Legend of LeTy LivesNovember 4, l985 -April 28,
Good Bye Dear Le-TyA memorial to our best friend(A poem to Le-Ty by Darren Mann)Le-Ty!! is a loving caring little muffin he is so
cuteand he is just a little trooper we all have cared forLe-Ty he was
sick my Mom started to have to givehim fluids every day I love my dog so
much I stayhome from School I am in Grade 2 I stay home
It all began 12 years ago when my Dad gave me my annual
birthday money. Usually the money is just spent on Christmas presents as my
birthday is in December. While growing up in Vancouver, I almost always
had a dog and really missed not having one. For years I admired Shih-tzus
through pet store windows, and whenever I saw them I really wanted one (no I
don't suggest that you buy one from a pet store). Dad had given me enough money
this birthday to make this dream a possibility.
I started checking out the pet sections in the newspaper and
making litter inquiries. The first litter I saw was stunning but I felt no
connection to a puppy. Then I visited a local breeder Susan Student, who
had two litters with several pups to chose from. Susan knew I had my heart
set on a female before I arrived at her home.
There were other potential buyers so I held one female, and
then a little male while waiting. The little male was so unusual in his
response to me compared to any of the other puppies I observed. He seemed to be
so relaxed yet happy to see me as if he knew me already. He wagged his
tail, wriggled to my voice and licked my hand happily. A few minutes later
Susan exchanged him for a female pup.
It was not the same. In no time I was asking to hold
the little male pup again. Susan said "Oh, that one! Remember that one is a
little male". I told her that I knew. She said, "I thought you wanted a
female.?" Looking into his little face, I said, "I did want a female but he
chose me and he is the one."
It was so magical. I felt something special deep inside that
made me know without any doubt that this was my special puppy. At that
time he was about 3 1/2 weeks old and by 7 weeks we were able to
take him home.
He showed no signs of adjustment even on the first night
home with us. I remember thinking how unusual it was. We named him Le-Ty
(Le we pronounced as Lee from Lenore and Ty is from my son Tyler.) Sadly, not
long after we had him he began with what seemed like a small bladder
problem. But it kept reoccurring or never clearing up. He
accidentally ingested some bad turkey a year later and he developed kidney
Then every few months he would have a bad spell brought on
by eating the wrong food or something. Sometimes baby-sitters or visitors
would accidentally drop or give him protein out of ignorance. People did
not realize that beans, peas, eggs or cheese were proteins, and do not realize
how many foods other than meat have protein in them. Le-Ty 's kidney disease
slowly became worse, and the bad spells were longer, and closer
One crisis began after Le-Ty ate a corn husk accidentally
dropped by my two year old son Darren, during a barbecue. Recently
separated from my husband, I was temporarily off work with a torn muscle in my
ankle. We were in a mess financially and had to figure out a way to pay back
money we borrowed for the Vet bill and for the continuing Veterinary costs. This
particular episode came to approximately $1,000.00 for just the months
accumulated Vet bills.
The day after the Le-Ty went to the hospital, Tyler began
his lemonade stand to help pay for the rising bills. He was seated in his
small chair at a little table, with pictures of Le-Ty and copies of his current
Vet bills posted on a paint easel. Tyler worked for five days, about 10 to 12
hours a day, in the hot sun without much in the way of shade. Tyler was not
quite 9 years old at the time. He soon learned that it is not always
a dog-eat-dog world, and quickly discovered that people have generous hearts
when it comes to a little boy and his special buddy. The Vancouver
Province newspaper was covering a baseball tournament across the street
from Tyler's stand. When the reporter noticed Tyler's table, he came over to
check it out. The Vancouver Province ran Le-Ty's story with a picture of
Tyler at his stand. Soon, readers came from near and far to meet Tyler and Le-Ty
while donating to his cause. People dropped off bottles, checks, cash, lemonade,
cups, cards, letters and some stayed to visit.
The Famous Lemonade
Stand Tyler, and Lenore holding Darren
One mother brought her children for a picnic on the
lawn. She wanted her children to meet Tyler and to see what one little boy
could do. Her children were very well off and had nothing lacking.
