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Rainbow Bridge

Rainbow Bridge

This is a place for people to post tributes to their furry loved ones who have crossed over. Also, we have some great links at the bottom to comfort and honor you and your friends. If you would like to send a tribute to your companion, please email it here.


We adopted Pal from Rudy's Rescue in early January, 2008. He was a Mississippi boy, probably 2 years old, with a tremendous sweetness to him--and a unique feature, a tale that went around and around when he was especially happy. Maybe that came from his being a "lab mix"--and we never knew what the non-lab portion was. We kept his name, Pal, because it fit him so well. He loved my husband and me as well as our large extended family, including adult children, elderly parents, and young grandchildren. He was a great "leaner", and gentle with the old and very young. But he also enjoyed rough-housing with our three granddogs, all of them rescues. He brought tremendous joy to my husband and me as we entered our "empty nest" years, while making sure that we didn't stay too long at work--because we needed to be home for the dog! Pal and I walked around our neighborhood daily, with both of us making new friends, human and canine, and the added benefit of keeping us both in shape. We lost Pal to kidney disease today, but will always be grateful to Rudy's Rescue and his foster family for bringing us together with him.


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I had been a cat person for 32 years. Thanksgiving night 2006 I found myself on Rudy’s Rescue webpage. I saw this beautiful black puppy laying on a couch with a cat, to me, she looked fragile and lonely. What to heck I thought, I’ll apply for adoption and see what happens. Two days later the Foster Parents brought little Bella to my house. A skinny, long legged, trembling little girl with her tail between her legs came out of the car. I looked in her eyes and fell in love, we needed each other. A few hours later I was a proud dog owner.

Bella was an anxious and nervous girl, how could I make her feel at home with me? I sat in the rocking chair with Bella in my arms and just rocked; she would calm down and came to trust me. Long walks in the neighborhood and parks gave her plenty to explore. Shortly after her arrival I had the backyard fenced and she had her domain. There was a big willow stump in the back which she would sit or lie on, her regal posture made her look like the Queen of the Neighborhood.

We had 11 years and 7 months together, the best years of my life! Bella’s ears and facial expressions were priceless. We came to know each other so well that I could look at her and she would know if it was walk time, nap time, or cookie time – the ears would fly up immediately. She did this little happy dance when I gave her the look to go for a walk, kind of stomped her feet and wiggled her butt at the same time, it always made me laugh. I worked from home, for ten years I spent every day with my sweet Bella. On July 5 at 12:07 PM Bella crossed over, my world has not been the same.

My world was Bella. How many minutes a day did I spend rubbing her belly, sitting on the couch with her, or walking? The rhythm of my world involved whatever Bella needed or wanted. In return she loved me every day, almost knocked me to the ground when I would travel and return home so delighted to see me, and brought joy to my heart every single day. Of all life’s blessing Bella was by far the greatest. I miss her, will mourn her and heal in time. My last words to her were, “I love you more than the moon and the stars Bella. You come back to me, or send me another dog to love when you know the time is right”.

Thank you Rudy’s Rescue for Beautiful Bella that you brought to my life!



When I saw Bear’s picture on Rudy’s Rescue in 2007, he called my name. Our Bear came to live with us shortly later in July. He was a very energetic and handsome guy who also brought some fears as a result of early experiences. It took a while, but he became the most trusting and loving dog so typical of a Lab. He enjoyed swimming, running with my husband, sharing a home with our cat, Shea, and most recently making snow angels. In August, he suddenly became ill and ended up having his spleen removed. Then in October, he had another major surgery because of bloat. In both cases, our vet, Dr. Frank Capella, commented on what a strong and healthy dog he was. He recovered so quickly from both surgeries. However, in January, we began to notice a lack of energy. On the 23rd, we brought him to Frank for some testing. The next day, we got the bad news. Unfortunately, it was clear some cancer cells had spread from the spleen surgery and he probably only had weeks. On February 7th, we had to make that heartbreaking decision. He left us surrounded by his family including our daughter, Kelly and her dog, Sophie (a great friend of Bear), and our son who came home from Chicago to say goodbye.

