Halle
My best friend died just after midnight on April 2.

I should have known he was going, that it was his time. I rescued him when he was 10 years old - at least, that was what the shelter told me. Lucky had severe dental disease then, and the shelter thought he also had glaucoma. He was on the euth list for the next morning at that shelter.

Instead of him dying then, I took him home and was pretty much immediately kicked out of the house in which I was living. There were no pets allowed there, and Lucky cried whenever I wasn’t home.

He and I were best friends from the start. This little guy was part dachshund, part cocker spaniel, part something else, maybe corgi. He stood about 6 inches tall and had a long body, reddish and white hair that curled when it grew long, and front paws that pointed outwards. Up until last year, people we passed on our walks together commonly asked if he was a puppy.

Lucky didn’t know he was small, though. He thought he was the biggest dog around. In the first month after I adopted him, we went to a dog beach and I kept him on the leash. He went beserk when he’d see any dog bigger than himself - he would bark and strain against the leash. Part of it, or maybe all, was that he wanted to protect me.

That day, one dog came up to him and had the patience to deal with this fiery little guy. They sniffed each other and after a couple minutes, it was clear Lucky and the big dog were okay together. I took Lucky off the leash - and much to my amazement, the big dog and him ran over to a few other big dogs - each at least 70-80 pounds and some probably 110. Lucky weighed in at 11.5 pounds at his most plump.

Much to my amazement, he joined all the other dogs, six or seven of them, and they began to run around the beach in a pack. There were at least 10 other small dogs on the beach that were not a part of this group. It was big dogs - and my tiny little boy.

He ran around and I know he felt such joy.

Flash forward to 4 1/2 years later, and he was still my sweet little boy. He would jump up and down for at least 10 minutes whenever I came home, even if I’d only just walked out the door a few minutes before. Every morning, he woke up early and let me know he needed out. I’d let him out and then he’d come right up and snuggle against my head while I slept in, wagging his tail to say hello.

I worked at night for years, so I’d sleep a bit late and than when I’d wake up he’d be there, ready to jump up and down, his little tail wagging. Every morning I would pick him up and walk him around my house, telling him I loved him. We’d go for a walk; he would go wild for his food, and I would leave some music on for him when I had to leave for work.

My little buddy was the most loyal friend. And it’s incredible to look back and remember the people he didn’t like in my life - he always seemed to know - long, long before I did - when friends of mine weren’t really friends. There were those he just never liked, and would growl at, when at the time I thought these people were my friends. Every single time he was right - and sometimes I didn’t realize at all until months, even years later.

Two weeks before Lucky passed, he hid in my garden and wouldn’t come to me. I was scared. I knew something was wrong.

That was the same morning he started limping badly when he walked. He experienced a rapid loss of coordination over the next few days - and I thought that it was a disc problem. Until his dying day I thought it was.

He was given painkillers, taken to his vet three times, and the day before he died I rushed him to an ER. It was Easter Sunday. He had surgery scheduled for the next morning - well, first an MRI, and I assumed surgery. I thought his lack of coordination was from a slipped/inflamed disc, his lack of appetite from the pain caused by that.

It was the most astounding thing. Before I rushed him to the ER in Easter afternoon, he was lying on my bed, unable to move. I thought he was paralyzed. He wouldn’t respond to anything. I thought he for sure would need emergency surgery, that his disc problem had worsened to the extent that he needed surgery right away.

When I got to the ER he wasn’t moving, and he was breathing heavily. I was so afraid.

An hour later, a vet came out carrying him - and my little Lucky was moving, has perked his head up, was his normal little self. He literally went from being in a horrible, alarming state to his old self.

I didn’t know what to think. I held him and petted him and he was my Lucky dog for another couple hours. He made himself well - I know now he didn’t want to pass there, with a strange doctor, in a strange place.

The doctor said he didn’t think Lucky needed emergency surgery. That it could wait until morning. I just held Lucky, feeling confused, but so grateful that he wasn’t acting like he was in pain. He was wagging his tail and happy to be in my arms. He wanted to go home.

I took him home and laid him in bed next to me. At 11:30, I fell asleep. At 12:35 I woke up and knew he was gone. But i still tried. I rushed him to an ER. The vet wouldn’t help him and said he was in “rigor mortis.” I rushed to another nearby hospital, completely dévastated. I felt my world was going away.

The vets at the second hospital were extremely kind, wonderful, compassionate. They heard me when I begged them to try to help Lucky. They did try. And then finally, they came out and said that he was gone, that they couldn’t do anything. They hugged me and sat with me while I cried.

I took him home to sit with him in bed for a little while. I held him and just wanted It all to be a dream. Then early in the morning, I took him back to the vets who had tried to take care of him.

Later that day, I finally went to sleep, crying. In the last weeks of his life, Lucky was in a low dosage of Tramadol for pain. It made him pant at night. In my bed, the panting would shake the bed and even woke me up a few times.
The first time this happened I thought it was an earthquake (I live in California).

The morning after he died, I woke up in bed and felt my bed shaking. I lay there and heard cars out my window going by, and birds chirping. I felt the bed shake and I thought, well it’s an earthquake this time, because Lucky is gone. The shaking lasted around 5 minutes as I lay there, just feeling it.

