Once again, it’s the anniversary of the September 11 attacks. While we want to acknowledge the emotions that always arise on this day, we also want to “doggedly” forge ahead with life!
In that spirit, here is some heart-warming news about the way a group of people, united in love for one very special member of their community, dealt with his loss. On this day, we hope it brings you a smile!
“How do I know that all dogs go to heaven? Because I’m there now.”
—Blue II, Butler University’s mascot, in a final tweet to his legions of fans
I’m not a sports fan.
But a sports story caught my eye last week because, sadly, it announced the death of Blue ll, the adorable English Bulldog who was the beloved mascot of Butler University.
At nine-years-old, five months after retiring his collar, Blue II, the sweater-wearing English Bulldog who walked softly and carried a big bone, died of congestive heart failure.
But, it wasn’t just his death that got my attention. It was how the University handled it.
First, there was a final post on Blue II’s official blog, written in Blue ll’s own voice!
This was Blue saying good-bye.
You can read the full blog post for yourself here.
Then, there was a follow-up tweet from Blue himself—from Heaven!
“How do I know that all dogs go to heaven? Because I’m there now. It’s been a great ride. Thank you all, God bless @butleru, and #GoDawgs”
Okay, I know this wasn’t REALLY from Blue ll, but I didn’t care. It made me feel better!
The way Blue ll’s death was handled through the University’s Social Media and the Bulldog Memorial that the school is planning to honor Blue is admirable along with this touching tribute video.
Much of the credit is due to Blue ll’s owner, who is also the school’s director of web marketing and the one who helped make Blue II a media darling over the years.
“Blue had an uncanny ability to rise to the occasion,” Kaltenmark said. “Whether it was live TV, a visit with elementary school kids or just a photo shoot, he was a professional. I think it afforded him the respect and envy of a lot of other schools and fans.”
Here is a link to Butler University’s Facebook page that also addressed Blue’s death:
Blue suffered from dilated cardiomyopathy, which affects both the right and left sides of the heart. In the final months of his life, his owners, the Kaltenmarks inserted his medication into some specially-cooked chicken breasts and his favorite treat, ice cream. In addition, received a steady diet of steaks from Indianapolis’ landmark restaurant St. Elmo’s. It’s so obvious how much this community loved their mascot and how much he will be missed.
Rest in Peace, Blue II, and keep those tweets coming from Dog Heaven!
Laurel directs the Resource Center at www.veterinarywisdomprofessionals.com She co-founded and developed the Argus Institute at the Colorado State University Veterinary Teaching Hospital.