People came from Abbotsford, North Vancouver, Richmond and some from miles
away. People began sending checks to the Vet, to us and to the Province .
The local Television Crew showed up and the next thing we
knew, Tyler's Little Lemonade Stand was the top story on the news that night and
one of the top stories the following evening. A couple of days later we did a
follow up story to say that the present bill had been paid and that the
remainder was in an account for the dog and would be used for his special kidney
diet dog food and for his ongoing Vet bills due to his Kidney and Bowel disease.
Tyler had also had searched the blue boxes for a square mile for pop and beer
cans to cash in for money.
The lemonade stand got a lot of media attention for several
days in Vancouver. Then we received a call from a Reporter in Florida who
had read the story over their wires. They ran the story in Florida and
before you knew it we were International. We received calls, and letters,
and even cards, and presents at Christmas time a few months later. This
experience gave us back our faith in human kindness and generosity. The
money helped pay for his vet bills and special dog food he required for years.
We received mail from Germany, Hawaii, Alaska etc.
Le-Ty suffered from kidney disease for many years. It seemed not to be a big
problem for him if we followed his diet, though he had health problems at
least a couple of times a year. The last 8 months was a constant
It was not until he had a total body ultrasound just 2
months before his death that we learned that he had been suffering with several
other problems . We discovered that some of his previous problems were due to
cysts in his bladder, a tumor in his prostate, liver problems, blood problems,
heart problems, and bowel disease as well. The Vets that discussed his
case were amazed that he had done so well for so long. They actually
confessed that it was beyond science and that his love for us must have been
what kept that little fellow going.
Over 2 months before Le-Ty's death I had asked a girlfriend
who is also a Pastor, Sandy Sasaki, to my home to do a blessing with me
for him, and to release him with our love. We thought he was going to die
before the day was over. At this point, I realized that soon I would have to say
good-bye to my closest, dearest, trusting, courageous friend. I could no stand
to see him suffer and had even called a Vet one Sunday to have him put
down that day but I could not find anyone. I had hoped he would go
peacefully and quickly on his own. I hated the thought of ending his life
for him. Sandy came to my house and we held him and cried and told him how
much we loved him and to please have our blessing and go with Grandma to Jesus
in Heaven. Sandy placed her hands on Le-Ty as we prayed together.
Sandy said she sensed that he was not going to die that day or any time soon.
She said she felt some change occur after we began praying.
She was right. Le-Ty and God must have known that we were
not really ready to release him even though for his sake we wanted him to go if
he needed to. During those last couple of months I had enough time to
accept his fate with strength as well as sadness. I realized I would lose him
soon and would sometimes carry him around, or just hold him with tears streaming
down my face knowing it could be the last time . He would stare at me so
intently and sadly while gently licking my tears from my face. I
felt that he was hanging on because he was worried about leaving me.
Le-Ty was an inspiration. That little guy enjoyed his car
rides and walks right up until five days before we gently let him go. The
week before he died he enjoyed a 2 mile walk along the Fraser River just a few
blocks from our home.
When my boys were sleeping and I was alone with Le-Ty I felt
he was a special gift from God. He had been with me through many tough
times and was always there to comfort me. The last couple of weeks he knew his
time was very near and his eyes became overwhelmingly sad . I prayed and told
him again on the Friday night that my Grandma up in heaven just loved little
dogs and she would take great care of him as I was her favorite Grandchild. I
told him several times at the end that it was all right to go but that I
would miss him.
Finally one Sunday he refused his food no matter what I
tried and he did not want to go for his walk. I gently force fed him once that
day. I kept thinking he might snap back again as he did so often.
The next morning, Monday, I was wakened by the sounds of him throwing up on my
bed. The dreaded knowledge became clear - this was the day. My Vet. and
some of my close friends had said I would know. I had been so worried
about not realizing the right time for him. I would not see him starve and I
would not force him to eat now.
