Hello! My name is Tipi. I’m a black dog. I was born in a small village in Japan in December 1997. My mother was a very clever black Labrador Retriever and my father a big old grumpy Golden Retriever.
When I first saw the light of day a few days after being born in December 1997, there were eight other little puppies around me. Some of my brothers and sisters were a light golden color and some were black like me. They were so warm and my mother was warm too and we cuddled together and slept a lot. When I was awake I remember I always had to push to get some milk from my mother when I was hungry because there were only eight places to drink and there were nine of us puppies!
In the house where I lived with my brothers and sisters there were also other big, noisy “things” that walked differently to us. They walked on their two hind legs! They waved their front legs around and lifted us up and stroked us, strange, but the stroking was nice. These “things” were humans I found out and there were two big ones and a small one that lived with us. The small one had a high voice and long hair – I only had short hair. They gave us puppies different food from the milk I got from my mother and it made me feel really full!
I had a lot of fun playing with my brothers and sisters around my mother who watched that we didn’t fall out of the pen.
Later, I was able to go outside and play in the sun but at first it was so cold I didn’t want to stay out long. After a while many other big, noisy humans came and looked at me and my brothers and sisters.
One day, two of these humans, who I had seen and played with many times before, picked me up and carried me away from my mother! I thought they were taking me out to get some fresh air but – they didn’t take me back to my mother! They took me to another place and gave me a warm bed to sleep in. But I was all alone, no brothers or sisters to cuddle with. I remember my mother once told us puppies sometime the time would come when I would have to leave her but that she would always love us and welcome us back to visit. This must be it I thought. So I decided to follow the legs of the human in the new home. I had to run really fast sometimes. Once the legs didn’t move so I bit them a little but they were hard and still didn’t move. I had made a mistake! I found out the legs belonged to something the humans used to sit on.
My humans were kind to me, gave me nice food and we went to the beach every day where I met my mother and brothers and sisters again and my mother taught me how to swim. So I learned to swim in the ocean and to chase a ball. I love swimming and chasing and retrieving things it is great fun!
I have a great life with my humans. There are three of them. A big one with a deep voice who I have always to follow, one a little smaller with a high voice and another with a voice that keeps changing but who always plays with me and is a lot of fun. I like sleeping near that one but that human isn’t here right now and only comes here sometimes.
I have to have a nap now so I’ll see you later. Shall we play together?
…and now finally:
Our beloved friend Tipi has succumbed to the inevitable and passed away peacefully.
On May 13 at about 1300 the time came to look life in the face and accept that there was nothing more we could do for our beloved Tipi, a black lab/golden retriever mix who had been with us for over thirteen years – actually since she was born.
She was diagnosed with lymphoma in December 2010, had chemotherapy which worked for a while and had been receiving blood transfusions for the last 10 days – donations from many friends’ dogs for which our heartfelt thanks. There was nothing left in the arsenal to ward off the inexorable advance.
We were there to hold her paw, stroke her head, keep her clean and murmur words of encouragement & endearment. There was sadly nothing more we could have done.
Her body has been cremated and her memory will remain in our hearts forever.