Magnum’s Little Lady Bear (Maggie), was a beautiful chocolate labrador retriever, who came to live with her person, Nina, in September of 1999. Maggie was a hard headed puppy, but she loved to hunt! She placed 2nd in the National Field Trials when she was only 9 months old.
In the summer of 2001 Maggie started having issues with thunderstorms. She would claw, chew, or bite her way out of a fully enclosed chain link dog run. She would try to run away from the storms, but they just kept chasing her. She had to have root canals in both canine teeth by the time she was five because she chewed through her chain link kennel many times.
Nina moved into a house with a basement, which protected Maggie from the noise of the thunder. For about 6 years she had a few calm summers. Then Nina moved to a house with no basement. Nina would leave Maggie in the house, but she tore the house apart a few times during storms.
In 2009 Nina moved again. She tried leaving Maggie in the bathroom in the summer so that she wouldn’t panic and run away. She also tried leaving Maggie with the other 2 dogs in the basement during thunderstorm season. But Maggie was having none of it. She went through 3 doors, 2 privacy fences, and almost a window. Nina bailed Maggie out of doggy jail (Animal Control) more times than she could count.
Maggie’s daughter Kodi, who would not leave her mother’s side no matter where her mother took her, lived with Nina too. The two of them ran off one day during a thunderstorm — when Nina was away for the day and wasn’t expecting storms — and they were missing for 2 days. Nina worried herself sick.
Nina could never enjoy summer because of Maggie’s fear and the unpredictability of thunderstorms in CO. In March of 2012 Nina was at her wits end with Maggie. People told her she should put Maggie down because it was getting so bad, but Nina couldn’t do it — Maggie was an awesome dog.
Nina found me through the Denver Metaphysical Fair and we talked to Maggie. Maggie told Nina exactly how she was feeling, and that nothing I did was going to help her to not be afraid of thunderstorms. Maggie told me that she would go through ANYTHING to escape the thunder, she was so afraid of it. I told Nina that I’d never felt the level of terror that thunderstorms created in Maggie in any other dog — it was completely overwhelming for Maggie . . . all Maggie could think of was that she had to get away from the thunder and it didn’t matter what she had to do to try to escape it.
I gave Nina some helpful hints that I thought would work to help Maggie. Nina realized she had to block every door very well, and take the dog door out before she went to work in the morning — basically leaving 4 dogs in her house for 12 hours each day. But…knowing how Maggie felt, Nina thought that would work. With some symphonic radio music and the doors being blocked… at least she knew Maggie wouldn’t escape. I also suggested Nina try the Thundershirt for Maggie — but Nina said she’d already tried it and it didn’t work for Maggie.
Nina didn’t ask me to talk to Maggie again until March 2013.. Maggie seemed to be getting worse physically. She had fallen off of Nina’s bed the previous summer and had some disc issues in her back. Maggie told me that her leg was getting worse, and that Maggie was afraid Nina would be mad at her if she crossed over and left her. Nina assured her she would not be mad — that Nina didn’t want her to suffer and that she could cross to Spirit when she was ready. I told Nina that Maggie said she would not be able to cross on her own and that Nina would have to help her cross over. I felt that Maggie’s Spirit was very strong, but that her body was failing — that her leg would give out — “not work” — but that Maggie would tell Nina when she was ready to cross to Spirit. It felt to me that Maggie would be needing to cross to Spirit in the next couple of weeks.
Nina worried, cried, and worried some more… But Maggie did exactly what she told me she would do. Maggie’s back leg would not work, and she gave Nina the “Sign” that she was ready to cross to Spirit. Nina made the decision on April 10th to have Maggie euthanized on April 11th.
April 10th was a very bad day for Nina, because she did not want to make the decision to put Maggie down. But on the 11th when Nina woke up, Maggie greeted her with a wagging tail, ate all of the other dog’s food, and calmly got in the car. Maggie’s daughter, Kodi, got in the car with Maggie. Nina tried to get her out, but Kodi was having none of it. She was going with her Mom and that was that.
They drove to the vet’s office. Maggie walked in, laid down, and looked at Nina — Nina felt Maggie was saying, “Hey Mom…I’m going to go be with my buddy Hannah, and it’s okay.” Three years ago Nina had to put down one of her other dogs (Hannah) — it was the hardest thing she’d ever done.
Maggie’s crossing was very peaceful and easy.
“If it weren’t for Sky I don’t know that I could have gone through with it. With Sky’s help Maggie was able to tell me what was going on, and what she would do to let me know when she was ready.
I know that I’ll see Maggie again someday, and maybe I’ll feel her Spirit by my side before that day.
I’m just so thankful to Sky for helping ease my pain and Maggie’s also.
Thank you from the bottom of my heart, Sky. I’m sure I’ll be talking to my other dogs with you soon.” — Nina S., CO
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