That day I told the boys they would not be going to school
that we were all going to the Vet for a serious discussion about Le-Ty. I
told them that we would talk it over with the Vet. but that we would probably
say good-bye to Le-Ty at home later that day. I had been discussing and planning
this day with the boys for a few week (I just did not know when the end would
be). I told the Vet what had been happening and why I felt that today should be
his last day of suffering. I wanted the boys to learn as much as possible
about the reasons so they would agree and feel right about this decision. They
were able to get all their questions asked and answered.
The Vet gently and patiently explained everything about his
condition, his bleak future, the pain he must now be suffering, his
depression, and all about the grieving process. It was a long healthy
detailed discussion. I was surprised by all their excellent questions,
their concern for their little buddy, and the mature although sad way the
handled the situation.
Their questions included one that I had not
expressed. My eldest son asked, "Isn't it wrong to end any living
creature's life?" The Vet said something I too needed to hear and had not
realized. He said that in the Bible, God clearly states that he has given Man
dominion over the animals. That it is not wrong for us chose to end an animal's
suffering. Hearing that was such a relief for me.
We took Le-Ty to a local fast food drive in and offered him
his hearts desire but he was not hungry. I now wish over his last few
weeks I had let him eat any of his favorite foods. Later, we took him for a last
walk which was more like taking turns carrying the poor little sweetie. ( I
found out weeks later that my boys went back to the tree where he did his last
pee and marked it - how very sweet.)
A friend came over and took a few minutes of video of us all
together visiting one last time. In the video we held, kissed, stroked and
talked to Le-Ty and each shared special memories we had of him. We told
cute stories about him running in circles around the living room to entertain
us, and of how he knew which stocking was his at Christmas etc. We talked about
our favorite times and put his hat on so we would have one final shot of him in
his baseball cap. We sat together on the couch while my girlfriend taped us and
we just forgot she was taping or that he would soon be gone, for a few more
treasured last moments together. I am so glad we have these moments on
The Vet soon arrived and we began by praying together. Le-Ty
was given a relaxant shot first, and then one to gently release him from his
tired and worn out little body. We kissed and stroked him and softly said we
loved him and to go to Grandma. I am crying again as I relive these final
moments. I told Le-Ty that it was all right to go now. We love you. Don't worry.
Please go to with Grandma and be with God in heaven and we will see you again
one day. We told him how much we loved him and wanted him to not suffer
...one last hold and then it's
over.Watching me, you know I cry,you wave a kiss to say
I wailed out loud as soon as he died and I have never cried
like this before. The pain was incredible although I felt his peace. It was the
most horrible painful sounds of crying I can ever remember making. The
sounds of extreme pain and loss were horrible. But he was not there to lick
the most tears I ever cried the days following his
death. He died in my arms as ever, looking into my eyes and never looking away.
Darren, my youngest carefully cuddled his own first baby sleeping bag around
Le-Ty as he was dying. We held him for awhile and then the Vet gently carried
him away in the little sleeping bag.
I suggested to the boys that we pack up a few things and go
away for a few days. My best friend had been waiting for my call, as we had
already discussed the possible plans a few days earlier. We packed up and left
almost immediately and picked her up on the way. This was an excellent
thing to do because it gave us something to do and other things to think about.
The job of packing was suddenly enjoyable as it was a diversion. The boys
love to stay in motels with pools and hot tubs.
I am sure God had a great deal to do with our plans that
day. We had such a good change of scenery with our close friend and her toddler.
I am sure God put several more deer and wild life in our view along the highway
as we drove to Princeton, B.C. I have never seen more than two deer on that
route and this time we counted more than 25. It was miraculous. It was as if God
were trying to let us know he cared. These times are never enjoyable but this
day was so well planned and felt so right that it made it so much easier to
accept. I felt that God was with us and that Le-Ty although sad also would be
relieved of his pain.
We spent two sunny days in Princeton and kept busy all the
time. It was great to be in different surroundings with my best friend and
children. When we returned home the first thing we did before we unpacked was to
watch our video of the last treasure moments with Le-Ty. These times are never
easy but we felt really at peace with the way we conducted the entire
ordeal. I am so proud of my two sons. A few weeks later I produced a
memorial video with music which included shots of Le-Ty as a puppy and other
special times with us over the years. Our friends and family have enjoyed
watching it many times.
