I lost my dog today

Discussion in 'Chit Chat' started by kjade, Feb 24, 2009.

  1. kjade

    kjade New Member

    Hi everyone~
    I haven't been here in awhile, I know. But I needed to talk today. I am so devastated. We had to make the decision to put our dog down today, and I am completely heartbroken.

    For the last few days, he was refusing to eat. He was vomiting any water or food he tried to eat. We decided he must have some kind of flu or something, so we decided to watch him and if he didn't get better, we would take him to the vet. We also thought he just didn't like the new food we just bought this past week, however, our other dog seemed fine with that food.
    Well, last night, we noticed that he was falling down anytime he tried to walk. It was heartbreaking. Then when my husband tried to take him outside, he fell down our basement steps. He took him to the vet this morning, and they ran some x-rays. I was thinking that maybe he had swallowed a part of a bone he had chewed up, and maybe it was lodged in his intestine or stomach.
    The vet told my husband after looking at the x-ray that it was a mass, possibly on his liver, and they were going to do an ultrasound, and run some blood work. I was at work...and just trying to remain calm, and praying for the best.
    A couple hours later when I phoned the vet, he gave me the devastating news that he has Lymphatic (not sure of sp?) Leukemia. He explained that our dog had the highest white blood count they had ever seen, and they were shocked by the results. He said this form of cancer is very rare. He explained there is really nothing we can do. Even chemotherapy may do more harm than any good, as the cancer has already spread to all of his organs and bone marrow.
    So my husband and I chose to end his suffering. He was only 5 years old.

    We are not strangers to this heartache. Six years ago, our beloved German Shepherd was diagnosed with Lymphoma. At the time of the diagnosis, we were in the process of moving into our new home. We were very upset, but chose to try chemo with him. The vet had told us he could live another year or so with treatment. So we spent the next 5 months taking him in for treatments every month. Until it got to the point where he could no longer walk or even stand up on his own to go outside to the bathroom. We had to make the difficult decision to put him down. It tore us apart, but it was for the best. He was only 6 yrs old.
    My husband and I held him as he passed - it was the hardest thing I have ever had to do. And it took a long, long time for me to get over that moment - watching him slip away. I felt like we had failed him. It was one of the very few times I have ever seen my husband cry. At the time, I swore I would never own another dog. I felt no one would replace him, and I couldn't bear to ever go through anything like that again.

    But we missed having him there everyday. Within a few weeks, we ended up at the pound. They had a new litter of puppies, and he was the one who came to me, and would not leave my side. So we adopted him. And in some ways, having him around helped ease the pain I was going through over losing my dog just weeks before.
    He has been a wonderful pet...he wasn't always the best behaved though. He was part hound, and hounds have the tendency to wander. We live in the country, and I can't tell you how many times that dog would just run....we were always getting calls from people all over the place that they had our dog in their yard, and we had to go get him. He loved to wander. The thing they all told us was that they adored him. They thought he was just the sweetest, nicest dog. And he was.

    It was so hard to sit in the vet's office with him for the last time. We took the whole family so we could say goodbye. I didn't want to be there when they put him to sleep (It was so hard with our first dog - I just didn't want to go through that again). So we talked more to the vet who assured us that this was the best decision for the dog, because the cancer had spread so rapidly, and he was not going to get any better. My oldest son, 9, held him and began to cry. Then we were all crying and holding him - knowing it was the last time.

    Even though he could hardly walk, he jumped up and ran by the door - it was like he thought we were getting ready to go home. It broke my heart. I can't deal with this.
    And I can't believe this is happening again. I just can't. WHY? I sort of feel like this is God's way of letting us know we should never own another pet. Were we terrible "parents" to him? Did we do all we could do for him? I don't know....I guess I never will. The only comfort I have is that the vet told me he has gone through this twice himself in the last 10 years. And he said if it were him, he would do the same thing. So I hope and pray we made the right decision.

