Moments with Baxter is a collection of touching, true stories about the poignant connection between Baxter, an 19-year-old therapy dog, and the hospice patients and their families to whom he brings comfort and love. During the last six years, Baxter has helped hundreds of patients ease out of their lives with dignity and peace. His uncanny intuition and almost human responsiveness demonstrates the unique and inextricable bond between human and dog.


89 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Debbie Watson  |  March 21, 2009 at 4:43 am

    Ohh, that sweet baby> Happy Birthday young Man.

  • 2. melissa  |  March 29, 2009 at 12:36 am

    Hey Deb(Fruity) Thanks for the Happy Birthday cheer. My time
    @Three Dog Bakery was fantastic. They even made a cake for
    me! Lots of folks came, took photos, and looked @my book.

    I can’t believe I’m 19.

    Love and hugs,


  • 3. Judi Doss  |  March 31, 2009 at 6:06 pm

    Dear Baxter,
    My friend, Sharon would like to know some dates and events that you will be attending

    Thank you,

  • 4. wasabicp  |  April 30, 2009 at 10:20 pm

    Hi Melissa, Dennis, and Baxter,
    This is Andrew. I ran into you at the Farmers Market last Saturday and I am glad I keep running into you and thank you for making me the president of Baxter’s Fan Club ☺. I got your E-Mail and saw the picture of me and Baxter. I also looked at the blog and saw Baxter swimming! How Cute!!!! Also, I have a wordpress blog as well, well it’s not really a blog, it’s actually a cheat site for this game called Club Penguin, Here is the URL:


    I hope you can check it out!

    Once Again, Thank you for making me the president of Baxter’s Fan Club, and I hope I run into you guys again!!!

    ~Andrew ☺

    P.S. The Smilie Face is Alt-1

  • 5. Rhonda  |  May 28, 2009 at 11:42 pm

    what a beautiful dog, and an inspiring story.
    I love my 2 fur babies (which is an understatment..haha)..
    I am unable to have children and being in my mid forties, and divorced, my 2 furbabies have literally saved my life in so many ways I could never fully repay them, other than the love and care I am able to give to them everyday.

    Thanks so much for your story, God Bless You…and Baxter, aka Baxiboo…

  • 6. melissa  |  June 13, 2009 at 6:43 pm

    Hello Rhonda,

    I’m so happy that you feel that way about your babies as
    my mom feels about me. She loves me more than anything
    and I am grateful that she rescued me. I try to show her
    that love back everyday.



  • 7. Connie Peterson  |  June 14, 2009 at 5:12 am

    Just love the pictures of that precious boy, Baxter! He is a comfort & joy where ever he goes! Hopefully he will continue to enjoy his golden years.

  • 8. Lori Gerbac  |  June 19, 2009 at 10:13 pm

    Dear Melissa, Dennis and Baxter,

    I met you at Warwicks last week and I was the recipient of Baxters first kiss of the evening, which was absolutely wonderful! I also purchased your awe inspiring book. I started reading it last night and finished it today; it was a book that I could not put down and as your message within encouraged, I did get to know Baxter better than his first kiss. I also learned at the end of the book that we share the same Vet, Dr. Karen Hackett- she is wonderful! I can’t stop thinking about Baxter and I have told everyone about him. I sure hope to see you again as I really enjoyed listening to your stories, being inspired and being in the company of a beautiful (furry) angel. He is a gift and you are so generous to share him and your time and devotion with others to enrich their lives. You are all angels! Thank you!

    Lori Gerbac

  • 9. Lori Gerbac  |  June 19, 2009 at 10:24 pm


    Oh.. we might even have the same Therapist too.. as mine also told me that I should love my husband and/or talk about him as if they are more important than my dogs. I love my husband dearly, but there is nothing like the love, kisses, and understanding my rescued Doberman and Great Dane provide!

    xoxoxo to Baxie!
    Lori Gerbac

  • 10. danielle  |  August 31, 2009 at 10:11 pm

    can I meet Baxter? I really want to meet him! I love old dogs, just lost my 15 year old lab. My mom died at Hospice 10 years ago…she would have loved him! Does he still visit Hospice?


  • 11. Jane Mull  |  September 13, 2009 at 10:38 pm

    I was the “other southern drawl girl” at the Hospice this afternoon who was with Dixie Sampier (artist) that got an unexpected opportunity to meet sweet Baxter! What a thrill! He is such a blessing to so many and I feel very fortunate indeed to have met him and his special family. 🙂

  • 12. Cathy  |  October 6, 2009 at 12:46 am

    I feel sad, I’ve never heard of Baxter until about half an hour ago. I saw a video of him where his mom put him in bed with some elderly ladies. I was so touched by him. I love animals, and I just love Baxter. What a precious dog. Thank you Baxter for showing us humans what unconditional love really looks like!!!

