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carol j. phipps | all galleries >> Galleries >> My Favorites of 2005 > Unspoken Grief of Pets.
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Unspoken Grief of Pets.

This is Jenny, the long-time pet of a friend whom has
a terminal illness; she was sent home from the hospital last evening;
"nothing more we can do," doctors said.
Today while sitting with my friend a couple of hours, her dog snuggled into my side.
Whenever I moved, the dog came with me. As I prepared to leave,
hugged and kissed patient and other friends in the room,
Jenny came and stood in front of me blocking my passage out of the room.
Her eyes told me she was grieving and needed some comfort.
Although I'm a chaplain, I've never consciously comforted a pet before.
Today I felt like this dog was "asking me for help."
Strange? Maybe.
Still, I knelt down and
held the dog's face in one hand and
placed my other hand on top of her head. Speaking softly,
I said something like,
"it's difficult, this grieving, isnt' it?
You're suffering, too, I know."
All the while Jenny, the dog, never moved her eyes from mine;
her eyes were moist and serious.
"Trust in your Creator, ok," I found myself saying.
"God loves you; this is uncharted territory for you, I know."

I continued to speak softly and directly to my friend's pet while the
others in the room talked softly. I marveled, realizing I
hadn't often given much thought to the grief of pets. After
a few more strokes to her head, I got up to leave.
Jenny turned, walked to the other side of the bed and
prepared to sit with her owner.

other sizes: small medium original auto
larose forest photos24-May-2010 02:22
Fantastic story Carol, and very, very moving. Pets do indeed feel grief, I know that first hand. Thank you for sharing this remarkable story. HUGE VOTE
Pic Chick27-May-2006 06:13
Wow, I have tears in my eyes reading this. Nicely done, and very true...
De'Carr Studio12-May-2006 02:17
A very touching portrait. I can see the sadness in her eyes. Vote
Buz Kiefer21-Dec-2005 13:02
Beautiful shot Carol; you've captured some of the story in her eyes. It's a wonderful story and I don't find it strange at all.
Gayle P. Clement20-Dec-2005 02:15
Very touching story.
Karen Stuebing19-Dec-2005 11:36
Oh, this story and photo brought tears to my eyes. I truly believe our pets will be with us in heaven. I can't imagine one without them.
Graham Tomlin18-Dec-2005 14:17
bless you ,its touched a note with me .lovely photo.regards Helen
Renee Lockett18-Dec-2005 13:20
Dear Carol, I hope this photo, and your essay touch the hearts of many. It sure touched mine. My heart aches for little Jenny, and the grief she is facing. Thank you for the comfort you gave her.
joanteno18-Dec-2005 09:47
You are absolutely right. Dogs are very intuitive to what going on. It not uncommon for two dogs raised together to "greive" the loss of their companion. Wonderful essay.
Guest 18-Dec-2005 07:38
Beautiful tribute to a devoted grieving pet.
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