October 14, 2009 at 3:00 pm
How do you like my new wet suit? It will help keep me warm when I'm swimming.
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Signed by Baxter
Cynthia Bennett | October 14, 2009 at 3:31 pm
I just saw your video on facebook and you my sweet boy are an insperation.And a true Godsend.Sexy swimsuit too lol!
Traci Engle | October 14, 2009 at 7:26 pm
Looks great Baxter! You are so cute, you look like a cuddly stuffed animal!
Beth Bonner | October 14, 2009 at 7:32 pm
Baxter, I’m a new friend and I am so moved at what you are doing to bring hope to others. I don’t care if your new wet suit keeps you dry or not, you sure are adorable sporting it!!
Rita | October 14, 2009 at 9:33 pm
I just heard about you and allready i am BIG fan.
I just love what you do.
Greetings from cold Finland =)
By the way, your new wet suit looks really good.
Debbie Anderson | October 14, 2009 at 9:46 pm
Baxter is truly an amazing dog! I am so glad that I have “met” him!! through the internet.
I am in love with Baxter, the Therapy Dog! God Bless him!!
Fiona | October 15, 2009 at 4:41 am
Very handsome, Baxter. Very handsome.
Kristi Rota Childress | October 15, 2009 at 1:29 pm
Baxter, you are nothing less than AMAZING!!! Keep up all the good work lil’ buddy.
pat vangalder | October 16, 2009 at 6:33 pm
Baxter you are so sweet.i like your new suite.keep up the good work you are an angel sent from god.god bless you sweet buddy.
baxieboo | October 18, 2009 at 7:46 am
March 23, 1990 – October 16, 2009
Baxter, the world’s best, most devoted, and oldest therapy dog, 19 years and 6 months, eased peacefully from his life on Friday afternoon, October 16th.
Baxter began volunteering 7 years ago at San Diego Hospice. In a place created for making goodbyes gentler, Baxter comforted everyone who crossed his path. He licked tears from grieving faces, gave hugs to those at a loss for words, and warmed the hearts and souls of those who were making their transition. He would take his body and curled himself next to a patient for hours, making this intense eye contact that penetrated the human spirit in everyone, proving his undeniable loyalty, love, and sensitivity. Everyone loved Baxter!
I took in Baxter after he was rescued from a life threatening circumstance. He was 2 years old, and it took me 6 weeks to make him mine. It was not much longer when he became my heart. As I socialized him more and more, I realized Baxter was not like other dogs. He had a gift and everyone who met him witnessed it. Though perhaps difficult to believe, to meet Baxter was an experience. And, you never forgot that experience. He touched everyone he met.
When my husband, Dennis, and I went through the volunteer orientation at San Diego Hospice to become volunteers, Baxter accompanied us because he went everywhere with us. During those many hours, he spread his magical spirit throughout the room. And, in the end, the knowing staff exhorted: “You must get Baxter certified. He’s magical, and he would make the perfect hospice dog!”
What they recognized was Baxter’s special ability to bring light to darkness, smiles to downturned lips, respite to tear swollen faces, and comfort to pained hearts. His mere presence brought joy to rooms that were filled with tragedy and imminent loss.
He was the perfect love affair. His love never ended, he was true to the bone, and his
companionship was invaluable. Baxter taught me many of life’s lessons. And when I
forgot one, he reminded me in the subtlest of ways. He was consistent, reliable,
and predictable. He was always in a good mood, prepared to volunteer, and full of love, kisses, and devotion.
There has never before been a dog like Baxter in my life. And there will never be another Baxter. He truly was the world’s best therapy dog.
Though Baxter is gone, his legacy lives on through his book, MOMENTS WITH BAXTER, a series of 36 true stories and photos that demonstrate the magical connection Baxter made with individuals at the end of their life. Visit Baxter at his
website: http://www.momentswithbaxter.com and become his friend on Facebook at Baxter Bussey.
ALL PROCEEDS FROM THIS BOOK WILL BE DONATED TO CHARITY IN HONOR AND MEMORY OF BAXTER.
Melissa Joseph, Baxter’s mom and author of MOMENTS WITH BAXTER
Karina | October 25, 2009 at 11:36 pm
Your story came up on my facebook and you Baxter, rest in peace, as you ARE one special dog!! I needed a box of tissues :O)
I love dogs and I believe very strongly in adopting pound puppies or rescues. They are the best.
Dennis and Melissa ~ thank you for sharing Baxter!
black hattitude | October 30, 2009 at 7:54 pm
Thank you for the great quality of your blog, each time i come here, i’m amazed.
deedee | November 7, 2009 at 11:10 am
baxter you look like a teddybear when you were it.
i read your book very touching i cryed reading it too
have a good one!!
Lori Gerbac | November 7, 2009 at 12:15 pm
Dear Melissa and Dennis,
I just learned of Baxter’s passing and wish to extend my deepest sympathy. The pain runs deep when we lose our treasured pets, but Baxter clearly was not just a pet. He was an ambassador, a therapist, a friend, and a kind, adorable, fuzzy bear/dog that touched sooo many lives and was truly extra, extra special. It hurts to know that we are without Baxter now. I cherish the moments that I got to know him at Warwicks Book store and I received his first of many generous, tender kisses of the evening. Baxter’s eye’s could melt anyone and with my love for dogs, he surely made me melt and fall immediately in love. It is that unselfish love that he shared, and gave so freely that will be sorely missed. It is hard to fathom not having his beautiful, loving face and caring soul to share with those in need of cheering up. We are left with so many beautiful memories though of this very special dog, your dog that you were kind enough to share with the world. My heart is warmed by thinking of him and flipping through the Moments with Baxter book that sits on my living room table. You can be sure that even though Baxter has crossed the rainbow bridge, he is still making a difference in the lives of others, in heaven and on earth! For that, we can be joyful. Please know that my thoughts are with you during this very difficult time of loss.
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