  • 13. Nancy  |  October 6, 2009 at 1:43 pm

    Like Cathy, I only heard of Baxter through a video earlier today (its going around Facebook now like wildfire!!) What an adorable “gentleman” … er “gentledog”.
    I volunteered with our Humane Society and their therapy dog team for a short time. It was indeed an honor to share the experience of joy that people have when a bundle of fur stays with them for a while. I know of several elderly people who would, for days before our arrival, begin getting ready for their visitor (not the humans of course but the therapy dogs and cats!)
    As for Baxter, he has got to be one of God’s most graceful creatures! He is, and brings, blessings.

  • 14. Sage  |  October 6, 2009 at 2:21 pm

    Hey Baxter,

    You’re the best dog in the universe! It was love at first sight for me as I am sure it is for everyone you meet.

    Someday I want a doggy just like you!

    What is your breed? Shiba Inu/Chow mix?

    Keep healing people with your lovely heart…The planet needs it!

    With a warm heart,


  • 15. Kelly RInker  |  October 6, 2009 at 8:17 pm

    I love you, Baxter. You are doing so many wonderful things for so many people. You are an angel.

  • 16. catherine  |  October 6, 2009 at 8:58 pm

    baxter is the most wonderful dog it seems! i think he must be so old because he has such an important job to do here…you are all very lucky to have each for so long! i would love to give baxter a nice pat on the head and shake his paw. very inspiring story!

  • 17. Bunny  |  October 7, 2009 at 12:04 am

    How can I get a link to the video so I can send it to my mother?
    Just wonderful what you are doing! My Bichon-Baby is 12 and she is just precious, too. Love love love love.

  • 18. Jamie T Pendleton  |  October 7, 2009 at 1:07 pm

    What type of dog is Baxter? He is awesome.

  • 19. Marilyn HIll  |  October 7, 2009 at 1:32 pm

    Such a sweetie. Makes me want another little critter to add to my brood.

    Can Baxter use his front legs…. if so can he be fitted with the little wagon to pull himself along.

    Baxter looks very loved.


  • 20. Debe  |  October 7, 2009 at 11:45 pm

    Baxter, you have visited my friend, Cheryl, twice in the past two weeks at San Diego Hospice. She loved your visits. You are a treasure. Thank you for making my friend smile.

  • 21. Kimberly  |  October 8, 2009 at 5:20 pm

    I just saw your video and I just cried!! I’m sorry you’re not able to walk anymore – I hope you never feel any pain!! At the worst time in my life I made it through because of my dog – I’m glad you can do that for people who are in such horrible sitations! You are an angel!! Sorry to be so mushy but I absolutely love dogs and what you can do for people is so incredible!! :O)

  • 22. Deb  |  October 9, 2009 at 5:58 am

    Hi Baxter, hi to your mummy and daddy too.

    Well, I’ve just found out about you old boy, and all I want to say is what a wonderful and special boy you truly are, and very much loved as you deserve to be.

    Sending you lots of hugs and kisses from here in the UK.

    Deb x

  • 23. Julie B  |  October 9, 2009 at 1:31 pm

    What a wonderful boy you are, Baxter!! I love you buddy! You’re making such a big difference in so many lives!! Keep up the good work! 🙂

  • 24. Paulette  |  October 9, 2009 at 4:26 pm

    Baxter, I just watched your video… someone should have warned me that I might need a tissue. You have a very important job and you do it with such grace and love. I can only imagine how proud your mom must be and what joy she must feel when you bring smiles and comfort to the hospice patients you visit. God bless you, sweet Baxter!


  • 25. Renee  |  October 9, 2009 at 6:14 pm

    Baxter you rock….I hope when my time comes I have a loving sweet angel to hug like you by my side….God Bless you Baxter!!!!

  • 26. angelo monteiro  |  October 10, 2009 at 2:36 pm

    i would like to know what kind of dog you are exactly. like breed/mix etc..

    • 27. baxieboo  |  October 12, 2009 at 12:16 am

      Baxter is a chow/Golden retriever mix.

