount of hard and soft stool and acted normal after that. I know this is long but this is FYI in the slim chance that your cat might get something similar. I probably should do a post about this.

      On an added note. Older cats are more prone to constipation and if you feed a high quality diet such as Royal Canin Fiber Response Intestinal diet she will likely never have a constipation problem.She only needs a small amount such as 1/3 cup added to her regular food. It is expensive but for one cat it will last a very long time. Instead of the cat food you can add a bit of plain pumpkin mixed in with some canned cat food that she likes. You need to start with a tiny bit and gradually add till you have enough that keeps her stool formed but not hard.

      Keeping Dixie fit with just minimal assistance will ensure her a much longer life. Save your pennies so that she can have a dental to prevent premature renal failure. I know that you love her very much and I hope you can enjoy her companionship well into her teens.

      I forgot to add that Nellie was 15 years old May 4th. She and her sister (litter mates, only two kittens) were hand raised by me and I love them so much. Nellie and Addie live in my bedroom. Both have had major health issues not just the constipation problem. They were diagnosed at Central Texas Veterinary Hospital in south Austin. I have dipped into my savings to keep them alive and had I not, neither one would be with me today, I feel very blessed by God who answered my prayers.


      • shoreacres says:

        Thanks for all the info, Yvonne. So far so good on the digestive system and all that. But I’ve made note of all your good advice.

        I also brought you this, which I just found today. It’s about a blind kitty who likes to hike with her owners. It’s such a wonderful, optimistic story — just the kind we like!

        • Linda, thank you for sending me the link to Honey Bee. I watched 3 of her videos. I would have taken her as a pet as well. Who could resist a sweet cat like her? She really is an inspiration and it’s nice to know those people are true cat lovers with more cats at home. I’ve made her link a favorite. Thanks again.


  8. This is lovely, Yvonne…thank you!

  9. What a gorgeous dame. Your son and Lady were lucky you could step in.

  10. sybil says:

    Oh gosh, 14 is a wonderful long life and a testament to the loving care that Lady received from you and your son. As I write this, two dogs and four cats are snoozing in the sun and quietly shedding drifts of fur onto my floor. I cannot imagine having clean floors any more than I can imagine a life without my companion animals …

    Damn poem made me cry ! 😉

    • Hi, Sybil. I understand crying when you read the poem. I shed some tears as well when I initially read the poem last year. It brings into reality having to face the death of a pet that we love so much. I cried last night as I read through it again and then looked at some of Lady’s pictures. Your four cats and two dogs have the some of the best care from anyone that I know. They are all look so happy and healthy. I hope they all live to a ripe old age. I know that you love them dearly.

  11. Lottie Nevin says:

    It is so sad when a much loved pet dies – how very lovely that you could take over the care of Lady at a time when she needed it most. This is a beautiful poem, thank you for sharing it with us, Yvonne xxxxx

    • Thanks, Lottie for sharing your thoughts. I liked this poem as well. I’ve had it in draft form for quite some time along with many other topics in draft. I put this one out since it did not take much of my energy. I reckon I need to learn to work on some of the drafts a bit at a time. 🙂 xxxxx

  12. Wendy Kate says:

    It hurts so much when we lose them. Our cat died in June of this year and I still cry for her. We still have her lovely brother with us though. I am glad you were able to give the love and care to Lady that she needed x

    • I’s so sorry that you lost one of your cats.I’m glad that you have her brother who gives you a continued connection to his sister. The grieving process seems to never end. I know from my own favorite pets that there seems to be a reminder of that special pet that we loved so much. Thanks so much for commenting, Wendy. x

  13. Great poem and how touching. Someone said once; the more I get to know people the more I like dogs,
    I would not go that far but for some it might well ring true.

    • Thanks, Gerard, You included this poem in one of your comments to me last year. I’ve save it for just the right dog. I so appreciate getting the poem from you. I’ve read that quote as well but at the moment I can’t think who had such good insight.I’ll need to look that quote up in Google.

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