Our “older gentleman” will be deeply missed, but we are so grateful for the years with him. Bear brought such joy into our lives and afforded us with many laugh-filled moments. I am glad we were able to have him find a home filled with love to overcome those early experiences. He thanked us by giving us 9 great years of love.

Thank you, Rudy’s Rescue for saving Bear.
The OBrienFamily

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On December 30, 2016 with broken hearts we had to say goodbye to our sweet dog Trixie, who we adopted from Rudy’s Rescue nearly 10 years ago.  When she came to live with us, she was extremely skittish and scared, but over time she developed into this sweet, cuddly, amazing dog.  When our son was born 4 years ago, she because such a little mommy to him making sure she was always right by his side or always in the same room as him. The dog who was once extremely scared and timid, soon became a dog who would allow a toddler to climb all over her, and be his pillow.  Right after Christmas, she was diagnosed with multiple lung tumors.  While this came super unexpected for us, we are glad that it wasn’t a slow declining progression of her health.

Trixie, we are incredibly heart broken you have left our family, but you will always remain a part of our hearts and lives. Your brother Wyatt is welcoming you to the rainbow bridge and I am sure the two of you will be running free watching over our family. Thank you for being such a special part of our hearts and you will always be our “Diva Dog.” 

Greg, Jamie and Blake B


Many years ago I met someone from Rudy's Rescue .That is where My Ruger came into my life. He was 3 and wild, hyper, full of energy. I was a single mom and Ruger quickly became a instant member of our family. He got me through cancer - twice. Personal hardships were many but Ruger got us through them. I want to thank you for letting us love him. Sadly yesterday (December 3, 2016) at the old age of 13 he crossed over the rainbow bridge. I just really needed you to know how much he did for me. He had a wonderful life with a huge yard; slept every night with me. He was my everything. Even though our hearts are broken we are better people to have had Ruger in our lives. Thank you for what you all do!

Anne S

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Cindy Lu

I wanted to let everyone at Rudy's Rescue know about the passing away of Cindy Lu. I adopted Cindy on 3-16-09, she was 9 years old at the time. I wanted share with you what a wonderful dog she was and that she was loved until she passed away at age 14 on 11-23-13.  She was a wonderful companion to me and my two other labs and I will never regret adopting an older dog that still had a lot of love to give.

Thanks for the wonderful work that you do and I am forever grateful to have had her in my life.

Erin M.


We adopted Miss Maggie a beautiful 8 year old lab on Sept. 16, 2006 from Rudy's Rescue.  It was her birthday the day we signed the papers and we didn't even know it till then.  Sadly she passed away on Tuesday, July, 10th, 2012.  She was our only dog and we spoiled her and loved her so much.  My family takes comfort in knowing that we gave her an awesome forever home.

Thank you,

Kerry H & Family

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I just wanted to drop a line to let you know that I adopted Maggie from you five years ago.  She was the most wonderful dog I have ever had and we had the time of our lives for the past five years.  Maggie was a super happy dog and loved life to the fullest. She was never a problem dog and I could not have asked for a better companion.  Up until the last week of her life, she acted like a four year old puppy.  Unfortunately, she took sick quickly, and upon an exploratory surgery, my vet found she had an intestine obstructed by a tumor and did an intestine resection. She also had a tumor on her spleen and the spleen was removed.  And unfortunately she was full of lymphoma which had spread through out her body.  To know her, you would never have had an indication that all this was going on.  She survived the surgery come one for one more night to be with me and her sisters. She took for the worse, and at the vets, it was decided that with the multiple organ failure it was best to not allow her to suffer and send her over the Rainbow Bridge.  I was with her until the end and even then, the tail gave one last thump as she licked my hand while I held her. She was a gift that I appreciated every day of her life and though I know I will continue to have dogs in my life, I doubt there will ever be one that will even come close to what she was.
Thank you for allowing me to adopt her so long ago and have the privilege of sharing her life. Maggie passed on May 22, 2012
- Katherine S


