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Posts: 2
I am beside myself. My 16 (or so) year old rescued beagle, Cricket, somehow drowned in my pool this week.
She was in failing health, and it had taken me almost 2 years to come to a place where I had prepared myself to put her to sleep. Prepared my two children for it too. Then this tragedy took it out of my hands.
Cricket was a tiny little beagle. In the last two or so years, she had become somewhat incontinent. So, I had to keep her in a large crate if she was indoors but spend most of the time outside. She was a very vocal little girl, and kept me up almost every night wanting to go out, then come in, then go went on and drove me crazy. I was so frustrated. It's the end of summer here in the NE and she was quite content to sleep in her cozy little bed by the back door, snoring away. Always barking like clockwork to come in around 5 or 6 am. That night, I had let my other beagle, Apple, in and noticed Cricket sleeping contently in her bed. I went to bed. I woke up with my 3rd beagle, Buddy at my feet. Got up and checked because Cricket hadn't barked as usual. I looked in her bed outside the door, checked the other bed on the back porch. NO cricket. I looked inside thinking my husband had let her in. She was nowhere. I walked outside and started looking around under the trees, scanning the entire yard. Walked about 15 yards at my pool. I had vacuumed it the day before leaving the vacuum, pole and hose in the pool in the deep end. I got to the pool coping and saw what I thought was at first a bunch of brown leaves and then focused. It was Cricket. She was floating face down in the deep end of the pool, inside the pool hose which was floating on the top of the water. Her head was hanging below the water. I couldn't believe my eyes and cried out her name, sick to my stomach. I reached down and lifted her up out of the pool. Crying. Her little body was so light, being only about 15 lbs dry, she was a little feather. I laid her down on the coping and ran to get my husband. He came out and picked her up and put her in a towel and laid her down on a lounger. She was gone. She was still warm even though she was in the cold pool. Her eyes open, looking like she just froze in time. It must have just had happened and I woke too late. I can spot a damned chipmunk in my pool from a mile away or any other creature and I missed seeing Cricket.
She had been having trouble with her two front legs. Old age was settling in and she was somewhat bow-legged. She would fall over on occasion and the only conclusion I had was that she had gone for a stroll and edged the pool, stumbled or her legs gave out and she rolled into the pool. She never went by the pool. Especially this Summer. The floating pool hose must have caused her to really freak out because it was around her when I found her, she was encircled by it.
The night before this happened I had said to my husband that we had to move forward to put my little girl to sleep. I had planned on choosing a site for her burial in my yard that very day. It took me so long to get to that place and then she drowned. Never did I expect to have this be the way it ended for her. I cannot get the image of her floating in the pool out of my head. I sat there for her for an hour after i pulled her out, just resting my hand on her. Why didn't I try CPR? Why didn't I do something? Could I have saved her or brought her back? I feel so guilty that I didn't try SOMETHING.
Then of course, even though she was out of the water for an hour and was obviously not with us anymore, I fear that after we buried her that she could have come back, finding herself buried in the ground. Am I nuts to think that could actually happen? I try to console myself in that falling in water v. jumping in is so different. Falling in is a shock and the shock of that itself and then the cold water. I can only hope she did not suffer. I feel like I let her down. I cannot get that damned image out of my mind. My little Cricket. It was unimaginable. I am just so devastated and sad. I cry doing the dishes, just feeling a breeze on my face....I think it is so unfair. I took such good care of her, she went everywhere with us. The perfect little travel companion. I know it was an accident but it is so painful to accept.

Posts: 164
I'm so sorry, what an awful shock that must have been.  Cricket sounds like a darling little dog.  You took really good care of her for 16 years.  Try to let your guilt over the accident go -- no one can foresee everything.  I know that's easier said than done.  I'm wishing you comfort and peace at this sad time.

Posts: 601
Cricketsmom, Your post made me cry!  I cannot express how sorry I am about Cricket's death!  How absolutely heartbreaking!  What a wondeful long and happy, loving home she had with you for over 16 years!  I know that's hard to focus on right now because all you can see is the end, but please know we are here for you and deeply care. 

Posts: 51
Oh my goodness, I am so sorry.  How awful for you.   We had almost the same experience with our 15 year old lab last year.  He could barely get up and when he would, his legs would collapse.  One weekend, my husband was gone and our dog got up, stumbled and if Sam (our dog that was just put down), hadn't run past him and knocked him the other way, he would have fallen in the deep end of our pool.  I knew he was too heavy for me to save alone and that is what prompted us to finally accept that it was time to put him down.  I've heard that drowning is more peaceful.  I don't know if that is true but, if so, he may have 'floated' off peacefully. 

