I feel like a 2 year old, but that's all I can feel still.  It's just not fair. This site has brought me so much comfort, but I read of the people that had their babies 12, 13, 14, 15 years...I'm jealous.  It's horrible of me, but I am.  My baby died suddenly at 6 years old.  I know it would have hurt whenever I lost her, and the pain that everyone experiences with their losses is just as valid and heart wrenching.  I'm just angry that my baby was taken so young.  Why did her heart fail her?  If there is anyone else who lost their babies young, unexpectedly please help me.  I still feel like it's my fault, my family never had an animal die that young.  My dog was my everything, I am single and alone with no kids or anyone near me.  Why would the one who loved me most be taken from me?  So many NYE I spent with her, when everyone else was too busy with families or boyfriends.  I didn't mind, I had my girl.  I have my kitties, but they have each other.  Me and my Chloe, we were soul mates.  I'm so sad still.

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I know the pain of losing a beloved friend before their time. Havana was just over a year old when I had to make the very difficult decision to eauthanize her. I will likely struggle with that decision for the rest of my days as my experience with her will never be forgotten. Sometimes our beloved friends find themselves in tragic situations that we are powerless to control. This is a situatation, sadly, that I have found very hard to accept. The loss of her has hit me hard. It seems to be, so unfair. But in the midst of my grief and sorrow I search for the lessons she so bravely showed me. In her courage, love, and willingness to forgive and face each day with hope. I will miss her always,as I'm sure you will miss your beloved baby but our animal companions have much to teach us of love and loss, regardless of whether we are ready to learn it or not. Take comfort in the time you did have with your beloved friend and in the grace of the animals you still share your life with. Nothing will help you heal your heart more than them.
x tiki       
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This is my first post here. I haven't been sure how my broken heart could be of much help to those suffering with the pain of their losses. We had two labs, a 2-yr-old black lab named Shadow and an 18-month old yellow lab named River. On November 28th, my family (3 children in their late teens and early twenties and husband)were all out and about, doing their own things. I was having a banner day, wrapping up the garden ready for winter and just beginning to get ready for Christmas. My husband and I were just putting the boys collars on to take them for an outing when my 23 yr-old daughter came along and said she had planned to take them on an outing. These boys are big weighing 220 between them, strong and can be pretty rambunctious when there are other dogs, squirrels, blowing leaves, just about anything nearby. They were my life. I walked them most often by myself and the only other member of my family that I would allow, although reluctantly was my 23 year old daughter. She took them out and later in the afternoon, she loaded our little River into the van and as she was loading Shadow into the van, River hopped out. He ran to a nearby culvert that crossed to the other side of the highway. He was a meek, timid fellow, but Shadow had shown him how to go through culverts, and no matter how much we scolded him, he would arrive at the other side, with a big happy smile on his face, so proud of himself. He did just that, and my daughter, horrified to see an SUV coming started to yell at him to stay and started waving frantically at the vehicle to stop. River was never very good at the stay command and started across the highway. My daughter watched as he braced himself for the blow, then saw him tossed through the air and roll to a stop 50 feet from where he was hit. The driver never slowed or made any attempt to avoid hitting him. My daughter said that he could have done either easily. Nor did he slow or stop after he hit him. Two other vehicles stopped to help her. Two men helped her to load him into our van and one drove so that she could comfort River. The closest after-hours emergency animal hospital here is an hour away. River died on the way there. He was our baby. He was child-like in so many ways. He was a little smaller than Shadow and we used to always say that we would always think of him as a puppy. I was always so careful with them. The funny thing is, River was always so cautious normally. He hated swimming, strange for a lab, but loved to splash around in the shallows. He never wandered into deeper water. If Shadow went down a steep embankment, he would wait anxiously at the top and would pull him up by the collar when he returned. Once the two were ahead of me and I could see that Shadow was investigating something, but noticed that River was giving it a wide berth. I ran ahead to see what it was and it was a porcupine. He was the most gentle pup, and we were all devastated. I knew that Shadow would miss him, but had no idea of the effect it would have on him. I would take him on familiar trails and he would be hesitant, only to stop and sit, staring intently into the distance. I tried everything, and the only thing he seemed interested in was playing ball. Eventually, he refused that as well. When I would finally agree to turn back, he would hurry back to the van, or home if we were in the neighbourhood. An animal behaviorist I contacted suggested luring him with treats which worked somewhat but only briefly. He then refused treats and I would have to hand-feed his meals to him. I probably don't need to add that he looked everywhere for him and if he heard anything that sounded like the tinkle of his collar, he would jump up and look around for him. I became afraid that he was going to become physically ill and decided to bring home another pup. His name is Farley, and though it was not love at first sight, and I hadn't expected that it would be, Farley was the distraction that brought him out of the depths of his despair. He was well on the way to being back to normal almost immediately. I love Farley for helping Shadow to heal - what a big job for such a tiny soul. As for your feeling of being cheated - I absolutely understand how you feel. Anyone reading your post understands your suffering. You should not feel guilty for how you feel. Everyone's loss however different the circumstances are, is heartbreaking for them too. I think of it as just a different kind of horror, but a horror all the same. My daughter who was with him has said the very same thing that you did. I too searched several pet loss forums for accidental deaths, and found few. When we arrived at the animal hospital and I saw River's beautiful but broken body and looked at Shadow, I thought that life as he and I knew it would be forever changed. It has.

