rhea
I am a nurse, and I am confronted with death pretty regularly, but it’s never affected me as much as putting my Sneakers down yesterday did. We adopted Sneaks in 2014 from a local shelter. He was in awful shape with arthritis, chronic dry eye, and ear/skin infections, and at the time we thought we would be adopting him to give him a comfortable place to pass. He made it two and a half more years (with lots of love and medications), until I started noticing small changes in his behavior. He was pacing the house because it was getting hard for him to sit or lie down. He no longer greeted us at the door. He slept most of the day, only getting up to go on walks and eat. He wanted to be in the same room as his family, but didn’t want to snuggle or be touched. I believe these were signs of pain and suffering. The hard part was that he was still eating and wagging his tail. It’s been a fight to make my boyfriend understand. Sneakers was so tired. We made the decision two weeks ago to take him to the vet and put him to sleep on the sixteenth of this month (it is hard to make my night shift and his day shift schedules work). I know in my heart that this was the right decision. Sneakers was a good, sweet, patient boy. He deserved to die with dignity. I did not want to wait until he was crying in pain or defecating on himself. I just miss him so much. I am struggling with the loss of my very best friend, and I feel guilty that I may have ended his life too soon. Has anyone else experienced these feelings or grief and guilt? I would love to hear stories of your fur babies and how you dealt with these emotions
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Charlies_Mom
Rhea:

I am very sorry for your loss of Sneakers. Thank you for the beautiful pictures of him. Sneakers had a loving home and family.

I also adopt from shelters. You adopted Sneakers and loved him is why he lived longer. I too had to put down a week ago, an older dog I adopted from the shelter His name was Charlie. I understand you grief. Sneakers had a home and love at the end of his life and some one who loved him so much to let him go and not be in pain anymore. I know you have extreme grief now but it will get better. Happy memories of Sneakers will replace the sadness. Hugs

Charlie's mom
Breckie
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rhea
Charlies_Mom wrote:
Rhea:

I am very sorry for your loss of Sneakers. Thank you for the beautiful pictures of him. Sneakers had a loving home and family.

I also adopt from shelters. You adopted Sneakers and loved him is why he lived longer. I too had to put down a week ago, an older dog I adopted from the shelter His name was Charlie. I understand you grief. Sneakers had a home and love at the end of his life and some one who loved him so much to let him go and not be in pain anymore. I know you have extreme grief now but it will get better. Happy memories of Sneakers will replace the sadness. Hugs

Charlie's mom


Thank you for your kind words. I hope that the memories of your Charlie comfort you during your hard time as well. Pets really are family members. I wish they outlived us.
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normsmom
I am so very sorry for your loss.

Sneakers was a lucky boy to have a loving home for the last years of his life, and such a kind mum who knew when the time was right to say goodbye. It's such a big decision to make on behalf of these furry family members, and it's perfectly normal to question the timing of the decision. Even with my dog - where the vet showed me the xray and said "this is going to get bad, and fast", I still have moments of doubt. Sneakers let you know he was ready, and you did the kindest thing for him, listened to your heart and said goodbye. He wouldn't want you to beat yourself up. You gave him a wonderful life of safety, love and caring. His last years were beautiful years together. Be kind to yourself. The early days can be unbearably hard. But it will start to ebb a bit, and you will begin to remember him with more smiles and less tears. Give yourself all the space you need right now to grieve. 

Wishing you peace and healing,
Heather
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carmens_mom
Rhea, I am so sorry you also had to make the decision to euthanize Sneaks.  I am also a nurse and went through the same self doubt as you are now. My Gigi had severe osteoarthritis with spinal stenosis.  She was also dealing with recurring mast cell tumors as well as a heart murmur. 

Although Gigi had always slept on the bed right up next to me, she made the decision to sleep on the floor on a very soft pallet.  Looking back, I think it was because if I changed positions during the night, it hurt her to move.  We have three other dogs in the house who she used to romp and play.  But towards the end, she stayed away from them and retreated once again to her pallet on the floor. 

