When I left for work yesterday morning, I didn't have any idea what would be waiting for me after work. I'd already had a tough week. This past year my girl, Roxy, has been having a hard time. Having bouts of being unable to get up. Thursday, I took her to the small vet across the street. The vet said she had a ruptured spinal disk most likely, prescribed anti-inflammatory medicine, and put her under house arrest for the next month. She hadn't been eating much these past few months, losing about 8 pounds and bringing her down to 10 pounds total. She was completely skin and bones.

Friday she worsened. I hoped it was just getting worse before it got better. Yesterday she couldn't use her back legs. She could stand, but she would walk arched, and her legs would give out, like they were partially paralyzed. I was scared. My partner had already pulled me aside a few times to have the "it might be time to put her down" talk. Trust me, the topic has been on my mind the past year. Every time I took her to the vet I was terrified it'd be the end.

Last night I took her to the emergency center. All the pet emergencies happen on a weekend. She threw up all over me in the car, then when I carried her in she had diarrhea all over me and peed all over me and the floor. She hadn't been able to get up to use the restroom inside the house. Yesterday morning when I'd taken her out, I had to hold her up just so she could pee.

We sat in the waiting room for two hours. I cried my eyes out. I knew what was coming, but I still hoped for the best. I hoped I would be bringing my little girl home. Eventually the nurses came in. The one who talked to me and my partner was close to tears. She knew already what would have to happen.

I was given three options, for my dog of 13 years.

I could put her through spinal surgery. Most dogs had a 70% success rate. But she would be in a lot of pain and therapy afterwards, and may have been completely paralyzed in her lower torso.

I could have her hospitalized. The medicine they had been treating her with wasn't effective. They could higher the dosage and keep her for a few days. I know that she would have died without me. Even before this, she would get major depression if she was away from me for too long. She would have given up.

And then the third option. The one I was the most scared of. Euthanasia.

I cried when I made the decision. Part of me selfishly wanted to put her through surgery, wanted to keep her for longer. I never imagined that that would be the last time I came home to her. I have no regrets of the past, I made her homemade food when she wouldn't eat dog food anymore. When she got too slow for walks, I'd carry her around so she could at least be outside. I'd cuddle her whenever I had the chance and always make sure she was comfortable wherever she was.

I chose for them to give me back her body. I cried at the thought of cremating her. I didn't want to burn her body. I couldn't. I didn't know what I'd do with her, but I couldn't do that.

They brought us into a nice room. It had wooden floors and pretty brown seats, with a pretty side table and a ficus in the corner. They brought my baby girl to me in a blanket and towel. She had little pink bandages on her front paws, where they'd been giving her injections. On her left front paw she had the catheter they would inject the sedation and euthanasia into.

When I first held her, I started crying. I didn't want to do this. I couldn't do this to my baby girl.

I held her for a long time. She was shaky. She's never liked animal hospitals or the vet. I talked to her and kissed her and loved on her. I promised her I'd make that steak for her I have in the fridge. I hadn't gotten to making it for her yet, and the turkey bacon I had for her. I told her I'd figure out what she needs in her diet, so I could feed her really well.

It was hard. She looked at me with her age-clouded eyes, and we both knew that it was time for her to go. She settled down in my arms as the doctor came in. I told her I didn't need any more time.

I asked to change to cremation. Private cremation. I couldn't bury Roxy anywhere. I couldn't leave her behind. I'm not long for this place, and I want to bring her with me. I won't receive her ashes for two weeks, but when I do I'll make them into a pendulant to wear on a necklace. She'll go wherever I go.

The doctor first injected the sedation. Roxy got tired really quickly, resting her head in my hand. I pet her, telling her how much I loved her, how she was going to feel better and be okay. I'd make her that steak that night. It'd be okay.

Then came the euthanasia. She passed quickly. The shift in feeling of her head resting in my hand to her head laying limply in my hand hurt so badly. My hands were trembling as the doctor listened for a heartbeat. It still felt like Roxy was there as the doctor pulled away, tears in her eyes. I held onto Roxy, crying silently. I pet her face, her eyes, her nose. The light in her eyes had faded away. It was painful.

The doctor gently took her from my arms. I was crying harder as I pet Roxy's limp body. I pet her face in the doctor's arms. It was hitting me that she was really gone from her body now. She reminded me of those bearskin rugs, with her lifeless eyes and motionless lips. It was hard watching the doctor take her away.

It was even harder coming home. The weight of her being gone didn't entirely hit me until then. I opened the door, against all facts hoping she would be in her bed, looking up at me as I walked in.

And she wasn't there.

I spent all night crying, I've spent most of today crying. My best friend I've had since I was 6 years old is gone from this world, and I have no idea what to do now.
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I am so very sorry for your loss of your darling Roxy.  I was in tears reading your post because so much of what you experienced also echoed the road I've walked as well. You made the right decision.

For me, after, there is nothing but grief for a great long while.  Even knowing I did the right thing, to grant my beloved darlings that final decision, that final Grace, that last gift I could give them of peace and freedom from pain, wasn't comforting because at the end of it, it was my decision to end a life--it was the right decision at the right time, but bestowing that final Grace to let them go, is carried with me forever.  I had to do this for my beloved dogs, in order to be kind to them.   

Like you, I choose private cremation, so I can take them with me if I move.  I've also looked into that "galaxy swirl" type of jewelry that would have some of my babies' ashes in a pendant.

Peace to us all.
Heaven is the place where all the dogs you've ever loved come to greet you.
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so sorry for you loss. I lost my beloved ladybug last Saturday. she was a diabetic and got shots twice a day. The last several months she got sick a lot but always got better. The day before she passed I had her at the vet he said she had colitis . He said she does not seem like herself if she is better by morning bring her in. I went to work . when I came home she did not want to eat but she did drink a little, She layed by my bed I tried everthing I could think of to try to get her to eat. In the morning I called the vet they said bring her in at 11:30 it was 8> I layed on the floor with her telling her how much I loved n her. I got up turned around and she passed.

 She was my best friend  I live alone and  she was everything to me, She was a sweet loving friend, I miss her so much, I feel sick and so lost and lonely without her. The only thing that helps is I know she is in a better place and does not have .,.to take shots anymore. Once again im so sorry for your loss pets are the best thing ever.
Jean DeGrafft
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I'm so sorry for your loss. Roxy sounds like an awesome dog. It's wicked hard losing your beloved friend. Sooz is right. You made the best decision for Roxy. Your decision came from your love for her and putting her needs ahead of your own. You gave her a good life. You stayed with her during the euthanasia. You did everything right. In time this will comfort you but now is the time to grieve your this sad, sad loss. My thoughts are with you. Hugs to you!
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I am so sorry for the loss of your sweet Roxy. I am glad you were with her til the very end and she knows how much you love her. I am glad you are getting her cremated also, i did that with my past pets and I actually also put their ashes into a tiny pendant that i can wear every single day, i feel they are close to my heart and soul now.

I know the next few months will be by far the hardest with meltdowns and tears that come out of nowhere. Your Roxy was so loved and that is the price we have to pay, with our tears and grieving for so long in exchange for the love our babies give us.

Please know you are not alone and please keep coming back and posting, it does take away that alone feeling.


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A friend for basically your entire life is gone. 

It hurts so bad.

They are not with us long enough.

Roxy had a little slice of heaven while here with you.

It is a void like no other.

I wish you peace.
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