I just wanted to share my story because I am feeling so overwhelmed and don't really know how to deal with my grief. Our dog, Sam is a 13 year old golden doodle and next week we are going to the vet to discuss options for putting her down. A couple of years ago, she went to the groomer and her bladder tore. $7000 later my parents saved her, but she aged so much more quickly than I could have ever imagined. It's really bad now - she has terrible hip problems and cannot go the washroom or even walk around without help. I remember reading somewhere that you have to know when to let your pet go, and every time I look in her eyes it feels like she is telling me it's time.

In May of this year, my parents got another dog. A puppy, Charlie with the hope that she would bring some life back into Sam, and that she did. But as we move closer to the holidays, we had hoped that we could get at least one more Christmas with Sam and we can't. She's the greatest - she actually opens presents, every year on every occasion. I am sad because she won't be able to teach Charlie this, and Christmas feels like it will never be the same.

When I moved away to university, I wouldn't have ever imagined I would miss my dog so much. When I was younger I wasn't as interested in Sam... and I feel so guilty because in the more recent years I have really learned to appreciate and love her so deeply. I feel like she forgave me for not paying attention to her when I was younger, her devoutness and love and loyalty has led me to understand the beauty of having another soul there to help you through life.

We have talked about putting her down a lot. But this time it's real, and I honestly don't know how to cope with this. I cry all of the time and she's not even gone yet. My parents are arranging it so that the vet will come to the house and I feel like I cannot be there. It is just too much and I don't want to watch her fade to sleep. On top of it all, the night before this is supposed to happen my parents want to have a steak dinner and let her open some presents. I can barely handle even writing this and I don't want her to know I am upset because dogs are so insightful - they know everything and I don't want her to know she will be going across the rainbow bridge. I am scared for her, and for me. I am scared for Charlie who has grown so attached to her.

Any words of wisdom would really help me. I don't know how to get through this. I cry all of the time it seems, at work, at home, at my parents house. I feel an unbearable sadness for a loss that I am waiting for. I want to be strong for Sam, but I don't know if I can. Has anyone else been through this? Please help me.
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I am so sorry for your pain. Your love for your beautiful baby shines through. Advice is difficult to give. I went through this 2 years ago twice, 6 months apart. If I could go back in time, I would have the vet come to my home and do as your parents are planning. But if you decide not to be there at the last moments, spend some time with Sam, tell her how you are feeling. She knows how much you love her. She will continue to walk by your side, you may not see her, you will feel her presence. If and when the time comes and you decide you can hold her and be there, please know it will be painless. She will just drift off to sleep. The love you shared will live on.

I am thinking of you and sending warm hug's your way.

Duncan & Myles Momxx

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I just went through this Tuesday this week. Like you, I cried so much in the months leading up to this...the thought of living without our babies is unbearable. I have to tell you that it is all preparation, but no preparation is ever enough. I think now how lucky I was to say goodbye and have that time to prepare. A lot of people lose their beloved so suddenly and for them I pray and thank God I had the chance and time to "pre-mourn."  You love her and she loves you - I keep things in mind - like, love never dies. It is the hardest decision to ever make, I am in serious doubt of my decision, the grief is unbearable. This site is helpful because people here understand. I asked for signs leading up to the decisions. I felt like I had been given enough signs and on her final day she felt my grief, I couldn't hide it. She was shaking like a Chihuahua, my big lab. She hadn't done the shaking thing often unless I knew she was having a "bad" day or was scared. So I know she was ready and scared. I had to be there to comfort her and hold her and tell her I love her. I still think I could have given her a few more days or maybe longer...that decision will always haunt me. I think from what I read here that you either feel like it was too soon ...or it ends up being too late. I think another couple days of her not being able to walk would have just been mean and for my wanting us to be together longer. At some point you decide to be brave for her. My final sign was actually a postcard on my desk...as I was holding the phone to make the call that I knew I couldn't back out of (for the 2nd time)...life is hard, but our memories and love is so strong it gets us through it. You have to believe that and love her now...and be brave for her.  be brave.jpg 

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