Sunshine is at the Rainbow Bridge

Our beloved dog Sunshine has passed away.  She was put to sleep on Aug 3, 2023 after suffering a relapse of her lack of cognitive ability.

Three weeks previous she was taken to the 4 Paws Emergency Hospital in Halifax, for an overnight stay, and put on an IV drip and oxygen.  At that time we thought that was the end, but she rallied the next day so we took her home and had a good three weeks with her.

We were with her  all day from 6 AM until her passing at 9 PM.  We held her paw as she slowly left us with broken hearts and much anguish.  She is now at the Rainbow Bridge with our Lassie, both who are waiting for us.
Sunshine was born in Japan and saved from a kill shelter by a woman who brought her to Halifax.  When the woman relocated to Toronto, she put Sunshine up for adoption at the BideAwhile shelter where we were the lucky family to be able to adopt her. She was my hiking and walking partner for 7 years, and a companion to Barbara in the evenings and during the day.

She was a hunter, always walking with her nose to the ground. Others knew her well.  A UPS driver would give her a treat when she came to our house, and so would our contractor.  A local man who walked the same road as we did always had a biscuit in his pocket for Sunshine.

The early years with us were probably very exciting for her, but "anxious" for us, as she escaped constantly.  She wanted to hunt and run so she broke chains, collars, leashes, and pulled out large eye screws from her tie down.  She once was out all night, in winter.  I found her the next morning a mile from home with her leash tied around some rocks on the shore at the high water line.  Another time when she ran off, she came back with a male pheasant in her mouth, all proud that she brought dinner home that night.

She practiced her hunting instincts in the house, destroying the bed of our previous dog, chewing a paper roll, and taking a bite out of a black forest cake too close to the counter edge.  She even destroyed the parson's hat when he came to visit.  We gave her lots of toys, one every Christmas, on her adoption day, and a bunch in between!  Her favourites were a pizza slice plush toy, a colourful Mallard dug, and a husky pup.  Her absolute favourite, the one we called her "baby", was a stuffed white lamb.  She would carry it around in the living room, put it down, then sleep beside it.  It was the only one she never ripped apart.

Sunshine shared our pizza night on Saturday where she looked forward to getting the pizza crusts, treating them like bones.

We went on many hikes in the Peggy's Cove area, but when getting into the car was a little more difficult, we walked around our forest area and local roads instead. She loved her walks, and before we would leave the house, she would chow down on whatever was left in her food dish, increasing her carb load for the mission ahead.  She was well known in the area because of our 5 walks per day, and of course, her escapes which gave her a different kind of notoriety.  We walked rain or shine or snow, the latter she really loved for some reason. 

To say Sunshine was our best friend would be an understatement.  Since Barbara and I had no family close by, Sunshine was our baby and our daily activities were centred around her life.  She was never left alone, even when we erected a large dog run attached to the house.  She had her own doggy ramp and a big well-insulated dog house. She was in heaven when she could run, sleep and eat in her own large enclosure, watching squirrels in the trees.

When a delivery van came into our driveway, her bark alerted us to it, the perfect burglar alarm.  As they say, her bark was worse than her bite, because she was a friendly dog to children, adults and puppies.  Cats and squirrels were meant to be chased. 

Four operations where she had to be put under anesthesia made us very nervous.  She had an abcessed tooth, thought a porcupine was her friend, ate a Christmas ornament because it looked like grass, and nail cutting! 
Video: You Are My Sunshine