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MyCharlieboy

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Reply with quote  #61 
PumpkinsMama,
I felt like I was reading my own thoughts when I read your post. It's not just grieving the loss of my baby boy but every day I say I just want him back! I just can't accept that he's gone. He was my baby, my best friend and my support. I'm so lonely and broken hearted. I'm sorry for all of us that suffer this way.
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jeffreyburcham

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Reply with quote  #62 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PumpkinsMama
It was 3 months for me last week, at times I can't believe its been that long and other times it seems like so long ago. Its just terrible, terrible loss. I'm on a few grief/loss for pets pages on facebook and sometimes I think it's making me feel worse, but I feel like I need to honor the huge losses people are going through. I feel so bad for every single person and dog on there.

I can go a couple days and I'm dealing alright, then it hits me that she is really gone and I lose it. My birthday was the other day, the cards from my mom and boyfriend normally sign all the dogs names and her name wasn't on it this time and of course I burst out crying. I don't feel like I will ever be the same again, and that's okay, but I just miss her sweet face and she was such a kind and sweet dog. I will never have another baby like her again & I just want her back. I wish I'd cherished every second with her, I feel there were so many I took for granted. :'( anyway I'm sorry Jeffrey, I know how painful this is. 


I feel exactly the same way, I wish I had lived every possible moment with her, for her. Every day is a reminder of how much she touched me, of how much she loved me, no matter how I treated her. I wasn't always the best to her and I wasn't always patient with her. Still, I know that she knew I loved her and that she was very important to me. She knew she was my beeby girl and that she was number one pup in the house.

I miss her so damn much (am crying as I type this) and the smallest things remind me of her. of course, when I am home, everything reminds me of her and of her not being here with me. Some days, I really do wish it would all just end, that I could be with her at the Bridge. That of course is not an option, under any circumstances and she would never want that.

I just miss her so damn much and it's just not fair, for me or for you or for anyone who has ever experienced unconditional love, only to have it ripped from their heart.
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queenbee

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Reply with quote  #63 
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffreyburcham


I feel exactly the same way, I wish I had lived every possible moment with her, for her. Every day is a reminder of how much she touched me, of how much she loved me, no matter how I treated her. I wasn't always the best to her and I wasn't always patient with her. Still, I know that she knew I loved her and that she was very important to me. She knew she was my beeby girl and that she was number one pup in the house.

I miss her so damn much (am crying as I type this) and the smallest things remind me of her. of course, when I am home, everything reminds me of her and of her not being here with me. Some days, I really do wish it would all just end, that I could be with her at the Bridge. That of course is not an option, under any circumstances and she would never want that.

I just miss her so damn much and it's just not fair, for me or for you or for anyone who has ever experienced unconditional love, only to have it ripped from their heart.
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PumpkinsMama

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Reply with quote  #64 
MyCharlieboy & jeffreyburcham and anybody else reading or posting its so nice to have a place to come to pour my feelings out to nice people going through the same thing. Esp since we lost our babies around the same time (for me, the 27th is 4 months since she's been gone). Some days I just don't get it b/c as bad as I feel now, I honestly don't know how I got through the first few days and weeks after she had to go. I guess maybe a little bit denial, little bit shock. I too wonder how I'm going to get through the rest of my life without her. It's not like this is my first pet to have passed, there have been many, I have loved them all dearly. Losing Pumpkin was different. 

I am getting ready for annual trip to florida, my hometown, and we always bring the dogs of course. Last Xmas Pumpkin was the only one of the group to get to go w/ us to look at Christmas lights and I'm anticipating a lot of sadness and missing her even more that she is not there. I"m supposed to be enjoying my time but she won't be there, so inside I will be sad, even when I'm trying to have a good time, there is a constant sadness.

On our christmas light outings, she would sit in-between us in the car, her front paws on the arm rest and her hind legs on the backseat, she seemed so happy to be seeing all the pretty lights. She was such a good dog. It's so hard remembering....thinking about me being oblivious that was the last xmas I had with her, it never occurred to me it would be the last. I can't believe I didn't take any pictures of her on those xmas light outings, she was so happy. The drive down will also be hard, I always made sure she was where I could see her while I was driving or in the passenger seat, I would always (like every few minutes) be looking in back to see her sweet face while we were on the road. I don't want the the memories to ever fade, and I'm scared they will, but the memories that come out of nowhere can also be painful. Missing her seems to get worse as time goes on, its just can't be real that she is gone. 
 
I've been waking up crying a lot, then other times it hits me out of nowhere a small memory of her face or something I especially loved about her, a look or a memory of something we had done together and I lose it, almost daily and many days I break down numerous times. Those moments are so painful and I dread them. My heart hurts.
 
