Sunny's Life Story and Life Mission


Emporer Sunshine In His Palace By The Sea


HERE IS THE WONDERFUL STORY OF SUNNY'S LIFE

 

 

SUNNY STARTED LIFE AS A MYSTERY BOY- HE WAS MOSTLY YELLOW LAB, BUT WITH A GIANT BREED IN HIS GENES, MOST LIKELY A GREAT DANE PARENT OR GRANDPARENT. HE WAS UNWANTED BY THE PEOPLE WHO SEARCH FOR DOGS UP TO 'BREEDING STANDARDS', AND, AS AN OVERLY LARGE PUPPY, THE DOMINANT OF HIS LITTER, WAS ALSO CONSIDERED BY MANY TO BE TOO 'COARSE' OR WILD OR DOMINEERING FOR MANY HOMES.

SINCE THE LARGER PUPS ARE THE VERY FIRST TO BE EUTHANIZED AT SHELTERS, DUE TO THEIR RELATIVE UNPOPULARITY, AND TO THEIR HIGHER UPKEEP, AND TO THEIR GREATER NEED FOR SPACE AND MORE FOOD, WHEN WE WANTED A DOG WE WANTED TO RESCUE ONE OF THOSE- SOMEONE ESPECIALLY IN NEED.

SUNNY CAME TO OUR ATTENTION, SINCE I VOLUNTEER FOR  WILDLIFE RESCUE, AND WAS DOUBLY EXCITING FOR ME BECAUSE I HAD MET ANOTHER DOG OF HIS TYPE EARLIER, WHO HAD SO CAPTIVATED ME, THAT I HAD HOPED THAT ONE DAY I COULD HAVE THE PLEASURE OF THE COMPANY OF SOMEONE LIKE HIM IN MY LIFE.

HERE IS THE STORY

Sunny he was the big guy of the litter and looked funny wading through the oceans of little mostly black siblings. he was several inches taller. one of two yellows in the bunch and a monster pup. i had wanted a white/yellow guy like the one, an older gentleman, whom i'd fallen under the spell of while searching for a female doggy i'd been feeding in a parking lot in a hellish part of the valley where the music studio i rehearsed in at the time was located- she'd been too wild to come to the car, but i'd gone faithfully to feed her every night of a horrible hot summer while she itched and miserably scratched both fleas and mange. she was just a sad, messed-up little doll- pregnant too, i feared. one night she hadn't shown up, so, i raced around all the stores in the shopping center- asking if the people who worked there had noticed her that day- no one had- and then i went on a shelter search the very next day for her- as hard as that would be.
i was so fixated on finding her- and knowing i'd be thrown out of my apt at the time for it, but i was going to get her no matter what- and met this big yellow/white ,lovely , older doggy with entrancing eyes, who had extended his paw out to me to shake, and had given me his soul.
i asked if he'd be there awhile, and was told he'd be there - he'd been there and they all liked him so much....and i spent the night tossing and deciding that yes, i'd take him instead or also,( if i could ever find the female homeless dog, the one i'd been feeding in the parking lot),even though the lease on the place i lived at the time specified 'no pets',-(  i knew i would be forced to move the moment i brought a pet home. how cruel the rental policies are that exclude pets from leases! after all, people who own pets are by far more responsible than other people, and pets are the number one health asset, so, by law, everyone should be allowed and even encouraged to have one at least!  and drove there first thing. i'd also left messages. i was there upon opening, waiting at the door at seven-thirty a.m.- a sacrifice for my latenight lifestyle at the time.
someone unlocked the door at last, from another staff, another shift- saying they had euthanized him at that dawn.
i was devastated, and had always vowed i'd one day rescue a guy like him when i could.
i should have grabbed that big white doggy at once, and will always regret that uncharacteristic hesitation. i had just steeled my mind toward that one goal of finding her- knowing how hard it would be to see so many lost souls, and not be able to save them, and was on that one mission for the doggy girl i had promised myself to.
the universe, as usual, had other plans for all of us.
some day i'd like to know why things turn out the way they do, and have a talk with the Almighty One..
anyway, so i heard of this little puppy guy who was in need of a home- too large to be wantable by a breeder, sort of half yellow lab, half great dane-floppy, yellow/white and huge, who was going to the shelter (i do animal rescue, and heard of his plight), and they'd put a last-ditch ad before sending him that another animal rescuer had seen and told me about - (the books all say not to get the biggest- they grow up to be 'coarse' - just what i like!!!!), and they had had such a big litter and no papers , and were awash in puppies- the blacks were wantable, though, but not the big guy- in fact, they'd already taken him to the shelter, and i'd called and they brought him back home for me- in the nick of time!), and that was my lil Sunshine.
he tripped around on his too-long legs with giant paws, all clumsy and adorable, and sat right next to me for no reason. i'd just arrived and sat on their stairs to talk to the owner lady, and he'd come out of the bunch to find me on his own. he just sat there, the nicest guy in the world, and was just WITH me. then easily and quietly left in my arms, no problem, no whimper, just as if he'd scripted his life out that way.
we were a perfect match- and he really did look like a pint-sized version of the guy i'd met earlier in that hellish shelter.
i had promised the love that older guy had wanted to this guy, and ended up giving him way more than even i thought i contained.
he enlarged my life, my soul, my joy, my being in every way.

