anguished
I understand that there's no more pain. I do.

I despise the vet for assuring that she'd be coming home the next day, that she had "perked up".

Oh, she came home the next day all right...in a box.

I had just had her at his office on the Friday, where we'd been managing her diabetes successfully for 13 months. Miniature schnauzers are notoriously hard to regulate, so I've been told. She had dropped 3 lbs. since her last visit, and she was 9 and a half years old.

Clouds had started to form in her eyes, just the very very beginning of cataracts, nothing that we couldn't accomodate. But her sugar was running high and he told us to cut her insulin back to 4cc and we'd take it from there.

The next day, she starts throwing up. Called the office and said to just keep an eye on her. Called the next day, same thing, told to bring her in first thing Monday, and we did. Some sickness was to be expected for the changeup in dosage. Getting ready to leave, she had fallen over (now I'm thinking maybe it was a stroke) onto her left side but shook it off and then we were off to the vet.


When she had thrown up once over the weekend, it hit the cat. Normally, the cat would've clobbered her, lol..but she stayed beside her. The cat knew. If only I had the cat's intuition...if only.

She was mildly dehydrated and her sugar was high again, 330. They ran some bloodwork and started an IV. They wanted to keep her overnight.

Little did I know that after 7pm, everybody went home. Now, this is a vet's office that is all "Oh, we know they're members of your family. We think of them like that too." Really? Let's see, if your mother/father/child is hospitalized, does everyone punch out and leave them alone in the hospital, where they could be afraid..and die alone?

This is what's killing me the most. The call made to check on her Monday evening had the vet saying that he called her name and she lifted her head up to respond and she was ok.

Next morning, get a call that she died. Of course, that's when I began to scream, demanding to know why she died. "We don't know".

I wasn't going to have her body desecrated with an autopsy. We went in the car and went to collect her. There she was in a box. Now, on a rational level, I understand sanitation procedures, but to have brought in the dog and to be given a box with a dead dog...that made things worse. Screaming at him to open the box, calling him every name in the book, my husband lifted her out of the box and handed her to me. She was in a towel, like a shroud.

We went home and buried her in our yard. As he dug the hole, I held her and did not want to let her go. My father, who also loved her, came to help us. I should mention I am not a kid. My father is a senior citizen and he was the one holding me up during this and was the one who was able to get me to turn her body over to my husband so he could place her in her grave.

We put her favorite stuffed animal in with her. I hurt as badly now as I did on December 1, when this happened. I am actually on medication now to try to help deal with this and it's not helping. I've even gone so far as to get a new puppy, more so for my son and to at least have a warm body who will at least make a similar sound for that familiarity in this empty-feeling house, and time isn't healing.

Her gravemarker came and it's out in the yard, and today I ran across a memory stone that said, "If love could have saved you, you would have lived forever." I saw this at a flea market and broke down publicly.

I am not one to be reduced to tears like this. Her death marked the end of the worst year of my life. I am still devastated and I know it kills my father to see me still like this.

The bill for her vet visit came 43 days after her death. $215. I called and yes, I was confrontational. I know that some vets give the paw print, at least, so there's something tangible. They told me they don't have hers. So I said, so you want my $215, and you won't give me a paw print, and you gave me a dead dog. It was a terse way to hang up the phone.

I will be forwarding the payment but I am afraid of what I might write in the memo section of the check, and there will be a note in there stating that at these rates, maybe paying someone to sit overnight with the animals so there's at least someone THERE for them so no more die alone wouldn't be too much to ask.

There were no "lifesaving treatments" in the bill. It was for IV, bloodwork and for keeping her overnight. I should never have let them keep her. Just a few days before, he tells me we didn't need to have the euthanasia conversation. Then she spares me from making the agonizing decision and she went on her own...alone. I wasn't there for her.

My father says that we kept her alive longer than many others would have. She had a bad bout of pancreatitis that had her hooked to an IV on Christmas Eve several years ago. She had corneal ulcers that required surgery that I didn't think twice about doing. I loved her so much that it hurts...and she loved me even more.

