Friday, August 12, 2016

The Mercy of Euthanizing a Beloved Pet

This blog will be about fun animal things when I get to posting here, but for now, I want to start with the realities of pet ownership. 

The Emotion of a Final Farewell

Letting an animal go into the mists of the veil is not an easy decision. They are a part of our family. They are a part of us... The character and personality of these beings are ingrained in our hearts the moment we meet them. We look into their eyes and recognize a familiar spirit. The happiness and comfort they bring is irreplaceable and it is sorely missed when they make their exit. There is a big hole in us when they go. 

Grieving follows for a time and it will be a sad moment to look back on years later.  I still shed a tear now and then for my other dog who has been gone over a decade now. The friendships we build with these companion animals is strong and pure. They are always by our side even if they are just a memory.

Surrendering a pet to someone who can humanely put them out of their misery is the most responsible thing a pet owner can do for their beloved. 

I had to do this not too long ago with a small rodent. My guinea pig, Sunshine, had a large mass in her belly and it was not feasible to spend a couple of thousand dollars on a treatment for her. My only option was to have her euthanized and so I did with an emotional turmoil about the choice I had to make for her. The issue was a serious moral quandary. I know it was the right thing to do; to leave an animal suffering is not acceptable. Her well being was a priority even if I had to surrender her to death.
I had no idea that the visit to the veterinarian's office that day would end like it did. I took my time to let go at the office that day. I struggled with this so fiercely. I wanted to just take her home, but I knew that she was suffering and that was not fair to this kind creature. She needed to go. I sat with her. I talked to her. I sang to her. I took pictures of her. I loved her and she will always come to mind anytime I hear the song You Are My Sunshine. It was this song that gave her her name.

Making the Decision to Euthanize a Pet

And here I am again. I must follow through with this same heart-wrenching decision. The canine friend that scolds me when I come through the door at night needs to go to his rest and I shall walk him to the doorway soon. I will request to be there when the vet delivers the sleep medicine so that he'll not be afraid. I will stroke his furry face until it breathes no more. I will do this for my friend. I will cry buckets of tears for my companion and I will hesitate when I walk so that I don't step on the animal that is no longer there. Leaving the routine of a pet behind is as hard as letting them go. 

The best thing we can do for ourselves before this time of mourning is gather a collection of memories and images to honor their life with us. I have a file of pictures that I have captured of this sweet dog so that I can say that I did right by him and showed him how good life is. He was loved and he was cared for and he will be sadly missed. Oh, that this day never had to be... my heart cries.

The event will be posted here when I finally decide it is time for us to part ways. Check back for the update. In the meantime, I want to celebrate this dog's spirit. His lifeline to me was just a couple of years, but we made the most of what time we had together. 

Update: Wilbur left this world about 8 am August 12, 2016. 
His story is told in the Hubpages article below:

How to Give an Old Dog the Time of His Life

Read more of this dog's history here in my personal companion blog

Simple Terms
Tribute to Wilbur

Memorial Binder

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