  • 28. Nora Smith  |  October 10, 2009 at 8:30 pm


    A friend just had a youtube clip on their facebook comments about Baxter. Being a dog lover, I clicked on it and then of course went on to be in awe of this sweet gentle dog. When he went to lick the lady – I thought, OMG what a sweetie I don’t know if they allow thereapy dogs here, I live in Nova Scotia, Canada, but if they don’t — I would love to see them begin a program. Thank you for warming up my eveing.


    • 29. Nancy  |  October 12, 2009 at 11:08 am

      Nora – I was part of a similar program here in Ottawa. Check with your local Humane Society or SPCA. There are usually programs in most larger cities.

  • 30. Jen  |  October 10, 2009 at 10:59 pm


    You are such a beautiful boy with an even more beautiful spirit. Thank you for the gifts you share; love, comfort, compassion, and connection. You inspire me and I wish I could meet you. You have very special parents too.

    Take extra special care of yourself and ask your mom to give you a chin scratch from me.

    Hugs and pets,


  • 31. Shana  |  October 12, 2009 at 11:27 am


    I just watched your video on Facebook and I could not stop crying about how amazing you are. You bring such happiness to those you visit! What a wonderful boy you are. Keep up the good work!!

    I hope you know how very special you are. I wish I could meet you and give you the millions of kisses you deserve!! You are a furry little angel, and forever in my heart!!

  • 32. Tammy D. Olsen  |  October 13, 2009 at 3:21 pm

    Baxter, you are the most precious doggy I’ve ever seen! You look like a teddy bear! My daughter and I watched your video on Facebook last night and cried but at the same time couldn’t take our eyes off of you.

    You might think this is strange, but I get a little queasy in my tummy because you are so unbelievably precious.

    Thank you to you and your mom for the beautiful work that you do.

  • 33. Kristen  |  October 13, 2009 at 8:22 pm

    We love you in San Clemente Baxter. You are famous in my first grade class now that I have your book.
    People in Michigan now also know about you and we hope that you are well. You’re the greatest! Hugs to you and your parents.

  • 34. Leslie of Midland MI  |  October 15, 2009 at 6:56 pm

    I’m so happy he was saved from being euthanized. I wonder how many other Baxters are waiting in shelters for their forever home.

  • 35. Amy Duncan  |  October 16, 2009 at 3:15 pm

    Baxter is so precious!! I love him and appreciate your cause!!!!

    Amy Duncan
    Rome, Italy (Texas)

  • 36. James McKend  |  October 18, 2009 at 8:58 am

    I just heard Baxter died. RIP Baxter… your duty is now done. Run along and play in the golden fields of heaven. Your book will be your everlasting legacy!

  • 37. Michael van der Kamp  |  October 18, 2009 at 1:50 pm

    I am quite saddened to hear of Baxter’s passing, but am very sure he has a glorious place in heaven.
    I know he has been a blessing to many, and will be missed greatly.
    The Lord certainly created a very special animal when he made Baxter.
    My prayers go out to all who loved Baxter.

    By His grace,
    Michael van der Kamp

    Psalm 51:10 (NIV) Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.

  • 38. Kathy DeShong  |  October 18, 2009 at 10:29 pm

    I enjoyed Baxter’s video that has been circulating on the internet. I was re-viewing it this evening and noticed that Baxter has his own site on Facebook. I was saddened to read of Baxter’s passing. Baxter had an important job he fullfilled until his own last moments. I know the hole he leaves in your heart as well as those he worked with. Thanks for sharing.

  • 39. Connie Peterson  |  October 20, 2009 at 5:05 am

    My heartfelt sympathy to you on the loss of your beloved Baxter. There are no words that can take away this grief. Please know my thoughts and prayers are with you during this very sad time. If there is anything I can do please let me know. I live in Rancho Bernardo, 858-674-6524. God bless you!
    Connie Peterson

  • 40. Anna Evens  |  October 20, 2009 at 9:19 am

    My deepest sympathy to you…you are in my prayers. Baxter was (and is) a wonderful inspiration to so many. He will be deeply missed. God bless you!

  • 41. Sage  |  October 20, 2009 at 11:01 am

    The Rainbow Bridge…

    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 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, and our friends are warm and comfortable.

    All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor; those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of 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. His bright eyes are intent; His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him 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 hands again caress 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 Rainbow Bridge together….

    Author unknown…

  • 42. Sage  |  October 20, 2009 at 11:35 am

    And now The Rainbow Bridge Poem…

    By the edge of a woods, at the foot of a hill,

    Is a lush, green meadow where time stands still.

    Where the friends of man and woman do run,

    When their time on earth is over and done.