following his entrancing babyhood and precious childhood, during which i was with Sunny every day and every night, and that included all the errands in the car- how handsome he was! everyone always drooled over him, and i was always afraid to leave him in the car for fear someone would steal him, 'cuz he was so beautiful. i called him my Velvet Boy, because he was so soft and glossy, and my Sugar Boy because he was so sweet.

i called him Gooby, short for Goober, when he misbehaved or did something outrageous, as he did once, when i had had to leave him home-probably the first time. i had left him with plenty of toys, water, his soft bed, (day bed, he slept with me at night), and when i returned, i found this one little puppy, sitting in the middle of the floor, looking so innocent and sweet that he thought i would blame the kitty-kats for what i had found- i still to this day cannot keep from swelling with pride over the fact that my one little puppy could single-handedly demolish an entire room, furniture and all, in the course of only twenty minutes. knowing he was only a baby, and that their little brains don't allow them to know right from wrong yet, i just laughed and videotaped the entire room, shredded belongings and all.

i knew even then, thankfully, that one day, the only reason i would ever have to even keep the furniture, or the books or the fabrics, would be that they bore the tiny teeth marks of my beloved little puppy in them. i now have a box of many of those objects, made precious only by their contact with him. at least we can console ourselves now with the fact that we, at least, had always had our priorities in order. as a Chinese fortune cookie strand we had gotten once read, 'the most important things in life are not things.'

on his first foray off the couch by himself, as a very little pup, instead of easing himself down, sliding, or calling for me, he looked out for a second and fearlessly flew off the couch in a gigantic leap, all fours to all four directions, like a little Marmaduke, and landed floppingly on the floor. we used to call him Floppy Dog, too, among the many loving nicknames he had for all his myriad aspects of personality. they are part of our vocabulary for good now, and when we say that we're 'Goobering out', we know that it refers to doing something completely silly and unsophisticated. when being "floppy', we're clumsy, and when being a 'blob', we're, like Sunny asleep, completely relaxed and about to fall off a couch or something- as Sunny often did when very asleep and dreaming- legs flailing and all.

as far as Labrador Retrivers being water dogs, i'm not sure, but i know that Sunny, perhaps in a Great Dane ancestor's footsteps, was initially afraid of water. he was very aloof about even a bath at first, but his first encounter with the ocean, soon after he was with us in his babyhood, was definitely telling in that he tried with all his little puppy might to save me from the mighty waves by gathering all his bravery and running out to grab the sleeve of my sweatshirt and drag me away from the dreaded body of water. i had given up coaxing him out with me, and had advanced into the ocean to let him know all was ok, but his troubled brows,- which had the cute habit of never being exactly even; one eye and brow working usually at odds with the other- were working overtime, and then he had suddenly darted in to save me from the sea! so cute !

eventually, on the second or third day at the beach, he understood that it was FUN and he catapulted himself full throttle into enjoying it from then on. being at the ocean was his greatest pleasure. and he was legendary for his long swims into the kept beds and his friendship with our own pod of dolphins, who used to dance and jump out of water whenever Sunny would come around, and they used to always follow his activity when he would be running on the beach- they and he shared that mystical bond that unites truly happy creatures. they exulted in his physical prowess and enjoyed watching his antics, as we enjoy watching theirs- and ,indeed, Sunny invariably drew an audience whenever he was surfing of delighted onlookers- of the people variety too!

our outings were exciting, not only because we were together, but because every time i'd have to tie his lead outside a store for a moment -with his water bowl- he'd draw a crowd of admirers, and loved performing for them- he just adored everyone- human or any other kind of animal- and i would always search out a shade tree for the car, so that my lil boy would be comfy on our rides around- sometimes i'd have to circle areas for fifteen minutes to wait for a shady spot! he was worth it- worth any extra trouble i ever went to.

