Our boy Berrin went to the rainbow bridge on Monday morning. On Wednesday the 4th I got him up and we went outside. He couldn't start a stream of pee no matter how many times he tried. For a little while we had noticed he was having a slower start on his first pee. So I was cutting down the time for him. It seemed to do the trick. But I don't think he was totally emptying himself without two attempts. He had also started acting a little stiff and holding up his back right leg. When we contacted the vet on the 4th she wanted to see him immediately. I think we both had it in the back of our heads he might be put to sleep that day. She ran a bunch of tests on him. He had a fever, blood in his urine and crystals. She put him on 100 mg of Zeniquin and 100 mg of Rimadyl. 

We took him home and got him to eat his breakfast so he could start his medicines. Within 3 and a half hours he was peeing normal. By the 2nd or third night he was having almost no issues with his back legs. He could rise up and was following us around again and getting us toys. We had been giving him 1 Rimadyl in the morning and one at night. But he was slowly losing interest in eating his breakfast. So I was pulling out all the tricks to get him to have it. So we asked the vet if it would be okay if we skipped the nighttime dose and got him onto two Rimadyl at a time like it said we could do. She said we could. But to me it seems like he went steeply downhill as soon as we did this. I don't know if those couple of days were just false hope or if he might have been poisoned by the Rimadyl. On the 13th he refused all water and food so we couldn't give him any pills. By the 14th and 15th he was almost unable to even stand up on his own. He lost full control of his bladder. He would lay on the ground and just pee. On Sunday night I had him out every hour and he would just stop in the doorway and pee instead of going down the ramp we built him to get outside. 

We contacted the vet and she wanted him in asap. We had discussed things as a family. My parents were strongly leaning toward putting him to sleep. But I was fighting it. At least wanting to have some x-rays on his back legs. Why he would go from peeing perfect for 9 days on Zeniquin. To missing one day and then having no control of his bladder. The vet said it shouldn't have had any effect missing the one dose. He still had a 103 fever. He couldn't hold his bladder for more than 5 minutes in the room. His hips felts good, his heart felt good and his midsection and his gum color was good. I had noticed him knuckle his back paw when going down the steps and walking once awhile. The vet felt that it was neurologic. That no matter how many tests we ran we wouldn't get a good answer. That she didn't feel like we could save him. So through tears I gave into the vet and my mom.

We took him outside and spent some time with him. We brought him in and he went to get his catheter. When she came back into the room he ran straight to me and gave me one big kiss. He circled a couple times and laid down in front of me. I gave him kisses and told him how much I loved him and pet his head when he went to sleep. Yesterday I had accepted that we did what was right. But today i'm angary and upset that I didn't fight for him. If it was just a tough UTI and a minor leg injury or arthritis. Or something more sinister like degenerative myelopathy or a tumor. But we will never know and that kills me typing this. Now I just walk around crying looking at all his favorite resting spots in the house. He was my little boy we were together 24/7 from day one. With my parents work schedule we were alone all day long. I couldn't go anywhere in the house without him following. By the last couple of weeks he couldn't do that. But a couple times he came upstairs when I told him I would be back in a little bit. Normally he would have been up the stairs before I did. I would stop whatever I was doing to show him all my love and he would wag so happily. The last two nights I slept in the living room with him. As I wasn't going to allow him to be alone. After we slept next to each other all his life. At night when I would get into bed. He would get up and come to the side of his crate closest to me. I would pet him on his head and tell him I loved him and I would see him in the morning. Then he would put his head down and we would both go to sleep. Last night I cried myself to sleep. Last night when I normally would have got him for bed I just wandered around upstairs crying. So broken hearted missing my buddy. 

We will be getting his ashes next week. We are putting them on the mantel next to Storm(GSD) with the collars they last wore. We are also getting me a paw print. That I will put in my room with 3 pictures and a small box of 6 of his baby teeth.  We have talked as a family and feel like Christmas will be to soon for a new German Shepherd puppy. But all I can think about his missing him as he loved Christmas so much. He loved the Christmas tree and would lay as close as possible. Waging his tail into it with no care in the world. He loved opening gifts so much. We said we would probably get a new pup around April. But that seems so far away with so much sadness. 

Berrin - 5-4-07 - 10-16-17 

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I am so sorry for the loss of your Berrin, and you showed some beautiful pics of him from when he was a baby til all grown up...what a handsome boy he is!

You did everything in your power to keep your Berrin as happy and comfortable as you could for the couple of weeks that you could. Whne you said  Berrin ran straight to you and gave you one big kiss, he was most likely telling you it was "time". I know the pain of losing a beloved pet and it shows thru your words on how far you went for this boy and how much time you spend with him and trying to help him by taking him out alot and taking him to the vets and running test, you did spend alot of time and money for your precious baby and he knows that! And spending your last two nights on the living room floor your Berrin knows he was so loved by you.