River's mommy (Mary)

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I think when it is an unexpected death, the pain hits in a different way because you have shock on top of grief.  Almost all the animals my family had throught the years had got really old or sick so the decision was ours to let them go and it hurt, but at least we knew it was coming.  Chloe was my first dog all on my own, so that makes it tough plus the fact that she was fine one day and gone the next.  Accidents are horrific and tragic and I'm glad I never had to watch my baby suffer in that way.  But a sudden illness or heart failure is just as dumbfounding to me and I don't know if it's common or why it happened?  I guess it's common in certain breeds, mine was mixed, not of one of the breeds that I know.  I just miss her.  I'm sad.  I don't know why she got sick.
Thanks for sharing your tragedies.  I wonder Tiki, why did Havana have to be put down?  Did she get an illness at 1?  Anybody else reading have experience with sudden heart failure?  Still looking for peace, want to know it wasn't my fault.
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hi Misscandy,

I haven't been on the forums in a while, I have a hard time reading through many of the posts since I am still dealing with the loss of a loved one.  I lost my beloved Sigmar a few months ago, he was only a year and two weeks old.  He died one day short of the one year anniversary of my husband discovering him abandoned at two weeks old.  We bottle fed him, helped him learn how to pee and poop on his own, took him to the vet when we realized he had colitis only a couple days after bringing him in.  So many people scoff at me when I say this, but I literally felt like he was my child, he was my baby.  Around the time we guessed he would have turned one he got sick, the vets all seemed so optimistic, they told us it was something that shouldn't be too difficult to cure, hemobartonella.  Well, only two weeks later I was taking him a box, my beloved sweet Sigmar.  It wasn't until a little later that any of the vets offered any explanation as to what went wrong.  some sort of an immune response caused his body to attack his own red blood cells.  I was SO angry, at everyone, including myself.  I still feel angry at times, althought I'm working on getting passed that.  It's ok, it's normal to feel angry, it's just one of the stages of grief.  I just can't understand why this happened to such a young, sweet, beautiful baby like my Sigmar.  I can't understand why your beloved sweetheart would also die so young.  It hurts so &^*%#$ much when we lose our babies so young, there's no rhyme or reason to it.  It's unfortunate and truly frustrating.  I know it's hard to think about now, it will even be hard months and even years from now, but if you can remember the good times, when you're ready take out pictures and look at your baby, think about all the snuggles, and all the love that is STILL there.  That love will never wane.  Though your heart may not never fully mend, your sweetheart will always occupy an area of your heart, nothing will EVER take that love from you.  and you will see your baby again, we have to believe we will see our sweethearts again, or life will seem just too sad.

My Sigmar's Rainbow residency: http://rainbowsbridge.com/residents/SIGMA001/Resident.htm

Sigmar, my baby ~ Forever in my Heart
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There is little that can be said to lessen your pain.  Losing your beloved furry at any age is heartbreaking.  My boy, Rebel, was 4 when he was shot to death.  Ripped my soul ... his brother Rex was shot at the same time but survived.  You have so many questions...WHY being the biggest.  I know, I don't understand it ......... 1/15/06 was the worst day of my life ... hard to believe we are coming up on 4 yrs. because it feels like yesterday.  Believe it or not, the pain does get better ... it's there but changes ... it's not as raw, I guess is the best way to put it...but you do get to where you remember your furry with happy tears instead of sad ones. 
God Bless you and be with you on this journey because it is full of ups and downs.  I was hitting my two year marker and literally going out of my mind when I found this site.  It helped me sooooo much.  Though no one can take the pain away, it is truly helpful to know you are not alone.  The compassion, understanding and love you will find here is priceless.
Norma and the Shadowhoffen Shepherds ~~ Rebel and Rex together forever
Remembering Rebel.. 8-21-01 ~~ 01-15-06
Remembering Rex ... 8-21-01 ~~ 01-22-11
Remembering Tala ... 9/17/2000 ~~ 8/30/11
Remembering Baron ... 3/12/98 ~~ 11/23/11
http://www.premiereshepherds.org/blog ... for Rebels memorial blog and soon to be Rex's as well

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