    For here, between this world and the next,

    Is a place where each beloved creature finds rest.

    On this golden land, they wait and they play,

    Till the Rainbow Bridge they cross over one day.

    No more do they suffer, in pain or in sadness,

    For here they are whole, their lives filled with gladness.

    Their limbs are restored, their health renewed,

    Their bodies have healed, with strength imbued.

    They romp through the grass, without even a care,

    Until one day they start, and sniff at the air.

    All ears prick forward, eyes dart front and back,

    Then all of a sudden, one breaks from the pack.

    For just at that instant, their eyes have met;

    Together again, both person and pet.

    So they run to each other, these friends from long past,

    The time of their parting is over at last.

    The sadness they felt while they were apart,

    Has turned into joy once more in each heart.

    They embrace with a love that will last forever,

    And then, side-by-side, they cross over… together.

  • 43. Janet Grace  |  October 20, 2009 at 1:31 pm

    So sorry you had to leave us, but you did a wonderful job here. Could you take care of my friend Rascal who passed this morning, he is a brown sharpei/lab and would love a playmate. Also if you’ll check on Katryna, Dancer and Dolph they would love to play with you and they will watch out for you.

  • 44. Tracy Martz  |  October 20, 2009 at 5:22 pm

    I just watched his video and then cried when I found out he died. He sounded really special and I wish I could have met him.
    All my thoughts,

  • 45. Kerry  |  October 20, 2009 at 6:49 pm

    I am so worried about Baxter’s loving mom, dad and family! Losing a furry kid is heartbreaking and I’m just hoping you guys know just how much you’re loved and truly appreciated for the joy you brought into the world…for without you and your patience, kindness, love and attention – we wouldn’t have had the blessing of Baxter and his unbiased devoted love.

    Please know I’m sending my thoughts your way and kitty hugs from my furry kids. 🙂 Thank you so much for Baxter!

    Thinking of you and the family…

  • 46. Kimberly C.  |  October 20, 2009 at 9:01 pm

    A friend posted a you tube video of Baxter last week on Facebook. I cannot begin to tell you how much the video touched me. I immediately bought the book ‘Moments with Baxter’ on Amazon.com. It arrived Friday… October 16th. I just heard of Baxter’s passing… I am so very sorry for his wonderful owner’s. I cannot begin to imagine what they are going through right now. I hope they are warmed to know that just seeing the video and reading the book has touched so many people… Thank you, Melissa, you and Baxter have changed my life. You made me realize what is truly important…

  • 47. Joe  |  October 21, 2009 at 4:58 pm

    God always blesses the angels on earth and Baxter you are an angel…thanks for all you have done and God bless you in heaven…Watch for my Little Rainy she left us about a year ago and we will never forget her love as well

  • 48. SABRA LANDE  |  October 22, 2009 at 12:58 am

    I will miss you, Baxie. You had the most loving mom in the whole wide world. You both shared a wonderful giift with so many. Much love,
    aunt sasa

  • 49. Judy Dixon Gabaldon  |  October 22, 2009 at 2:23 pm

    Baxter’s and Melissa’s mission of love touched me more than anything else has in such a long, long time. Having experienced hospice with both my parents (who died two weeks apart in 2006) and being a committed animal lover and defender, with five dogs of my own, I was especially moved by Baxter’s influence on dying patients. As so many of us have said, he was truly an angel on earth (as is Melissa) and now he’s a “true” angel over the Rainbow Bridge….

    Bless you, Melissa, for all the good you and Baxter did for the world. I hope a new doggy will come along some day so that you can continue your good works…

    I just can’t say enough or express myself fully. I haven’t cried like that at a video in a long time (sad and happy tears).


  • 50. Kate  |  October 22, 2009 at 6:21 pm

    I saw the video of Baxter on Facebook today and it wasn’t captioned because I’m Deaf, but a friend did a research and sent me the link to here. I read that Baxter had gone to doggy heaven. I’m so sorry, but I know he’s happy where he is now with all the other dogs and cats. My dogs from years past will look out for Baxter!

