“Miracle Maggie”

On February 23rd, the world dimmed a little bit and a new star was created in the sky. Maggie, a long time patient of ours, was returned to heaven. We often find that we get attached to many of our patients because so many of them come in so often for their advanced diseases or health conditions, and Maggie was no different. Maggie burrowed her way into all of our hearts and when she passed, we all felt the loss. While we smile knowing that Maggie is healthy and happy, frolicking in the pastures near Rainbow Bridge, we frown because we no longer have her here with us or expect to see her soon.

Her furparents put together a beautiful video dedicated to the celebration that was Maggie. And even if you never met Maggie, we hope you take a moment to remember the wonderful times you’ve had with your furkids who have crossed the Rainbow Bridge and are now another star in the sky shining over us:


A special heartfelt thanks to the doctors and staff at Encina Veterinary Hospital, most especially, to Dr. Stephen Atwater. It is due to Dr. Atwater’s exceptional skills as an oncology specialist that “Miracle Maggie” became one of the most famous patients in Contra Costa County. An additional thanks to Drs. Peter Nurre and Jenifer Wang for their expertise in internal medicine and for helping greatly enhance Maggie’s quality of life in here final years.

The Good (After)life

The View at Bubbling Well

As we all know, the lives of our animal companions are far too fleeting, and it seems as though as much time as we are given, it is never enough. My first dog lived to be twenty-two, and on the day she passed our family grieved the loss as we would any other family member. One of the hardest conversations a veterinarian may have with an animal parent is the decision to put their pet down, and a part of that conversation includes care of remains. At Encina Veterinary Hospital, we use a company called Bubbling Well to assist us in cremations, burials, and memorial services. Located in the heart of wine country, Bubbling Well has a beautiful facility that rivals any human cemetery I’ve ever seen.

When assisting with the tough decision to euthanize at Encina, we typically offer two options for the care of your pet’s remains. One choice is a group cremation, in which pets are cremated together and the ashes are spread at the Bubbling Well facility. The other option is a private cremation, in which your pet’s ashes are returned in a cedar box with a personalized plaque on the front. You also have the option of disposing of the remains yourself, but you should be aware that it is illegal in many California counties to bury pets in your yard.

One of the Bubbling Well Residents

For more information regarding Bubbling Well and aftercare services not mentioned in this post, please visit their website at: http://bubbling-well.com/, or call us at (925)937-5000. If you are considering euthanasia for your pet, we are available 24/7, and we always make your difficult decision a priority.