I had hoped we found an appropriate medicine, but when I took her for a follow up to our trusted vet, he said - "Alicia, look at her face and her eyes.  Look at how she carries herself with her head down.  She is still in pain.  We can't operate because she wouldn't make it due to her comorbidities.  If it was my wife in your place and I had to help her make the decision, I am so sorry, but I would have to tell her it was time."  Rhea, those words still haunt me today.  Was I selfish and kept her too long?  Did this really need to happen now?  Are there clinical trials working on her specific situation?  My list was agonizingly endless until I finally had to stop questioning myself and specifically the advice of our trusted vet and realize that there was nothing more that could make her comfortable.

It's been almost three months now and I've reconciled that the right decision was made.  Like you, I was concerned about her dignity, her quality of life and I didn't want her to be in pain.  I miss everything about her horribly but I do believe that she is not really gone, she's waiting for us to play again. 

Rhea, it's clear you have an amazing heart - you provided and received love from a precious dog whose life would have been receiving care in a shelter and who also had special needs.  You gave Sneakers a wonderful and extended life because of your kindness and caring.   Be kind to yourself Rhea -  I promise you Sneakers will always remember you just as you will always carry Sneakers in your heart.
My warmest regards,  Carmen's and Gigi's mom - alicia
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rhea
normsmom wrote:
I am so very sorry for your loss.

Sneakers was a lucky boy to have a loving home for the last years of his life, and such a kind mum who knew when the time was right to say goodbye. It's such a big decision to make on behalf of these furry family members, and it's perfectly normal to question the timing of the decision. Even with my dog - where the vet showed me the xray and said "this is going to get bad, and fast", I still have moments of doubt. Sneakers let you know he was ready, and you did the kindest thing for him, listened to your heart and said goodbye. He wouldn't want you to beat yourself up. You gave him a wonderful life of safety, love and caring. His last years were beautiful years together. Be kind to yourself. The early days can be unbearably hard. But it will start to ebb a bit, and you will begin to remember him with more smiles and less tears. Give yourself all the space you need right now to grieve. 

Wishing you peace and healing,
Heather


I am sorry about your pup as well. Although it is still too fresh a wound, I love the idea that someday we will look back with more smiles than tears. Thank you, Heather for your kind words and well wishes.
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rhea
carmens_mom wrote:
Rhea, I am so sorry you also had to make the decision to euthanize Sneaks.  I am also a nurse and went through the same self doubt as you are now. My Gigi had severe osteoarthritis with spinal stenosis.  She was also dealing with recurring mast cell tumors as well as a heart murmur. 

Although Gigi had always slept on the bed right up next to me, she made the decision to sleep on the floor on a very soft pallet.  Looking back, I think it was because if I changed positions during the night, it hurt her to move.  We have three other dogs in the house who she used to romp and play.  But towards the end, she stayed away from them and retreated once again to her pallet on the floor. 

I had hoped we found an appropriate medicine, but when I took her for a follow up to our trusted vet, he said - "Alicia, look at her face and her eyes.  Look at how she carries herself with her head down.  She is still in pain.  We can't operate because she wouldn't make it due to her comorbidities.  If it was my wife in your place and I had to help her make the decision, I am so sorry, but I would have to tell her it was time."  Rhea, those words still haunt me today.  Was I selfish and kept her too long?  Did this really need to happen now?  Are there clinical trials working on her specific situation?  My list was agonizingly endless until I finally had to stop questioning myself and specifically the advice of our trusted vet and realize that there was nothing more that could make her comfortable.

It's been almost three months now and I've reconciled that the right decision was made.  Like you, I was concerned about her dignity, her quality of life and I didn't want her to be in pain.  I miss everything about her horribly but I do believe that she is not really gone, she's waiting for us to play again. 

Rhea, it's clear you have an amazing heart - you provided and received love from a precious dog whose life would have been receiving care in a shelter and who also had special needs.  You gave Sneakers a wonderful and extended life because of your kindness and caring.   Be kind to yourself Rhea -  I promise you Sneakers will always remember you just as you will always carry Sneakers in your heart.


Alicia, I am so glad that you have come to terms with the decision after three months. That gives our family hope. I also love the idea of him waiting to play again. Thank you for your kind, warm words and I send peace your way (and Gigi’s way).
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