Friday, May 11, 2018

Until we meet again

It's too soon. Not just too soon after losing Jessie. It would be too soon if it was next year, or in ten years from now. It will always be too soon to lose a dog like Casey, because he was the best dog. I loved all my pets, and I've mourned for losing all of them. But sometimes you're lucky enough to get a dog who's more than just a dog, who becomes absolutely a part of you. Your doggie soulmate. Casey was all that and more to me, and nothing short of my whole life is long enough to spend with him.

I fell in love with Casey the moment we met, one cold December night in 2008, a bright blue scarf tied around his neck. He smiled at me, and then he licked my ear, and we belonged to each other immediately. It wasn't all roses -- the cats took a long time to forgive me, and Casey caused all the mischief that a teenage boxer is going to cause. He was so smart, learning how to get out of his crate no matter what and even mastering the Doorknob Principle to open doors on his own! This earned him the nickname Houdini. I tried everything to keep his crates inescapable. I don't feel like I succeeded so much as he just decided that he would humor me and stay inside if I wanted him to. Casey trained to be a therapy dog, but he just loved life and was so exuberant that he couldn't quite master the final temperament test. But I didn't mind, because that led me to start fostering with LBR instead. Casey was the BEST foster brother and had a knack with helping new dogs find their feet in our house. I know that many of his fosters siblings are going to be welcoming him to the Bridge with enthusiastic jumps and barks.

No matter what he did, Casey touched everyone he met. He became an LBR ambassador by writing the blog for LBR, where we both met some lifelong friends who made a big impact on our lives. He loved going to LBR events, whether a home visit or gift wrapping at Barnes & Noble, because he would invariably get fussed over by everyone. In addition to being a good foster brother, Casey was an amazing brother to his siblings here. Cinderella and Jessie both came to us as fosters, and it was Casey who let me know that they were at their forever home. They played and snuggled and slept together. The kitties weren't his fans at first, but he never stopped trying to convince them to let him love them. Eventually both came around, and I treasure the moments of them snuggling together. Cinderella, Jessie, and Scribbles are going to be so excited to meet him at the Bridge and snuggle with him again! I picture them all running around together and can't help smiling through tears.

But most of all, Casey was his Momma's boy. We had a bond that I've never had with any other dog, and I know I won't have with any dog in the future. He's always been happiest when he can snuggle with me, no matter where we are. He loved going on walks, his head up and eyes bright as he looked for anyone who might come by to say hello. Even in his young and wild stage, he still loved best to cuddle up to me on the couch, watching TV or playing on the computer. It didn't matter what we were doing, as long as we were together. He was my Handsome Man, my baby boy, my Casey. Helping him over the Bridge was the hardest thing I've ever had to do, but I owed it to him to not let him slowly lose what he was until his dignity was gone, he was in pain, and there were more bad memories than good.

I still can't picture a world without Casey. It doesn't seem right that such a world should even exist. One day, my handsome man, we'll meet again. Until then, watch over me from above and remind me you love me in my dreams. <3

Casey Houdini Westerfeld
10/17/2007 - 5/11/2018


  1. Thank you, Casey, for being part of our Blogville family. We're better for knowing you and you will be missed. Rest in peace dear boy.

  2. So very sorry to learn of you loss. Casey touched your heart and will be missed.

  3. Even though we never met in the furs, we always felt like we knew Casey as a good friend. Your heart is broken but it is always going to be filled with love, love for Casey, but even more importantly, love from Casey. That kind of love is eternal. We are so very, very sorry for your loss. We know that Casey understands why today had to be, and we are certain he had a huge crowd waiting for him at that bridge. Soft woos, gentle hugs, and lots of love to you from all of us.

    Hugs and Woos - Lightning, Misty, and Timber, and Mom

  4. Thank you for sharing Casey with us over the years. I've been a faithful but mostly silent follower for a long long time, and I'll miss his presence here. I know how hard today must have been for you... I wish there were some magic to take away the sorrow. You're exactly right, no matter how long we get to have them with us, it's never long enough. Your love for your sweet boy shines through in every word and every story. He was definitely one of the special ones. Please take care of yourself dear friend.

    Lots of love, Kim and Jasmine

  5. I had a dog like Casey once - my angel K. And it's true that your heart is always full of the love of a dog with whom you have a bond like yours with Casey. It still hurts that he's here in the spirit rather than in the fur but his love guides you forever. I am sending you the softest woos and hugs. You were very brave, doing what you felt was best for Casey rather than prolonging a possibly painful journey. That was the greatest manifestation of your love for him. He is now watching over you, waiting until you are united again. Please be kind to yourself as you grieve.

