Happy 9th Birthday Carrie

Ch. Sunburst Acadia Here I Come, “Carrie”, is 9 years old today. This picture is of her with “her girl” Katie. I had always expected Carrie to live her entire life with me and Mike at Acadia- but one day a wonderful women, Susan Leddy, called and described Carrie to a T when she was describing the sheltie she hoped to find for herself. Even though Carrie was everything Susan wanted, Carrie never crossed my mind as a match because --- well, Carrie wasn’t available.

Susan was an older women who wanted an adult sheltie that was not too big. She wanted to do therapy work and wanted a calm and loving dog. Susan went on to mention many other traits that she wanted that Carrie possessed. I spoke with Susan many times on the phone until finally it dawned on me that she was describing Carrie. I asked Susan to meet me at a dog show and I would bring Carrie to see if they might have some “chemistry”. Susan came with her daughter, watched us show, and went back to my van to see Carrie. Susan sat down in a chair and I got Carrie out of the van- she immediately jumped into Susan’s lap! I told Susan that she couldn’t take Carrie that day. I was not ready yet, but that yes, I could see they did have chemistry. (I had a few great pictures of these two, but the memory stick crashed and they were lost)

The two lived together for only a little over a year before Susan succumbed to cancer. I know that Carrie was the best therapy dog for Susan, even if she never completed the formal training to be certified for this type of work.

Of course my contract always says the dog is to come back to me if for any reason you can no longer keep the dog, but in this case, Susan’s daughter asked if she could have Carrie. They have told me that having Carrie has made the passing of their mother a little easier, so again, she has proven that yes, she is a therapy dog.

Although I miss Carrie, I love to touch the lives of other people and families in ways that humans are not usually able. Dogs are the best, and I love to share my love with other people.
Happy Birthday Carrie.

Acadia Shelties  – (September 4, 2008 at 7:20:00 AM PDT)  

I read the message you wrote on your webpage about Carrie and my mom. It was very sweet; thank you for such a great story! While I'm not "the daughter" described twice in the article, I am Susan Leddy's other daughter and Carrie has deeply touched my life too.
Professionally, as a vet, Carrie has unfortunately been one of my most challenging patients. When Carrie caught Leptospirosis, it took all of my medical knowledge and all of the care at my clinic and the emergency center to keep her alive. There were several times I was not sure if she was going to survive. But thankfully she has a strong spirit and she did great!
Carrie showed her strong and gentle spirit again when mom became sick; Carrie would not leave her side. Carrie kept a constant vigil and provided a lot of comfort to mom and everyone else around. After mom died, Carrie was heartbroken but she toughed it out to provide comfort to everyone else. She probably walked for miles with me that first week when I needed to "get away".
Since then, Carrie has moved in with my sister; and Carrie and "her kid" Katie are best friends. Carrie has played twister (or at least tried), gone sledding on her back (having a wonderful time), saved the house from multiple vicious dust bunnies, and chased countless squeeky toys. I also sometimes take her to work with me where she has provided a dignified yet easily approachable presence for coworkers and clients alike. While not formally completely trained, she has definitely been a therapy dog for my family and many of the people I work with. Carrie got a cake (designed for dogs) on her birthday. She earned it. Happy Birthday Carrie.
- Debbie

susanskid  – (September 10, 2008 at 10:24:00 AM PDT)  

I remember the first day I met Carrie...I went with my mom to that dog show to keep her from getting a dog! I thought that it might be too much for her, but my mom really thought you had the dog for her...so off we went. By the time I met Carrie I was ready to bring her home too, they had a connection. When my mom died I thought I would never be able to go on...I remember lying in her bed and crying...I also remember Carrie coming over and sitting next to me and not budging...at that moment I knew that I wanted to bring her home w/us...it was like keeping some of my mom. I truely believe that having Carrie with us has healed our souls in a way that wouldn't have been possible otherwise, she made us smile again. She makes our neighbors smile too! The second I take her out for a walk I have 14 children yelling "carrie!" and running over to pet her. She truely is my daughters best buddy...she guards her at all times, especially against crazy squirrels :) I thank you with all my heart for finding it in yours to let us keep Carrie in our lives.

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