Ryders_Mom
I can remember the day clearly back in the summer of 2008. My husband and I were out and came across a pet adoption and decided to take a look. At the time we had 2 young boys at home but no pets. Once we got there we came across the cutest little mixed breed golden pup, the last one there waiting for his forever home.

When we first laid eyes on our Ryder boy we knew he was meant for us and so started our journey with our first fur baby. He was the happiest most energetic puppy I knew. Always playing, always happy and a little mischievous. He was quick to learn the rules though and wanted nothing but to please us. He was very sly when he did break the rules and knew how to get around them.

Ryder was there bringing our toddler and preschool sons into their preteen and teen years, for the birth of our two daughters and when we brought him home a new fur brother. Ryder was a big 65lb boy and his little brother was a 5lb baby. He was very gentle with his brother and always played with him making sure to never hurt him.

He took to each and every member of the family and made us all feel as if he were our best friend. There are so many memories I could write about but I know it would take a lifetime. Ryder made our house a home.

Fast forward to this past Friday September 17th 2017, I came home from working my midnight shift and my husband was at work and the kids at school. I decided not to nap that day because I had the night off so it was just me and my two fur babies home that morning.I gave Ryder lots of extra love and attention that day. We knew he was a little older being 9.5 years old but he never showed any signs of his aging (he still acted just like a big puppy) and never showed any signs of being sick. We thought we still had more time with him. That day he ate and drank like normal, used the bathroom normally and played normally even bouncing around with his brother Bentley. The only thing he did was vomit a little flem but he would vomit from time to time so I didn't think much of it. My husband came home to get me so we could go pick the kids up from school. We were maybe only gone for 1 hour, when we returned home we found our boy laying in one of his favorite spots but he was no longer with us, his tongue was blue with a tiny bit of blood on it and he wasn't breathing. We tried to wake him but we realized he was gone. We will never know what happened to him. I blame myself for not staying home with because part of me wonders if I was there to witness what had happened could I have saved him? He was momma's boy, always following me wherever I went and wanting to be by side. I feel guilty I wasn't there in his last minutes. I only hope that he went in his sleep peacefully.

We had him cremated and I made him a little shrine where his bed use to be. I have been so overcome with grief since his passing, I can't stop the tears and I feel physically sick. I know that grieving takes time and that we will never completely get over this loss but I also know that Ryder would not want us to be sad and would want us to continue living a happy life taking care of his brother and each other.

To my Ryder boy: Mom misses everything about you. All I want is to hear your bark, feel you next to me and see you running with the kids and playing with Dad. I hope you are happy and free where you are now. Please don't stop looking over us. We will continue to honor your legacy until the day we meet again.
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Chinadoll
Ryders Mom, your post touched me deeply. I can feel the love your family had for Ryder, the years you shared your love and care for him and in return the love he provided for everyone, especially his little brother. I love how a large dog can be so sweet and gentle with a much smaller one, Ryder certainly played the roll of big brother, what a sweetheart. Please try to be easy on yourself, these feelings of guilt are so common, I've seen so many posts here talking about that subject. It's just not possible to be with our dear friends 24x7 and they are so good at hiding illness from us. I never saw it in my little girl China, she died quickly without showing any signs of being sick. I felt guilty for a while, struggling with the what ifs. We all do the best we can, give all the love and care we can. They know this, they know how much we loved them. I believe their spirit is still with us and we will be united again one day. I pray for peace and comfort for you and your family on this long journey. Time does help, it varies from person to person, but it will slowly get better and your thoughts will turn to the good times, the smiles, the love. Bless you, for coming here and sharing your story. So many people here who care and know how difficult it is to lose a precious love like Ryder. God bless you.
Charlie
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Twilight
Ryders Mom - What a beautiful story of your family, and your life with Ryder.  He was so lucky that you came along at just the right time, and adopted him, and gave him so many years of love and happiness. I understand how you are hurting, and how lonely you are right now.  I feel like I've lost my best friend, since Winnie has been gone. It's only been since Thursday, so the feelings are still fresh and painful. Over time, we will heal, but we'll never forget the loving pets we have lost. 
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LisaAndy
I am very sorry for your loss. I love the story of his life and how he was with your kids your older as they grew from toddlers to teens. Its cute the way he was gentle with the little dog. 
Do you have any photos you can post? I can sort of envision him.

