In the last month I had the honor of assisting a dog through her transition. We met for the first time over the phone late in September, when her people had begun to feel that her time in this body was winding down. They sent me her picture, as my clients often do. The picture portrayed a large, mixed-breed dog who looked very solemn, even serious. I gave the reading by phone and, as I always do, I asked for the dog’s full name so I could dial in the radio, so to speak, and capture her energy.
Quickly it became apparent that “Ruby” (not her real name, if you’re wondering) was hilarious. Shortly after the reading began, I saw her stretched out as if on a piano, with a feather boa. I do love surprises in a reading; I feel like they’re confirmation I can trust the information. If I made it up, I reason, it would feel predictable, obvious! But there she was, with a twinkle in her eye, not at all concerned that the end of her life was approaching and ready to share some entertaining instructions with her people. I rarely encounter distressed animals at end of life, by the way. They seem to understand that they will go on, just not in their current body. Most of the time, they’re ready and willing to make the transition.
Ruby turned out to be very loving, but drily funny. She wasn’t ready quite yet, she told me, but it was likely to be soon. She was amused at the idea that her person needed to consult with me. Wasn’t it obvious she’d be departing soon? Didn’t they already know??! They did, I told her; they just wanted to be sure!
Like most people who consult with an animal communicator, her people were very attached to Ruby. She was included in most of their activities and the raison d’etre for much of the way that they lived. She had a whole harem of human and canine friends who came to say their goodbyes and her people were concerned about what to do with her remains. It turned out she wanted to be buried, which was no small chore because of her size. Ruby wanted to rest under a big tree at the far corner of their sizable yard.
They wanted me to let Ruby know she could pass on her own, or they would bring someone in to help. It turned out, and this made everyone laugh, that she wanted to be escorted out by her loved ones. She wanted someone to come in and administer the drugs and she wanted them to cry and pet her through the transition. She wanted ceremony. I told Ruby she could help make the decision that it was time to transition. If she continued to enjoy her life they could trust she was still engaged in her body. Once she felt ready she could show her people by withdrawing, turning away food, isolating. Which was exactly what happened; one day she was different, not so much “there”, quieter. They followed her lead and called on a vet who could come to their home.
The week before her departure, they fashioned a basket to put Ruby in and labored away digging the hole for her grave. They sat with her in the sun, and told her all the things they loved about her, and waited for the Big Appointment. A few days before their dog was to pass through the earthly door into spirit, they contacted me to make sure everything was in order. Her person wanted to know if Ruby was ready and if Monday was the right day. Before she’d even finished the question Ruby butted in and said, any time! She was amused, impatient. It was three days away.
The day came and with it, beautiful pictures of the dog in her basket, of the tree and the beehives and the yard. Her people had found a large rock in the shape of a paw to mark her grave, and called upon their friends to share messages to Ruby with the intent of creating a prayer flag to fly near her grave.
It’s such an honor to speak to people’s companion animals and so remarkable how like us they are. They’re funny and opinionated and they know so much more about the world around them than you might think. It’s a pleasure to help them transition; I love their courage and willingness and how they help their people to have courage, too.