I also understand the fear that she was not really gone.  I was there when they put our three year old pup to sleep on Saturday but part of me keeps thinking, "What if they just knocked him out and he's really still alive."  I know that is not true but that irrational thought just persists anyway.  I think it our way of just not wanting to fully accept what happened.  Huge, huge hugs for you.  I know this just hurts so much :(

Posts: 11,059
I am very sorry your precious Cricket has passed on.  Losing a cherished pet due to an accident is so painful and hard to understand.  She sounds like a sweet girl and you were blessed with many years together.  In time, the sweet memories will warm your heart.  My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

precious Christoph ~ lives on in my heart ~

Posts: 339

Your post broke my heart. I can't imagine finding your beloved Cricket floating in the pool. Dogs usually have a natural instinct for swimming.
Do you suppose she fell into the pool and began to swim, but being old, her heart gave out?

I guess it doesn't matter. It was an accident and something you could not have ever anticipated happening. She had a wonderful and long life with you. I hope that helps bring some comfort to your hurting heart.
She's fine now, healthy and young again, running at the bridge with her new friends.

I'm so very sorry for your loss. ((((hugs))))



Posts: 279
I am so sorry to hear this. What an awful thing to go through!

We have also lost a beagle recently, so I know how empty it feels when the merry little hounds are gone from our lives.

I am sending out a big {{{hug}}} to you and your family and also to Cricket! Please come visit this site whenever you need to. The kindness and empathy I have received have been invaluable.

Posts: 345
I am so sorry to hear about your loss of Cricket, from your post she sounds so sweet and you sound like a really great caring mom.
I have something to tell you that while not pleasant may help you. I had a friend in the same situation but with her cat. She found her cat in her pool one morning and she though it had drowned, it too was an older animal. Well she took the cat to the vet for creamation and asked the vet about the drowning and what might have happened, did her cat suffer etc. The vet told her that the cat most likely didnt drown, because she found it on top of the water and if it had drowned the water in the lungs would have caused the cat to sink. The vet felt that the cat was by the pool and had a medical problem like a heart attack that caused its death not a drowning. She felt better knowing that there was nothing she could have done for that.
Its a hard story I know but I do believe that your Cricket had a medical problem and died before she fell into the pool, so dont blame youself for not finding her sooner, there was nothing you could have done. I am so so very sorry though as I know how very hard it is to lose one of our babies, its just hurts so much.
I hope my telling you this doesnt cause more pain I just really feel Cricket didnt drown and didnt suffer.
However no matter how, she is gone for you and your family and for that I am so sorry.

Julie Tee's mom

Posts: 9
I am sorry for your loss of Cricket. She seems to have lived a long, wonderful life with you and your family. The dramatic manner in which you found her seems crushing but i think you handled the situation as best as it could have been..

Posts: 30
I am so, so sorry for your loss! Cricket was lucky to have such a caring family and it sounds like she had a wonderful full life.  I lost my beagle, Princess 1 year 5 mo ago and I still miss her howl.  My Karma I lost a few weeks ago due to a sudden illness that was completely unexpected.  So I know how an unexpected loss tears your heart apart.  {{{hugs}}} May God bless you and your family during this time.


Posts: 1,821
i am hoping this is okay - it is the story of another dog - lost as your precious baby was. Another broken heart here at PL. My hope is it will offer you a measure of peace.

 The Silver One ~ Kiwi's Tale

Phoenix, don't follow me!!" Kiwi fought the water closing around her, pulling her down. Phoenix paced at the pool's edge. "Kiwi, tell me what to do. . .....Ki-wiiiiii!" Phoenix went to the back door, "Momma will know."


A few moments later momma opened the door, Phoenix rushed in. Momma looked, Kiwi, where are you?" When Kiwi didn't answer, momma went looking for her baby.


Kiwi felt loving hands lift her,. “It’s okay, Kiwi, I have you little one." Kiwi felt better, safe. She always felt safe with momma. "Thank you, Phoenix. I knew you'd get momma." Kiwi snuggled deeper into momma's arms, safe and loved. And she dozed off and dreamt the most beautiful dreams.


