Ruby's Mum here. Our sweet red rock adventure girl left us yesterday for adventures in pastures new. It came out of the blue and was very quick, leaving us shocked, but grateful there was no long, drawn out suffering, and that we were both there with her. We think it was a heart attack.
Ruby left the way she lived, with no dilly dallying. The day before she had an acupuncture session, visited the staff of OfficeMax, then spent an hour fishing at the creek. She was the liveliest we've seen her in the water for a while.
She slept outside with me that night, and slept in for a little in the morning, both of us enjoying the cool morning breeze, until Dad came to take her for a walk at Long Canyon. In her usual way, she made friends with some Japanese girls walking the same path, and when she was ready, told Dad it was time to come home for breakfast. A couple of hours later, we heard her scream. She struggled for two breaths, and was gone.
Ruby touched more lives than any dog I've had. Just a couple of days ago I was walking with her in our neighborhood, when someone in a car that Ruby seemed to recognize, stopped to say hello. They of course greeted Ruby, not me, but as if she were a person. "Hello Ruby, how are you? I haven't seen you in a long time. You're looking good."
I had no idea who this person was or where they might have met Ruby. This happened on other occasions too, to the point that we thought maybe Ruby was leading a parallel life and meeting these people without us. The strangest one happened when we were on holiday in California a few years ago. Some people stopped us in the street and greeted Ruby by name. To this day, we have no recollection of meeting them anywhere before.
Emails and Facebook notes have been flooding in, and we are so very touched by the depth of feeling people have for our girl. She has been my constant companion and workmate for almost 11 years. Today was my first day giving a massage without her. I sorely missed her trotting out to the gate and giving the client their first greeting. This was clearly her job and she never liked to miss a session. Once the greeting part was done, and she had led the person to the studio, she would take her place on the kitchen floor and stay there until a few minutes before the end. She didn't like me running over time, and would let me know when she thought I should be done by getting up and stretching, and shaking her collar so the tags jingled.
Many a time I would reenter the room when the session was over and find the client down on the floor with Ruby, having a heart to heart. People connected with her on a very deep level. One of my friends, who never met Ruby in person, sums it up perfectly.
"All people and all creatures have their intrinsic worth, but some people, and especially some dogs have a special luminosity. I think Ruby Red girl was one of these special beings. And she seemed to have chosen you to communicate her love to the world and other human beings. I will miss your wonderful stories about her."
There are a few stories yet untold, and when the rawness of it all has subdued, I'll share them here, along with some more pictures.