Saying Goodbye to Remington


This is the post I never wanted to write. My first “baby” who I had over 15 years with, crossed the bridge May 25, 2024.

For months I prayed I wouldn’t have to make the decision of when it was time to let Remington go, because I just couldn’t do it. We made the decision with Abby and it was gut wrenching. Never again did I want to feel that pain.

Before we went out of town I had a bad feeling. I took Rem to his longtime veterinarian and he was prescribed a few more meds for elderly dogs to help with brain function and arthritis. There was no indication he was going to decline rapidly. Even still, I took his paw print in clay and the kids hugged him bye “just in case”. I think we all knew it was time, but just didn’t want to admit it. He passed away quickly and peacefully and although I was not there to see him take his last breath, I pray this is what he wanted and could finally let his old body free.

Today on my 43rd birthday, I visited his body for the final time before he is laid to rest. I kissed his head and stroked his beard and told him how much I loved him. I firmly believe he is in dog heaven with all our other beloved pets. I already long for him to return in spirit to check on us and hope I feel him with me.

I will always love you, Remington. Thank you for bringing me so much joy.

THE STORY OF REMINGTON (written prior to his passing)

As I sit down to write about my life and career, it all comes back to Remington.

And yes, Remington is a dog. In this case, a spunky miniature schnauzer, not the firearms manufacturer.

I still remember searching for a puppy and hesitantly making the decision to bring home an adorable salt and pepper 3-month-old miniature schnauzer.  I was so scared to change my routine and life. I was in my late 20s, had no clue how to care for any living creature, and this was long before I had 2-legged kids of my own.  What a ride I was about to experience!

In between potty training, sleepless nights, and unconditional love, Remington quickly inspired me to expand my existing photo restoration business and photograph pets professionally. He was a perfectly poised model and the reason I continued to pick up my camera and improve my skills every day. I started photographing dogs up for adoption at local animal shelters and rescues. That eventually led to photographing the pets of my close friends and family. I realized I had a true gift when my passion for editing photos was coupled with wrangling pets and creating a digital work of art regardless of the conditions or temperament of each pet. 

As my journey continued, I started receiving countless requests from pet parents hoping to have their senior or critically ill pets photographed. So, I founded Going with Grace© to honor and celebrate the lives of those pets.  Most sessions are booked when a pet parent is making one of their hardest decisions; the last act of selflessness we can give our precious pets. End-of-life pet photography comes with a myriad of emotions. I’m honored to help others find peace through imagery, but it comes with a small tinge of the pain a pet parent experiences, especially after they say goodbye.

It’s clear Remington helped me in my professional career. But, he eventually played a crucial role in my love life, too. I met the man of my dreams at a local dog park in 2012. Abby [a rescued Vizsla who sadly passed away in 2018 from Cushing’s Disease] made her way over to me and Remington. Abby’s dad followed her, and we struck up a conversation about pet photography. I conveniently gave him my business card to ‘check out my website,’ and the rest is history. Aaron told me when we first started dating that our love story was going to be just like the ones you see in fiction. Two years later, we were featured on the front page of the Kansas City Star and even interviewed by People Magazine, appearing in the 2014 “Amazing Pets” feature.

Nearly 2 decades later, I’m still living my personal and professional dreams. Remington will forever be my soul dog. I can’t imagine where my life would be had I not made that plunge into puppy parenthood.   I’ve been blessed with a beautiful family, including 2 small children and an assortment of furry critters over the years.

Remington has chronic bronchitis, a benign softball-sized lipoma on his chest, and a minor heart murmur.  I am more nostalgic each year because I know his time with us is growing shorter. Remember to snuggle your pets a little tighter today and always. You never know how much time is left on this side of the rainbow bridge.


Stages of death in pets

Signs from dog heaven


Reach out to your friend who said goodbye to their pet. It truly has meant the world to me to hear from people during this time. Expressing that you care really does help with the grief process.

Share resources or books with your loved ones. I found the book “Dog Heaven” to be extremely comforting for my children, but even for me.

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