July 7, 2002 – July 15, 2016
Ringo came into our lives at the age of 8. He had been placed in a shelter in Springfield, MA after arriving from somewhere down south. At the time, Ringo had only about half of his teeth and a malnourished little body that needed plenty of TLC. I had stumbled upon Ringo while browsing a shelter pet directory online. After seeing his photo and discovering that his name was Ringo (my family are Beatles fans), I knew that he belonged in our family. I was busy with work & finishing college at the time, so I shared Ringo’s profile with my mother, and she decided to adopt him and give him a new life. We made the trek to Springfield where Ringo sat anxiously barking in his crate. He was small and timid, but he sure did have an appetite, and he managed to jump on a counter-top to snatch snacks from the shelter’s stash when staff let him out of his crate to meet us. Ringo had a hard life before he came into our family. We don’t know his entire history, but it appears that he was mostly left to fend for himself, and was eventually abandoned by his former owners. We were determined to make the remainder of his life a much happier one.
My mother and I doted on Ringo, feeding him handmade, home-cooked meals and taking him on adventures to the beach. He loved sunning on the porch on warm days, and could be spotted trotting around the neighborhood in a cozy All You Need Is Pug hat during snowy afternoons. Food was his passion, and he used to sound the alarm by barking an hour before any mealtime to alert us that it was time to get up and get cooking. While he wasn’t terribly affectionate to most, he enjoyed snuggling with family members, and was attached to his human mother. He loved her with the same fierce love that she held in her heart for him. When Ringo came to us, he already had health issues. These unfortunately worsened with age. Due to the maltreatment that he had suffered with former owners, his lungs were never strong, and he was prone to pneumonia and lived with chronic bronchitis and lung disease. He became blind a few years after his adoption, but that didn’t stop this fearless little man. He learned to navigate his home (especially the kitchen) and still walked around the block on days when his arthritis wasn’t ailing him. Other days he rolled around the block in his cozy stroller, taking in the air and nuzzling neighbors’ hands as they reached in to give him a pat. Ringo, like most dogs, was a creature who loved unconditionally. Despite having a hard early life, he still had so much love in his heart and brought so much joy to our family. He simply wanted to love and be loved, and I am glad that my family could grant him that. He deserved every moment. He deserved the best.
My mother and I devoted the last 6 years to making Ringo as happy, healthy, and comfortable as possible. With heavy hearts, we said goodbye to our beloved little buddy on July 15, 2016. His lung complications finally became too much for his little body to handle. After being sedated and placed in an oxygen tent during a visit to the veterinary ER, Ringo simply never fully came out of the sedation, and during the moments of clarity that he did have, he coughed and seemed to fight to breath. After many tearful hugs and kisses, we released Ringo from his suffering, and said goodbye to the little man who taught us so much about living compassionately and giving unconditional love.
Ringo, you are so missed. Your mama cries every day, and my face is a swollen, tear-stained mess as I write this. Look how you’ve touched this world. Our customers adored your sweet face, and you even had fans who couldn’t wait to see your photos pop up on our social media pages. No matter how small your paw prints were, they are forever pressed into our lives. You changed us, and you changed all who met you and discovered your resilience and your passion for life’s little joys. How lucky are we to have had our time with you, even if that time was too short? I hope that you are breathing easy now, little buddy.
Good boy, Ringo.