If only I could get all those moments back i took for granted, the days I should have done things with her that made her so happy. All the times I took for granted when she would quietly lay down beside me without fail, when she followed me from room to room as I cleaned and waited on the bathroom rug while I took a bath, when she would wait looking out the window when I had to leave for work and would be waiting for me with her little tail wagging and crying b/c she was so happy I was back.

I'm get so mad at myself that i didn't stop to realize how awful it would be when she would be gone and how much I would want those moments back more than anything in the world. Why didn't I realize this more? So many times I did appreciate those moments and how much I loved her and her me, but there are so many more I didn't....the days I was upset about something stupid that didn't matter compared to losing her. Not only that, but the thought that I made her sad b/c of it is heartbreaking. I try not to feel guilty, but I do. All the missed opportunities when I could have been spending quality time with her instead of wasting time on things that didn't matter. I will be thinking of you all around the holidays, its going to be rough one for those of us who have lost our angels. 

“The trouble is, you think you have time.”

― Jack Kornfield

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jeffreyburcham

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Reply with quote  #65 
Pumpkinsmama,

I couldn't have said it any better. You said exactly how I feel and I am sure everyone else would agree. Nothing will ever be the same and because of that and the feelings about my Satin Marie, I feel guilty because I didn't have this experience with my other three babies that preceded Satin Marie and I fear I won't feel the same when it's time for my three boys to leave me.

To everyone here, may you all have kind thoughts and know peace. May whoever is up there watching send you solace and happiness. May the upcoming days be better, if only a little. May your memories be good ones and may we all know our babies are waiting for the day when we can all be together again.

My thoughts, prayers and sprit are with you all.

Jeffrey
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Inkysmom

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Reply with quote  #66 
PumpkinsMama and Jeffreybouchart (sorry if I'm messing up anyone's name I'm awful at remembering screen names, or any names for that matter), and other's who've posted on this and other grief threads, I can empathize with how you feel, especially around the holidays.  I've lost five cats and my beloved heart dog in the past two years from May 1, 2015 to June 5, 2017.  Ironically June 5 was my mom's birthday, she died a few years ago from cancer and my beloved Inky cat died on her birthday, which now is a sad day for me anyway.  I've lost other cats back in 2004 and 2005 (just two months apart one special childhood cat lived to be 20 years old) and my first dog, and those were sad too, not to mention losing my mom who was my best friend.  But my special dog Max and my beautiful Inky cat who was completely a feral adult cat that I trapped and took in along with his tame stray friend one winter are the hardest to get over.  The other cat Fawn was a 4.5 year old stray that was tame and had pneumonia when I caught him.  He and Inky were best buddies and always cuddled together outside but came over to me and people where I worked at the time for food.  I could see how sick Fawn was and that he wouldn't last the winter, so just before Christmas I borrowed a wild animal trap and caught Inky by mistake who was perfectly healthy and about two years old or a little more.  He flipped out in a spare room and tried to jump out the windows and climb the walls but settled in fine once he saw he had food, water, heat, soft beds and blankets and his buddy with him.

He made friends with all the other cats and Max and was happy for ten years keeping me at a distance but sometimes I'd wake up with him in bed with me and his beloved Mandy (female cat who he LOVED) cuddled entwined together.  Mandy loved to be right next to me purring like a motor.  Inky would keep her next to me and be further away and staring at me like I was an alien and looking at Mandy with bemusement, trying to figure out how she could love me and want to be close to me and so happy when she had him for love and company lol.  When she died May 1, 2015, a sudden awful infection that came out of nowhere in two days she stopped eating and I kept her in the hospital and they did everything for five days until I had to put her to sleep, (she probably had cancer since she'd lost weight recently and I hadn't noticed since she had long hair and was a big cat and kept eating well) it was the first pet loss in our little family since my mom died and the whole household was devastated.  The six remaining cats stopped eating and all started sneezing and got runny noses and were clinging to me and each other.  Max was devastated.  The other cats recovered eventually but Fawn died a month later. He stopped eating with the runny nose and I brought him in and his liver had started to shut down; at first they thought from not eating for a couple of days but it turned out he had advanced liver cancer at age 14 so he had to be euthanized too.  