When Kiwi woke she was in a beautiful meadow, and the sky was lit by a perfect rainbow. She looked about as the fog of sleep lifted, she was laying with her head in the lap of the most radiant human she had ever seen, her head being softly stroked by gentle hands. “Who are you?” she demanded. “Where is momma, she will be worried, furious you took me!” She was answered by a sad smile, “No, momma knows where you are.”


Kiwi tried to shake the fog of sleep. She had fallen into the pool and momma had pulled her out. How did she get here? She struggled to remember. Just then she heard momma cry out. Kiwi ran to momma’s voice and found herself at the edge of a crystal clear pond. When she looked into the water she saw her momma standing beside the pool, and her 2 legged sister run out and jump into the pool. Then she saw her sister lift something from the pool . . . .no, someone. As she looked closer she realized she saw her sister was lifting her, and everyone was crying, momma, daddy, sister.


She looked back at the radiant being beside her, confused. “Momma saved me, I felt her arms, heard her talk to me . . .” Now the angel spoke quietly, “No, I brought her love to you , wrapped you in it so you would feel safe on your journey to here.” “Here? Where is here?” Kiwi thought. Now the angel smiled, “RainbowBridge.”


Kiwi sat watching for a while, the angel by her side. Finally she looked up, away from the sadness reflected in the crystal clear waters. “Why are momma and my family sad? Why is everyone crying?” The angel smiled sadly, “You are needed for a very special task, so you had to come home very young. Your momma feels a pain deep in her heart because you are gone. She worries you were afraid. And she feels she failed you.” Kiwi looked at the scene in the pond and back at the angel in stunned disbelief, “Failed me? How? All I have ever known from her is love and care. I can still feel her love, the bond we share. Can’t she feel my love?” The angel scratched Kiwi between her ears. “Right now all she feels is pain, and guilt. In time those will lessen and the love will touch her heart.” Kiwi looked back at the pond, “Guilt? No!! Can’t I tell her, help her?”


Almost as if on some special cue, others joined Kiwi and the angel. “Ah, there you are Silver One. I see you brought a greeting committee,” The angel smiled. Kiwi ducked behind the angel, “HE”S A A A A WOLF!!” The Silver One smiled and those around him giggled. Kiwi peeked back out, she hadn’t noticed the others, only the large white wolf. Now she realized he was surrounded by many others, cats and kittens, dogs and puppies, ferrets, hamsters, bunnies, even birds, reptiles, and fish ~ even some horses and a cow.


The Silver One nodded to the angel then smiled. “I thought someone new was here? Someone whose family needs to find our families, someone who needs to visit to help their momma? I guess I was mistaken,” and he grinned mischievously. “Seems you are here alone.” Kiwi darted out, indignant. “I am too here! She is NOT here alone!” Having taken a step she felt both timid and emboldened. “Can you really help? Help me visit? Will you?” Suddenly she felt a deep sense of trust and walked right up to the white wolf. “Momma needs me. Phoenix needs me. Please.”


“Patience, little one,” the Silver One said softly. “She has found our families and they are reaching out to each other. She needs time and help to accept what has happened. And, yes, we will show you how to visit. And the angels will help you start your special new task.” Kiwi thought about the Silver One's words. “I don’t want a new task. I want momma!” her tiny voice rising to a pitiful wail. “Oh, little one, you and your momma are connected by a silver cord that can never be broken,” the angel said. “for now let the Silver One and the rest hold you, show you around RainbowBridge. Soon, very soon you will know how to visit your momma.”


© Candace 7/27/07


Posts: 2,719
I am so very sorry for your loss.  As I told you,  I lost one 18 yr old in a pond across the street from my house when I was 16.  It made me feel so guilty.  The thing is, Cricket knows that you did nothing to cause this.  She will wait for you at Rainbow Bridge.  She so appreciates the good life you gave her.

Bless you and the spirit of your beloved angel.

Love,  Diane, Mom of Miss Dallas at the bridge almost 10 years

Posts: 4
I am so sorry to hear about cricket, that had to be so hard for you. I had the same thoughts with my dog, after the vet put him to sleep I worried that since he took him right away after and I only had a few minutes to say good bye, I feared he wasn't really dead and he came too while in the back seat of his car or in the fridge waiting for cremation. I don't know why we beat ourselves up like this but we do.I second guess treatment i put him through its rough, hang in there, I am so sorry. Kodiaks Grandma:)

Posts: 2
It truly breaks my heart to hear this story being told by another person. My baby girl passed away the exact same way this past Sunday. She too was having problems with her legs and would fall over at times. It was rare for her to go near the pool. I am having such a difficult time overcoming this horrible guilt that I feel and just missing her so much. She is my world, my baby, I would often introduce her as my daughter. She was so loving and tender. I would give anything to bring her back. I'm so sorry for your loss. The pain is unbearable. 