 Sunny was like a shooting star.
actually, i used to just gaze at him instead of the tv at night, lying down across from me on the big, pushed together couches making into a huge bedtype thing in the living room, and he at me, and i'd just always say that he could only belong to an emporer or billionaire, and wonder at my luck in having such a beautiful ,sweet, fun dog. both of them together-Sunny and his three-month-younger brother, Thor, made a great match- dark and light, but so like twins in many ways, since they were raised together and were true bros.

whenever i'd have to go in somewhere and tie Sunny outside for a moment (rare- i was so afraid someone would steal him! but if i could see him, it'd be ok, if too hot in the car or i'd be too long) and i remember once when i had to go inside at kinko's, he drew a crowd, whining and just loudly complaining right at me through the glass, ever-opening door, that 'I WANT TO COME INSIDE WITH YOU!!!!!!', and everyone was amazed at his vigour, his strength, his size, his adamant way of commanding me. remember, he was the alpha dog! but at the same time being whiny and sweet, his two big paws curled in a little when sitting and straining to look sweet with his huge brown eyes with all his might, then the next second rearing up like a stallion (i was riding his back through the slick kitchen with sox on just ONE MONTH AGO!- he was my horsie boy too- i'm 5'61/2 or so and a hundred and five pounds, he was around 120 or 130 and so strong!)  , and being very stubborn in calling attention to himself. he had the whole store in a delighted uproar! one man questioned me about his breed, cuz he was so large for a lab, and was very impressed with him. i was proud too, cuz the guy so obviously knew dogs and was so taken with my Sunny, who was such a powerful personality. i was called out again and again by my Sunny's uproar to talk to him, and , since i'd been with him every moment of his life from early puppyhood on, he really did understand almost everything i'd say! we had certain phrases and i had certain words we'd converse in, in subjects concerning him, or interesting to him, (no long abstract philosophies- he had let me know these bored him!), and people were amazed how he and i actually conversed. his whiny, sing-song long drawnout sentences were really talking words. many i could understand.
just cuz they don't have the same voiceboxes, and structures in their throats, doesn't mean they don't talk , of course. they ALL do.
it's up to us to learn to understand their sometimes very patient and labored attempts to communicate with us( Sunny would often take a deep breath, and look me straight in the eye, seated, composed, and start vocalizing his wishes to me, and ,like in charades, i'd guess until his leaps and happy face would let me know i'd correctly guessed it! and then he was so proud of me cuz i had proven smarter than he'd expected and i was obviously learning! i know these were his training time for me- he was training me to learn HIS language!)

on his first foray off the couch by himself, as a very little pup, instead of easing himself down, sliding, or calling for me, he looked out for a second and fearlessly flew off the couch in a gigantic leap, all fours to all four directions, like a little Marmaduke, and landed floppingly on the floor. we used to call him Floppy Dog, too, among the many loving nicknames he had for all his myriad aspects of personality. they are part of our vocabulary for good now, and when we say that we're 'Goobering out', we know that it refers to doing something completely silly and unsophisticated. when being "floppy', we're clumsy, and when being a 'blob', we're, like Sunny asleep, completely relaxed and about to fall off a couch or something- as Sunny often did when very asleep and dreaming- legs flailing and all.



as far as Labrador Retrivers being water dogs, i'm not sure, but i know that Sunny, perhaps in a Great Dane ancestor's footsteps, was initially afraid of water. he was very aloof about even a bath at first, but his first encounter with the ocean, soon after he was with us in his babyhood, was definitely telling in that he tried with all his little puppy might to save me from the mighty waves by gathering all his bravery and running out to grab the sleeve of my sweatshirt and drag me away from the dreaded body of water. i had given up coaxing him out with me, and had advanced into the ocean to let him know all was ok, but his troubled brows,- which had the cute habit of never being exactly even; one eye and brow working usually at odds with the other- were working overtime, and then he had suddenly darted in to save me from the sea! so cute!