Poor Inky lost his best cat brother and his cat soul mate in just a month after having them all the time for over ten years.  He shut down and even let me touch him.  I was able to get him in a carrier and to the vet and he'd never let me pick him up in ten years.   It took several people to get bloodwork and do an exam; he still was feral and wouldn't let strangers near him even though he was sick and depressed. He had diabetes and resultant skin infections, awful infected teeth and matts on his fur from not grooming; he wouldn't let me brush him.  He'd have to get tame and let me medicate him for the infections and give him insulin injections twice daily for the rest of his life or be euthanized right then. They cut his nails and clipped off the matts.  I was so sad at losing Mandy and Fawn I wasn't going to lose him too without trying my best to save him.  I owed it to him to tame him and make him trust me and try to make him healthy and loved and beautiful, not let him suffer and die and know only a life of neglect and mistrust.  I'd tried so many times to get close to him but he'd always hissed, swatted, and ran to stay with his other cat buddies.  I couldn't really bond with Fawn either, he was tame and I could handle him and medicate him, and brush him and approach him with treats and he'd tolerate petting but freeze and never sought me out and never joined me on the bed or chair.  I'd found him with cigarette burns on his nose and felt he'd been so badly abused before he'd never enjoy human bonds again.  I felt I'd failed him and didn't want to fail Inky too.  He was so loving and had such a personality with the other cats and so bonded to Mandy and Fawn and feisty with the others and Max.

I took him and all the meds and needles and syringes home and his special expensive diabetic food and ear meds home for his otitis in his ears and locked them all in the bathroom.  I discovered that his pet insurance started in a week and now considered the otitis and diabetes preexisting so wouldn't cover a dime and he was going to be a very expensive cat.  I also leaned that the thick protective oven mitts I could wear to protect my arms and hands from his ferocious determined nails were useless with syringes and insulin needles as I couldn't grip them to dispense the meds.  I couldn't give him treats or anything he loved to eat as his blood sugar was off the charts dangerously high so anything to bribe him with meds to get him to trust me was out.  He didn't want me touching him or petting him or anywhere near him and the better he felt from the meds working the less he wanted to do with me.  He was all a rich beautiful black with the softest medium length black fur and I should have named him Panther the was he could fight.  He had a mean right hook and a mean left hook, when I went to put a syringe in his mouth he'd cuff with his nails out and swat the syringe out of my hand and knock it to the floor then take off and hide in the tub while I went to get it.  Bending to pick him up while he was cornered in the tub was never wise; better to get behind him than in front of him.  Trying to be soft and loving while trying not to get injured and lose my temper was a challenge.  I had constant bloody arms and hands.  He never bit me but his teeth were so bad they were literally falling out; he had a couple of sharp fangs left though.  The first few weeks were literally hell while I grieved my deceased cats and my mom.  I was single and had no friends or family to help.
Then my mom's little cat Emerald kept panting after I cut her nails one day and seemed strangely out of breath at 15 years old.  I'd felt little lumps on her belly for months and hoped it was nothing.  She'd been a feral kitten that my mom caught and never really trained and I was left to occasionally handle and train.  She'd been spayed very late and had an eye problem once and was even worse than Inky to medicate or restrain (I know because my mom flatly refused to deal with it and I had to give her all her antibiotics when she had the uterine infection when spayed and the bad eye infection and almost lost her eye).  Getting her into a carrier to move her to my place when my mom died and she knew my mom wasn't there anymore and was freaked out(she was scared of men and it was me, my dad and bf at the time five years before) literally took three of us half an hour and that was the last time she'd been in a carrier.  So stressing her to get her to a vet was no easy feat.  I got her in and learned she had metastasized mammary cancer from my mom not spaying her til she was older and that cats not spayed within 3 heat cycles are more likely to get it.  It was in her lungs and she had at most a month to live but probably less.  Even if I'd brought her in when I first felt the lumps, there was no good treatments that would have helped her live even a year if she was lucky and the traveling would have stressed her so much and maybe made her sick that her quality of life would have made treating her not worthwhile.  I took her home and found a traveling hospice/euthanasia vet and kept her comfortable and fed her treats, tuna and baby food for two weeks.  Continuing to keep Inky in his own room(I'd moved him to a spare bedroom with his own bed and window since I felt guilty with the tiny bathroom, and little Emmy also beautiful shiny black with green emerald eyes and in perfect health asides from dry eye syndrome and this stupid preventable mammary cancer.  She was almost sixteen and could have lived to twenty.  The joy and happiness I felt as little by little Inky stopped fighting as much, and stayed still letting me pet him after medicating him, was lessened by learning how to monitor Emmy's breathing and load it into an app on my phone the hospice vet  gave me and see how she'd only eat a few bites of tuna and baby food and treats each day.  Frustration that I had to lock out and yell at my three healthier younger bully cats who always teased and picked on Emmy and couldn't seem to sense or care that she was dying and hated being locked out of my bedroom and would pound on the door and meow nonstop.