the thing is once a dog is old, like almost age 10 is considered elderly for his breed, anything can happen and very suddenly. I think the life span is 8-11 or similar. I have learned that on this forum that once they are elderly all sorts of things can happen to take their life, that very few die from old age.  Yours was extremely sudden but there are other things that develop suddenly in an old dog which maybe gives them a day or 2 or a week or 2 or maybe that very day have to be put down. Now that I am aware of this I have another 14.5 year old dog, I realize I could come home one day and find him how you found Ryder, because they can have a stroke. Maybe it was a stroke and there are no signs of this previously.  There is no way to tell the dog is going to have a stroke, there are just no symptoms. You could not have helped him if you were there. It sounds like he had a heart attack or stroke or some kind of clot that came on suddenly with no warning signs.

I'm sure you are sad and is not much I can say to help you there. It's very, very hard. He had a great life with you and your kids, they learned a lot about being dog owners and dog friends that they will take into their future.

Hugs to you.

Lisa

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Ryders_Mom
China doll,
Thank you so much for your response. I am so sorry for your loss as well. Ryder was the heart of his family and I appreciated how gentle he was with all of but especially his little brother Bentley. He truly was a very special dog. I know in time my grief will take different forms, I am still crying everyday but not as much as those first couple days. I still feel his presence here and believe he's letting me know in the little ways that he's still here for us and waiting for us all on the other side. I am truly greatful for finding this group and reading others stories and all the resources here has been some sort of a comfort for me. Take care,
Ryder's Mom
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Ryders_Mom
Lisa thank you so much for your response. He did have a tiny bit of blood coming from his mouth. Not enough to even get on the floor so we think it was possible a stroke or seizure. Possibly some sort of aneursym. We will never know for sure but he did live his life to the very fullest and I'm thankful to never have seen him suffer.
That's awesome that your dog has made it to such a heart age, try not to worry about his death and just enjoy and spend as much time as you can with him.
I've tried to post a picture of Ryder but for some reason my files won't load. Do you know how I could possible post a picture? If it helps he was a golden boxer/pit mix of lab/pit mix, they were never really sure. Take care!

Ryder's Mom
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Ryders_Mom
Twilight,
So sorry for the loss of your Winnie. I know this is just the beginning of the grief for the loss of our best friends. But time will heal and although we will never stop missing them someday we will be able to look back and remember more of the good times instead of the loss we feel. Thank you for your response. Everyone's kind words bring a little comfort in this terrible time. Take care,

Ryder's Mom.
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LisaAndy
That's a cute one of him! 

Yes it certainly could have been an aneurysm something that just burst, and there was nothing could be done by anyone even if you got there sooner or you were home. That's so very sad. He sounds like a GREAT DOG...like his photo he has some expressive eyes


If you want to post any more, you can go to where is the blue line in the post saying "reply to this topic"- underneath is another line Font Family, font size etc and along that bar is  GREEN Tree - click that and then "on computer" and the click on until it says Upload from computer and choose photo from your computer. It's fairly easy once you know where it is.

Glad you are feeling a little better, I think it comes and goes, good and bad days. eventually better days ahead

Hugs

Lisa


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Ryders_Mom
Thank you!! He knew how to use those puppy dog eyes on us!! And thank you for sharing on how to upload a picture!!
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BonnieNora
Ryders-mom,

Oh I am beyond sorry that you lost your baby. And to come home and find him and have the thoughts you are having are unbearable.

I too lost my Mischief kitty on 9/7. Unexpectedly. Stomach cancer. I have not been the same since. I relate to how terrible you feel.

Sending you love during this time.
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