I have aged 3 years easily as a result of losing Le-Ty and I
still miss him and grieve for him terribly. It seems so incredible how
much his death has effected me. I cried several times a day at first and
now a little almost weekly.
One of Le-Ty's special treats he enjoyed was being snuggled
up in my jacket and going for a bike ride through Central Park or along the Pitt
Le-Ty's death was one of the hardest experiences I have ever
lived through. He had been on a roller coasterride for the last 8 months of his life and during the last
few I had to keep a medical chart to insure I gave him all his medications and
treatments correctly. In the last month it was practically a full time
job. I was fortunate to be working out of my home. We spent a fortune on
Vet. bills but we felt he wanted to live and that we had generated at least half
of the money for his Vet bills with Tyler's lemonade stand. Our Vet helped us
out with a special discount as well. She even took Le-Ty to her home at
night when he was critically ill a few times. Dr. Leslie Ross and her
staff were very kind to all of us.
I have been taking my pets to Dr. Ross for over l8 years.
The clinic operates now is about one hours drive east of us but I still take my
pets to her when possible. One night her assistant Shelaigh offered to have me
stay overnight at her place in case Le-Ty began to pass away in the night.
Her home was only a block from the clinic. Dr. Ross and her staff were
unbelievably, special and kind to us as well as to Le-Ty. They showed me
how to do Subdural Fluid Therapy at home and this gave Le-Ty a few more
enjoyable months of life. It took me awhile to become an expert at giving Le-Ty
his subdural fluids. He always understood that I was doing my best, and never
tried to bite me if I accidentally hurt him. At times, despite my efforts the
needle would still hurt him. He always let me know by his eyes, that he
understood and knew I was only trying to help him. He always enjoyed going to
see Dr. Leslie Ross at her clinic, and happily greeted them all every time.
Eventually, she felt it necessary to refer us to a closer specialist, but they
still worked together on his case.
After his death we placed an obituary notice in the
Vancouver Province Paper in the Pet section. It read MANN - Le-Ty a male
Shih-Tzu passed away peacefully at home...... it also included a special thank
you to Dr. Leslie Ross of Sardis and her staff. We thanked our past lemonade
stand supporters and expressed our gratitude for its continued help to enable
Le-Ty to live well beyond all expectations. Le-Ty had many friends and admirers
nationally. He was the world's greatest Shih-Tzu ambassador.
My son, Tyler's lemonade stand generated over $7,000.00 over
the years for Le-Ty's ongoing Vet bills. A few weeks after his death we began
plans for his memorial fund. A memorial fund now exists for needy animals at our
Veterinarians in Le-Ty's name. His legacy is passed along with every
animal the fund aids.
Dr. Ross sent me a fax stating:"As his veterinarian for many years, I will never
forget a little tan and white Shih-Tzu named Le-Ty. He would have been twelve
years old this month. Afflicted with chronic kidney, prostrate and in his later
years heart problems, he was a very regular patient of mine. Throughout
all of his various, at times complicated and stressful treatments, his eyes
always remained bright and trusting, even until the day of his death, where at
home he was gently released from his suffering. I felt a personal loss when this
small dog died, a small dog with a very big heart. In a fitting memorial to his
fighting spirit, his owner's on the anniversary of his birth donated a fund to
our clinic in Le-Ty's name to help support a needy ailing pet. It both
humbles and makes our clinic feel proud to be a part of a process that allows
little Le-Ty's spirit to live on."
We really missed Le-Ty and really noticed the loss whenever
we arrived home to an empty house. Just a few weeks after Le-Ty's death I
was picking the boys up from their school when I noticed another Mom with a
Shih-tzu puppy. I asked if I could hold her puppy. It had very
similar markings to Le-Ty. Shortly after holding it, I began to cry as if
a flood gate had just opened. The poor woman had never experienced this
with anyone else that had held her dog and she looked very puzzled. My two
sons wandered over and explained the situation. Later, when I gave her the puppy
back I felt this strange tug inside. It was difficult to give the puppy
back. This started an emotional upheaval in me which made me realize that
I needed another Shih-tzu, but not right away. I also felt a desire to have a
link to Le-Ty, so I began the search for his roots and possible relatives.