She's gone now. I can't accept this. There's too much anger and too much pain. This is not the first time I've lost a pet. This is just the one that's killing me.

Is there anything that anyone can advise at this point. I am ceasing to function as a normal human being at this point, unable to control the tears that come out of nowhere, unable to truly enjoy the puppy. (I do give her love and it will never be the same, and I don't resent her, but I miss my dog too much to truly enjoy anything anymore.)

I see my own doctor on Monday to see if the medication will continue and I have a feeling he'll be upping it. I am beyond devastated and just can't climb out of this blackness. My son is handling this better than I am. We got her when he started kindergarten, and he's in high school now. To think a high school kid who grew up with her is handling this better than me, I should be ashamed of myself, but I am too beyond feeling anything other than pain.
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anguished

By the way, the new puppy will never see that vet. I am going back to the original vet I'd used, and my cat will never see that other vet either. The puppy is to be spayed this coming Monday. I'll drop her off, go to my doctor, then wait to pick her up. As for the old vet, I can't go through that with them again. I am not a violent person but I am afraid of what I might possibly do should something similar happen.

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misscandy77

I understand your anguish. I have never been so devastated in my life.  My dog died suddenly and she was only 6.  Still don't know why...heart failure, aneurysm, embolism...those were the best guesses.  Shock on top of grief is the worst.  Your dog was 13 but I understand you thought things were going well.  I would have been angry too about them being left overnight.  I just realized that about my vet as well when I was there.  But they had told me that when they closed I would have to transport her to the emergency vet since nobody was there and they knew she was critical.  Then they said she was stable and I was hopeful, they said I could pick her up at closing and take her home instead of to emergency.  An hour later she crashed and she was gone so she didn't have her final night in a cage.  I understand your anger, but anger and guilt and what if's don't bring them back.  I'm still trying to grasp that.  My dog got xrays, fluids and bloodwork $700 for that, $150 for cremation and box.  I would have spent anything though to make her well.  You did what you could.  I think the road to acceptance and peace is longer for some of us and longer depending on the bond with that person or animal.  This is the worst grief I've ever experienced over this dog.  I had lost others and been sad, but not like this.  It's hard.  That's all there is, I dont' know about time either.  It's only been a month for me and I'm still crying every day.  I think sometimes you have to force yourself to go through the motions and find something else to think about before you brood and dwell and make yourself fall deeper into despair. 

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jasminesmom
anquished,

Know that I feel your pain and share your sorrow. Oh I so understand your feelings towards your vet! When you can, read Jasmine's nightmare story about her last 57 days with me: http://RainbowsBridge.com/residents/JAMIN001/Resident.htm

I am not able to provide words of comfort, nor able to tell you that in time, you will heal, for it's been 4 mns since losing Jasmine and the tears still come daily.

You will be in my thoughts and prayers, as we both try to heal.

Hugs,

Cheryl and Angel Jasmine
Jasmine was loved
Jasmine took Proin
Jasmine is gone
Cheryl and Angel Jasmine
Jasmine was loved
Jasmine was given ProIn
Jasmine is now gone
http://RainbowsBridge.com/residents/JAMIN001/Resident.htm
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SchnauzsMom

    Dear Anguished,

           I am so sorry to read about your little schnauzer.  I, too, have a little schnauzer-- I say have because I will never let go of him.  My baby has been gone for over 3 years and I am getting worse rather than better -- not the words anyone wants to hear but it is the truth.  I hope everyone realizes that it is the norm for vets to leave the dogs/cats alone overnight -- an unbelievable practice.   I do pray you can find peace in the memories of your baby's life and the fact that you are a great mom who cared for her and loved her dearly.   God may have come and taken her peacefully while she slept and her precious body is home with you now.  My deepest sympathy to you

                               -Schnauz's Mom
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Mac
Joining in your deep sorrow and echoing the words of the others who have posted.

