TyMom
I was referred to this site from a friend who suggested it would help. I am so completely devastated and would appreciate any feedback. I have had my beautiful boy, Ty, for 17 amazing years and love him more than anything in this world. For the past 3 years he was battling diabetes which was found out when came down with a sudden acute pancreatitis. He almost died, but after 7 days in the hospital he came back to me! I was beyond happy. Since then I have been giving him insulin at home and doing my best to manage his disease and he was doing very well. He has had two more bouts of pancreatitis as he was dealing with this on a chronic level. But everytime he pulled through. I work at home, so he had me with him daily. I had a pet sitter who is also a vet tech for last couple years taking care of him while I traveled for a couple days here and there. This year I went for Christmas to visit family for 5 days in Okla and he was completely fine when I left, but I came home to a horrifying nightmare where my baby couldn’t walk, became blind, and was suffering from DKA with a BG of 645. I’ve never seen him in so much agonizing pain. He became partially paralyzed. I couldn’t understand what happened, when it happened or why. I’m trying to understand bec my sitter not once called me to tell me he was not well and not eating. His food bowl was completely full and his medicine of daily steroid he takes for inflammation was still in his bowl, which he should have taken in the morning. I’m just so sick my sitter, who is a licensed vet tech, did not let me know anything. He was so dehydrated and howling in pain nonstop. I rushed him to Emerg clinic, then transferred him to my vet in morning, but nothing helped. After 4 days he became unable to eat, still couldn’t walk, developed a horrible twitching all over his body, and his breathing was labored and he was panting. I made the only choice I could and had him put to sleep. I lost 5 precious days with my boy while on vacation and now I’m dying inside bec I can’t ever hold and kiss his beautiful face again or watch him enjoy his screened in patio anymore. This is so gut wrenching his story ended in such a tragic way, and I can’t help but feel had his sitter called me to let me know he wasn’t eating, had peed all over the floor, didn’t take his meds that day I could have come home earlier and he would be with me now. Also she changed his insulin schedule by over 4 hours and didn’t tell me. I am trying not to blame her, bec I know she did nothing intentionally. I just don’t understand how this happened and I feel so much guilt as his mom as it was my duty to ensure he was taken care of at all times. I’m broken without him, my home is so lonely, and I can’t breathe thinking I won’t ever hold him and see his handsome face again. He was my entire heart.
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Smokey3887
I’m so sorry you have this pain. I too have my Smokey and his days are limited. I’m scared to go through this process.
Smokeys mom
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Smokey3887
I’m here for you.
Smokeys mom
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CKMP
Ty's Mom,
I am so so sorry for your loss of your boy....Pancreatitis - believe me, I know this disease only too well...chronic or acute is so so painful and with each bout it is more and more difficult.  Added health problems as your Ty had [and my girl also - had Addison's disease]and each day with them is a gift...Please do not let guilt move into your grief...I did, and believe me it is so tough to get reid of this 'guest'...it has the potential to rob you of your memories of happier times, of the love shared and of the 'logical' understanding of the things you can not control...We want to blame ourselves and be hard on ourselves because we are left here while the most precious companion of all is not...We want to assume the responsibility for everything - and really the most difficult realization of many is that there are things we do not control...and can not...Ty lives within the moment now, he lives still within your home, your heart and will for always...His heart belongs to you and always will...And, he knows instinctively, as our special fur ones do, you did all you could and all that you believed was the best....We can become plagued by the should haves, could haves and whys - but to no fruitful end except our inner torment.  Your boy lived in a home of love, care and affection...  Sometimes I wonder if our fur ones are far more intuitive with that 'sixth sense' that we can ever hope to be...Perhaps they know when the time is right to give in to that next adventure - and despite what we believe we do not have any 'say' over this...You did nothing wrong by taking a holiday at Christmas time, and you set up care for Ty...Have you been able to talk with your sitter yet and ask those tough questions?  We ramble around and around within our guilt and self-punishment - and will always find fault with what we have done or did not do...Know your boy is still near by, and will always be your angel...The bond is not dependent upon a physical presence...Life changes with our special ones and changes without them - Their lives matter and will continue to do so.   
Hopefully this forum will provide you the support and the reassurance you do not travel this road of grief and sorrow alone.  There are many kind and caring people here...Wishing there was a word, a way to ease your pain...Take care of yourself.  
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PeppermintPatty
Oh my word. This story is heartbreaking. Please don't blame yourself. Anybody would think a vet tech would be more responsible in their care of someone else's pet. 