Emmy would determinedly climb on the bed to cuddled with me each day and let me feed her favorites but also hide in corners of the room and under the bed.  I'd be terrified that she'd isolate and I'd find her dead under there so I'd call her to spend time with me as much as I could. One day Inky seemed relaxed so I cautiously was massaging between his shoulder blades, he liked that, and cautiously touched his belly, knowing some cats love that and some hated it.  That was the key!  He rolled belly up like a fish and started purring deeply and almost fell over wanting more belly rubs! From then on we were buddies and I was to be trusted, as long as I never raised my voice to him or tried to tell him no or give him any kind or finger in his face or little warning cuff for bad behavior.  He'd swat back and hiss and tell me clearly that was not to be tolerated.  He was in charge.

Within two weeks of that vet appointment, beautiful Emmy didn't want even her favorite treats one day and her breathing was worse.  The day before her breathing was worse and she'd only eaten a few treats the whole day.  So I called the hospice vet who wasn't available and had to call another euthanasia vet to come out and say goodbye to Emmy forever.  Third cat in 3 months.  This was better than the hospital though, she was home with me holding her, her best buddy Tigey (my mom's other cat but now mine too) next to her purring the whole time and Max and the others all got to sniff her and say goodbye after.  And unlike the hospital vets who sometimes made little mistakes, a euthanasia vet is experienced and makes it comfortable and peaceful without any dumb mistakes or discomfort for the animal, like the solution being too cold or stinging, so no crying out or anything but peaceful sleep.

Meanwhile I poured my heart and soul into saving Inky.  He had a diabetic low blood sugar emergency and I had to race him to the ER his blood sugar was so low it couldn't even be measured but they saved him and he had no lasting damage that he could have had.  Stupid vet kept him on too high an insulin dose and increased it too fast even when he didn't eat well.  I changed vets and eventually found a dose that worked and when in doubt I held the insulin if he didn't eat well.  His ears were always infected and he hated cleanings but I did it every other day then twice a week.  Always feeding him special food and checking on him, insulin twice a day, many skin infections, skin treatments, antibiotics, finally teeth surgery, then he had asthma.  He was a full time job.  First thing and last thing I did every time I woke up, left the house, came home, went to sleep, went anywhere.  Anyone I dated wanted me to go to their house or outings on weekends, my dad wanted me to fly to visit him in DC.  Nope, no one can handle this cat but me and I've got a large dog, not boarding them they don't like strangers and kennels.  Deal with it or goodbye.  I can't leave the cat more than twelve hours and the dog goes everywhere with me.  Inky was underweight then became a foodie so overweight so I had to restrict his food but he ate everything at once and I was afraid he'd have another blood sugar episode.  I learned about diabetes.  He gradually became shiny, healthy, good weight and gorgeous.  And tame, vets and staff couldn't believe he was ever feral and he was the favorite because he was so loving.  Then he got ear cancer eventually.

Meantime Max my dog got a spinal disease and gradually lost the use of his back legs.  Five months of neurologists, pills, incontinence from the steroids which caused the infection that killed him at the end (lowered resistance to infections).  Carrying him up and down two flights of stairs for the bathroom twice a day, all 80 pounds of him, even when I had surgery and wasn't supposed to lift anything for two weeks.  Watching him have good days where he'd walk and run a little but unhappy that he couldn't run and play like he always had.  MRIs, procedures, weekly ER trips, sores on his back leg from dragging the toe that wouldn't heal.  I put socks on it, he pulled them off.  I got the vets to bandage it and put little casts on it, he pulled them off and chewed them up, the good ones I had to change or got wet.  I bought little dog boots, he pulled them off and finally chewed them to shreds.  The sores wouldn't heal.  I was constantly cleaning the carpeted stairs from blood and he'd almost make it down and then have an accident.  Neighbors and passersby would ask about the sores or why he'd drag a leg, I'd explain the illness and that he was getting tons of vet care and they'd call animal control or the SPCA anyway and I'd have to explain again.  The animal police kept making appointments to come investigate him and refuse to talk to the vets or references or see his records or character witnesses.  She'd then cancel or not show up to the appointments and keep rescheduling and tried to make me late for my surgery after I'd taken a medical leave from work already.  I finally lost it and yelled at her and she stopped harassing me.  I would have given him years of my life to heal him.  The day he died I had an appointment to drive across the stated to get him fitted for a special wheelchair.  I took him to acupuncture (no covered by his pet insurance) and neurologist weekly and harassed the physical therapy department to fit him in sooner.  He was a full time job on top of Inky and my full time job that required 50-60 hour weeks, plus I had health issues at the time.   I carried him up and down stairs all day long, mixed meds into his food and roast beef and mayonnaise, fed him by hand, bought and put pee pads everywhere, and put special blankets and layers of pee pads on the bed so he could sleep with me every night.  I lifted him onto my bed every night so he could be with me.  We had almost 12 years together and he got me through everything, 3 breakups of major relationships, my mom's 3 year battle with cancer and death, helped me herd and train my horses and gone with me through countless hours and miles on rides through state forests loose and stayed with me never leaving my side except to chase off coyotes and predators and come right back.  He went to work with me and everywhere in the car with me and lived for playing fetch and had a constant supply of tennis balls in the car, at least ten, he stole balls everywhere we went to add to the stash and would play fetch till he collapsed.  After my mom died and my last breakup with a man who'd helped me get through my mom's illness and death and longest most serious relationship; I really thought of this man as a husband and family and then he just left one day with weak excuses after years of living together.  He tried to come back many times over the next three years which just prolonged the ending and endless memories of him and my mom, at least for me and probably for both of us.  He wasn't malicious but certainly not emotionally healthy and I wasn't as emotionally strong as I should have been after losing my mom and best friend that I'd counted on to help me get through everything in life with her wisdom and advice, wanted or not, as parents' advice can be.

