RS UK Shih Tzu Ziggy Returns from Pet Heaven and Rainbow Bridge 3 Pet Reincarnations !

My first shih tzu was Ziggy, who was black and white, very small, and I had him from a pup.  We were always together and he never liked to be away from me.  He began to have back problems in later life, and had to have an X ray at the vet.  Much as I made a fuss the vet didn`t want me there, gave him an injection to knock Ziggy out then sent me home.  Two hours later when I went to collect him Ziggy was fighting the anasthetic, sitting upright, trying to keep his eyes open, with his dear little head swaying from side to side.  It was only when he was in my arms in the car going home that he finally gave into it and slept for the next 10 hours, knowing I was there with him.  When he went into the vet he was walking, and when he came out he had difficulty doing so, and I believe the he fell off the table in the vets whilst the X ray was being carried out, looking for me.  After that he wasn`t able to go for walks outside the house.  About a year later he experienced heart problems, eventually being taken ill during the night, in a great deal of pain, and I had to make the very hard decision to go to another vet for the last time.  He knew where we were going and didn`t want to go, but he was in so much pain.  I`d rather it was me than him.  I was very upset to lose him as we had been together for over 12 years, and it happened right on my birthday.

My mother arranged for me to go and get another shih tzu puppy that day.  When we got there, there were about six pups of various colours around the room.  Two were at the back with the mum, two in the middle and two at the door, which had a gate to keep them in.  I glanced at the two at the back, then my eyes fell on one in the middle of the room.  His eyes were just like Ziggy`s and in pain, just as he had been some hours earlier.  I commented on that at the time.  He looked at me, rushed over to the gate, put his arms up to me, and it was as if there were no other puppies there.  I took him home and right from the start, he knew things that no puppy could know.

The first night he went to the edge of the bed, asking for a drink from his bowl, which he always did.  He played with his ball as before.  I couldn`t let him out into the garden for the first week as it was pouring with rain.  When I did carry him out there, I put him down and told him to spend a penny, which he did.  He then ran to the middle of the garden, turned left, then right to go to the toilet.  It was where he always went.  You cannot see the spot from the door, he hadn`t been in the garden before as Shadow, and he didn`t sniff to find a spot, as most dogs do.  He knew where he was going. 

 I became more convinced he had come back, and in fact had been with me the whole 7 hours when he laid on the path beside Ziggy`s grave, looking at the spot, as if he knew.  It wasn`t a comfortable spot to lay down in, and not where we usually sat down.

 He looked at himself strangely in the mirror, recognizing that he was a lot smaller than he had been.  He didn`t bark at the other dog in the mirror or try to look behind it as most pups do.  It was like an old head on young shoulders.  In his first life he tried to chew electric cables and shoes, socks, etc.  This time he didn`t.

 After he had had his injections are was able to go for his first walk, I thought I would test this further, so told him where we were going and we let him lead the way.  Imagine my amazement when the first thing he did was to get off the pavement into the gutter to go to the toilet, just as I had taught Ziggy to do.  He led us straight to the place I told him to go, an old disused railway track where we used to walk.  On the way he put his nose down on the tarmac whilch had been laid in places nearly a year before so that wheelchair users could get on and off the pavements.  That wasn`t there the last time he had gone there.  He tried to go through the usual entrance we had used, but that had been blocked up.  I told him to go the other way, which he did, went exactly as far as we used to, then turned around to come home, all the time leading the way. 

We then used to go back via a housing estate which we had passed on the way there.  He went straight to the estate, past about 12 houses and tried to go down the drive of a friend`s house, who we used to visit, but she had since died.  We carried on.  He could have gone right to the end of the estate, but turned left, down a lane and on to the main road, just as we always did.  We crossed the road and he went into the forecourt of some flats where he had two friends, another shih tzu and a lhasa apso.  If that wasn`t proof, I don`t know what is.

The following day I told him we would go to our friend`s shop, and again he led us straight there.  There were 12 shops to choose from, he hadn`t been there as Shadow before, just like the railway track, but he knew the way, and he knew where friends lived or worked.  I just couldn`t believe what was happening, but know he was (is) very strong willed and a little thing like death wasn`t going to stand in the way of us being together.  Not in his book.

When Shadow was just 3 years old he began having heart problems.  I would have moved mountains and did, trying to get the right treatment, insisting it was his heart and not epilepsy.  He hadn`t given up on me and no way was I giving up on him.  Eventually I was able to prove I was right, and two nice lady vets listened and got the treatment he needed.  Hoever, I lost him again just a few months before his 6th birthday.  I was terribly upset but hoped he`d come back again.  He`d done it once.

We got another pup, black and white again just like Ziggy,(Shadow was variegated), and he was 6 months old when I brought him home later that day.  Shadow had had a stroke before he passed, so this time it took a little longer for him to return as I guess he needed some time to recover.  I knew he was back again though when he was back to his old habit of chewing his right foot, and making the fur into a point.  Ziggy and Shadow both did it, and here he was at it again, just like a child who won`t stop sucking his thumb.  None of our other shih tzus did it either - just him.  And he still won`t let me out of his sight.  Soul mates.

C Chaffney