animals, babies, care taking, child birth, children, chocolate, chocolate lab, death, faith, family, family bonds, friendship, health, life, love, nostalgia, pets, relationships, sleeplessness, son, surviving

Sadness for Today

I came home today, after dropping my son off at school, to a saturated carpet. My 14 year old puppy lost control of his abilities. I’ve been putting off taking him to put him down, knowing that he’s getting more feeble. He’s still like my puppy in so many ways. He still gets excited and can play with toys in joy. He still wants to love and show affection.

So I’ve been telling myself he was fine. He lasted 14 days at the vet, while being boarded when we were on vacation last month. The vet said he didn’t think he was going to make it at first because he’s stressed himself out so much, with us leaving him there, that his bowels were loose and uncontrollable. However, he gave Hershey meds to help him, and my sweet doggie turned a corner for the better, and continued to do well.

But ever since we brought him home, he’s just not been the same. He doesn’t sleep through the night, because he can’t hold it anymore. And then today I came home, and it was just strung through my entire house.

I only left him for 20 minutes, but it was long enough apparently. Every walking path had a string of zig zag pea which tells me that he just couldn’t hold it in. He wasn’t stopping to pea in a corner because he had to go….he was walking around the house in distress as he couldn’t hold it.

Everything in me tells me it’s time to put him down. His hind legs now shake barely able to hold him up. He’s blind in both eyes, due to massive cataracts. And now he’s incontinent. I’m sad for my puppy, as he’s lived a long loyal life.

In the last 14 years with Hershey, he always knew what I was feeling. He was that in tune with me. When I was sad, he always knew and would lay his head in my lap. When I was stressed, he would break out in hives and stress out for me. When I was uncomfortable with anyone my room-mates would bring over, he’d growl or bark at them, which in effect gave them enough motivation to leave and not come back. He was potty trained after one try when I brought him home, at 10 weeks. I have been a very blessed to have such an extra-ordinary dog. This pure bred puppy changed my life.

I was the first human to actually have contact with him. His breeders let Hershey’s parents have interaction with him, but never held him so that he would bond with the first person to own him….me. I was his momma. For people that don’t have pets…they don’t understand the bond between animal and human. They don’t understand the love for one another. He was my baby, until I had my own. Then Hershey patiently and graciously stepped aside to be the step child, as my son was born into my life. He held no resentment, only love for my new baby.

I’ve not given Hershey as much as he needed in the last 5 years, as my son was my primary focus. But I know Hershey has not been neglected. He’s had a loving family, food, and shelter. He’s been taken care of very well. He just didn’t have the emotional ties to me, like he had before my son was around.

BUT I can give him something now…a chance to let go. I don’t want to see him suffer. Whew…so there’s more than a little sadness in my world today, but I know he’ll be going home to see his creator. And in heaven he’ll get to run and jump again with no pain in his hips.
I took this right before loading him up to go to be in doggy heaven. Goodbye friend…I love you.

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16 thoughts on “Sadness for Today”

  1. Oh Kim..I am so sad for you!! I know what Hersheys means to you and your family and its because of Hershey that I call you my friend..I don’t know when you wrote this, but I am praying for you through this rough time..
    Love to you,
    Maria

  2. I’m so, so sorry Kim. It is one of the hardest things you’ll ever do, but trust me on this; As hard as it is to let go, a sense of peace will quickly take over, knowing that you gave him release from his pain and weariness. Call me if you need to talk. I know what a horribly difficult day this is going to be for you.

  3. Oh, Kim,
    Reading this could have been the story of my Rue-dog – she was 18, and deaf instead of blind at the end – but family for sure.
    I’m grieving with you over your loss – and praying that you get through this with some measure of peace.

  4. Thank you all. He passed quickly. As soon as his spirit left, I knew. And then he didn’t even look like my doggy anymore. He looked like one of those stuffed animals, that are made to look real. It was obvious that he wasn’t there anymore. I said what I needed to say to him, let him go, and prayed that God would let him play with all the dogs he knows that have passed on before him. I miss him so bad. My hands still smell like him, even though I’ve washed them a few times. I can’t get that smell off me. crying…
    I appreciate all of you so much.

  5. Its so hard. But I beleive our pets will be in heaven waiting for us. I had my 1st doberman when he was 9 to 14. He followed me home one day and stayed LOL. He had cancer and I knew it was his time. I don’t eat meat but I bought him a good bye steak before I took him to the vet. My second doberman birth to 12 yrs old gave my then 2 yr old son a kiss and ran outside and died of a heart attack. Talk about shocked, the death and kiss since he wasn’t to fond of my son LOL. I just HATE having to decide when to be the one to put my pets to sleep. I want to keep them around but never want them to suffer you know.

  6. I know Hershey will have a nice life over the rainbow bridge, and you gave him a very good life too. As hard as it is to let go, we as people, always know when it is the right time.

    I will think of you and Hershey these next few days and say a prayer….

  7. brent and i took our friends dog in to be out down about 4 years ago. she couldnt do it herself. i remember how peaceful he looked…but how extremely hard that was, even for us who weren’t his owners.

    Kim…im sorry! i know you know you made the right decision for him – the most unselfish one. i love you! so much!

  8. Thanks everybody. I’ve stopped myself at least 4 times from going outside to bring him in tonight. I know it’s going to be like this for a long time….second nature to feed him, shelter him, and think of him…and then remember he’s not here. Man if it’s this bad for a pet, I don’t even want to think about what it’s like with a loved one, of the human kind.

  9. I am so sorry… this hit home hard since we have a 3 year old chocolate Lab named Hershey too. Our black Lab is about 13 now and is showing increasing signs of age. I completely understand how you feel about your pets and grieve with you over your loss.

  10. Pets in my life have been family. I can tell just by your writing that your dog was an important and special part of your life.
    Having been through this same scenario, I know there is nothing I can do to help at the moment. I would like to send you a big blogging hug from Hollydale, though.
    This was a fine and touching tribute to your freind Hershey. The Lord sends us certain things to adapt, learn to love, and bring happiness into our lives. Your dog most certainly was a great sense of joy. May the memories and happiness that you both shared live on forever in your memories, Kim.
    I still smile and tell stories of my dog Wrinkles to this day.

    Eric

  11. I’m so very sorry. It really is those little things….for me one of the worse is waiting for him to start snoring before I fall asleep. He would snore SO badly … now I miss that. No snoring for the past two week and is too quiet. My thoughts are with you….hugs

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