Max went with me to her grave and went with me driving on all the roads and all the places and memories, by her apartment, by the hospice and hospital where she died, all the millions of places I'd gone with my ex, the beaches I went with my mom, the millions of places I'd gone with both my mom and my ex.  I started bringing Max to the places I'd gone socially and somehow was permitted to bring a non service dog to bars and restaurants I'd gone for years.  I think my friends who owned and ran those few places could both see my grief over my mom and honestly were dog lovers and were won over by Max's larger than life exuberance for everything.  He'd pull me into a room/social event all lit up and be determined to lick the faces off of every single person there.  He wouldn't just wag his tail, his whole body from his waist to his butt and tail would frantically exuberantly shake and wag and he'd whine impatiently for me to hurry up so he could "go party".  He quickly steal a crumb or bite of someone's food and gulp it down without chewing and look innocent like it never happened, take a quick lap of any drink within reach even though he knew better and anyone sitting on the floor or his level he'd hug or basically be so happy to see he'd practically knock onto their backs so he could reach them better to kiss and lick them nonstop.  I had to teach him and "enough" command.  Everyone was his very best friend in the whole world and it was like he was completely starved for affection and couldn't possibly have enough time to meet and befriend and win over every single person.  He'd do tricks anyone asked him to do, and go through his whole little routine with me giving commands in 3 different languages. He knew which people to be gentle with and which people loved to roughhouse.  He could do a happy dance not to be equaled by any.  He'd be belly up on the floor with five people fighting over who could rub his belly.  He'd have silly people saying "hey he didn't even get my number after making out with me all night lol" when I left to take him home and I'd have to give a silly response about how he's a player or doesn't have phone privileges cause he got in trouble last week or something ridiculous.  He brought joy and laughter and love everywhere even when I was in the deepest depression I had ever known.  When we were in the car, he'd butt his head under my arm from the back seat and push his head under my arm until I was hugging him while driving and we'd drive for miles like that.  He could open the windows in my car and in my truck (totally opposite buttons). He could quietly open bags of popcorn in the back seat and munch away for days before I figured out why they were disappearing so quickly.  He could eat anything, pizza, chicken nuggets, burgers,  fries, chips, and had an iron stomach.  He opened a paper bag an stole my dad's muffin once in the car.  He was smarter than most people I know, including me. He loved people and touched many hearts and many people told me they'd been depressed and he seemed to know and comforted them.  Even more people told me they were scared of dogs since they were little from bad experiences but he'd won their trust and healed them of their long fears.  He was also fiercely protective when he needed to and would snap first without a sound if necessary.  Never dangerous or vicious though, always in appropriate situations. When he died, many friends had hundreds of Facebook comments and social media sympathy posts.  Even now under two years later, I still randomly run into people I barely know or recognize that tell me how sorry they are about Max's death and how much he touched their hearts and souls.
The day he died I just laid on the floor in his cage hugging him and crying and he lay sick with his head on my face and chest and paws wrapped around me.  I still miss him and always will he was as much as a soulmate as any living being ever could be.  After 11 years we could read each other's minds, I barely had to tell him any commands or use words and I felt that he could read my mind and I knew what he was thinking.  He died February 22, 2016 I got the call just when I got home from the hospital around 7:30 pm.
Then in October 2016 Tigey died suddenly of cancer in his stomach liver and intestines.  He'd lost 3 pounds in two weeks and wasn't eating great.  He escaped overnight two weeks earlier but I found him the next night in the building.  I'd caught him the same time I took in Inky an Fawn but he and Inky didn't get along and he was very tame so I gave him to my mom and they really bonded so I didn't take him until after she died.  He and Emmy loved each other very much.  He and my other cat Skye also fought a lot over who was boss and asides from Emmy he really didn't bond with the other cats much.  But he found my mom's cancer and gave me 3 extra years with her and was very sweet and loving to people and I loved him too.  He was very cuddly and affectionate and only 12 when he died.  
Then Inky's infected ears turned cancerous and Christmas 2016 he had to have major ear surgery to remove the ear canal as the infection and tumors were so bad. He got an abscess in his neck and his ears suddenly started bleeding all over the apartment on Christmas Day.  The insurance luckily paid for that and the cancer was supposed to be contained, not spread and not an aggressive but slow growing kind.  After four or five surgeries and lots of complications (diabetics have trouble with circulation and healing and he wasn't the greatest patient) he was supposed to be cancer free with no recurrence for about five years, as he was almost 15 at that time with asthma and diabetes that would be great if he made it to upper teens or 20.  But the cancer was gone a month or two and came back and metastasized to his lymph nodes.  He had two rounds of chemotherapy, one didn't work, the second kind made him very sick and nauseous and stop eating and diabetics can't not eat.  The oncologist was awful and didn't treat him and due to the opioid crisis now took him off the injectable opioid that helped him the best so poor Inky suffered and my advocating made him think I was fighting to get meds for I don't know.  