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pet loss tribute

A Puppy Named Dakota

A Puppy Named Dakota
Author Rev. Dee Siat, Animall Clergy

In March, 1991 I opened up a new business in New York City a venture that I thought would be a life changing experience. Little did I know that my real life changing experience was due to arrive in August of 1991  sporting a fur coat and 4 legs. Who could have known that a  precious  puppy who wondered alone on a dirt road in North Carolina would change the lives of many.

Dakota was such a sweet soul, She became a workingdakota girl and was the meeter and greeter at our office. Her calm demeanor put a smile on the faces of our clients. The years flew by with my cherished companion and we shared nearly 15 years of an adventurous life together.

In late December 2005, I got up and found her looking sick and panting terribly. She was diagnosed with  Pancreatitis. Although this is a very painful disease I was told with medication and care she would recover.  Twelve hours later she looked into my eyes one final time and took her last breath at home.

I was in shock, disbelief and numb with pain. How did I not see that my baby was dying before my very eyes, how could the Vet not know?

In my endeavor to feel better I started scouring the internet for answers, anything that could help me feel better and help me cope with this extreme pain I was feeling. It was then that I realized that there was not much help for pet owners that were grieving the loss of their four-legged family member.

The Pet Industry is a 39 billion dollar industry and growing. We spend thousands of dollars over the years purchasing products and paying vet bills. We are encouraged through major advertising to think of our pets as family members.  I have discovered that many grieving pet owners do not have a good network of support in their private lives. Some people are apprehensive about expressing their grief to family members, friends or co workers  for fear of judgment. We leave the Vets office without our fur kids and when the door closes behind us, we are on our own.

I decided to do something about this void.  I became a Certified Pet Loss Grief Recovery Specialist and I designed and launched, a Pet Loss Comfort Community Online last year. We have had over 18,000 visitors to date and our support group has helped hundreds of people recover from the grief and loss of their pets in the US, Canada and England. We have many resources including a support group and forum. The concept is very simple, it is just people helping people.

Every time I receive an email Thanking us for our help and friendship I realize the wonderful gift of love my sweet Dakota gave me and so many others in life and now in her passing. Each day I am so very grateful to that shy little puppy who wondered off the road and into my heart where she will stay forever.


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