This is all fresh, and new and raw since your baby Berrin and the first weeks into the next few months are by far the hardest with tears and meltdowns that will come out of nowhere, and guilt too, i think we all wish we could have done more or done something different to keep our pets alive longer. But you have to know that you did above and beyond for your baby boy and sometimes we may never get a good solid reason as to why our pets left us.

I am glad you will have Barrins ashes soon and his baby teeth too as a keepsake, it will be reminders of his love for you and yours for him and he is now safe at the Rainbow Bridge and always watch for "signs" from him, as he is still with you forever your guardian angel.

See how you feel in a couple of months about getting a new GS puppy, there is never a right or wrong time for adding a new addition to your family, every person is different but maybe think things over when your mind may be a lil' clearer about bringing a new furbaby home.

Again, my heart goes out to you at this difficult time.


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That was really big for me. As when Storm passed I felt like I hadn't been as attentive. I was a lot younger but had as much guilt. Especially with the way she went. The night before she was fine and then the next day she couldn't walk. A tumor had burst in her abdomen. I blamed myself for a long time as the night before she was wrestling with us over putting her drops in her ears. I always think did we cause it. But mom says she was okay when she got up and went out for her morning bathroom. 

I haven't told anyone else this yet. But on the 4th I was taking pictures and spending time with Berrin downstairs ahead of his vet visit. We had gotten up early so my alarm started going off. I came up stairs and Living on a Prayer was playing. I got down and prayed for my dog to be saved. 

We talked about that this morning. After Storm passed mom had said she thought she heard her tags jingling in the house. It even felt like she brushed up against my leg once. But I haven't felt anything from Berrin. Mom said that he's in heaven now and will always be in our hearts. This morning I couldn't even brush my teeth without crying. As he would stand next to me every morning as I brushed my teeth. He loved toothpaste and you would get tons of kisses after. I cried yesterday when I had to pickup a rice krispie that fell on the floor. That he would have normally scooped up in a second. As i'm living on cereal, yogurt and water at the moment. Forcing something into me so I don't get sick from grief this time around. 

Thank you so much for your kind words Cam it means a lot.  
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Your message brought me to tears for the hundredth time today. I have been experiencing something very similar to your grief, and the loop that plays in our brains over what if .... I lost my Wilbur early in the morning of the 7th, at home, with our vet friend. I am not ready to write my own post yet, but I can tell you I watched him lose his ability to walk and potty and eat.(although it wasn't clear if he couldn't, but knowing him he would if he could) It was happening so fast without clear answers from the vet, it was horrifying. The day before he passed, my vet was clear on what was the issue, but the medicine we had stopped for other reasons, was what had been slowing the progression. His cancer that was out of remission (in lumbar lymph nodes) were pressing on his spine... I have beat myself up over not thinking of that, questioning it. And of course the movie reel of all we went through trying to fix it... I have cried on his bed, in our bed where we slept together, the yard where he collapsed one night and I couldn't lift his 70lbs, my parents bed where he passed with me.... YOU ARE NOT ALONE. I think it is a human condition to question and wonder and some of us place blame on ourselves.... The loss is enormous, and to have the movie reel of his passing and the what ifs playing in your mind is torturous. Truly. I am so sorry for your great loss. I can tell you, after losing his 4 other pack mates (all rescues), that I am still haunted by all of thier illnesses and end days. I was blessed to be with them all, and all were cancer complications at old ages. I can say with all honesty, there is always something we wish we could've, would've,should've done, said, stopped, etc I have been surprised that this is a part of grief. I always thought it was just loss. There is never a good time and we are never ready... I pray you will find comfort and peace within yourself and feel his presence around you.
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I'm so sorry for your loss. Wilbur was a beautiful boy. 

That sounds very similar. Berrin had some lumps but the vet didn't seem like she was worried about them. With them being near the top of his skin and movement. About 4-5 and one was by his spine. He had them for awhile and they never bothered him. We could brush him with no issue. But late last month we gave him his bath on the last hot day we could get. We almost missed it which he would have been perfectly fine with. But when I brought him in after he actually cried out when I brushed over his one bump near his spine. That goes into the what ifs category. Thank you so much for your kind words. You are totally right we always want to do more for our furbabies. As they have done so much more for us than we can repay. 
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I’m so sorry for your loss of Berrin. We all have guilt and look back and analyze every move we made when our babies started to spiral down. That’s our mind and the “ what if, should have” game it plays on us.
On the 20th it will be 5 months since I lost my 14 year old daschund, William. It’s the hardest loss I’ve been through.