Friends, it was with deep sadness and tears that we said goodbye to Rosie, my sweet, wonderful dog,  who I adopted from Rudy’s Rescue in May of 2009.  When she came to live here, she was so frightened at first but over time she really bloomed.    She loved to walk and we did a lot of that.  My friend Bill has three dogs and he and I would meet in the mornings to walk and she loved the company of the other dogs.  She also loved horses and I would bring mine to the field by my home to groom.  Rosie was diagnosed with a tumor in July and over the next months, things were then not so good.  I knew recently that it was time to say goodbye and it was devastating.   She earned and deserved a longer happy life but I am grateful for having known her and loved her.  
Rosie, your journey is complete.   You will always be a part of me and this land.  Thank you for letting us know such a special animal and for occasionally letting us think we were in charge.  Your new journey has begun...
Your mom

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Ben was such a wonderful and unexpected gift and blessing in our lives.  We grieve his loss and our hearts are broken.  Rest peacefully, dear friend, until we meet again.

Howard & Phyllis Beemer

Gentle Ben

They say memories are golden
well maybe that is true.
I never wanted memories,
I only wanted you.

A million times I needed you,
a million times I cried.
If love alone could have saved you
you never would have died.

In life I loved you dearly,
In death I love you still.
In my heart you hold a place
no one could ever fill.

If tears could build a stairway
and heartache make a lane,
I'd walk the path to heaven
and bring you back again.

Our family chain is broken,
and nothing seems the same.
But as God calls us one by one,
the chain will link again.

-Author unknown


Smokey was the loving pet of 4 very lucky children. We think she was the perfect dog; Smokey was our beautiful white lab and we were so blessed to have her for 3 1/2 years. We remember when she first arrived, and she was so full of life and so full of smiles, and so grateful to be a part of our family. We didn't care that she was old--we called her our Old Granny and we were thankful that we got to enjoy her in her old age. We loved our daily walks with Smokey, and we miss that SO MUCH. We like to think that she is in dog heaven and that her body is young again and she is free of pain. We miss her every time we walk in the door and she isn't there waiting for us; we miss her every time we go outside and she isn't at our side; we miss seeing her big furry body laying in the middle of rug; we miss yelling "Hey Girl!" and seeing her smiling face. We all feel an empty space because Smokey is gone. We are sure she is the loving pet to our family in heaven.

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APRIL 14, 1994 - MAY 29, 2009

Our hearts are broken.

Phyllis & Howard Beemer

God's Garden
God looked around his garden and found an empty place,
He then looked down upon the earth and saw your tired face.
He put his arms around you and lifted you to rest.
God's garden must be beautiful he always takes the best.
He knew that you were suffering, he knew you were in pain.
He knew that you would never get well on earth again.
He saw the road was getting rough and the hills were hard to climb.
So he closed your weary eyelids and whispered, 'Peace be Thine'.
It broke our hearts to lose you but you didn't go alone,
For part of us went with you the day God called you home.


Gunsmoke's day began with a pre-dawn stroll around the house, followed by his favorite meal of tuna fish, 2% milk warmed up for 10 seconds in the microwave, and a tiny squirt of whip cream. He then washed it all down with a drink from my bathroom sink faucet, a pleasure he only recently discovered.

