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adventures of Manni the wonderdog

Almost an 11th birthday. Almost.

The last ever picture we took, half an hour before he left us forever, 6 weeks ago.

This last Sunday would have been Manni’s eleventh (guesstimate) birthday.  When we got the devastating diagnosis of yet another osteosarcoma in the summer I knew then that he wouldn’t live to see this day.

But then he hung around longer than anyone ever expected and a sliver of hope crept into my stupid head, as hope tends to do. Hope is not my friend. I’d rather be positively surprised after the fact than devastated because I had hope. Not that this birthday really meant anything, least of all to Manni.

I promised then that I would invite (and pay for plane tickets) every Tripawds member that wanted to make the long trip over here to have the biggest -and most unlikely- birthday bash ever. Obviously, that didn’t happen. Sorry folks. Instead I spent last Sunday volunteering at our local shelter. It wasn’t fun, it wasn’t pleasant work. It was lots of physical labor like cleaning kennels, but I was busy. I was also not tempted to take one of the dogs home with me. I guess I kept comparing and, sorry to say, nothing compares to Manni. Not for me, anyway. I went back to the shelter today and will continue doing so but at least I found that I don’t feel the need to rescue every poor soul out there. -That is a good thing, in my book.

On that Sunday I went from the shelter to my yoga class and didn’t get home until later that evening, completely beat. For once, sleep came easy and the Sunday was over fast. Thank Goodness.

I miss him so much. Every minute of every day. My life is so different now and it’s not better. Even I myself was better with him. I miss the little bump on his nose, his freckles. I miss burying my nose in his oh so soft fur right behind his ears, I miss his scent, so much. I miss his unbelievably reckless, independent spirit, his wise eyes, his exasperation with me. I miss my purpose,

I miss Manni.

These below are videos of better times. They make me cry but they also make me happy for a few seconds. Enjoy and please remember him for a little while. Thank you.





  1. Jeanette

    Oh Tina…I didn’t know Manni had crossed the Bridge 😢. I’m so sad to read this…

    Please know your TriPawd family is there with you. Hold on to all those special memories and times with your boy.

    Life is different for you I know. I believe that Manni is still watching over you, and you’ll sense his presence.

    Sending you much love today.

    Jeanette, Angel Boone and Tuck 💕🌈🐾

  2. mom2shelby

    Oh Tina… how much joy for US to see those videos of Manni in his prime with four and with three. I loved the gift of a seeing more of a glimpse into your special life together. What a beautiful way to honor what would have been an 11th birthday.

    I hear what you are saying about hope – your writing is SO true, so real and so raw. You are – as you know – in the thick of the absolute f’ing worst right now. I am so sorry you are hurting so bad.

    BUT … like you … I also did some ‘volunteer’ work and was surprised that I didn’t want to save them all. But happy that I could be around dogs and know that I could get dog fur on me and not need to rush to bring one home. And that is a gift too!

    Thank you for sharing these videos and these stories … keep ’em coming!!! We love to hear and learn more about your life together. It was unique and special and you know that story never really ends. He is always with you!

    Sending love!
    Alison (little Jasper Lily) and Spirit Shelby

  3. midnighter94

    Thank you for sharing the videos of Manni and letting us know him a little bit more. He was such a beautiful boy! I love the treat game! The memories are so very bitter sweet .. they make us hurt and smile at the same time <3
    Hugging you across the Pond

  4. dobemom

    What treasured memories these are! That you were even able to volunteer at a shelter is huge in my book. And of course none of the dogs could compare to Manni! He was special, your soul mate, your heart dog. One day, there could be another friend out there, one who needs you, one that maybe Manni pointed in your direction. There will never be another Manni (just like there will never be another Nitro). I can feel how your heart aches right now, and mine aches for you and your loss. In the words of Winnie-the-Pooh……”How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard”. Wishing you peace, my friend,

    Paula and Warrior Angel Nitro

  5. dobemom

    Paula and Warrior Angel Nitro

  6. Michelle

    Thank you so much for sharing Manni. I loved each one of the videos they showed his personality and why you loved him so much. Happy Birthday on the Bridge Manni. Go have fun, enjoy your steak and party that we know you are having.

    The grief can be so over whelming especially on these firsts after they cross. I cried for days before and after Sassy’s birthday. I understand how alone you feel.

    Thank you for volunteering your time. It might not be the right time for a furbaby for you but know this when it is Manni will pick the right one out for you.
    hugs and lots of love

    Michelle & Angel Sassy

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