  • 51. Marta Martinez  |  October 23, 2009 at 10:58 am

    Dearest Melissa and Dennis, I am so deeply sorry to hear of the loss of Baxter. I included the photos of Baxter and my cousin Lupita who died just 2 days after these photos. I know in my soul that Baxter is in heaven, jumping and running along side my cousin and all the others that were assisted in passing by your loving Baxter. God’s Blessings to each of you, Marta

  • 52. Genny  |  October 24, 2009 at 7:29 pm

    Dear Baxter, I hope you are having a good time running and jumping and playing in Heaven. Just looking at your pictures makes me happy. I just saw your video on FB today and I cried so much. You and your mom are angels. Would you please look up Boomer the basset hound and tell him that Pam loves and misses him very much, and tell Ruger and Rosie the Jack Russells and Needlenose the collie and Demi (she’s a horse) that Missy loves and misses them very much, and please tell Jellybean (a pony) and my precious Cocomo, and Bourbon and Shanny the cats, and Reggie and my baby Moses the dogs that I love and miss them very much. And please tell Lovy the Nowich terrier that Tom loves & misses her. I love you and your mom Melissa. Love, Genny

  • 53. Janice Giampaoli  |  October 25, 2009 at 3:25 pm

    Oh my goodness Melissa, I just read your blog and learned that Baxter lived to be 19 years old. How very very lucky you are as was Baxter. From everything I read, he was a very special, and very loved dog besides being so handsome! God bless his heart and soul. Baxter is now at Rainbow Bridge with so many wonderful, loving friends, including my soul-mate Duke. Baxter will be enveloped in God’s loving care for all eternity until you meet again Melissa. My love to both of you.

  • 54. Darlene  |  October 25, 2009 at 9:31 pm

    Dearest Mellisa,
    I am so sorry to hear that Baxter has gone. He was a godsend to so many patients at Hospice. I found out about his passing this morning when we saw the picture in the paper of him with my husband. Graham too, has passed, 10/17/09
    He loved Baxter’s visits so much. Thank you for sharing your wonderful friend with so many.
    Sweet Dreams to them both.

  • 55. Deborah B.  |  October 26, 2009 at 6:27 am

    Upon viewing Baxter’s video, I thought about how much pain he was in yet how much will he had to comfort others. Perhaps in doing so, for a fleeting moment ,he forgot his own. Baxter’s selfless deeds are a tribute to his legacy and all other fyrred and feathered creatures. He has touched our hearts and of those he physically touched.

    • 56. baxieboo  |  October 31, 2009 at 8:53 am

      Baxter’s pain was moderated and constantly tweaked w/massage, acupuncture, Chinese herbs and swimming. Baxter was not suffering. I made sure of that. I was told that I would know when
      that day came and Baxter did let me know. I hope you understand that I would never ask something of him that he was unable to do. I knew my little guy very well and I had lots of professionals
      on his team. I respected him and what he did perhaps more than anyone else on the planet.

      Thank you for writing to me and for your comments.

      Melissa, Baxter’s mom

  • 57. Caea Sager  |  October 26, 2009 at 8:59 am

    Dear Melissa,

    I have a seriously ill child who has benefited from the love of therapy dogs through the years. Watching the tribute of Baxter made me want to thank you for all that the two of you gave to others in this lifetime. God Bless and Keep You as you mourn the loss of your very special therapy dog.

    Caea Sager

    • 58. baxieboo  |  October 31, 2009 at 8:50 am

      Maybe one day you can read Baxter’s story to your daughter. Thank you for writing to me. Melissa, Baxter’s mom

  • 59. Marsha Funchess  |  October 26, 2009 at 2:45 pm


    Saw on aol about the passing of the world’s best therapy dog and decided to read on. In reading through the article, I saw where it said you were Baxter’s owner. Learning that, I am not at all surprised that he was the best therapy dog…… I am sure you 2 made a beautiful team.

    Knowing you from many years ago in Jackson, MS I know Baxter’s passing is hard for you, but I also know you will remember the good times and all the wonderful moments y’all had bringing cheer to those more needy. I know you will continue on with your loving, caring spirit.

    I can’t wait to get a copy of the book…. and I hope if you ever back in Jackson, you will give me a call….. I’d love for it to be a signed copy!


    • 60. baxieboo  |  October 31, 2009 at 8:49 am

      Hello Marsha,

      Thank you for your kind comments. I would be honored to personally sign your book. I appreciate your purchasing it as it’s all for a good cause and it does, too, spread the message of
      pet assisted therapy. I am so fortunate to have had this type of bond with a higher being. Baxter truly was not of this world. He was love reincarnated.

      Hope we can meet on my next visit.

      Hugs to you,

      Melissa, Baxie’s mom

  • 61. Kristy Brown  |  October 26, 2009 at 7:12 pm

    I am sooooo sorry about Baxter. I just read about him for the first time today. My eyes are tearing up right now. You & your husband are very, very special people. He is is in heaven now, giving everyone the love he gave here on earth. My kitty, Mimi sends a “meow” and so sorry as well. Please take care of yourselves.

