Rachael Ray's beloved dog, Isaboo, has died, the celebrity chef and talk show host revealed this week. Ray said she was devastated by the loss, although the pet died in her arms "peacefully" at home. In a heartfelt Instagram post, she tried to eulogize Isaboo all while giving some perspective to the situation and passing on her love to friends and followers.
Isaboo passed away on Wednesday "in her backyard in the sun in the Adirondack Mountains in New York," the Rachael Ray Show host wrote on Instagram. Ray put the loss in perspective, noting that the country has lost "more than 90,000 human lives and over 300,000 of our global citizens," adding: "We all feel disconnected and so many are suffering right now." But that weight did not detract from the grief she and her husband, John M. Cusimano, felt for "a pitbull who taught us more about unconditional love, empathy, and understanding of one another than we could have ever imagined."
View this post on Instagram
"We'll miss her sense of humor. Her Wile E Coyote-ness. Her energy and her game-on attitude. She was a fighter," Ray wrote of her dog. She added that fans will likely be seeing a lot of Isaboo in the upcoming weeks, since "she was our only audience for the shows we've been producing from our home during this strange time." Ray and Cusimano have been making cooking shows at home for fans while they practice social distancing during the coronavirus pandemic.
Ray's post came with a call to action for fans. She encouraged them to contact the North Shore Animal League to adopt a pet of their own, adding: "I say from experience that bringing an animal in need into your home can help you become a better human being." She intends to "open our home and our hearts to another animal in need, because that's what Izzy would want."
"Our life will be a little less sweet without our Isaboo," Ray concluded. Fans grieved along with Ray in the comment section, sharing their condolences for her loss. While Ray put Isaboo's death in the context of a global pandemic, many fans seemed to take the opposite perspective — they argued that it must harder now than ever to lose a pet considering all the stress and uncertainty of life.
The animal shelter that Ray plugged in her post is still facilitating pet adoptions during the coronavirus pandemic, with some new protocols in place. Many other shelters around the country are doing the same. Health experts say that house pets should generally follow the same social distancing guidelines as their owners.