eventually, on the second or third day at the beach, he understood that it was FUN and he catapulted himself full throttle into enjoying it from then on. being at the ocean was his greatest pleasure

i'm lucky my life allowed me to have my Sunny with me all the time. i am saddened in reading about so many puppies who are left in those cages while their owners are at work. how horrible to be a puppy and be so confined! i am grateful that my Sunshine never ever had to be confined in one of those things, never had to go to a kennel, never had to be apart from me more than an hour or two, for his whole life. and even then, he was always at his own home, with his lil brother doggy for company.

that's another thing i'm grateful for- that Sunny had a brother doggy, Thor, and i feel sorry for anyone of any species who doesn't have another of his own kind to relate to as only a species of the same kind can.

another endearing and unique feature of my relationship with Sunny was that he was my Horsie Boy too! i used to ride him, literally, all around the house! he was so large and strong, due to the giant breed admixture, i guess, that he could riotously romp around with me on his back- all 110 pounds of me! i'd wear socks sometimes and just slide along the tiled floors astride his back at other times.

he adored riding on the comforters at bedtime, as the bed was being made, and loved being hauled around the house, fearlessly clinging on with his fingernails while his more timid little brother watched and followed along. this had started in babyhood, and he enjoyed it all the nights of his life.

we were a really happy family-  we made up a really joyously happycombination, close in every way, our own private universe, complete, our own
loving pack, and now the loss of the joyous cornerstone of it all has left us more than berift. we are all like mud without our shooting star.
nothing else seems to matter as much any more. i've just been.going through mindless motions, stiff with dread of the ever-dawning realitywhen i look around every corner and there is no white streak running towardme, when i sit down and there is no silky-soft warmpth rubbing against me,
when i look up and there are no melting huge brown eyes gazing into my soul. it hurts like a brass-knuckled fist in my ribs every moment i'm not deeply asleep, and dreaming of him, and then the inevitable awakening, and that pain returns.
i don't know if you're now or have ever been bonded with an innocent soul,
but anyway, it's far worse than other losses in life.

and as hard as the loss of Sunny is on we humans, i know it is far worse for his brother dog, Thor,his 3-month- younger,almost four years old
now, Sunny's shadow, a rottweiler mix boy.there's nothing sadder than a lone member of a species with no one to really talk to, rub up against, or be with and play rambunctious games. i always have at least two of any species in our family. it's the kindest thing to do. i thought we'd lose him due to his complete desolation on losing Sunny. Sunny had been his refuge- he'd even bathed him after meals like a cat.
every time Thor was frightened by a noise or whatever, he'd hide behind his Sunny,
and of course, the constant playing and communication an togetherness they experienced is irreplaceable.
we thought we'd all go for awhile, the depression is so deep- i keep telling Thor- 'we have to pretend to be happy, and then, one
day, we'll -just maybe- be happy again- '
i know it'll never be that total, complete, no-holds-barred happiness that
we'd known with Sunny, but it'll be something else.

the saddest times for me now are the mornings, when i have to wake up without him - no matter what went on in life, Sunny would remind me on every morning that all that mattered was that we were alive, and we were together, and therefore- to rejoice! we'd roll around the bed together giving each other 'sugar'- kisses and hugs, laughing- then, we'd stand up, jump around on the bed in our good morning dance and song, then everything i had dreaded or worried about had vanished- i would be drenched in the sunshine of Sunny's magical presence, and all was happy from that moment on!

i had to make big copies of the few photos i already have developed of Sunny to put in every room to fool myself into thinking he was there somehow- they really do make me smile, his
photos- especially the thrashing one- he was so marvelously happy whenever he was at the beach.
i am reminded when i see the shots that he really had a happy life, and that's the main thing that keeps me going these days.

i just love having the Gooby face all around me- (Sunny's naughty or silly nickname was Goober,remember?), and i have shots on either side of the computer, as well as elsewhere in every room. he used to come by at any time when i was on the computer and just buss me with his knothead and rub his side against me and recently he had tried to coax his big bulk underneath the table near my legs and feet, the way he'd done when he was little. i had stopped him, afraid he'd get stuck. i'd hire a medium if i could just be with him for another minute.