I know how hard this must be for you. At 17, Ty lived a long life. I wish I had some advice for you. But I am feeling the same pain you are at this time. You are not alone.

My little Lara left in her sleep early this morning. I too work at home, so the void is going to hit very hard. She was almost like a dog (she always greeted me at the door, came when called, etc.) and was always by my side.

Take care of yourself and hopefully you can reach the point where the good memories will chase away some of the pain.
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lizarose1
TY's Mom,
I lost my precious rescue dog of 12 1/2 years to a terrible bout of pancreatitis in November. He too had diabetes and we were able to manage it successfully for about 6 years. It was endless insulin injections and constantly trying to get him to eat. I even had him on a home cooked diet so he would eat everyday. He went blind right after he was diagnosed as diabetic but he managed it well and was still a happy little guy. He had 2 other bouts of pancreatitis which we were able to get him through but the last one was the worst and his body was not able to recover. I held him in my arms when they put him to sleep. Even though he was barely conscience, I didn't want him to be afraid. When it first happened I felt very guilty because I couldn't save him and he depended on me. I second guessed everything that I did...everything that the vet did but at the end of the day it was his time and I couldn't change that...no matter how much I loved him. I have learned from others on this sight to be gentle with myself. There are so many pets who do not know the love that your Ty and my Titan knew. They gave us a pure, innocent love and even gave us a purpose. When that purpose is gone it is normal to suffer and feel a deep daily loss. I truly believe the greater the loss the more love that you had and rec'd from your precious pet. Know in your heart that what you did was for love. 17 years is a long life and I'm sure your Ty is looking down on you and thanking you for all of the sacrifices you made for him. I wish you peace and comfort during your process of grief. Although it doesn't seem like it now, you will get through this but you will be forever changed by your Ty. 
LizaRose
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TyMom
Thank you all for your sweet and thoughtful words as they have helped a lot during these few days of tremendous heartbreak.  Ty seemed to me like he was immortal, so having this happen is so surreal, just completely shocking.  Yes, he had diabetes but we were managing quite well, and his last days with me were great, which is why I am dying over the fact that I left over Christmas break and came home to a cat who was paralyzed and near death.  I'm not sure what happened when I was gone or why his sitter didn't call or text me that my boy wasn't eating or taking his meds. I can't do anything about it now.  I'm just completely broken, feeling like I failed my sweet boy.  I'm so sorry for all of your losses.  We love them so much and they love us back unconditionally, forgive us when we are wrong without question, and are always by our sides no matter what just wanting more love from us.  My Ty helped me through my divorce, numerous relationships gone wrong, countless moves across the country, deaths of family members and so many other life events, and he never once waivered in showing me his absolute love.  I tried so hard to manage his diabetes, but his also dealing with bouts of pancreatitis flare ups was tough, because the steroids he had to take weren't good for the diabetes.  So, his blood glucose was pretty high on a regular, but he was doing well and his symptoms were few.  This forum has helped, so I thank each of you for responding with your heartfelt stories, and I pray for peace for each of you.  Smokey3887, just love on your baby as I know you are doing, and I'm sorry you feel that fear of knowing your baby's days are limited. I also felt that way about Ty and there were nights I would just cry salty tears all over his sweet head knowing that I had no control over his ending on this earth and reassuring that regardless of what happened, momma would always love him. Our time with them is so precious and so limited. lizarose1, I'm so sorry about your grief over your rescue dog. Seeing our babies struggle through pancreatitis is the absolute WORST as it is so painful and hard on their little bodies.  What a lucky boy he was to know you were with him till the end. CKMP, thank you for the encouraging words, and yes, maybe they do know when the time is right, but gosh, I wish it was easier for us in the process to accept it.  I have talked to my sitter, not really received much in return from her, but she's also dealing with this loss in her own way. I wish you the best, and I thank you so much for your sweet, thoughtful, and helpful words through this gut wrenching time.  PeppermintPatty, I'm so very sorry for your baby, Lara. My thoughts and prayers are with you during this time.  I don't like that you all are going through such a loss as I am right now, but at least we can provide each other with caring words and comfort that we are here for one another. My thoughts are with you all.  And thank you all for caring enough to reach out.  Means the world!