My search took weeks and many long distance phone calls. It
seemed impossible because his parents and all his litter mates had all passed
away. His whole line seemed to have died out after one of the last had
been hit by a car. I would not give up and kept making calls. I
finally struck a lead in Calgary where his Father had been born. I
miraculously found a woman, Donna MacQueen of Coralie's Kennel in Calgary, who
was expecting puppies out of Le-Ty's nephew. We finally made contact and
this big hearted woman and I talked for about an hour. She planned with me
that I could have one of her puppies and would arrange something later.
In the meantime, my boys and I decided we needed two dogs to
help us all get over our loss. We decided to find a male and a female so
that we might later breed, and they would be company for each other as well. We
never wanted to be without a link to our pals again. I then found another
woman, Kathy Lorenscheit of Tochi's Kennel, who
was expecting a litter with cousins to Le-Ty and Dar Len. It was so exciting.
Kathy sent us a video of the puppies. The boys and I unknowingly picked the same
little boy out of several litters she had at the time. Coincidentally it was the
closest male relative who turned out to look the most like Le-Ty. We found out
several months later that he was also related to Le-Ty's mother's line a little
further back on at least one side. These dogs go back to some of the famous
first champion dogs brought into North America. Donna
phoned us on June 14,1997 to tell us that our little girl (a great niece to
Le-Ty) was born. We already had both their names picked out. Dar-Len
for the girl, after Darren and Lenore, and Ty for the boy pup, after Le-Ty and
Tyler my eldest son.
Their full registered names are now Tochi's Ty to Heavenly
Le-Ty and Coralie's Dar Len Kin of Le-Ty. The little girl is a miracle great
niece to our Le-Ty and the little boy is a cousin to Le-Ty and to her as well.
These two puppies have helped us a lot and they have given us a connection we
wanted to still feel to Le-Ty. They both have Nanking Kim Su in their
pedigrees several times. This Nanking line went back to the famous Yingsu's Lucky Lindy which was
on Le-Ty's mother and father's side. In a year we may
have puppies and we will keep one boy that looks the most like Le-Ty and call
him Le-Ty's TREASURE from Heaven. (and Treasure for short) Dar-Len is in her
first Dog show this Feb. with handler Bonnie Hubert.
Thank you to Susan Student for letting us choose Le-Ty years
ago and going with me to Calgary the first time. Thank you to Dr. Leslie
Ross, and her staff for her continuing support to all our family. Thank you to
CKVU for the wonderful touching story about our lemonade stand and to the
Province Newspaper for several stories written about as well.
A special thank you to my best friend, Lynda Roche for her
love, support and for always being there for us during sad and stressful times.
I really appreciated the kind words, phone calls, hugs and cups of tea
that I received from Maureen, Dr. Ross's assistant. It was also very kind of her
other assistant Shelaigh to open up her home for me and have me spend the night
when Le-Ty was close to death one evening. Another assistant Cheryl wrote up a
lovely little story about Le-Ty to go out with every animal that his memorial
fund helps. We did not have a lot of friends who understood but the ones
we did have around us had such beautiful caring souls. It was beautiful to
experience such genuine kindness and generosity of heart. On behalf of Le-Ty and
our family I want to thank all those who cared for Le-Ty and gave us the support
we needed so badly.
Le-Ty gave us so much love and life experience from one
little dog. His ashes have been carefully placed in a specially made
wooden planter on our patio. In the planter we have an evergreen dwarf spruce
with little flowers planted around it. In front of the planter we have placed a
specially made bronze plaque which includes Tyler's poem. We will cherish our
memories and love you forever Le-Ty. I hope our Dar-Len, your little niece
makes you proud. Love never ending, and your family will continue ..Lenore,
Tyler, Darren, Dar-Len, and your namesake Ty. See you on the Bridge little
to My Mom / Tyler and Darren's Grandmother:
Moira (Mann) Reid nee Drysdale
May 07, 2022
All Photo rights Lenore
Mann / Reminiscence Video