    • 62. baxieboo  |  October 31, 2009 at 8:47 am

      You can learn even more about my little guy by reading his book, MOMENTS WITH BAXTER, which is really a gift to the world, especially since ALL proceeds go to charity in honor and memory
      of my cuddle bug. Melissa, Baxter’s mom. As trite as it may sound, it really is the gift that will keep on giving.

  • 63. Andrea  |  October 26, 2009 at 8:27 pm

    This is the most amazing story. Baxter was and will always be one of a kind! Thank you for blessing so many people with his comfort.

    • 64. baxieboo  |  October 31, 2009 at 8:44 am

      For me, as well. I have never had an experience with a dog like the one I had with Baxter. I recognized long ago he was different. He had a gift that was available to anyone and everyone. I
      was lucky enough to be the one who got to share him with the world. I feel so grateful and indebted to him. Melissa, Baxter’s mom

  • 65. Lisa  |  October 27, 2009 at 2:50 am

    I saw AOL news about Baxter. It was video and no closed caption because I am deaf. Also, I read the story about Baxter from Melissa. Baxter was great dog to care of people at hospic. I felt sad that Baxter gone. He goes to heaven gate now.

    • 66. baxieboo  |  October 31, 2009 at 8:43 am

      One of the healing persons who was @Baxter’s memorial, more like reflection, service is learning to sign. She will be a wonderful addition to the world when she becomes a full fledge
      vet. And, Baxter’s acupuncturist is studying to sign as well. Regardless of your inability to hear, I know you can feel that Baxter is what is between you and me. He is the heartbeat
      that continues to bring people together and awaken the world that love is all that matters. Melissa, Baxter’s mom

  • 67. Sonia  |  October 27, 2009 at 2:49 pm

    Baxter family,

    Thank you for sharing a video of Baxter. We were touched by his unconditional love. It uplifted us because our service dog Tansi, aged 15 1/2 passed on December 27, 2008. She and other animals will keep Baxter content at the Rainbow Bridge.
    Please know that we keep you and your family in our thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.

    Love Tansi’s momma and dad

    • 68. baxieboo  |  October 31, 2009 at 8:40 am

      Thank you so much for your empathetic response. It seems to me, and I’ve lost many dogs, that Baxter’s death is different for me. And, perhaps it has to do with the depth of his
      story, the years and years, moments and moments, of hearts he has impacted. His wing spread is so large, so powerful, and so deep. Melissa, Baxter’s mom

  • 69. Pa Smith  |  November 2, 2009 at 2:43 pm

    I just had to tell you how sad I am to find out about Baxter going to the Rainbow Bridge. I am tearing up as I write because I know all about dog love. I had watched some videos awhile back & I can’t even imagine your loss.
    I wish everyone could understand dogs the way we do. I believe God gave them to me cause nothing makes me happier than my fur babies. The poem you wrote for him is beautiful. Made remember why I would rather hang out with my fur babes instead of people.
    You have my sincerest condolences.

    • 70. baxieboo  |  November 4, 2009 at 7:44 am

      Right now, Baxter is deep within me, in my heart, and really, all around me. Through so many individuals’ messages, Baxter’s love
      seems to be pouring into my life. It’s this, these incredible empathetic words, that fill my life @this moment. It’s a huge transition.

  • 71. Pat Smith  |  November 2, 2009 at 3:25 pm

    I went to Amazon & read a few exerps from the book & I see your originally from Jackson, Ms. I’m from Meridian.

    • 72. baxieboo  |  November 4, 2009 at 7:42 am

      I’ve been to Meridian many times. Used to go w/my mom, who died a very long time ago, to Weidemans. I believe that’s the correct
      spelling? I did return to Jackson last year for a book signing @Le Murier Bookstore. Perhaps you’ve been there.

  • 73. Sue.  |  November 4, 2009 at 3:50 am

    When you look up into the sky and see the stars , Baxter we be the brightest one. A beautiful story to share with all my friends who dedicate their lives to making others comfortable and not alone.xx

    • 74. baxieboo  |  November 4, 2009 at 7:49 am

      I spent so much of my time w/Baxter that my life was always full. It seemed wherever we went, Baxter was the magnet that drew
      people into my life. When we began volunteering 7 yrs. ago, again, it was Baxter who allowed me to blossom as a volunteer. His
      magic was in great demand. There would be a list of rooms for us to go to visit. Family members, friends, and staff would request
      us to visit the patient. Oftentimes, the request, however, would be not for the patient. I cannot tell you how many others just
      wanted/needed to luxuriate it in all his love and comfort. I was the lucky one. I got to go home w/him, sleep next to him, and
      awaken with him in my life all over again day after day. It was truly an amazing relationship. He was a lifetime experience, a one
      in a lifetime experience.