by the way, Sunny had been my dancing partner, too!with us and Thor, his lil bro, or alone with me- every time i'd try to work out,even, or when a groovy song would come on the tv, or radio, whatever, Sunny would get that excited expression on his sweet mug, start singing and run over to dance with me.
i miss so many things about him, but he was the constant JoyBoy for all fun times.

of course, when sirens scream by now, i miss the lovely harmonious chorus of Sunny wolf-howling with his brother, Thor- always taking the higher, more plaintive melodic line. i have to fill in for him these sad days, so Thor won't seem so alone in his wailing- his low tones are hollow without the Sunny Boy.

he had a natural ability to harmonize, to speak, and ,naturally, thus, to sing- and he adored belting out words and melodies with me, or on his own, when the mood struck, and he actually had written several songs- or the melodic lines for them- himself. i didn't really understand the lyrics, so i added some i thought he'd like, but he has authored several complete songs!

another name i had for him was My Seal Pup, because he had alwyas looked like one of those precious baby harp seals, with big, dark eyes. and, of course, his fur was so sleek and soft and  lovely, like theirs- and there is the swimming ability they had in common too.

Sunny My Sunshine   01252012


I am once again feeling that terrible guilt, that longing for you, for just another chance that I keep promising not to attach to your angelic memory.


Another clue, another remembrance llast night when pal mentioned the death of a beloved pet who'd lived, though, 15 years instead of a scant 4.


Information had merely slipped thorugh my mind, landing only months after you'd died.


Amid, still, grief for things, and life issues I could  barely sweep under the little rug you'd lie on under my computer in those days, you, Darling, kept me alive...


And you'd sneak up to our bed when your Daddy had gone to work, and i'd comfort you onto his pillow under the covers with me, and we'd both waken to joyous smiles, realizing we were close together and that nothing would ever part us.


So I had believed.


You, so strong, so beautiufl.


I'm so sorry, my Love. Forgive me from Heaven, please! For not knowing what to do!


God forgive me too!


forgive me!


and Keep my Sunny near me!



 and there was Sunny's great compassion- he would always walk over to me with love and concern whenever i was sad, those enomous, kind, beautiful deep brown eyes with natural eyeliner, full of concern - that i know he got me through the horrible pain of losing my father. i was able to cry on his shoulder any time, and to lie against his strong body for warmpth and comfort during the long grieving period. he was always, always there for me.

i so much wish he were with me now- it has truly been the very worst time in my life- worse even than losing Daddy. the reasons are obvious- i was responsible directly for Sunny's welfare, and i feel i should have known more about how to make him well again. even in all the books i owned and all the vets we'd been to for check-ups, etc., there had never been any mention of AIHA or IMHA and only marginal mentions of bloat or insect or snake bites, parasites, the deadliness of certain heartworm medications,etc and also because Sunny was entirely innocent and helpless and couldn't speak for himself, and , of course, he was so young! all those factors make us hurt even more than we would if he'd had all those capacities.

that's why this site was born, one month after Sunny had gone on to heaven, to help others help their doggies and themselves. frankly, i have never been closer to death myself, or even to suicide, than with the illness and loss of my Sunny- i know myself of several people who died after their dogs had died from grief, and i know of many more. it is imperative that more information become available to those who adore their dogs and other pets, and i sincerely hope this site helps many.

anyway, Sunny had an ideal life, if an all too brief, one, and he knew how very loved he was every day of his life. he was a part of our lives- a vital part- and he was a surfer, like we are, and lived most days at the beach, body-surfing, - and occasionally on a board- chasing sticks and frisbees, digging holes in the sand, running full-out for long distances, just like a racehorse, and his favorite- swimming far out to fetch sticks i'd throw for him, and surfing back in.

he was that rare, and too often taken for granted being- a completely nice guy. kind to all, friendly, effortlessly loving and trusting, and noble by nature. a daredevil who adored adventure, a hero, a caring dog with a compassionate heart.

 

following is a page of shots of the big guy who owns me and my heart and soul.
and will forever, my Sunny Boy.

Subpages (2): Pet Stories Sunny Photos
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