Maybe he thought I was taking cat doses of meds.  I wouldn't touch those meds at any dose.  When I had knee surgery they forced me to take one opioid pill before they let me leave the hospital and it made me feel dizzy.  I hate that feeling of dizziness more than anything in the world.  When I got home I did have a lot of pain hours later and had eaten a pizza with my friend and thought maybe I felt so bad before from an empty stomach so took one more pill.  Felt dizzy again so threw out the whole bottle and stuck to ibuprofen from then on.  Inky got worse and worse I kept him in the hospital since I was working nonstop and didn't want him suffering at home and wanted him at least comfortable and monitored. I had a second opinion appointment for radiation at a highly recommended hospital which seemed reasonable to try.  The awful vet ordered no treatment just regular meds and no fluids or anything to help him.  So I told him that wasn't what I wanted switched vets and complained about him.  Eventually found out he was too sick for radiation, lingered a few more days visiting him and feeding him.  He'd still eat when I was there and he'd eat and drink and seem happy with me petting him and leaning his chin on me.  Vet said he wasn't interacting or eating or drinking but he was with me so maybe I was in denial but I wasn't seeing what they were so I was having so much trouble letting him go.  I'd been fighting for two years to get him healthy and bond with him.  He was the one pet I'd been saving so far.  We'd finally gotten close.  He went from feral and attacking me to sleeping on my pillow wrapped around my head and up against my face, wrapping his paws around my arm in a little cat hug, doing little chortles and soft meows, head butting my face and licking my face and running to me when I called him.  He was more affectionate than tame cats I'd had.  I'd gotten him so beautiful, healthy, shiny, perfect weight, loving, affectionate, playing with a toy mouse and other cats, feisty.  Everyone says you can't ever tame a feral adult cat and they're only good for colonies or as outdoor barn cats.  I did it and he was truly a wild animal in my house for ten years.  I wish I'd tamed him sooner.  And after only two years of him being a trusting loving pet they wanted me to give up on him and just let him die.  The first vet who saw him wanted me to euthanize him in that first visit and even filed on me with animal control when I didn't.  They came to see him, said she was wrong and I was a saint for trying to medicate him when they saw how wild he was and said good luck, but he's not dying and it's not cruel to keep him alive.  It's very hard for me to give up on my loved ones, especially after losing so many.  Taming a feral cat requires you put your heart and soul into it. You want their trust and love, you have to give yours too, you can't hold back or be cautious or distant because animals can look into your soul.
Cancer and spinal diseases are awful.  I still miss my pets all of them.  I love my new dog but he doesn't have great recall and he runs off for interesting scents or to chase rabbits or play with other dogs and comes back when he feels like it not when I call him.  That drives me nuts and makes me feel like he doesn't love me like Max did.  Max always came back the second I called him, from the very first day.  Maybe this dog and I both have trust issues from past losses and maybe I got him too soon, but he needed a home and was very miserable in the shelter.  He's a difficult dog and many people would have given up on him by now so maybe we're meant to be too.  That one issue really pushes all my buttons though.  Everywhere I've read and do all the right things and he still just does what he wants although he's better than he used to be.  It's nice to get compliments on him now and know he's come so far from when I got him in so many ways. I shouldn't compare him to Max but it's hard not to.  I don't know how to fix the recall issue to make him more reliable.  I stuff him full of treats whenever he comes over to me in the park or loose.  We walk on the street late at night with him loose and he stays with me and stops and sits when I say wait.  When I call him in the park I praise him and give him a treat and let him go again so he doesn't associate coming to me with ending the play and fun.  For leaving I say do you want dinner or do you want a cookie or something good.  Usually he comes over but sometimes he's just like "leave a message see ya later".  Trainers have told me if he doesn't come back by second call say a warning word and then just leave so he knows bad things happen.  That usually works but yesterday he went to other people who were petting him so got reinforced that way.  If my own dog doesn't want to go with me, why do I spend all my money on him.  I can't run with my bad knee so I can't run with him and make me chase him like I read about.  And he has IBD and food allergies so I'm not supposed to give him treats at all let alone varied treats like they say. I give him his favorite kinds of treats but keep it to one kind cause he's very picky and gets diarrhea all the time anyway.  Holidays I always the miss the loved ones that aren't here.  Max and Inky hit me the hardest and I miss them all.  I feel like a traitor to the others saying I especially miss them.
Thank you and hope everyone gets through ok and starts feeling better.  I don't cry every day or feel the same constant anguish some of you talk about.  But when it does hit, it's strong powerful grief as strong as the day they died like it just happened.  Sorry I wrote so much, I had a lot of losses in just two years that I try not to obsess about because I have to function.  I lost a job in early June because of Inky.  Ironically I lost the job because I kept having to change my hours to get him to the vet June 2, 2017 and he died June 5.  So I could have called them I guess and told them and seen if it would have changed anything, but the job had four hours of driving a day, hundreds of miles and I was so drained and devastated I couldn't do anything.