  • 75. susan burgoyne  |  November 4, 2009 at 6:53 am

    Hi i av sin ur pics a few times and im soooo sad and sorry ur not wi us nemore. Just luking thro ur pics and wot uv dun is so remarkable and heart warming and a BIG thanku 2 ur mom 4 letting u do all u did. I was in tears wen id read that u werent ere nemore and thinking all of the gud and happiness and serenity u brort in2 ppls lives. Must admit just luking at u made me sooo comfortable and at ease u def got the healing power not just in person but ova the comp and world 2. God Bless u sweet Angel now u can soothe and calm all the ova Angels down in Doggy Heaven. My thorts and heart goes 2 ur mom. xxxx

  • 76. Judy Dixon Gabaldon  |  November 4, 2009 at 2:21 pm

    Greetings Melissa – I wrote a note earlier (#49) trying to express how I felt and feel still. Baxter and you have impacted so many lives for the better – personally and through the magic of the internet – particularly You Tube. I’ve passed your story on to so many animal lovers I know. As I said in a note I read to you personally, Baxie-Boo’s story is “right up there” – along with Faith the Dog (who walks on her two hind legs) and a few other memorable stories that I can share some time. I also plan to purchase the book and would love to have you sign it. I have five dogs (all strays, but one). We found another the other day and took him to the shelter. I wanted to take him home, but the other dogs would not have treated him kindly, probably, and besides, technically in this city, I think the legal limit is three dogs. I didn’t want him to be out on the streets – especially on Halloween. Well, another story, another time. Again, thank you for yours and Baxter’s love and compassion, and I’m sure it has come back to you in kind… Remember that old 50’s song, “You are my special angel”? I think that fits in this case!!

  • 77. Wendy Bill  |  November 4, 2009 at 2:24 pm

    Baxter was like no other….he was a true wonder and has touched my heart forever..He was a gift that always made me smile, I will miss my friend.

    • 78. baxieboo  |  November 4, 2009 at 3:12 pm

      Hey Wendy, Thanks for your warmth and hugs towards me.
      I appreciate that you got to experience Baxter and even paint
      a lovely portrait of him.

      I cherish what we share and realize that what brought us
      together was Baxter. He was the sparkler between you
      and me.

      He lights up a life! love, Melissa, Baxie’s mom

  • 79. Judy Dixon Gabaldon  |  November 4, 2009 at 2:43 pm

    I can’t believe it – I wrote a long, long note, and now I must have not submitted it? It doesn’t show. Well, I’ll try again.

    I wrote a note to you here earlier (#49). I continue to share your story with all my animal loving friends – by email and by Facebook…

    As I said in a personal letter to you, my mother was in hospice (at her home), and my dog, Rascal and I were with her just about 24 hours, around the clock. I didn’t mind since I’m an amputee, and just lazy sometimes anyway. Besides, I am so glad I was with her for those last two months and was with her when she passed away. My fear of death (if it ever did exist) is not there now.

    Rascal constantly “guarded” her and would growl if someone he didn’t know would enter the room. (LOL). He definitely wasn’t a “by the book therapy dog”. All her life, my mother didn’t really appreciate dogs as I did, but for those two months, I think she bonded with him and vice versa. Only problem was during the night she’d sometimes say, “Judy I can’t move my legs; can you move your dog?” (He would be sleeping on top of her).

    Anyway, I’m a dog nut – have five with me at home (all strays or shelter dogs but one). No other story has impacted me like Baxter’s – except maybe Faith the Two-Legged Dog (with whom I could naturally identify). She “walks” on her two hind legs. There are a couple of other outstanding dogs I would mention here too, but I’m running out of room.

    Have you seen the video “Dog and God”? I’ll post it here, perhaps. It pretty much sums up how I feel about things.

    Bless you both, Baxie-Boo and Melissa, for all you have done for so many people – in person – and via the internet.

