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In Memoriam

April 14, 2022

Baby - Remembered

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Written by: josh

Our Baby Girl has lost her battle with Lymphoma. Many of us were profoundly affected by Baby and are therefore mourning her loss heavily. Our hearts many be heavy but for me, there are so many positive aspects of her life to focus on that make her death easier to process. Baby simply brought joy. Everybody that met her feel in love and their day was that much more wonderful having interacted with her. In just a few months she positively impacted the lives of hundreds and turned many-a-frown upside-down. Her Mother Theresa like, benevolent journey began at the Shelter in Bakersfield where, for whatever reason, she had been owner surrendered. We can’t judge these people or pretend to know what their motivation was, but for Baby, this looked like the end. After all, who is going to want to adopt a 10+ year-old pit bull from the shelter? The staff did what they could to intervene and extent her life. They made her a “staff favorite” and spent a lot of time trying to inform folks of Baby’s upside. They gave her the name “Baby”, which is unique because they really don’y name the dogs at the shelter, makes it difficult in the end. Baby’s undeniably loving persona infected the staff at the shelter and after several weeks there, she had worked her way out of a kennel and in to the office of the Director (Jen). On one of my trips to the Shelter Jen grabbed me and said “you’ve got to meet this dog, she’d make a PERFECT Marley’s Mutt!”. She excitedly whisked me into her ofice and said ” Tad-A!!”, while pointing at this ancient, toothless, blue pitt bull that was sleeping in her office. Not exactly what I excpected but I went over to her to say hi and it was all she wrote. Nobody is impervious to the magical powers of Baby and you can’t resist the urge to fall in love immediately. If she hasn’t sucked you in with those altruistic tractor-beam eyes, she’ll get you with her licks, which smell terrible but I’m sure are composed of some pheromone that renders you helpless and haplessly in love. Needless to say, I came back down a few days later and took Baby home while the staff applauded and said their own tearful goodbyes. Baby was no Vegas fling, no fleeting impulsive urge that led to a bad decision; she was a LOVE and that’s we approached it when she came to live with me at the rescue. She moved all of her stuff in (not much, just a cute sweater outfit that she had rom the shelter) and made herself right at home. She wasn’t going to sleep in my bed the first night -gentleman’s courtship- but my feelings got the best of me and she joined me in our “non-marital” bed. She and I were like peas and carrots! She went everywhere with me and we did everything together. Her altruistic attitude and balanced with which she approached life seemed to have a very positive affect on the other dogs. She was old but she joined us for all of our morning walks and pack hikes and never said no to hitting the road! One day, while getting some work done at Starbuck’s, we ran into the Koharchick Family- friends of myself and the Mutts that I had known for a couple years. You won’t meet a more outstanding three kids than the Koharchick kids- spearheaded by the youngest, Dmitri. Mary (Mom) and I chatted while the kids combed over Baby like she was the “big present” on Christamas morning. One thing led to another and Mary Koharchick said that she’d love to foster Baby and see how she does at their place, that way I could make room for more dogs to rescue. I said “Now?”, reluctantly contemplating “sharing custody” of Baby with another family. It’s funny how emotional I got in an instant when I had to think about leaving Starbucks without Baby. “How about we meet back here in a couple hours”, I said, frantically trying to stall the inevitable. They agreed and we met back there a few hours later. i can honestly say that it was excruciating to watch Baby walk away with another family but at the same time extremely joyful. I knew how much joy she had brought me and how she would continue to do the same for me. She had been my rock , my therapy, my companion and my UNCONDITIONAL LOVE; now she would do the same for Mary and the kids. Several weeks later we found out that Baby had Lymphoma… What was terrible news became less burdensome when Dana Love, our pal and Mutt Militia Brigadier General, offered to pay for Baby’s treatment. We were all going to experience her disease as a team and that is what we did. We met at Starbuck’s and hugged it out, knowing that we didn’t have much time with her. Yesterday morning she couldn’t get up and Mary knew what had to be done. Stupendously compassionate staff from the Tehachapi Vet came to the Koharchick residence and gently eased Baby through her transition into another dimension and we are very grateful for that. Gone but never forgotten; loved like no other.



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