I named her Heidi

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On a cold and snowy Saturday morning in December of 2008, I called my sister and convinced her to go with me to look at a female Golden Retriever mix dog named Rosie at the Grant County Animal Outreach Shelter in Moses Lake, Washington. My sister and I were from Ellensburg so we headed east later that day on I—90 to see this dog named Rosie. I noticed that she has been at this shelter for several weeks and I had called there previously two times to inquire about her. Yes, they still had her. Once my sister and I saw her my sister said to me “Let’s get her and go.” We drove back to Ellensburg on a very dark and snowy and icy I-90. I—90 was extremely icy that night.

Rosie’s name was soon changed to Heidi and two months later I got another Golden Retriever which I named Neisha. Neisha was a very active 12-week-old puppy and she loved playing with Heidi. The years up to last week were filled with love and happy memories. I later found out Heidi had been a stray that had wandered onto a farm in or near Marlin or Krupp, Washington. The people who brought Heidi to the shelter had her for about a month and could not keep her. The train passed through their property and they were concerned for the safety of their own dog and Heidi. Heidi loved to wander and explore. They understandably did not want their own dog or Heidi to be hit by a train.

I was going through a divorce when I got Heidi and rather than me rescuing Heidi, she rescued me. I had originally wanted a puppy; instead Heidi caught my eye after viewing many dogs on petfinder.com. No one knows her exact age, but I do know she did not like men as she hid or cowered when meeting them. She never bit them. My guess is she was dumped in or near Marlin or had wandered from a place she did not like.

Heidi survived cancer two times. She had breast cancer in 2010 and had a lump removed on her leg that was cancer a few years ago. Heidi’s hips and back legs were in very bad shape and she began to not eat as much for the last few months. One day last week I had to make the decision of not seeing her suffer any more. She had lost a lot of weight and not eating. I had many happy memories of Heidi. I know that God has a special place in heaven for her.

Please give an animal shelter or a rescue a chance before looking anywhere for a dog. There’s a puppy or a mature dog out there who would love to be rescued and to be given a second chance. I miss her more than words can express. Heidi is survived by Neisha and her little brother Tanner who is a Shih Tzu and who also is a rescue and my husband and I.

Lannett Ingraham

Lakewood, Washington

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