    Love and hugs, Judy

  • 80. Brittany  |  November 29, 2009 at 11:41 pm

    Dear Melissa,

    I am so soo soooo sorry for your loss of Baxter, one of the most amazing earth Angels. I just know that God has healed your boy and maybe sent him to be an Angel somewhere else now. Baxter’s story and all that you two have done and continue to do has truly motivated me to try harder at getting my own books published about my puppy, who has had a huge impact on my life. I can only pray that one day we can have such success at helping others as you and Baxter have done.

    Baxter is such a sweetie pie and oh so cute. May peace, comfort, and love surround you always. iI pray that you will ALWAYS feel Baxters presence and love around you, his mom. Know that Baxter is in the hands of our Lord now and forever. If there is anything I can do to help you during this time, please let me know. Love you!

    • 81. baxieboo  |  November 30, 2009 at 12:35 am

      What a lovely condolence. Thank you for your heart-felt words. I appreciate every thought. I’m not sure that I’ve actually realized
      that Baxter’s not in my life. I know that’s hard to believe; however, I’ve been so preoccupied w/promoting his book, responding
      to cards and e-mails, etc, that I haven’t really digested that he won’t return. It’ very strange.

      Melissa, Baxie’s mom

  • 82. Jeff Gage  |  December 8, 2009 at 8:44 am

    I also have a dog named Baxter who is an 11 year old Boxer/Chow mix. I have had a debilitating bone disease for about 9 years and Baxter has been my therapy dog the hole time, although he doesnt know it. I walk him 3x a day and I know that is a huge reason I am still as mobile as I am. He knows when my knee’s are killing me and will lick hem trying to get the pain to go away. I don’t know what it is but it is soothing. I don’t know what I would do without “Boo”.
    Thanks for sharing your story and your love with a magnificent dog.

    • 83. baxieboo  |  December 8, 2009 at 2:05 pm

      Thank you for sharing your story. Our dogs have healing powers through their love and sensitivity to us. I’m glad that you have
      your Boo.

  • 84. Sondra J Blake  |  December 12, 2009 at 12:41 am

    Baxter was an angel without a doult. There was hardly a week that went by I didn’t think of him. I watch a video of him 5 mos. ago and my heart was in love with him. So sorry to lose him but know he is up there in heaven with all his animal buddies and human people he met and helped. Bless his soul ans sorry for his lose.

    • 85. baxieboo  |  December 12, 2009 at 9:06 am

      5 months ago….has it been that long since we made that video? He hasn’t even been gone from my life 2 months yet! Thank you
      for your kind comments. He makes peoples’ hearts beat a little more deeply.

  • 86. Danyelle Woollis  |  December 21, 2009 at 3:30 am

    just fell in love with this beautiful creature. My grandmother was at home during her final weeks, and we have two little dogs that were her life. They were with her to the end. Baxter is a beautiful angel that gave me such a tear when I read the one script about his precious time with the judge. Bless you all for the wonderful work that you did for all of the end of life patients that you touched and helped along thier journey. I hope that Baxters legacy will continue on. Bless you all and especially BAXTER!!!

    • 87. baxieboo  |  December 21, 2009 at 9:37 am

      Danyelle, I think anyone who learns about Baxter falls in love with him. He’s radiates love and symbolizes, now that he’s gone, the essence of life….
      connecting with others through love and service.
      Thank you for your lovely words. Melissa

  • 88. Mary Irwin  |  December 26, 2009 at 11:41 am

    Baxter is truely an Angel ! He reminds me of my Golden. I feel better knowing that my one-eyed Golden “Bart” (12yr… joined Baxter at the Rainbow Bridge Oct 24, 2009 )— is running playfully with Baxter in heaven.
    what a beautiful story ! I’m looking forward to read the book of Baxter! His story .. His beautiful legacy … will help heal my broken , empty heart!

    Thank you Melissa for sharing your Angel “Baxter” with all of us!
    Mary , and Savannah…(our Choc/Retriever)

    • 89. baxieboo  |  December 26, 2009 at 5:40 pm

      Hello Mary,

      Rescuing Jezebel is what’s helping me heal, for sure. I think she, like Baxie, is a natural. He was a King, but she is a princess. Pure delight! I took her
      to hospice Christmas Day to meet the staff and they got to their knees. She gracefully greeted them in such a kind, sweet way. Can’t wait to get her
      certified….a little training first.
      I’m taking her everywhere with me to socialize her and familiarize her with my life. She’s already progressed and we’re on day 3!

      Thank you for purchasing Baxter’s book. I do hope the stories…really a dog’s magical love, fills up your aching heart. I’m thinking of you and I do
      understand how tough this is.



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