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jeffreyburcham

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Reply with quote  #67 
December 1, 2017 marks 6 months since Satin Marie left me. I say left me and that's not quite correct. I know she is still with me, not quite ready to go because, I think, I can't let go of her. I too feel guilty because I didn't experience this with any of the other fur babies of mine. I say mine because although I am certain my wife loved our girl Gizmo and our Sparkle kitty and Molly kitty, it was always me who took them to the vet, or had to let them go of their pain in the end.

I miss her terribly and there are some days, not many, where I can concentrate on other tasks but there isn't a single day that has gone by that I do not cry or think about her. I still attend the group grief counseling sessions near me in St. Louis, MO and it helps to be able to physically be with other grieving pet parents. I hate to use the word pet because they were never pets, they were and are my four legged children.

I still find myself second guessing some of the decisions I made, starting about this time last year. Would any of it have made a difference? In the end, I just couldn't save her, I could no longer protect her.

And that is what really tears me up inside. In the end, I failed her. Sometimes I just want to go to sleep and wake up with her.
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Reply with quote  #68 
On December 27, 2017 I had to say goodbye to my baby baby Shepherd Apollo. He was with us 7 years, 7 months and 19 days. I rescued him from the streets when he was just 3 months old. Him and one of my other males, a much bigger dog who was also a rescue got into another fight. I had said the next fight would be the last fight and I kept putting it off, hoping he would finally get over whatever issue he had with the other boy. 8 incidents in 6 1/2 years. I just couldn't let another one happen, one where Apollo may have been killed by my other boy. I am now with just 2 boys. I am devastated and that is putting mildly.

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CK1991

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Reply with quote  #69 
Hi Jeffrey, I just looked through your posts. I'm so sorry about Satin and now Apollo so soon after. This is awful and must be so painful for you Jeffrey. Would you like to write more about Apollo? Was he the aggressor? I read you had him on medication but I'm guessing it didn't work. It must have been terrible for these 2 dogs to fight that way especially since you loved them both. Did the vet have any idea as to why this was happening. I'm sure you did what you felt was best. Gosh, I don't know what to say. So much loss! I would like to hear more of your story. I lost 2 little dogs and they were siblings. When I had to have the first one pts I was able to handle it but then when, well it's been harder than I ever thought possible. It helps for me to come here and see I'm not alone but I can't post my story, at least not yet because it make it too real I guess. Anyway, if you would like to write more about your losses I would be happy to lend an ear. Take Care!
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jeffreyburcham

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Reply with quote  #70 
I started a thread dedicated to Apollo as well as a Memorial here.

https://forums.rainbowsbridge.com/post/had-to-say-goodbye-to-my-shepherd-baby-baby-9605106?pid=1302823430

Here is the link to his memorial:

https://www.rainbowsbridge.com/residents/APOLL013/Resident.htm
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PumpkinsMama

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Reply with quote  #71 
In 5 days it will be 6 months since I lost Pumpkin. I can't believe she's gone. Some days it feels like yesterday and in other moments it feels like she has been gone for so much longer, like maybe she was never here to begin with, which makes me feel so bad to even think for a second, but it's just how it feels sometime but I push it out of my mind b/c I know she's here with me now, especially when I'm so upset. She wouldn't want me to feel so sad.