Don’t project ahead on a new puppy. Take it a day at a time and grieve Berrin. You will know when it’s right to get a new pup. Don’t set dates or time frames.

So sorry for your loss
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I am so very sorry for the loss of your handsome Berrin.   However we lose them, the guilt always seems to niggle at us - was there something I missed/ could I have done any more?  Reading your post, you did everything possible for him - and my experience with animals has taught me that sometimes illness just comes upon them so very fast, often without warning.   Berrin knew just how very much loved he was - and as Cam say`s, he ran to you for a kiss - almost  as if he knew it was his "time".      When we lose our wonderful animals, it is absolutely heartbreaking - like a big piece of your heart has gone with them, and the first days and weeks are so tough.   Just give it time and see how you feel about a new pup - for some it helps to have another almost immediately, while others may want to leave it for a while...      Whatever you do, just remember you gave Berrin a good and happy life, as I can tell by the photo`s of him looking so full of fun.  Once again, I am so sorry...

J Taylor
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Thank you Kim your William was a handsome boy i'm so sorry for your loss. Our new puppy will be the final step in the healing process. However long that will be we won't rush into it. The new pup will be her own girl. We never compared Berrin to Storm or vice versa. We kept her memorial up for a good period of time after he was home. With her ashes, pictures and flowers. She now rests on the mantel with little angels around her one holding a puppy and her last collar. 

Thank you Jimmy. I was at peace with it on Monday. But the last 3 days i'm hurt and kind of angry that I didn't fight for what I thought we should have done for him. Maybe I was just blinded by my love and wanting him to be with us. But it hurts more that he responded so well to the medicine. That missing the one dose because he didn't eat put him into a spiral that could be reversed. The vet said it shouldn't have mattered missing the one dose. As he had been on the strongest medicine for 9 straight days. But I can't help but think what if. What if I had forced him to eat a little something on Friday so he would have got his medicine. 

Some videos of him. 

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I am so sorry to read about your loss. I know how devastating it is, and my heart goes out to you now.  

I work at the front desk in a vet facility, and I have come to learn a little bit about causes of death, life-threatening conditions, etc. It sounds to me like your vet has a good handle on what caused Berrin's  rapid decline. Just because he missed a dose of medication or changed the schedule on another doesn't mean that there wasn't also something sinister going on. The medication changes were probably coincidental and had nothing to do with why he declined. The stiffness in his legs preceded the medications, and is more likely to have been related to the cause of the problem,especially if your vet saw something that made her suspect this was neurological in nature. As for the lumps on his back, I know that if she had suspected malignancy, she would have recommended biopsies to rule that out.

It's always so hard to have to say farewell to our companions, and each of us recovers in our own time. My sister and my best friend from childhood both have to fill that void much sooner than I am ever ready to. Try to remember that our animals live life in the moment, savoring every experience to the fullest. They don't hold on to sorrow, anger, or loss the way we do. They always enjoy the best of times. We can learn a lot from them in that respect. It's perfectly normal for us to start off a relationship with a new friend with some level of expectation, including comparing them to our friends who have left our sides. in time, they develop their own routines, we begin to see their personalities shining through, and they take up a new place in our hearts. The ones who have gone ahead, remaining snuggled into their own spaces forever. 

I wish you and your family continued healing and brighter days ahead. May your next dog clearly tell you when the time is right for you to find new love. Whether it's a week, a month, or a year from now, it will be the right time for you.



In one of the stars, I shall be living. In one of them, I shall be laughing. And so it will be as if all the stars were laughing when you look at the sky at night. -- The Little Prince, Antoine de Saint-Exupery

All tears are healing tears.  They help to wash away our sorrow and allow the first buds of happiness to blossom in our hearts. -- Susie "Squillions"

A fresh start after 947 posts. March 7th, 2011. I've been coming to this wonderful site since April 6, 2004.
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Thanks so much Susie. I have no doubt that our vet did what was best for him. I just wish I had more time with him. Which i'm sure every pet lover would say. But I took advantage of the extra time I was given with him. So that makes my heart happy and easier to deal with the loss. I was pretty down on Monday morning. I think Monday's will be tough for awhile. But then we got the call from the vet that we could pickup his ashes and his paw print. We went out and got a new photo album and printed out 200 of our favorite photos. I put the album together yesterday. Still a big empty spot in the house without a pup. But i'm doing as good as I could hope for at this point. I made sure I didn't fall into the same issues as when Storm passed. Which has made the process a lot easier to work through this time. 
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