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Posts: 1
We put our sweet boy (Aussie/ border collie) of 17 yrs to sleep on Thursday. He was still a happy guy with much spirit, but also in a lot of pain due to hip dysplasia and arthritis. We made the decision after a hot day that seemed to really bring out the misery in him. He could barely walk and paced and vocalized most of the day. We had to plan the euthanasia out 4 days ahead. The weather got cooler and he was walking better (mostly still assisted or he would fall), his spirit was brighter, but the pain was still there.

The doctor came to our house with her ‘tool box’. She was very sweet, soft spoken, and explained everything thoroughly. While my partner signed the paperwork, Oliver pulled himself up and I helped him up the ramp to go inside. He laid down away from the doctor inside the house where he felt safe. I noticed his front leg trembled a bit, like he was nervous/ scared. This was not normal for him. Then my partner came in and we cuddled him and talked to him as they doctor applied the sedative.

He was gone so quickly.

Tonight, my partner came to me and said she had a horrible realization. She thinks he knew what was about to happen and was scared and that’s why he went in the house. I refrained from telling her about his trembling, but now I am so overwhelmed with guilt I can barely think of anything else. I feel absolutely horrible. I was just starting to come to terms with my grief and guilt and now I honestly don’t feel worthy of ever having another animal.

He was our life and our heart. He was there when we put his sister to sleep due to a very progressive cancer that did not allow her to eat or drink. Now I wonder if he recognized the tool box or just instinctively could tell what was going to happen? I am heartbroken. I understand not wanting to live after an event like this, but I have a Mum with Alzheimer’s and elders who depend on me. I’m not suicidal, just looking for opinions, kind words, etc.
Simply put, devastated that my buddy may have died scared.

Posts: 9
So very sorry for your loss. I too struggle with the notion, possibility that my pup passed with fear & anxiety & completely understand the weight of that realization. Wish I had the words or reasoning to alleviate your anguish, but, I have yet to clear that hurdle, myself. I can also relate to the feeling of "why am I sticking around when my closest companion just left". Im not so sure I would have declined if the vet had offered a 2 for 1 deal that day.

Through all the emotional torment, there are a couple of realities that give me a bit of peace through the tears:
I could not have loved my dog any more than I did (and vice versa). I believe I gave her the best life I could, all things considered.

I inherited my whippet, Riley, when she was around 3yrs old. The day the hospital transfered my father to the hospice unit, I immediately got on a plane & flew home. From the airport I went to the family home and gathered Riley & we went to see dad in the hospice unit. In 1 of the very few lucid remarks dad made in between the delirium, he asked that his dog Riley be cared for and loved should anything happen to him. Me and Riley stayed overnight with dad until the morning shift of my mom & sister arrived. Dad died later that afternoon. I can honestly say that I did everything I possibly could to honor his request. Probably 1 of the few times I didnt dissapoint. I hope and pray that he is now returning that favor for me. In many ways, that dog was 1 of the last links I had to my dad after he passed. I loved dad dearly, but, I will admit that was an easier loss to digest than losing Riley.

I wish better days for you.


Posts: 580
I am so sorry that you had to let Oliver go and your feeling remorse and guilt. We all try to rationalize what our Fur babies are thinking and feeling. I to thought and wondered if Termy knew he was taking his last ride with me in September but I know he knew I loved him and trusted me to always take care of him. He was 16+ and his heart was in living but his old and tired body was letting him down. His quality of life was diminished and I felt so bad for him everyday for months but after one really bad weekend I knew (and I promised) I would help him. I left him go while he still had his dignity. Oliver may have trembled because of a stranger in your home and I know he felt your pain and anguish. They read us so well and know us sometimes better than we know our self. I've been getting help with my guilt and I was told that I need to let go of the negative feelings because our babies wouldn't want us to be sadden by letting them go. They trust us and know we would never do anything to harm them only help them with love and compassion just as they gave us unconditional love, we need to forgive our self and honor them with all the happy memories that they made and shared with us.  The end of our walk through life with them  shouldn't over shadow the walk we took for all those years with them. I know it's hard, because I am still struggling but I promised myself that I wouldn't let the good memories be taken away by the memory of that last day. Yes it still rears it's ugly head everyday but I'm tired of hurting by remembering his last day. Please forgive yourself and take one day at a time, cry when you need to but remember the journey of 17 years too. We loved and cherished them and they knew that. Take care of yourself and your partner and remember Oliver as he would do and want you to do now. He's at the Bridge watching over you and sends you love.
Love and doggie hugs
Termy's mom
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