We lost our sweet girl Sassy in November, after a very sudden set of seizures that we had no prior history of nor any other obvious medical reason.  We took her to the vet for what was initially diagnosed as an ear infection-one hour after returning home our nightmare began-and we lost her three days later.

One thing you can and should do is report the vet to the state veterinary board - these kinds of abuses do become part of the licensing record, and it will help others to know that this is not the kind of place to entrust their pet.

Since you now have a new puppy, investigate not only a new vet, but the various emergency clinics in your area.  If/when you are in need of one, you'll know where to go, and have an expectation of how your pet will be treated.

We were referred to one place, then went to another because we had been told that they were highly specialized, had numerous well-known services and vets with advanced training, etc.  Could not have been further from the truth - suffice to say any animal should have received better treatment than we did.  We took our girl out of there after a few hours and went back to the first place, where we did experience excellent treatment and overnight staff who truly stayed overnight (I continue to be shocked at how many vets play the "fiction" of overnight care when there is actually no one there).  Who knows if those few hours would have made a difference or not?  Suffice to say we were devasted at our loss, and spent many hours reviewing everything that happened, and what we could have done better.

But as a family we made the decision to speak for our girl and file a complaint - we cannot help her, but can at least help others.

Know that you did all that you could, and would have done every possible thing if you would have been permitted to, so your little girl understood, and one day you and she will be reunited again.

If you can, put your focus into helping your other pets who need you, and continue to protect them as any parent would.

I know your sorrow, and will pray that you will begin to find peace in your heart...
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Shadowhoffen
I am so very sorry for your loss.  I totally understand how traumatized you are.
My boy was killed 1/15/06  the whole first year I was in a constant state of panic.  I had panic attacks if I was gone from my house more than a couple hrs.  I didn't sleep, I didn't eat, I cried alllll the time.  I understand ... you will have to understand time is different for us all.  The path is fairly common ... lots of ups and downs but the duration of healing lasts a very long time.  The bond with our furries is burned into our hearts...it never goes away.  We can't flip a switch and move on ... it takes a very long time to begin healing.  Especially if there is trauma involved, such as you with your situation with the vet.  You feel betrayed and feel guilt ... I understand that very well.  Let yourself feel what you feel....you have to allow yourself to deal with it .... I'm at 4 yrs. and spent Friday in tears .... not a day goes by I don't think about and miss my boy Rebel.  I didn't find RB until the second marker...I was so alone for two yrs. to suffer.  You are way ahead ... you found this forum of loving and compassionate people who understand and CARE!   it helps knowing you are not alone ... never alone.
let the tears flow ... let the anger flow (pound a pillow) ... everyone's time tables are different .... I got a new puppy 4 mos. after Rebel was killed ... he brought life and sunshine back into our home.  Rebels parents and brother were also mourning for Rebel ... Bruno helped us smile again.  Does NOT mean we forgot REbel or love him less ... he is always with us ........
God bless and be with you
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

http://www.premiereshepherds.org
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kmilk

 I am so sorry for your loss.  I hope you are beginning to heal just a little now.  My dog, Jack, was put to sleep on Monday 1/18.  It was the most agonizing decision I ever had to make. It was the worst experience of my life. The vet offered to keep Jack for 1 week at the vet to give him fluids, and cortisone to help his pain.  He was in terrible pain and it just happened so quickly. I couldn't bear to leave him there.  He was afraid of other dogs and would have been depressed, I know it.  But, I decided euthanasia. I am so GUILTY that I didn't give him one more chance. It is killing me.  When I read your post, I felt your pain. There is no knowing what will happen when we make tough decisions.  Could Jack have lived longer? I will never know that. You did what you thought BEST.  You loved your dog and trusted the vet. You thought it was curable.  Even vets will try everything to help an animal. Don't beat yourself up...it is debilitation.  I am beating myself up too over my decision.  I'm feeling pain for giving up and your feeling pain for trusting a vet.  I would have done the same thing you did in your situation. Many of us would.  You just didn't see it coming and that is just the worst part.  I am so, so sorry for your loss but we are not alone.

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