February 1, 2006 ~ June 22, 2020
Survived by John, Patricia, and her canine “sisters” Lily and Rhetta
Preceded in death by her canine “sisters” Heather and Katie
A Tribute to Annie’s Life
By John Ramsey
We were overjoyed to get a call in early 2006 from our Washington breeder/groomer giving us the opportunity to get another Westie. Patricia flew to Seattle and met the breeder in the parking lot of the Nordstrom’s at Tacoma Mall to get the little girl we named Annie, after Patricia’s middle name Ann. From then on, we often referred to Annie as our “Nordy Girl” and she definitely lived up to the name. Annie was our most beautiful Westie; the canine judging term is “conformation” and Annie had almost perfect conformation to the Westie breed standard. It is, however, her inner beauty that we will remember more; we called her “Sweet Annie” for her entire life. She had a gentle nature and got along well with all people and other creatures. Patricia brought her home to our new house in Helotes TX that we had just moved into; this was her only home for the rest of her days.
Annie was the middle girl of our five Westies; she was the only one to know all four of the others. This heightens our sadness at her loss more in that we have lost a continuity point in our family. But Annie will be missed for many other reasons. She was Patricia’s angel while convalescing from her many surgeries during Annie’s lifetime; we called her our “little nurse”, complete with a white uniform, because she was always in the bed with Patricia to be with her and comfort her in those times. Because of this, there is a special bond between Patricia and Annie that will always be there. When in the house and not in bed with Patricia, she could often be found on the back of the sofa in our bedroom looking out into the back yard, guarding it from squirrel incursions. I called Annie my “little engineer” because she was very smart; for example, when I walked her on leash she would always walk on the same side of poles or other obstacles as I did, avoiding getting me hung up with the leash. She seemed to understand spatial relationships in a way that our other Westies definitely did/do not!
Of our five Westies, our first (Heather) and last (Rhetta) could play ball with the best in the world in the classic dog “fetch, bring back, don’t let him have it without a fight, repeat” sense. Annie played ball, but with her own rules and her own flair. After fetching a ball, she would bring it back to about 4 feet from me, lie down and mouth it until she was ready, and then suddenly shoot it to me by flipping it with her nose. It was quite cute and her accuracy with her nose flip was excellent.
Annie experienced a very healthy and happy life for most of her days. She enjoyed all of her “sisters” very much and loved to go on walks with Lily and me in her later years. The day after Thanksgiving in 2018 she suddenly had a severe neurological event that was later determined to be an autoimmune meningitis that was caused by a parasite. She survived and, with daily steroids, lived the next eighteen months of her life as she had the previous thirteen years. Within the last month, the severe neurological symptoms returned and could no longer be managed by the adjusting and changing of medications. Our fourteen year old Annie left this world and us on June 22, 2020. We miss her terribly and appreciate your thoughts and prayers as we begin adjusting to our great loss.
Sweet Annie, we love you!