Later that afternoon I looked up recent earthquakes in the whole half of the state in which I live. They report all of them, even the smallest ones only felt by small patches of land. There had been none - none - in the past 24 hours within a hundred miles.

I haven’t believed in religion or really even God in over 12 years - more than half my life. But this to me - was Lucky giving me a sign. He was saying goodbye to me, telling me that he was still going to be with me.

It’s been so difficult since then. I’ve been in so much pain. I feel so guilty over what happened - I can’t believe, looking back, that I didn’t realize that Lucky may die. I just thought he was so tough, so strong-willed, that he could miraculously act normal for periods of time during those two weeks -
That somehow he psychologically could overcome a back injury to avoid having to deal with doctors. That he could recover from whatever was ailing him, whatever injury he had. He was scheduled to have surgery, and I never thought that that wouldn’t ever happen.

Over the past almost three months, I’ve gone from feeling devastated and not wanting to eat, to - I don’t even know. I’ve felt it’s all gotten worse over the past month. Now I feel hopeless.

It’s been getting worse and worse. I think I have gone from trying to accept it, and just remember the happy times, to me feeling like this pain will never ever stop. I don’t know. Sometimes I think about just going to his grave and dying.

I’ve gone on and on, and will stop writing this now. I just have felt so alone. I miss my best buddy so much, it is paralyzing.
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dachsiemom
Halle--  I am so very sorry about the loss you have experienced.  It is obvious that Lucky was an appropriate name for him when he found you to save him and take care of him for the rest of his life.  Unfortunately dogs do not live forever although we wish they could.  I have been through several such devastating losses in my life, and although it does not get any easier as I grow older, I do know that I can survive the pain. So can you.  Your capacity for profound grief over the death of your beloved dog tells me what a good and warm person you are.  Cry as much as you need to.  Tears of grief can help to release toxins and balance your equilibrium.  This will not happen quickly.  The days will be difficult for a while and the nights will be hard to sleep through.  Writing to this forum was a good step toward healing.  -Dachsiemom  
Moira - remembering Brandon
"Better lo'ed ye canna be. Will ye no' come back again?"
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Tankie12
Halle,, oh girl I feel for you! The pain is so horrible, but don’t ever feel alone, not now.,
How wonderful and tragic his story is. You saved him, your were his angel you gave him years of love and he you. It is the most devastating pain we endure when it’s gone, just gone, you don’t know what to do. He was shaking your bed, I believe that. I don’t think it was your imagination. I don’t believe their beautiful spirits leave just because their bodies had to go. I’m not wacko crazy🤪either, lol. Years ago, and it carried on from time to time, I felt my lil baby do the same thing. It was a little alarming at first, but when rational thought couldn’t explain it I began to feel comfort, and fall asleep.
The grief you’re feeling has it’s own life, it’s real and often gets worse before it gets better. It’s also individual, all yours, some grieve much longer than others. Yours has become screaming loud, as time goes on the reality gets stronger. At first it’s all surreal, you feel like it Couldn’t have have happened. It’s harsh and mean and ugly. Halle cry your eyes out, scream in the shower, beat your pillow in. Just let it out. Lots of us don’t receive the kind of support we need outside of this forum. I still haven’t opened up to my friends and the reasons are still the same I don’t want to hear things like ‘she’s out of pain now’ ‘it was time, Lynn’ or now ‘are you getting another?’ These were are babies in every since of the word and the grief is no different in fact many grieve harder
Please try to get some nutrition even shakes, sleep all you need to, be good to you,,,,,
Lynn, Tankie’s mom, forever
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PhyllisB
O Halley, I totally empathise. Loosing a pet is worse than loosing a human companion. If it helps do ramble on. It's safe to do so here because we are all experiencing the same loss & struggling with the process of grieving. We are here for each other & I am here for you. Take care xx
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J9C
Oh gosh this post made me cry. You are such a wonderful person to have taken Lucky and given him so many extra years of life. What a great life her had with you. Don’t feel guilty about his passing - he wanted to pass with you at his side in the home he loved. It is incredibly painful losing your beloved dog. I lost mine a few weeks ago - but it will get easier with time. I can talk about my Bobby without crying now and actually laugh at his funny antics rather than sobbing into a box of tissues. I miss him like crazy but I have 2 other dogs that have helped me through the pain.

I made a little memory box that sits with Bobby’s ashes. And collated all his photos into an album. Maybe this would help you too. And one day you may be able to do a wonderful thing for another elderly dog and take them into your life and make their final years so so happy. I wish you all the best, take care xx
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Dasiiy
I sorry for your lost
v.Shaw
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MAlcindor
Halle I am so sorry you had to say goodbye to Lucky. I'm also sorry you had to spend the last three months grieving on your own and feeling alone. It is so tough trying to get through this devastating pain all by yourself. Everyone on this forum understands what you are going through and will support you and never judge. You have lost a very dear friend, baby, companion. Your heart feels like it has broken into a million pieces. I wish I could tell you the pain goes away, but it doesn't. You just somehow learn to live with it. Cry all you need to, it helps you heal. I still cry every single day. I started to read your post while I was at work but had to stop and go to the bathroom to cry because how you describe your Lucky reminded me of my Bailey. Bailey was very small but whenever he got excited he jumped so high, past my waist. I miss him so much. Now I'm rambling. Keep posting here, it is very healing.
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