Loss and Love


Hey lovelies,

Those of you who have been reading my blog for awhile may remember the adventures our family had while living in Arizona. During the 6 months we lived off-grid we continually rescued animals. The area we lived had an abnormal amount of animals in need. At one point we had 2 cats, 2 rabbits, and nine rescue dogs plus our original family dog, Nestle a.k.a. Mr. Ruffkins.

When I decided to go back to British Columbia, I had re-homed some of the animals but still had 6 dogs, 1 cat, and 2 rabbits. Three of the dogs (Lightening, Shakti, and Diamond) we rescued when they were just 4-weeks old. There were originally four of them, but we had already found Gracie a home.

Their introduction to life was rough. Whoever owned their mother must not have been prepared to have puppies and didn’t want to deal with the hassle of surrendering the puppies. Instead, they chose to throw them into a dumpster as if those four beautiful, tiny blue heeler cross puppies were nothing more than garbage.

Raising four little girl puppies was no easy task, but it was well worth the effort. When I crossed the border, I had my children plus all of these animals in my van. I was pretty stressed about what might happen when I hit the border, but lady luck was on my side and we crossed without any issues.

I found homes for all o the animals except Nestle and Diamond. Diamond was my daughter’s dog. She was a fiercely loyal and protective best friend to my daughter and deeply loved by our entire family. Unfortunately, about 8 weeks ago, Diamond became incredibly ill. Our vet missed the underlying cause of her illness, which was a pyometra uterus.

We spent a few thousand dollars in an attempt to save her. Her surgery went well, but 4 weeks later, she died due to surgical complications. I have lost a lot of pets and a lot of loved ones in my short life. Losing Diamond and having to watch my daughter lose her best friend was devastating.

Diamond spent every moment she could following my girl around, playing with her, comforting her, and fetching anything she could talk my daughter into throwing for her. We had her cremated so that we could release her ashes into the creek that borders our property. It is not only Diamond’s favorite place to be, it is also where she attempted to go to die when she knew it was her time.

Generally speaking, when one experiences a loss of this magnitude, it is advisable to wait for an undetermined amount of time to grieve before attempting to establish another bond. In this case, however, I knew Diamond would not want her girl to be alone, so my husband and I immediately began searching for a puppy.

I drove my daughter to a tiny town in rural Iowa to meet a batch of CollieAustraliann Shepherd cross puppies. When we arrived at the farm, the puppies came rushing towards us. All but one, that is. A tiny blond puppy held back for a moment, then walked around her siblings and sat down just out of reach of my daughter.

We both immediately knew she was the one. We waited for her to grow and spend a bit more time with her mamma, then my hubby drove our daughter back to pick her up. There have still been moments of sadness of course. Grief is a strange beast. A beast who hides in dark corners or your mind and heart waiting to rear its ugly head. But we are happily exhausted from chasing after this tiny ball of fur, River.

Life is not the same without our Diamond girl. But life goes on. Sorry to bring you down and then pick you up, but life is what life is. Sometimes I avoid writing if I don’t have something 100% relevant to talk about, but I miss writing, so I decided to just share what comes to mind.

The first picture is Diamond with her favorite rope and the second one is River on my lap last night. I hope you’re having a beautiful day!

From my heart to yours,






6 Comments Add yours

  1. Kevin says:

    Joy – I am so sorry for your and your family’s loss. Pet bonds can be very strong due to their unconditional love. I can relate to your pain. I had to put my little buddy to sleep last weekend. He passed peacefully in my lap. With love – Kevin

    1. Joy says:

      Kevin, I am also so sorry to hear of your loss. In the end we also had to choose to release Diamond from her body. She laid her head between us all and was surrounded with love as she passed.

      My heart is mending and I am sending love to your heart so that yours may mend as well.

      From my heart to yours,


  2. Bare Beach Bum says:

    I am so sorry to hear about your loss. I know that feeling of having to put one down, but there is no doubt that you had the best veterinary care there. I still remember putting down my childhood pet.

    1. Joy says:

      It is such an intense experience…

  3. jeffstroud says:

    Bitter sweet yet sweet non-the less! ((Hugs))

    1. Joy says:


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