I Tried to Speak to My Dead Dog With Singapore’s “Animal Whisperer”
When I am not trolling on Facebook, I am thinking fondly of Shandy — my late rescue dog who was my companion of over 14 years. I was my parents’ first child and my father’s last gamete; an only child.

Shandy was my brother and I loved him like one. He passed one fateful day about four years ago, leaving a void in my soul that will forever scar me in its permanence.

Recently, I learned of an “animal communicator”,  “E”, based in Singapore who has received hundreds of rave reviews on Facebook. People seek his expertise to better understand their “furbabies” (this word is literally cancer and I apologise for using it) both living and dead. Think of him as a cross between Caesar Milan and your friendly neighbourhood bomoh.

His story begins with the death of his beloved pet, for which he consulted and trained under an Italian Reiki master. She helped him speak to his late pet and thusly kicked off his foray into animal communication. He now uses his miraculous gift to help others better understand their pets, but at a fee.

He even affectionately refers to communication with dead pets as “rainbow bridge cases”, which was the case for me.

The description of E's work on his Facebook page.
For a mere $150, I would be able to ask Shandy up to 15 questions, and to tell him whatever I wanted. Having only to stop buying my dad’s heart medication for a week to afford this, I took “E” up on his offer and ventured into the realm of poverty.

To prove his legitimacy, I decided to run a little experiment.

I put $40 (4 questions) into test questions (in italics) along with 9 fairly banal ones:

1) Do you ever blame us for what happened?

2) Did you love me or my sister more? (I do not actually have a sister)

3) Were you satisfied that we fed you the same dry food every day? (He had cooked chicken/pork with rice everyday)

4) Will you be alright with us getting another dog?

5) Since you were unsterilised, were you upset that we never got you a mate? (He was sterilised)

6) ‎What was your favourite toy?

7) Did you ever feel that we showed Lucky more love than you? (I made “Lucky” up)

8) What was your favourite treat?

9) Which of your dog friends do you miss the most?

10) What could we have done to make your life better?

11) Why were you never friendly to other humans besides us?

12) Is there anything you’d like to tell us?

13) What was your life like before we adopted you?

I also asked him to convey the following message:

“Shandy I love you and miss you very much. You were a brother to me. I hope that we made your life full and fulfilling. I hope you’re happy wherever you are now. I would give up my fiance to be with you (don’t tell her that). She’s fat and can be so rude, unlike you. You always understood me.”

Note: I do not have a fiancé and I adore obnoxious and chubby girls IRL.

If this is the face my dog Shandy shows when at the Rainbow Bridge, I'm sure he will be a hit with the bitches.
I waited nervously as “E” conducted, in privacy, the “communication” with Shandy. My brain was going at a million thoughts per minute: When will my next meal be? How long can a weak heart go without medication?

I wondered how Shandy would receive him, being a stubborn rescue who only showed any semblance of affection to my mother and I. He was also horribly nervous around strangers, and often cowered in the quietest corner of the house at the sight of guests.

A five-star review by a customer who could even smell her furbabies with E's help!
It seems that E could even time travel and predict when a customer would get a pet. I was offered no such service, however.
My phone finally rang. I picked it up with dogged anticipation. “E” sounded young, kind; he had the patience of a priest and the bedside manner of an oncologist. He explained that he had successfully contacted Shandy at Rainbow Bridge.

(In the name of brevity, rainbow bridge Shandy will henceforth be known as RBS, and my Shandy will be referred to as Real Shandy.)

He described RBS as initially “aggressive”, only warming up upon learning that I had sent him as my messenger. RBS was having a beer (yes, a beer) all alone, watching the world go by.

Spot on,” I thought to myself, “that’s the Shandy I know and love. Wow!”

“E” was off to a great start. RBS said that he mostly only had meat, not the crappy dry stuff. At that point, I knew he was the real deal. We only fed Real Shandy the best. He then went on to specify that it was pork and chicken. I felt my heart fall from my chest.  Amazing.

Almost as quickly as he caught my attention, he broke my heart. RBS loved my (non-existent) sister more than me. RBS said that she was gentler with him and that she “stroked his face” the way he liked it. Could RBS have mistaken my mother for my sister? Well, perhaps. Benefit of the doubt was given.

He then went on to provide an inspiring answer to question 7, citing RBS’s love for family and harmony but not addressing his state of fertility. To be fair, if someone had put me to sleep and taken my gonads, I probably would not have noticed. Perhaps Shandy never knew of the heist that was executed on his family jewels.

Rest in peace, Shandy, wherever you are. Don't go scaring the little ones.
RBS also felt that (the non-existent) Lucky deserved more attention owing to his advanced age and poorer health. Additionally, he was apparently unhappy that we had always left his fur wet after his weekly bath. Real Shandy, however, always had a towel down followed by a warm blow-dry. We should perhaps have thrown him in the dryer for a minute-long spin cycle after each bath.

RBS’s favourite toy was a rubber ball  while Real Shandy never had one. RBS also said that he was a house dog that only wanted short ten-minute walks, while we used to take Real Shandy on hour long adventures every day.

Overall, RBS was very satisfied and grateful for the life we afforded him. He wanted us to know that he was no longer fat, was peeing regularly and was drinking a lot of water; all of which were never known issues with Real Shandy.

As the conversation ended, I felt increasingly disappointed. Not in anyone else but myself. I had obviously not paid Shandy enough attention as most of the information “E” revealed came as a surprise to me.

I should have known about the rubber ball. I should have forced him to come home early from walks despite his violent protests. I should have known that his constant pissing was not enough. Most of all, I should have known that I had a sister.

I walked home with a heavy heart. “E” had assured me that Shandy would visit me in a dream. I went to bed eagerly that night, only to wake up to yet another pair of crusty boxers, which comes at no surprise (or warning).

Shandy, I love you. I am sorry for not understanding you better. I hope you enjoy your stay at Rainbow Bridge;  An idyll like that almost sounds made up.

Until we meet again.

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