Happy to return to his room with his buddy Floyd, he spent the next several hours sleeping on his heating pad that was strategically placed to be in the sunshine streaming through the windows. A light lunch of beef baby food was eventually slurped down, only to be followed with yet another catnap.
As the day wore on, he seemed to be less willing and able to rise. I tried my hardest to stop checking his breathing every few minutes to just let him rest in peace. I must have kissed his bony little head a hundred times today though. Poor guy probably got very little quality sleep.
The vet arrived around 3PM, as expected. My final prayer for Gunsmoke was that he have a peaceful and pain-free passing.......and so it was. I truly doubt he would have lived through the weekend, so it only seemed right to finally send him on his way before any unending pain set in.
I can't believe I'll never again hear him purring in my ear letting me know that it's time to get up and to feed never again hear him racing down the hallway after he visited the litter box and left feeling "lighter" never again have to share the heating pad with him. The era of Gunsmoke was far too brief in our household. It will never be the same around here without him, but we're SOOO glad that we were adopted by such a loving old gentleman.
In honor of the wonderful friend that he was to us, when dinnertime arrived, I ate a tuna fish sandwich, washed it down with a glass of 2% milk warmed up for 10 seconds in the microwave, and then enjoyed a dollop of whip cream for dessert.
I hope Heaven smells like tuna for you Gunny and that your ears no longer are filled with that nasty brown gunk you were forever plagued with. Eat like a furry piggy now and enjoy chasing the birds that you could only enjoy watching through the windows. Play nice though!
And please - give Dutchess, Marvin, Clifford, Ernie, and Cody a HUUUUUGE hug and kiss from their Mom and Dad who still miss them dearly. We love you Gunny. You made every day we spent with you a special one.
Hugs and tuna-breath kisses........Your heartbroken Mom

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We lost our beautiful Honey on Saturday, December 20, 2008 from cancer. Honey was the ambassador of golden retrievers - soft, loving, and obedient - a true golden angel. She is in our hearts always.

Here is my homage to Honey:

She had the brightest eyes I had ever seen, And wore a beautiful fur coat that would out shine a queen. She was never prissy but walked with an aire...... And oh so polite, you could take her most anywhere. Her tail was so long it touched the ground. Every bone that she buried, she always found. She could run like the wind and beat anyone she chased. She was truly a princess – with a gorgeous white face. But your bed is now empty, where your pretty head laid. Oh how we wish you could have stayed. You could not find a golden nearly so dear. Sweet Honey-buns, you will always have a special place in our hearts, ever near.

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He was a great fella who was taken too soon.

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Rudy's Rescue fondly remembers Claire, who crossed the bridge. She was in our foster care for only a day after a rough life. But that one day was a blessing to us and we hope it was a blessing to her as well.


Jade has crossed the bridge, but she had love and care at the end while she was being fostered in a quiet and loving home during her heartworm treatment. Many of our dogs come in testing heartworm positive. Please help donate to help us treat dogs with heartworm and to help get the word out that it is so important to use heartworm preventative on dogs.

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Sweet, sweet Abby was so special that even if our time with her was cut short so suddenly and unexpectedly... we would do it all over again. She was worth this heartache... she was like a one in a million dog. We called her our little black seal because she made the funniest little grunting noises, sounded just like a seal! She loved to be loved, too. She soaked it all in, she'd even push her nose up through your arm to get more petting. These are the memories that we will have in our hearts, for the rest of our short a period of time, and yet so incredibly rich. I stepped outside late last night, and just looked up at the heavens. The stars were out. I looked up and through tears thanked the God of the universe, for giving Abby to us. I thanked Him for his wisdom in connecting her to us, and us to her, a time when we both needed each other! I thanked Him for the privilege of letting us be the ones who would love her right up to the threshold of the Rainbow Bridge. I asked him to please help me to be grateful for the time that we did have with her, and not be sad or bitter for the time we did not. Only God can heal this pain! I know that the earth is the Lord's and the fullness thereof. That included Abby. And God is God. Still, I asked him,... if it be His will,....that someday we could embrace her once more, feel her soft velvety fur in our hands,...hear her gentle little grunts of happiness and contentment, hold her once again. That we had the chance to know her, to love her, is something that we would not trade for anything. And,... as I suppose we humans always do,. we wonder if we could ever love another dog, as much as we love her. Sadly, there are so many in need. Somehow, it seems to be these orphaned ones,... ~the ones who bear the roughest brunts in life, that wrap themselves so strongly into the depths of our hearts and souls. Rest in peace sweet Abigail. Run and play and swim to your heart's content. And, watch for us,... as we will one day look for you. For God is your creator and ours too. Thank you for being yourself,... so unique and so beautiful inside and out. We love you and miss you, dearly. "But I have trusted in thy mercy: my heart shall rejoice in thy salvation. I will sing unto the Lord, because he hath dealt bountifully with me." Psalm 13: 5,6
All our Love, Wendy, Paul, and Bear 3-28


