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We adopted Ranger in 2003 when he was two. The German Shepherd Rescue that we adopted him from had delivered 5 pups from their mother, Zelda. Ranger, Bernadette, Newt, and Dante are long coats and Shadow is a short coat. Ranger and Dante are the only boys.

Every year, in April, we all get together for the 'Pups' birthday. Every year, we have tried to reach Dante's family and every year, they have ignored the invitation. Last year, we tracked them down to Concord, near me. I went on a mission to try to get in touch with them but the address didn't seem to exist.

The annual Birthday party is great; besides the pups and mom, Brian brings a bunch of his shepherds from rescue for socialization opportunities. There are usually about 12 big dogs playing and tussling...it is great! (Whimsey was adopted from him as well as River)



<span style="color: #000066">Zelda(mom)Newt(sis)Ranger,Bernadette(sis) in picture, Shadow(sis) not pictured</span>

I got an email from Brian day before yesterday that Dantes family had contacted him, with a very sad story. The wife had committed suicide several months ago and recently the family had lost their home. After 9 years, they didn't feel that they could keep Dante anymore and were returning him to German Shepherd Rescue of Sacramento Valley.

He was in horrible shape, 20 pounds overweight and so matted that it looked like dread locks. He was huffing and puffing while he walked. He retreated into a dog house and wouldn't eat for three days. He was obviously unhappy and growled and snapped when approached. He finally came out of the doghouse and came into the house on the property. It was obvious that he was not housebroken...at 9 years of age
It seemed that he had been kept outdoors for all of his life.

The growling and snapping decreased and an Brian was able to see that Dante had an open sore on one of his front legs. When a leash was put on him to take him to the vet, it was discovered that he was very swollen in the lymph nodes of his throat, diagnosed as a response to lack of protein...suspected cancer.

Late this afternoon, I got an email that his lymph nodes were so swollen that he was having trouble breathing and Brian made an appointment to take him in to be euthanized tomorrow. In spite of his suffering, he was approaching Brian as if to say 'I'm not really a grouch, I just don't feel well'. He lay down with a couple of the other dogs and quietly slipped away


I never met Dante, but I feel as if I've known him. It is so sad to me that it doesn't seem as if he was treated as a beloved family member like his siblings and his mother have been all these years. I don't understand how his family could miss the signals that he was so desperately ill and would abandon him in his greatest need.

I know that I shouldn't judge them, and I'm trying desperately not to, I'm trying very hard to understand this, but I just can't. Each of my dogs has a piece of my heart, and the dogs that have crossed the bridge have taken a little piece with them. Dante has a piece, too.

RIP Dante...despite never having met you, you are loved


A full
 

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What a sad story. RIP Dante
I wish things had been different for you
 

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Nothing wrong with calling a spade a spade. Dante's owners apparently had other priorities than him and he suffered because of it.

It's people like yourself and the others who adopted his siblings who make the hard choices over the easy ones...and your dogs show you that appreciation because of it.

Truly sad to hear about Dante, but it's great to hear that Zelda, Ranger, Bernadette and Newt are living the good life!
 

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Thanks for sharing! RIP Dante.
 

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Poor Dante


RIP sweet boy.
 

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Dante

Too bad he couldn't have had a better life, but at least he passed with people who cared about him.
 

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Oh wow. That's so sad. That poor dog.

I realize it's easy to be mad at these people (especially if he was mistreated from the beginning), but if someone is so ill mentally that they take their own life, I think the state they are in is beyond the point in which they can care well for another being. My heart also aches for the family and what they have likely been going through for a long time. They likely have been dealing with serious issues with the mother for a long time.

They should have returned the dog a long time ago so he didn't have to go through this.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Originally Posted By: DorianGrayFFM

Truly sad to hear about Dante, but it's great to hear that Zelda, Ranger, Bernadette and Newt are living the good life!
And Shadow
 

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Discussion Starter #10
You hit on the two points that I've been struggling with: That it's hard to be angry with someone who is mentally ill enough to take her life and that they didn't return Dante a long time ago...

Thanks for the perspective
 

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Oh, poor guy, how sad.
I remember that pic of the other siblings, they're all so beautiful and it sounded like such fun getting them together every year. But I can't believe Ranger is already 9 years old!!!
 

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That is so very sad. I'm so sorry. Its especially difficult to know that just by luck your precious Ranger could have gone to them and lived the life of Dante. All I can do is shake my head...RIP Dante.
 
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