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rainbhrt.gif (12105 bytes)Rainbow Bridge

Jade & Tiny Tim Doc Kookie Leo Gump
Rita Kally      

Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge. When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to the Rainbow Bridge. There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together. There is plenty of food, water, and sunshine. Our friends are warm and comfortable.

All the animals who were ill or old are restored to health and vigor. Those were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of the days and times gone by. The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them who had to be left behind. They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. Her bright eyes are intent; her eager body begins to quiver. Suddenly she begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, her legs carrying her faster and faster.

You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy kisses rain upon your face, your hand again caresses the beloved head, and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.

Then you cross the Rainbow Bridge together . . .



There are many wonderful times and events in our home. There are also times of great loss. Our animals are treated as family members, and very much loved. Each one is special in their own particular way. Some of them who have passed on have touched us in a special way that is important for us to share with others. As sad as it is to lose a family member, we are blessed to have the time together we did.

Jade & Tiny Tim

Jade was sitting on a perch in the main flight one day when her mate knocked her off (we witnessed the event). She fell to the bottom and damaged some nerves. She had to be moved to her own cage (the law of natural order within the flock - survival of the fittest, meant she could not live in the main flight with others). We fixed up a nice 'handi-capable' cage to make it easy for her to move around in her condition. She had to be nebulized regularly due to breathing problems as a result of the paralysis.

We tried to ease her loneliness by taking her out as much as possible (she loved to sit with us on the deck in the sunshine, under an umbrella, and be preened. She could not fly due to her paralysis, so trips out in our arms were safe).

Enter into our lives a breach baby. Tiny Tim had to be 'helped' out of his shell. He couldn't turn himself as we later learned - he was born with only one hip joint. His parents rejected him so he was hand-fed every hour or so around the clock. Everything happens for a reason, and it seemed Tim's purpose was to be a companion to Jade. They moved in together when the time was right, and became the best of friends.

One day, without any warning, Jade passed away. We guess as a result of the breathing condition. Tiny Tim was obviously heartbroken. He pined away alone for about a week before he passed, too. It was a very sad time in our home, but we are sure these two friends are together again, and happy.


Doc was our third cockatiel, and our first rescue bird. He was found in a pet store with an open chest wound. He was taken to the nearest vet before coming home and treated. Doc was a 'runt' in size, but had a heart bigger than many people we've met. He was the most dedicated father and husband, too.

Doc would help feed any baby tiel that cried out, and fostered many when other parents had given up. He would tell you all about everything that happened since the last time he saw you, from his perch on your shoulder. Doc had the most brilliant outlook and disposition of any bird we have ever met.

We heard a night-fright shortly after going to bed one evening. Tammy went down to make sure everyone was okay, and came back with Doc in her hands. He had fallen off his perch, most likely a result of sudden stroke. We held him and talked to him for that short time we had left with him. We see a little bit of Doc in all his children, and grand-children. Rest gently, sweet Doc.


Kookie was a rare yellow-cheek cockatiel mutation we added from another aviary into our flock. He developed a respiratory ailment that required medical treatments many times a day. He had a tremendous will to live, and we tried our hardest to help him.


Leo, an Australian King Parrot, came to us from a friend's aviary when he was diagnosed with aspergillosis, a fungal ailment. He needed nebulizing 3 times a day, jugular injections at our vet's office twice per day, oral medications once a day, and tube feeding every couple hours (to help him keep his strength. Unfortunately, Leo was diagnosed too late, and the infection was too well rooted when treatments began.

Although not our bird, we brought Leo in and tried to the end to help him survive. He was a great patient who never argued about the treatments (as awful as they were... It was so much like receiving chemotherapy). He never cared for the touch of a human - until near the end, when he would come to us for comfort. He would fall asleep in our arms while the medicine tried to do battle. This was the last picture we took of Leo as he slept on our kitchen counter on a towel after one of his treatments.

Leo died in our arms, fighting for his life to the end. There will always be a special place in our hearts for this very special fellow. He may not have been with us long, but he made a very lasting impression in our hearts.


Gump was a Society Finch we found after his (or her) mom slept a little too hard on him. Gump had double club feet, a mal-formed tongue, and the idea he was a person, not a finch. Because of his tongue problem, he couldn't feed himself and required hand feeding every two hours during the day, and at least once during the middle of the night.

DJ adopted Gump and the two could be found watching cartoons together before school in the mornings. Gump is seen here with his other pal, Bubba, a stuffed birdie. Gump would sit on Bubba to gain height so he could see outside his travel cage he called home, and yell our if he saw one of us walk by. He also liked to sit on a shoulder (biting fabric or skin to hold on) and ride around the house.

Gump was born with little chance for life. With the help of our vet, he managed to spend several weeks with us (and we hope happy to the end).  Gump may have been the tiniest bird in our home, but he had one of the biggest hearts (and cries), and managed to touch all of us.


Rita (left, pictured with her mate, Flip) was the oldest cockatiel in our flock. She was one of the sweetest birds we had. She was a great mom and always loved to be put up for breeding, pitched in to foster babies, and was just a pleasure and comfort to us all. Her full name was Margarita and her mate is Flip-Flop (from the Jimmy Buffett song, Margaritaville).

We noticed she wasn't acting just right a couple days after being put up for her last breeding. She was really put up in case other, newer pairs decided they wouldn't tend to their offspring (and Rita would be ready to step in). We took her to the vet to see if there was anything wrong and found that she had a misshaped egg in her uterus that could not be removed without surgery.

Rita never made it out of the anesthesia. We will miss Rita, but certainly not as much as Flip.


This picture defines Kally - ever ready to fetch a tennis ball no matter how far it is thrown. She wore out many an arm in a full afternoon. Unfortunately, a crippling form of arthritis caused her to rapidly lose use of her hind legs and rob her of that joy. She helped make some of the roughest times passable and was there when needed the most. At over 16 years and not a touch of grey, Kally was quite a young lady.

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