Chelsea Lynn Riggins by Gayla Riggins / Mommy

I will never forget the day in September of 1992 when I went to the local dog pound to find a playful little mutt to be a pet for my two boys. When we arrived we were looking in all the cages and I found you crouched in a corner. Just a little black furball trembling and so frightened. I ask the attendant that was with us about you and she said that you were a black and tan full blood cocker spaniel that was ready to be adopted. The original family had bought you and suddenly had to be transferred out of state and had no time to find you a home. How sad for them but how fortunate for my family and I. The attendant said that you were 6 weeks old, had all your shots and already was named Chelsea. I picked you up and held you close. You were so scared that you “tinkled” all over me, but that was ok, I was already in love and knew
that you had to join our family.

All went well until you were about two years old and you had your first seizure. We were so scared we were going to lose you but you pulled through each and every seizure you had. The Vet said that cocker spaniels were prone to epilepsy and that when you had your seizures that we should just talk you through them, not try to stop them and so along with our prayers and your patience we got through each one.

Then in 2001 you developed an uterine infection that almost took you away from us again. We took you to our vet again and he said that you would need emergency surgery to save your life and we agreed to do so without even considering the cost. I even lost my job of 8 years because I had taken off to be with you during your surgery but I did not blame you for it and besides thanks to the prayers of my family and friends not only did you get well, I got a better job. Once again you came back from that horrible event triumphantly. All went well until October of 2004 I came home from work and found that you could hardly breath. You were gasping for every short breath you could get and did not even have the energy to stand. It was too late in the day to take you to your regular vet so we took you to the emergency vet and cried for him to “fix” you. “It’s gonna take a lot” he said “but if you want to try, I’m game”. Of course there was no question whether or not we wanted to try and so you spent the night in the hospital and we were to pick you up the next morning before 7:00 to take you to your regular vet and of course we did. I went to pick you up after I got off work at 5:00 and when I walked in the office they went to get you and you acted like you felt so much better. You would have to spend the rest of your life on medication that would make you turn into a lazy dog but that was ok, my family and I took you home and waited on you like you were a little princess
(which in my mind you were).

All went well until the beginning of 2006 when we began to realize that you were getting weaker and weaker. Increase the Lasix we were told by the vet as we were still not ready to give up on you and you seemed to still have a lot of fight in you. Then that dreadful night on September 5th when you had a horrible seizure and we were afraid you were going to die in our arms, but once again the little warrior came out in you and you fought through it but you never quite got over it. You kept getting weaker and weaker and could not stand on your own and we had to make the very sad decision to help you relieve yourself of the pain and misery that you must have been feeling. So on September 8th we held you close and whispered “love you’s” in your ears while you went into that eternal sleep. That was the hardest thing for me to do.

During the course of your life you had gone blind in one eye and had lost your hearing as well but you never gave up the “umph” of life and for that Chelsea I am so proud of you and I know that one day I will see you in Heaven and that gives me comfort. I know that my mansion in Heaven now has a “doggie door” added to it and
you are waiting for me there.


I Love You Lil Girl,
Chelsea Lynn Riggins
Gayla Riggins