Farewell Good Friend
We said our farewells to our male malamute, Trudeau on April 19th, 2018. It was a day stricken with sorrow, and joy. Sorrow because we said good bye to one of our furry children and it is never easy to do this. Joy because we were able to communicate with Trudeau and ask him what he wanted for his final resting day. The knowing, and honoring his wishes made the experience of his death much more meaningful for all of us. Some of you who read this will wonder how does one communicate to your dog and ask him those questions, and others know that it is entirely possible.
Now that we have respected a grieving period, I’m able to share with you the manner of our communication and the actual ceremony of his death, but before I embark on that journey I’d like to share with you the cause of his death, and the lessons learnt around it.
Trudeau was an 8 year old Alaskan malamute, the first descendant from the wolf. You are probably wondering why the name Trudeau? Well we both liked our former prime minister Pierre Elliot Trudeau and how cool to call your dog after him. However, I'm sure Grant has a different version of this story, I just can't remember what it is. Trudeau never appeared to be sick in our eyes, and always had a voracious appetite. I think he would have eaten anything you gave him, edible and non edible. Trudeau as a growing pup had some difficulties with his right hind leg. His knee would pop out every once in awhile, which was much cause for concern at the time, however, apparently normal for a growing, large bread. We brought Trudeau home with a sister named Luna, and they always lived outside in their pen. Never the 2 were separated, until the time Grant started to walk them separately for training. Our furry friends loved to pull the sleigh and they were the happiest when working.
In early March we noticed that Trudeau was not putting any weight on his right hind leg, and we assumed that perhaps his knee was popping out again. When looked over by the veterinarian, we were told that it was perhaps a torn ligament or muscle. It was suggested to supplement him with some calcium to help his bones; at the age of 8 he is considered a senior. The vet also suggested we take him on short walks, and to do some physiotherapy. So daily Grant would walk him slowly around the house, and we both would exercise the leg. I would daily give him some Reiki treatments in the hopes that the leg would heal. After a month passed, we were very excited to see that the leg had improved immensely. Trudeau was now putting weight on the leg, and he was even running a little. During this whole time his appetite never subsided.
One morning I came to check on him and do some work, and he was lying on top of his dog house, ears right back, and the look of intense pain in his eyes. This deep, sunken feeling came over me, and I knew something was not right. As I approached his leg, it no longer had any resistance to it. It simply flopped around. I’m no vet, but every ounce of intuition was telling me his leg was broken. How could it be broken? What the heck did he do? Did he fall? We knew we had to bring him to the vet, but it was a Saturday, and our vet was out of town, and could not take him. We really struggled with the decision to wait till Monday for an x-ray. But we waited. In the meantime, I did lots of energy work with him, and we gave him cannabis oil, and lavender oil.
The week prior to this incident, Grant and I had watched the video series entitled “The Truth about Pet Cancer” created by Ty Bollinger. It’s an excellent series and very informative. We had lost our first dog, Teiga to cancer. There was a lot of information in this video series, but the message we walked away with the most was that dogs and cats are not meant to eat solely dry pet food. They absolutely need raw, and wet food in their diets. The diet change was something I had been considering for awhile. I co-facilitate an Ayurveda and Yoga retreat four times a year and Purnima Chaudhari and we are constantly teaching the difference between intelligent, dumb, and dead food. Without getting into a whole lesson here in this blog, know that dead food is any food that has been processed and cooked at extremely high temperatures, or microwaved. Therefore, “kibble” falls into this category. Dogs are no different than humans, if their diet consists of nothing but processed food, they are essentially starving their bodies. The body can not get enough nutrients to be absorbed in order to feed all seven layers of tissues. All that consumed processed food is then being stored in fat, for the body sees it as a foreign element and does not know what to do with it. Eventually, your body starts to create disease, and we get sick, and fat.
Monday morning we took Trudeau to the vet for an x-ray and our fears were confirmed his leg was broken in half at the femur. But that news was not the worst of it. Around the femur was a shadow that indicated bone cancer. What the F@ck! Where did that come from? Our hearts were crushed! Our logical minds start wheeling and looking for the signs. Were there any signs that this was coming? Were we blinded to the signs? Are we terrible pet parents? If you have ever lost a pet you know exactly what I’m talking about. Our minds are trying to justify the madness. The vet said there is nothing we can do, you should put him down, as he is in a lot of pain. I’m a healer, I don’t like it when anyone, or anything is in pain! I told Grant that I did not want to rush into this decision and that we needed to sit with this for a few days. We would do the best we could to make Trudeau comfortable until we reached a decision.
As a shamanic practitioner, I have the tools to meditate (journey) to other realms to talk to power animals, guides, spirits, angels and so forth. I decided to journey to the spirit of Trudeau. The spirit is always available even if the person or animal is alive or has passed. My journey to the spirit of Trudeau was beautiful! His spirit came to me as a wolf, big large black and white wolf. His messages were as follows:
Up until the 19th of April, Trudeau no longer wanted to sleep in the pen with his sister, Luna. He was content to lie underneath the big old oak tree. I call this oak the grieving tree as we said good bye to 3 other pets here. We continued to do energy work with him, give him cannabis and lavender oil to ease his pain. My hope was that he would die naturally, however that was not the case. We chose the 19th to put him down. This number is significant as we have lost 2 other furry children on the 19th. The number for me signifies our ‘oneness”. In numerology, you add the 2 digits together until the number becomes a single digit so (1+9 = 10 , 1+0=1) One is the magic number.
The morning of the 19th Grant and I headed outside with drum, smudging tools, raw rabbit, guitar, Luna, and cats. We fed Trudeau his raw rabbit meal and he devoured it. I then began a ceremony asking the animal guides to join us and to assist Trudeau in his journey over the rainbow bridge. I drummed and sang shamanic songs, asking the sun to take Trudeau’s pain away. We danced with the spirits of nature, and all the cats came by to say good bye. Grant played a series of songs on his guitar, we sang and we cried. At some point I held Trudeau in a rhythmic breath of So Hum. A yogic mantra breath that literally means “ I am THAT”. It is a breath that brings deep calmness to the mind. Trudeau looked up at me with his head tilted and said in his own language that he was ready. Just as he finished looking at me, the vet drove up in the driveway, and proceeded to put Trudeau in his eternal sleep. He died at 11:11 the hour of awakening. I then proceeded to journey along side Trudeau as his spirit left his body. I guided him over the rainbow bridge where he was met by a pack of wolves, Oso, and Stu. He then gazed at me again, said his farewells and turned into a spark of light and shot out into the stars.
For me Trudeau’s death was beautiful, peaceful, and even magical. I felt so honored to have been able to create, assist, and lovingly release him. My heart is and was truly full. Trudeau has not been by in spirit yet to say hello. But I know that he is working with some of my other guides and I will soon be starting a new chapter in my life. His death has taught me so much, and I’m meant to share this with the world. How that looks like is being revealed to me as I write, and when the time is right for sharing it will be so.
Trudeau our black and white Alaskan Malamute.