Posts: 24
Hello dear friends....I am joining this conversation late, as I just experienced this horrible type of loss Tuesday...two days ago.  I've been searching for anyone who had the same type of loss because it is a special unique feeling of loss, sadness, guilt, and questions.  My dog was a senior too, and I will write more later.  I truly hope to hear from others.  My girl was 15 and was close to me needing to make "that choice", but her Tuesday was good and as far as I knew, we could be still 6 months out from that "decision"...still it happened, and I'll explain more soon.  I'll post tomorrow.  I'm so tired from crying, grief, and lack of sleep.  I need to try to crawl in bed now.  But the thing I always feared the most "The Pool" and the thing I worked so hard to avoid happening...happened in a quick flash Tuesday evening.  I'm crushed. I loved her so very much.  Thanks friends, and please contact me.  Anyone that wants to contact me directly, please do.  Alison Bardo, San Diego

Posts: 1
I was so pleased to see your story. My 18 year old Tibetan terrier that was the love of my life fell into the pool and I think she got worn out fighting the pool fountain hose. Please everyone take these things out of your pool and invest in a pool alarm. My baby was old but should not have died this way, my heart is broken
As I should have been watching her and I forgot. She knew how to swim but couldn't find the steps?
Please don't let this happen to you. There is much sadness. She died on Sunday nite and I had her cremated on Monday. They delivered her today to me. Always in my heart. Love you Lilly

Posts: 1
I'm glad I found this site. I have been so troubled at losing my beloved little Bichon Frise "Gaston".  He was my dear dear friend.  He was 15+ and my constant companion. Even at 15 he loved to run after the ball, or play with the kids. He could still run and every now and then do his little dance on his hind legs.  He started to get a cataract in his left eye.  Not a good combination with our pool and since he was a "house dog" he never went far from the house, and would often pass by the pool going from door to door when he was ready to come inside. My heart just breaks even though it's been 11 days without my dear friend. Tears are just flowing down my cheeks as I write.  See, he loved to swim and was still a good swimmer as I had been there when he fell in the pool due to not being able to see as well with the cataract. "Mommy" was always there to "rescue" him and he would usually swim to the ladder on the deep end and I would scoop him up.  Much like the beginning thread, I read,and it gave me some comfort knowing that I am not the only one that has lost her pet this way; After letting him out to do his business and the days growing shorter it was getting dark, but landscape lights were on around the pool, which I thought could guide him. I had to run to the store quickly, and he had not come to the door to come in yet.  When I got home, I quickly went outside and began calling for him.  Up in years he often seemed to not hear me call.  So at first I wasn't that concerned. I looked in the familiar spots he would lay while waiting for me, no avail.  I began searching in bushes, and heard creatures scurry away. This started to concern me as he wasn't used to being outside at night and as he was becoming older, my concern grew. I thought an animal may have tried to get to him, and tried to see what kind of creature, but could not. Exasperated and growing more concerned   that he didn't appear I went to get my phone and flashed it toward the pool. I saw nothing, no motion, no dog paddle, nothing. I searched, and then flashed around the pool 2-3 more times. The pool is inground but not so large. I began checking around the fence and wondered did he somehow crawl through when he heard my car and try to look for me?  I went in and got a better flashlight and looked around the fencing again. I had just about determined that I would need to get in my car and go searching for him, when I flashed my light toward the pool.  This time I was at a different angle.  There by the ladder, my beloved was floating. He was small, normally around 10lbs but with older age, he was losing a few. I raced to the ladder scooped him up.  His eyes were open, I tried to compress his chest, but really had no idea what or how to do chest compressions on a dog. I contemplated mouth to mouth, but how do you do that with such a wide area around their muzzle? Oh I just sat with my good dear friend, stroked him and wept. Oh I cried and wept. If crying could bring them back, he would be happily playing and I could hear him crawling under my bed. I must say, the guilt of losing a pet this ways is deep.  All I can think of is my dear beloved paddling and wondering where I was to help him.  I feel like I let him down. How could I not be there for him, when he had been there for me for so long. Oh, how my heart aches. I hope and pray, he forgives me. I hope he did not suffer, and I hope and pray he truly knows how much I loved him and what a large place in my heart he held. I couldn't bear to bury him. I too could only think and feel that any minute he was going to spring back to life. I guess he didn't. I was so much in shock that someone had to come help me bury my friend. I asked that they bury him in the spot he would find when he occasionally was left outside longer than he liked.  I would find him in a little ball in the corner of our house under a beautiful Red Vibrant Japanese Maple. It flames with Reds in the Fall so beautifully. I am lost without my companion and friend.  11 days and I still sometimes think I hear him rustling at the door or under my bed. But it's quiet, too quiet. I too have such a hard time with the vision of how I found my friend, and then the guilt of not being there for him. I weep, I loved him so. I'm glad there is a place to express to others who might understand the pain of losing such a beloved pet and part of your life.