    I am saddened as I watch my other dog - he looks lost without his best friend. He keeps running through the yard as if he is looking for him.

    If you read this, thank you. I just wanted to get out my feelings. I am saddened beyond comprehension right now.
  2. ckball

    ckball New Member

    Oh I am so sorry you had to go threw this again. I know how much our fur kids mean to us and don't think for one minute that you failed him or where a bad parent. You did not cause this to happen.

    Bad things happen to good people and this is one of those times. I don't know what I will do if I out live my girls. I have had to put a cat down, he had leukemia too and my other cat died in the middle of the night when he was 15, I had had him since a kitten and we went threw a lot together.

    Your buddy is now on Rainbow Bridge and knows you did the absolute right thing for him. So you cry and share all you want but please don't blame yourself for anything, it was out of your control. He is Gods angel now and no longer suffering. Hang in there and know your "family" is here for you aways-Carla

  3. Rafiki

    Rafiki New Member

    I am so, so sorry for your shocking loss. I am constantly amazed that we are willing to put ourselves through this for the great gift of loving a good dog. It is just gut wrenching! And, we do it over and over again.

    I know your beautiful hound was worth all this awful pain. His wonderful, joy filled, crazy running away, tail wagging, face licking life was worth it.

    I don't know how we do it. I don't know how we can bear the loss of these wonderful creatures. I live in constant amazement that they are so remarkable that we are willing to walk, knowingly, into heartbreak for the great pleasure of sharing our life with them.

    You gave your boy a good and rich life complete with woods in which to follow his nose where it would lead. And, he was spared a long illness because of your experience and wisdom and the courage you showed in being able to let him go.

    I'm weeping with you. My little dog is 10. He will probably not outlive me - and I can't even phrase it any other way. I have said goodbye to two dogs during the life of the wee fella I have now. I don't know how I survived but I'm here and I'm ok and you will be too.

    Be open to feeling a familiar weight lean against you when none seem to be there, let you heart sense your boy comfort you for I am absolutely sure they do.

    Love never dies and good dogs always come when called...


    ETA Carla and I posted at the same time and neither of us could even write it. We know the depth of your grief. I will keep an eye on this thread in case you need us.
    [This Message was Edited on 02/24/2009]
  4. lgp

    lgp Well-Known Member

    for your loss. This is a tremendous loss for you and your family and the fact that it happened so quickly makes it that much more heart wrenching. I was at the vet recently when a grieving woman had to put her pet down. I did not know her but she left the vet so grief stricken that I had to go after her and console her. And yet there are no words really. But Kjade, please take comfort in the fact that your dog, your wonderful dog, had YOU for the five short years that God gave him--and you gave him a companion. He had the best life he could, thanks to you. Try and find solace in all the joy that he was and not despair in the way he left this world.

  5. Granniluvsu

    Granniluvsu Well-Known Member

    Sorry not much time right now but I just wanted to tell youhow sorry I am to hear about your poor doggie. I am sure you all loved him so much. We had to do the same thing may years ago to my DH german shepard dog but he was VERY old. However, it was still very hard to do.

    He was so sweet.

    God bless you sweetie and your doggie who I am sure he is now in doggie or animal heaven where all the animals run and play and have no pain. It is not your fault and try not to feel guilty about it. Yes, it is hard I know.


  6. springwater

    springwater Active Member

    I can feel your heartbreak...this is one of the most difficult of decisions a human has to make, and even when he knows its the right thing it doesnt lessen the anguish...I have been through this a couple of times, and have thought it made me stronger for the next time, but the pain has always been excruciating...even though the knowledge is there that our sadness will lessen with time. Happily, this is true. The pain does lessen with time.

    Kjade, i have asked many times this question you have asked...WHY? I dont know still. I dont know why. Why pain is inflicted on us in this manner. And even more potently why is such an innocent living thing like a dumb animal made to suffer something like lymphoma, cancer, distemper and rabies.