Rudy's Rescue pays tribute to Moe (Moses) who crossed the bridge to the land of milkbone and honey. Moe was taken from a neglect case in Syracuse and found a few wonderful months with his people before he became very ill. He was the sweetest dearest friend to anyone and everyone who knew him. His people went to great lengths to treat his fungal infection, and Moe hung in there till the end. Despite his illness, he had plenty love to give. Moe, we are so sad that you are gone, but grateful you touched our lives.

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Gwendolyn was not a rescue with a sad past. She was born and raised at OtterTail Farm and greatly loved from the very beginning. She was the only daughter in my 4th generation litter among 4 beautiful black boys and was the mom of my 5th and last generation of the original OtterTail Labradors.

She was always eager to please and do well and I admit to abusing that privledge when I entered her in obedience trials before she had ever done figure 8's around 2 live people or stand for exam for a stranger. She placed 2nd and 1st on her first 2 legs, then told me I was taking her for granted on the 3rd try. I knew she was right. We took a break to gain more experience and she finished her CD nicely on the 4th trial. She was a joy to take anywhere because she always knew exactly how to act and never put a paw wrong.

Just like her mother Gwen never went anywhere without at least 2 nylabones in her mouth. She preferred 3 and she could do "un-assisted" quads as well. When she stopped greeting me with bones in the morning I knew something was wrong. It was so sad for me to watch her symptoms progress; symptoms that the vet concluded were caused by a brain tumor. All the while she maintained her happy and good-natured spirit. Run and play with your OtterTail buddies in heaven, my sweet Gwendolyn. We miss you here at home.


Thank you to J for taking Hammer when no one else would. Hammer, as you remember was a sweet old boy who was left behind when his owner sold the house. The new owner decided that Hammer did not fit with their family and off Hammer went to rescue.

Here is his listing in Petfinder.

Recently Hammer was feeling sick, J took him to the vet and they said he was fine. He left for the bridge on Sunday. It is nice to know that Hammer left us while he was enjoying over 10 acres at J's wonderful home. He was happy and loved in the end. What more could a dog ask for?

Thank you J for giving Hammer a place to rest his head and his heart in his last days. I know it is painful for all when we loose a loved one. Please find some comfort in knowing they are free from pain now, waiting for you to cross the bridge with them

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I decided instead of dwelling on how hard it was to say goodbye - I'd remember the good times --- so here's what I wrote when you first came to me, or actually you must have written this when I wasn't looking :)

"Hi! My foster mommy is taking care of the new foster at the house, so I figure I'll sneak on here and tell you how I'm doing...I love to give my human brother kisses and he likes cuddling with me. My foster mom takes me to lots of cool places and I meet all sorts of people and dogs. I love to come right up to people and gently nudge their hand or elbow so they can give me some scritching and attention. They can't believe how old I am...I still have a lot of pup spunk in me. Every now and then I like to leap for joy, especially when my foster brothers are playing. I just have to join in and play with them too. We take walks in the hay fields behind the house and I looove to roll around and get all scritched, it feels so nice! My mom will sometimes sing 'Leapin' Lizards!!!' to me when she walks me and then I leap all around, not because her voice is strange, just 'cause I'm so happy to be alive. Anyways, I would love to give you some cuddles, snuggles, and leaps too, even if you don't sing for me. Just give me a warm safe place and I'll be happy! "

Well Trixie girl, I know we'll be singing and leaping again someday... - Poems about our pals who have crossed over
DogStar - This is a neat site to 'put your dog in the stars'
The Rainbow Bridge Poem