I was out of town for over a month and I was so busy I didn't cry as much and didn't dwell as much on how sad I really am inside. I am home now and its breaking my heart all over again. All the memories are back and i'm surrounded by her pictures. She is my profile picture and background picture on FB now and I don't think I will ever be able to change it and I don't want to. I don't go on there as much as I used to, it seems so silly anymore. My heart sinks every time I see her big eyes looking at me from the screen, how can it be real she isn't laying next to me, following me from room to room, that I no longer have the burst of love in my heart when I would see her looking at me. 

The other day I got down on the floor to give my other cocker spaniel a hug and he wasn't all into it and it just hit me how when I would ask her for a hug she would come over and jump up and put her arms around my neck and let me hold her for as long as I needed. Ugh! i can't believe she is gone, i will never have another love like her again, she was the best kid I could have ever asked for and I just miss her so much. I want her back with me so badly.  I hope everyone is doing okay and making it through your days. It's a comfort to be able to come on here and express my feelings and I appreciate you all and from the bottom of my heart I feel for everyone of your losses :( 

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jeffreyburcham

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Reply with quote  #72 
I'd like to say the days get better but moments like you described PumpkinsMama bring it right back to the day we lost our babies. Losing Apollo so soon after Satin Marie was like a double punch to the throat. When I go to let my other two boys outside, it's not the same because my Apollo isn't there, chomping at the bit to get out that door to fend off the evil squirrels or deadly plastic bags invading the yard. My biggest boy Jesse has been sleeping at the foot of the bed where Apollo usually laid and I can hear him at times whimpering. My whole life has been turned upside down, again. It will never be the same, as if it ever was going to be having to say goodbye to Satin Marie and now Apollo. This Wednesday will mark 4 weeks with the 27th of January marking the first month.

I'll never be able to forgive myself, ever. And that is my Cross to bear, until I meet up with all of them again. The other day though, my Apollo did come to me in a dream, so I feel as if he has forgiven me, at least I hope he has.

My heart aches for all of you. Being here has helped me a lot but I can no longer attend my group counseling sessions as I cannot face the others and tell them the terrible thing I had to do. For now, I am seeing the therapist one-on-one, per her suggestion. 

Peace and happy thoughts to everyone.
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jeffreyburcham

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Reply with quote  #73 
February 1, 2018 marked 8 months since Satin had to leave me and now today, February 14, 2018 is what would have been her 12th birthday. I miss you terribly Satin Marie. Happy Birthday baby girl.
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PumpkinsMama

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Reply with quote  #74 
Happy Birthday Satin Marie <3 ....my little girl Pumpkin's birthday is on Saturday, Feb 17th and this has been a very rough week and i'm not even to Saturday yet. Last year on Friday and Saturday I took her to the park and we had a really good time together and then me and her went to McD and I shared an ice cream cone with her. UGh this is so hard and i'm so sad. Everytime I see a dog story on tv I break down and i've been thinking about her constantly and how I feel like I let her down in so many ways. More than anything I wish I could go back in time and do it all over again and not for one second would I EVER take her for granted. I just hope she is happy in heaven and knows how much I loved her and will always love her. I hope Pumpkin and Satin Marie are celebrating their birthdays together this week and are happy and pain free, but waiting to be with us. Ugh this just sucks...I don't feel like I will ever be okay without her, life is just not the same. Its so crazy, it's going on 7 months but I still just can't comprehend that she is gone :( 
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jeffreyburcham

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Reply with quote  #75 
My Apollo would have turned 8 February 8th so this has not been a good month so far for me. Things will never be the same and I know your pain and sorrow Pumpkinsmama. It's a sadness that, as bad as it may sound, I share gladly with you and everyone else here.

I stopped going to the group counseling sessions near me and instead I just see the grief counselor one on one, per her suggestion and me being in agreement. I can't face the group right now, after having to say goodbye to my Apollo on December 27, 2017. (there is another thread here dedicated to him and it explains what happened)

I too cry whenever I read a dog story, good or bad. Also when one of those ASPCA ads comes on tv. On my way to work, I pass by a dog park and I always break down, wishing I had taken Satin Marie to one. Having four dogs at that time made things a bit difficult but I should have set aside the time for her.

I am certain that our kids are together, basking in the sunshine at the Meadow. I know they are. That's the way it's supposed to be.

Jeffrey
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