Comforting words inspire Shamrock Fund

From Shamrock there is Sydney, Lena, Heidi, McGinnis, Tucker, Murphy and Scruffy, Kizzy and Charlie. They are just a handful of the names of dear pets whose stories have been shared as all of you have offered words of empathy and comfort on the passing of our beloved dog Shamrock. Our gratitude reaches wide across the Central New York region, to friends in other states and to displaced CNY'ers who stay in touch through this blog. There's Gunnie, Bogey, Samantha, Michael, Spooky, Rudy Roo, and Peaches. You fully understand the joy and heartache of having a pet as part of your family as part of your home.

You have told Jamie and me to cherish the memories of Shamrock. You advised us to remember the jingle of his collar, the warmth of his coat on the couch and the way he was there waiting for us to come home. You have suggested we be patient in deciding when or if another dog should enter our home knowing a new pet could never replace Shamrock, but might carve out his or her own niche in our lives. You have shared your stories of struggling to decide whether it was time to put your dog down or the suffering you felt when the end came unexpectedly.

You told us about Misty, Barney, Ginger and Christy. There was Whiskey, Spike, Quincy and Dottie. You told us what a special place your dogs and cats have had in your life. You have shared The Rainbow Bridge poem. You have pointed us to "Marley and Me" and "Rescuing Sprite." You have let us know ten times over we are not alone in the tears that come from nowhere when a moment arises where Shamrock used to be.

Your stories have provided inspiration for an idea Jamie began cultivating some time ago to help other pet lovers who are in need. In its early stages we are calling it the Shamrock Fund. In the memory of our treasured friend we will raise money to provide financial support to other pet owners who cannot afford the veterinary care our dogs and cats inevitably require. The first event for the Shamrock Fund will fall in the time around Shamrock's birthday which was St. Patrick's Day.

It seems only fitting that this community of animal lovers have a way to help each other before end of life decisions arise. Shamrock had a fighting spirit, a tenacious will and a big heart. We hope the Shamrock Fund will share those qualities and one day help the Scruffies, Misties and Whiskeys who have such a wonderful place in our lives.

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