    There must be an answer out there in the Universe..but what we can do now is take the good, and reminisce on it. You and your family gave this little chappie a loving home, care, your hearts. In return he loved you, romped around, made other people happy. What life he lived, except for his last days were lived out in joy. Remember him this way. This is the way he is just now, wherever that may be.

    I pray for him and for you, his family, to recover from this traumatic loss. Its hard to imagine, but he just went away to another place, better than this one. And Im sure his loving doggy soul remembers you guys with love. Just send out thoughts to him, tell him it was hard letting go of him, but that you know he is okay now. He'll know.

    God Bless

  7. PainPainGoAway

    PainPainGoAway New Member

    Wow, what a day you had...No one would question the obvious devotion you and your family had with this special guy...You had to do the hardest thing ever for you, but the best thing for your precious dog. It's so hard to do the loving thing when it's also so painful, but we know you didn't want him to suffer.

    You of course did nothing wrong...give your heart time to heal and thank you for sharing a bit about him. I had a chow who was a bit of a wanderer...obedience school did no good but I just ended up chasing him all over the place each and every time. Just so playful and curious, and in time those memories will hopefully replace the sting of his passing.

    My heart weeps for you, and I hope getting out your feelings helped some.
    Thank you for sharing that.

    Take Care,
  8. sisland

    sisland New Member

    So sorry for your loss! and no it's not your fault in any way shape or form! My heart goes out to you and your family!,,You have all done the best you could have ever done for him!,,,,,,,Please know that you all will be in my prayers as you go through this!,,,,,,,,,,,He has now crossed over the Rainbow Bridge and will be playing with your beloved German Shepard,,,and one day they will both run to greet you all again!,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,HUgs!,,and love to you and your Family!,,,,sis
  9. fibromickster

    fibromickster New Member

    I am so sorry Kjade. Our pets are our love of our life, how horrible for you and your husband. I wish I could say something to cheer you up, but I know there is nothing. It will just take a lot of time. PLease know you are in my prayers and thoughts.

    Take care and God Bless

  10. kjade

    kjade New Member

    Thank you all so, soooo much for your warmth, compassion and kindness. I opened this thread at work today, and began to cry...so I was unable to finish until I came home. I am crying again...it is just so hard letting go. I cannot begin to explain how you have all made me feel. Your kind words have touched my heart, and are helping me right now to get through this. I hope you all know that. I am so pleased I chose to reach out and write about this here....you are all such a blessing to me.

    Today, naturally, was very difficult. When I woke up this morning, it was the first thing I thought about, and my heart sank....he was gone. He was not there when I went to get my morning coffee. He would not be there jumping around when I pulled in from work. I stared at his empty dish, realizing he would never be here again. I thought about him all day - fighting back tears.

    When I got home, I broke down again. I found myself telling him I was so sorry I wasn't able to help him. I pray he didn't feel alone and scared. I can't get the image out of my head of him running to the door, wagging his tail, as if he were saying "ok, let's go home now!". I was so torn at that moment - I still wonder if I have done the right thing. I know the vet said he was in very bad shape, and would probably die within a few days, but what if he wouldn't have? What if I would have brought him home? Was there the remote chance he could have miraculously gotten better? I guess I will never know. It is such a difficult decision to make - having someone else's life in your hands....even if it is an animal.

    I know he probably would have suffered more and this was for the best. But I still can't stop asking myself what I could have done differently. This is still such a shock to me. With our first dog, we knew for months that he was very sick, so we were more prepared for his death. (although I don't think you can ever truly be prepared when the time comes). But with this dog, I woke up in the morning thinking he would go to the vet and get some medication and come home and be fine. I never would have thought I would hear that diagnosis again, and he would be gone before the day was over. I just don't get it.

    Where I live, we are able to take the body and bury him in our yard. We have our first dog buried at the top of this hill in our backyard that overlooks our woods. We buried this dog right next to him. For some reason, it is comforting to me to be able to bring them home and place them where they belong. My husband made a cross that my son decorated. We just said a prayer over his grave. I hope it's true that they live on, and that he is able to run through the woods freely now.