  6. Mitch displayed many of the same neurological symptoms as Casey with his polymyositis diagnosis. It's not easy to watch them struggle. You gave Casey the greatest gift of unselfish love. Our hearts are crushed for you. Godspeed, Casey♥ Hugs to you, Andrea♥

  7. Casey, run young and pain-free once again at the bridge. Andrea, our love to you and our deepest sympathy. Take comfort in knowing that Casey, Jessie, and Cinderella are all together again and will watch over you forever until you meet again.

  8. Our hearts are broken for u. Hugs to u Andrea. Casey was an amazing dog...and looked so sharp when u dressed him up. He is up over rainbow bridge dazzling those who have gone before him.


  9. That is such a lovely last photograph of your Baby Boy. I know you will treasure it always.

    Today was a hard day for you Andrea but you did something honorable that demonstrates how much you loved Casey. You didn't want him to suffer and so you suffered instead by letting him go sooner than you would ever have wanted to let him go.I believe Casey is close to you though his body is no longer near you. Casey will watch over you every day of your life until you meet again. He will continue to be part of your spirit forevermore.

    I am sending you continued love Andrea as are, Duffy, Malou , Levon, Wilhelmina and Avalon.We will miss your sweet Casey who always brought a smile to our face.

    Sophie and the critters in the cottage xo

  10. Andrea - for some time now I believe that no two individuals have the exact same feelings about anything - I do believe we can come close. My Angel Shiloh was my heart and soul dog. There had been dogs in my life forever - first growing up then my own - like you I loved them all. My Shiloh was special - very personable and loved attention. He did become a therapy dog and excelled at it = he loved the little children and I loved sharing him as I'm sure you did Casey. You know that you gave Casey the best gift a pet parent can give their 4-legged companion - the gift of peace, rest and no pain. I pray that you too can find peace and comfort in these coming days.

    Dear Casey I hope you can find my Angel Shiloh - he will be the big Beagle with his nose to the ground trying to find those wascally wabbits. You have had a great life with the best momma ever and so many who love you, here in Blogville and beyond. I am sure you have found Cinderella, Jessie and Squibbles or they found you upon your arrival at the Bridge and all of you are once again toogether up their at the Rainbow Bridge.
    Mom Kim, Lady Shasta'n Miss Maizie plus Amgel Shiloh

  11. There was a chapter from The Book of Barkley that I've never posted online, dealing with the day I let him run free that I've never posted. I posted it today. I hope it calms your heart for the wise decision you made, instead of making you sad. I could have bought maybe a few weeks for Barkley with amputation and chemo, but my brother was in hospice, also dying, 1200 miles away. It was a horrible decision to make. I had that connection with Barkley that you had with Casey, one I've not had before, and may not have again. I do understand your pain. Lin

  12. It's not goodbye it's see you soon in a blink of an eye.
    Run Free Sweet Dreams.
    When I get there we can dig in the mud and chase tree rats.
    I'll bring some stuffies we can rip up and an old ball to chase.
    Thank you for all you are and most of all the love you gave your mommy.
    xo your pal Astro

  13. Casey touched so many lives with his special spirit
    Thinking of you tonight with love
    Hazel, Mabel & Mom

  14. I am so sorry to read this. A double tragedy is too much to bear. Sending you lots of love and prayers

  15. my tears are running .... but you found the bestest word to describe this wonderful pup.... until we all meet again....

  16. It's so sad and unfair. We know we can't say anything to make it better, but we are sending lotsa luv and hugs and westie kisses from a little bit north.

  17. Hari OM
    YAM xx

  18. I have tears in my eyes as i read this beautiful story of Casey and you, your handsome man. So smart and loving.. this is the pawfect memorial to him. My heart hurts for your aching heart in the loss of your heart dog.

  19. What a lovely tribute to your special boy. We know he is enjoying the company of many of our Blogville friends and he is now reunited with his sisters. We send warm hugs and lots of licks to you all.

  20. Thinking of you. A very beautiful tribute. Hugs.

  21. Andrea you are so very right everyone who met Casey was in love at first sight...he was such a gentleman and oh a kisser too. At the BAR he often let Jessie take center stage like a good brudder but you could tell it was true love Jessie had for Casey and Casey for her and his momma.
    It was our honor to have been able to meet you 3 musketeers.
    Hugs madi and mom

  22. We are so sorry!! Saying lots of prayers for you and sending big hugs and licky kisses.

    Matt & Matilda

  23. We just cannot believe how this happened, so close together. We hope they send another pup to heal your heart.

    Stopping by for a visit!

    Murphy & Stanley

  24. Such a wonderful tribute to your fur-child. Casey will be missed. We understand the bond between a heart-dog and their loving human. Lily was that for us. Like Casey, she had such a beautiful soul and loving heart. I like to believe that all our blogging buddies that are at the Bridge are together, catching up with each other and having a grand ol'e time. It's the only way I can get thru the day.

    We send you lots of hugs and love.


  25. Sending so much love to you -
    KZK and the girls