Forever,
Ty's Mom
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Chocolatekittens
I'm so deeply sorry for your loss. I can understand your difficulty in trying to process this shock of what happened but please understand you mustn't blame yourself in any way. I am living in constant guilt as I work at home and I was downstairs working me and my cat Jasmine were apart for no longer than 30 minutes when I found her collapsed her health hadn't been good but she was doing ok. On arrival at the vets there was no heartbeat it seemed she'd had a stroke a stroke that nearly took my life 6 years before.My baby got me through that. Any guilt you feel will add to your grief. I know you wished you were there to comfort your baby I wished I was there for my Jasmine at that moment. Please cherish the happy times focus on your happy memories together and the fun you had that will get you through the pain you are feeling. You are in my thoughts and prayers xx
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joemom
I had a similar situation.  I left my Joey in the hands of someone who had taken care of him before, and who appeared to be able to take care of him again, despite the fact that he had recently become blind, and recently diagnosed with a brain tumor.  I was on vacation, in Cuba where communication was very limited, and didn't realize he wasn't doing as well as I had expected.  I came home to a house that smelled of pee (although that wasn't too surprising, as he had begun to have accidents and it was hard for even ME to keep the place clean and smelling decent).  He was sleeping with his head against the wall on a mat that I hadn't put there - although was using as a buffer to keep him from bumping his head - he probably knocked it down and then decided to sleep on it.  That made me a little sad, but wasn't a huge deal.  I woke him up, he smelled me, and started licking me.  Not long afterwards he started crying, and this went on all night until finally at midnight I figured something was wrong and took him to the emergency vet.  They found basically nothing wrong but gave him a shot of pain medicine.  It didn't do much, and he continued to whine and cry until 6 AM my heart was breaking and I got up and gave him more than a usual amount of pain medicine. I also put a blanket over him, in case he was cold, as I had left the house fairly cold, the way he usually likes it.  He actually slept for about 45 minutes and I did a tiny bit too.  But then the whining began again - and it was loud and breaking my heart.  At 8 I called his regular vet and asked if I could bring him in to be put to sleep.  He just wasn't doing well, his back legs were weak, and the crying was non-stop.  It was Saturday morning and I knew I wouldn't be able to speak to the neuro vet until Monday.  I finally remembered that if I felt it was necessary, I could increase his gabapentin pills, which he was given for pain by the neuro vet.  When I finally realized that might be an option, I had to decide whether I should wait until I had a chance to increase those (3 times a day instead of 2) to see if that would help, or put him out of his misery.  Of course nobody has a crystal ball, and who knows what, if anything, would have worked?  

Our friend told me Joey had done the crying a few times in the late evening, and it went on for about an hour before he stopped.  However, since I had told him before I left that Joey had occasionally done the same thing with me, and I assumed he wanted more food and water, he didn't really think it was alarming.  I can't fault the friend for not telling me everything that was happening, and most of the time I was hard to reach, or too worried about being reached because of the cost (on a cruise ship).  So now I'm kicking myself for not staying in touch more.  I'm also kicking myself for doing what I've told others not to do, which is get upset around your dog.  They sense it, and it upsets them.  I'm now kicking myself, wondering if I had only put the blanket over him, or slept in another room rather than on the couch next to him that night, or taken him to the ER the day before I left when he fell down some steps, he'd still be with me.  If I had only just put the belly band on him all the time, given him all the water he wanted, and not worried about the rug or the house, and instead worried more about his kidneys, maybe things would have been different.  However, the fact is that he had a brain tumor, and possibly other health issues, and it's impossible to know what will happen when a dog is sick.  I put my heart and soul into helping and loving him - for 13 plus years, for two months of tests to see if he had Cushings (no, though I think he probably did), was blind (yes), and had a tumor (yes).  Do I blame our friend?  No.  Joey didn't act or wasn't as sick while he was there as I found him to be the first night I got home.  He could not have known, and I could not have known.  I did the best I could, given the info I had.  That's all you and I can do.  That's all my friend could do.  

Don't be too hard on yourself.  Let yourself cry, get depressed; DO try to let it out.  I tried to keep busy the first two weeks but it didn't help.  I was really depressed - more so than I have ever been in my life, and more so than with any other dog I've owned, which has been 4.  Luckily I'm doing better now, and you will too, but of course I still have my "moments."  That's why I came to this site.  The guilt, the "what if" and unanswered questions, the fact that he was so sick, and how deeply his loud crying disturbed me, are what bother me the most.  My other dogs died in other, different and gentler ways. 

But we all have to get over our grief and let the good memories take over.  Tymom, you'll be OK, but I DO understand how you feel right now.  What we all need to do the most, though, is not feel guilty about what we did or failed to do.  We all did SO many great things for our animals, and that's what we need to remember. 

There's also the Chat Room if you want to chat with someone.  I've used it a couple times and it helps.




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