Posts: 64
I am so sorry to hear about what happened to Cricket, I cant imagine how you are feeling right now, you have really touched my heart. My beautiful 13 year old pup was put to sleep , it was terrible having to make that choice and I will have to live with that for the rest of my life. One thing I have learned it is how quickly death happens they are literally gone in a second and iyou are just left with the empty shell. I couldnt let go of Holly and kept her body with me in bed untill the following day and I didnt relaise how quickly the body starts to decompose and I have some awful memories , I regret that so much but I just couldnt believe my girl was gone like that in a second. I think no matter how it happens we always feel such guilt and such pain, there is nothing I can do or say to make you feel better. I wish I could my heart is with you and Cricket and I am always here if you ever need to talk.

Posts: 228
Hi to Luvmymamas. to AlisonB, to Murffie, and to CasCo, as well as Cricketsmom,

I didn't realize this was an old thread until I noticed the dates and that new posters have added so recently.  I'm so sorry about all your dear pets dying this way.  How sad!  My heart goes out to each of you. Hugs.


Posts: 1

This happened to me last sunday. I was in my room when my dad said he couldn't find my dog sloestie (a spaniel) the dog was blind and death and at the end of his lifespan but still happy. So at first we thought he was just stuck somewhere and checked all the rooms. Eventually the only place he coud have been would be the pond we have, a very small one with wooden bars surrounding it on 3 out of the 4 sides. He's always drink from these but never fell in since he was terrified of water. We had checked earlier but didn't see anything so we checked closer. I was standing on one side and couldn't see anything besides foam between the plants, my dad went to the other side and must have had full view of what was beneath the foam, when he cried out sloestie's name I collapsed as I saw his ear in the midst of the foam. Dragging my dog out of the pond is the most traumatizing event I've ever had. I cannot close my eyes without having that scene play out again and again and again.

The little guy had epiliptic seizures so my guess is that he had one while drinking and fell in. The thought of him actually just tripping in and fighting for his life while I'm in my room 20m away from the pond is unbearable. I somehow feel like there was something I could have done.


Posts: 182
Dear Sloestie,

I am so sorry to hear about the drowning of your beloved Sloestie. Your description of the event and your subsequent reaction (seeing the tragedy over and over again) is heart wrenching. Please consider getting professional support if things do not improve.

Remember, you are not alone.

Take care,

Boy's mom

Posts: 1
Well, I've read your post after Googling pet drownings. How are you coping now, after all this time? I wonder this, after going through something similar just yesterday morning.

Posts: 2

I am so sorry for your loss. Cricket knew that you loved him so very much... and that you were just doing the best that you could.

We recently lost our little boy Percy in a horrible accident... and the guilt is eating us alive. Every day I wake up and think about the things I should have done differently. And that if I had just thought things through a little bit more he would still be with us now. Every day without him hurts more and more... but there is nothing we could have done. 

One thing I am constantly trying to remind myself is that...sadly... we cannot tell the future. We try to be as proactive and careful as we can be, because thats what good parents do. If we would have known... you bet your ass we would have been there. 


Posts: 1
We just lost my beloved Jack 3 nights ago due to drowning.  I'm devastated.  I'm living with relatives in a spare room with my two dogs as I get established at a new job.  They are in their 80's.  I've been vigilant about keeping my elderly dog inside and away from their pool.  I let my guard down after they insisted that my concerns were unfounded.  Then, like the story above where I'm in my room and go downstairs to ask where Jack is, no one can find him and no one's seen him for hours.  I found him floating outside in the pool, my poor baby.  My relatives swear they didn't see him go outside, but he was *inside* the last time I saw him and they are the only ones who could've let him out with the other dogs.  They say they didn't see him go out when they let the other dogs out, but they're 80 and aren't sharp.  I blame myself for not letting my guard down.  My baby Jack trusted me and was dependent on me and I failed him.  He was partially deaf, partially blind but seemed to still enjoy life.  He was slowing down in recent weeks.  Nothing can take away the horror of finding my beloved baby floating in the pool in the dark in his little felt diaper.  I tried CPR on him but he was long gone.  I'm so filled with grief, guilt and remorse I feel like I'll never recover.  I was up in my bedroom playing a video game while he was drowning in the dark.