    Every time he would take off in the woods, I would be so scared.....I was always so afraid he would be hit by a car if he got to the main road (which he did get there, many times). And I keep thinking about how angry I would be at him when he would come home. But now....he won't be coming home.

    Thank you all again for writing to me. You have helped lessen the pain tremendously.

    God bless you all.
  11. TwoCatDoctors

    TwoCatDoctors New Member

    They are so much more than dogs and they become family and at times children to us. They are happy to see us and certainly enrich our lives many times. I'm so sorry for the passing on of this great family member. Unfortunately animals were made to have shorter lives than us but that certainly doesn't decrease their great impact on us and the pleasure they bring. I'm so sorry.
  12. Rafiki

    Rafiki New Member

    I just dropped by to see how you're doing.

    If it makes any difference to you, I know that you did the right thing. He knew little illness and less fear - a blessing for him. Had you taken him back to your house there is very little chance (none, I think) that he would not have known a lot of both. You helped him to go home, he couldn't know it wasn't through that door. He's ok now. You'll be ok, too.

    Wishing you swift passage,

    [This Message was Edited on 02/25/2009]
  13. springwater

    springwater Active Member

    No one could have said it better. Bless your gentle knowing heart.


    I cried again when i read thru this thread. I cried because i felt your emptiness and longing for him and because he isnt there now but inthat other place, but i cried also because where there are people like yourselves who can love so much outside of themselves, there is hope for this world. This thought comforts me beyond all measure.

    God Bless

  14. PainPainGoAway

    PainPainGoAway New Member

    Hi Sweetie-- you know these are questions any devoted momma would ask, but I think you already know the answer. It made it more painful for you, but that loving sacrifice on your part was for the best. I think you had good reason to trust his doctor, so find comfort that it didn't drag out.
    You have me thinking of my own Simba...we lived near a busy road and that was always my fear..and then sure I was mad, but those loving, mischevious eyes, and you're over it just like that...secretly hoping he had a good time while out and about. I had to tie an airline cable around my belly (pregnant twice thru him too) and attach it to his leash when I took him on walks (no country then) and lets just say he walked me! Even those extra walks, he ran off all the time, that wandering spirit in him.
    I have an old record from years ago when I unexpectedly lost a puppy to an illness...a family member bought me a song called "Shannon", a song inspired by one of the Beach Boy's members I think who lost a beloved pet...I don't know, for me it brought comfort and I can't play it anymore (no record player) but I still have it. I googled it on youtube last night and fell asleep to it with you and all the others suffering out there on my mind. I like to think mine are like Shannon in the song (on an island with a shady tree).
    Thank you for those memories...it really is so painful, but so worth the love of an animal. A place on your land is perfect for you all...we buried our beloved bunny under our tree and planted lambs ears and decorated a piece of slate, so I know for us we have a reminder. The lambsear (they have soft fuzzy leaves) multiplied and spread all over, and he's still in our hearts.
    So you know you did the best thing for him, no doubts needed, but certainly understood.
    May you find comfort in your memories and know like Rafiki said, you will be okay...

  15. PainPainGoAway

    PainPainGoAway New Member

    Your love of animals shines so bright...Springwater, your heart is so sensitive I just want to reach out and give you a squeeze...I know your questions and they are good ones. Thankfully there are many willing to love even at this cost...
    Rafiki, hang in there while gravity gets you down.
    And everyone else, how loving for Kjade to know she could come here and find comfort.
    And in turn comfort us as well, reminding us how deep that love is for our beloved animals by her own example...

  16. Beadlady

    Beadlady Member

    to read of your loss. I know it hurts us terribly when we have to send our fur kids to heaven
  17. kjade

    kjade New Member

    I am so glad I came back here. I have missed you all very much. I appreciate all of your kind replies. I hope you are right Rafiki, and that he is "home". I want to picture him running crazily through the woods; going wherever he wants to go.....

    I know the pain will pass, but the guilt is what is overwhelming for me right now. I am not as upset for myself and my own loss, as I am for Kody. I wish I couldn've given him a better life...I wish I would have taken him on more walks...I wish I would have not freaked out so much when he dragged a little mud into the house, or got my white rug in my dining room dirty, or chewed up the garbage and left a mess on the floor....because now that he is gone, I would give anything to have him back making those messes. Perhaps this was a lesson for me to just calm down and not care so much about such minor things. Maybe our other dog will be better off now, because I will be a little less tense about those things. But my poor Kody won't be here to enjoy the new "me". Does that make sense? I am sure that sounds like a lot of rambling...sorry.

    I have been thinking a lot about the times we shared, and there were many happy memories...just not enough. He used to follow me around the house - wherever I went, he would be there staring at me. At times it drove me crazy. I would ask him why he was staring at me and following me so much? Now I wish he was sitting there staring. I don't know...his life was just too short. I am still aching inside.

    Oh I don't know what else to say, really. I feel like I babble too much. The past few days have really been a blur. I don't think this has all really hit me yet. I just hope anyone with pets will give their babies a big hug today, and tell them how much you love them.

    And thank you everyone again. Sharing your own stories and offering your wisdom and kindness are truly a blessing.
  18. scarletstang

    scarletstang New Member

    for your loss and have been through it also. I feel God creates these little critters for us to enjoy, whether a short time or a long time, they are a Blessing to our lives. We love them and they love us and that is priceless. You did do the right thing sweetheart and don't second guess that part. I thought I'd never have another dog after my Sheltie, but I have two sleeping right next to me on the couch. No dog replaces another, but don't deny yourself that special love that could be yours once again.

    Wishing you a lighter heart . . .
  19. Rafiki

    Rafiki New Member

    Every time I lose a four legged best friend I am beset my guilt and regret. Every time I torment myself with all the things I could have done better or differently. Every time I think I will never, ever again lose my patience, or do anything to make them tuck tail but I do. That's life. They are ok with life.

    They're not actually as upset by it as we think they are. They have no way to tell us things like, "Sorry, I knew I shouldn't have torn apart the garbage!" except with their bodies and faces because they can't simply say it. So, it always looks so dramatic but please remember how quickly his tail would start to wag when he figured out that you were over the incident and how he would be right back to figuring out how to get into more mischief.

    One of my dogs, now running truly free and always young, was a limper. I always knew when he'd done something wrong because he would start to limp and there was never anything at all wrong with his leg. "Look at me!" he was saying, "Poor little, limping dog! Whatever I've done, I'm way too pathetic to punish." I'd think, ok, where's the garbage? I'd see him looking sideways at me as I looked for evidence of his transgression. If he thought I would not find it, the limp would begin to fade away. If I was getting closer, the limp would increase. It was like a game of Hot and Cold. They are so smart and they speak volumes with their bodies! He was 12 lbs of pure drama - what a character!

    I can laugh now. I will always miss every dog I have loved but it becomes alright to miss them. You don't forget them, you always wish they were with you but you go on helped by all the good memories and the ability to remember who they really were: happy dogs having fantastic lives!

    If you find yourself fixated on something you wish you had done differently, please think about what a spirited character he was and how very happy! He was allowed, by grace, to be happy nearly all of his days - no long illness, no painful old age. Hard for you, so hard, but wonderful for him.

    As the days go by you will all begin to talk about him more as you did last time. We forget the details of grief when it is once again fresh. You will laugh - probably already have - and the guilt will slowly drop away. Please trust this as much as you can.

    Swift passage,
  20. kbak

    kbak Member

    I am sooooo sorry about your dog. It is such a heartache to lose our pets! No honey this is NOT Gods way of telling you not to own a pet! This is just a world with so much illness right now and we all suffer including our pets. Pets give us so much. Never deny an animal or anyone else love!