Posts: 3

I'm so sorry for your loss and know exactly what you are feeling. Almost the same thing happened to me yesterday morning and I don't know how I can go on with my life after this. I was upstairs on my phone while my beloved 3 year old shihtzu Pepper was drowning. I can't forgive myself how she must have struggled and been so scared. I also tried giving her CPR in a frantic panic but she had been in the water for a while. I can't stop thinking if only... The guilt and pain i feel is unreal I took my anti anxiety meds and slept all day this was the only thing I can do to get my mind to stop thinking about it. Why do these things happen? My pepper was so happy and full of life and love she was only 3 years old. I hate myself and I feel disgusting inside. To make matters worse we recently adopted a big pit mix about a month and a half ago and I think he accidently pushed her into the pool because she hated the water and would never get near the pool. I know if that's the case it wasn't his fault and of course it was an accident but I cant help but resent the dog now and i cant even bring myself to interact with him right now. How do we deal with this loss with the images of finding our beloved pets this way? I'm so sorry to everyone who lost their pet this way. The images are haunting and i will pray for us all.

Posts: 51
MPerez, I am so sorry for the loss of your Pepper.  Sadly, I came here because our three and a half year old pup had to be put down.  We rescued another pup afterward.  She was the runt of her litter and all sorts of health issues.  She had terrible seizures.  At three, she seized and fell in our pool.  We got her out within a couple minutes of her falling in but it was too late.  I had just walked away from the door to go talk to my daughter in the other room and when I came back, there she was.  That image will never leave my mind.  It was beyond devastating.  Now that I look back, she was seizing so often that maybe this was a kindness.  She was so confused after her seizures that she'd lash out at our other dog (I initially thought it might be rabies because she was foaming and attacking him).  Still, it was so horrible.  Also, sadly, since those two rescues came with some serious issues, we have not rescued a pup since.  I don't think I could take another loss.  Too heartbreaking. 

Posts: 3

i am sorry for the loss of your 2 pups and as you know I understand how devastating it is to find your pup in the water. I too used to foster dogs and ultimately ending up adopting a 3rd one. After this I don't think I can do it anymore either. I Feel like an irresponsible pet owner and I would be too stressed out about something happening on my watch again. Who knows maybe in time our minds will change but for now I just can't I'm destroyed emotionally. At least your pup is no longer suffering from this horrible seizures and the time she was here it sounds like you loved her and cared for her greatly.

Posts: 2
As I was reading all the posts of grief of people losing their beloved dogs to drowning, I found comfort in them. I know that sounds weird, but it felt comforting that there are many people out there that are going or have went through what I am going through. Zak, my beloved chihuahua of 17 years drowned in my pool just two days ago. He was losing his sight and hearing but otherwise seemed to be doing pretty well. His behavior had changed recently. Things like he didn't sleep in my bed anymore or would go in my clothes closet when I left the house, but otherwise seemed great. He went outside like any other day like he did thousands of times. I hadn't heard from him in awhile, so I went to look for him and that is when I found him floating in the pool. I was devastated. I blamed myself, I played all these what-if scenarios in my head. It has been driving me crazy and I miss him so much. Zak has always been there to support me through many rough times in my life. The pain seems unbearable at times and I just hope he forgives me for not being there when he needed me the most. Most of all I hope I forgive myself because I know that is what he would want. Zak would want me to move and be happy and remember all of our wonderful times together. Zak, here is to that time that we will see each other and I can hug and kiss you forever. You will never be forgotten. 

Posts: 14
I am so so sorry that you have to live with that image in mind. Take comfort in knowing you gave Cricket an amazing life. I hope you can forgive yourself, you obviously cared so deeply. 

Posts: 1
I can’t even begin to describe the emptiness and guilt I am feeling right now. I just lost my dog in this same situation yesterday. He would have been 16 on June 11th. He was getting old for sure and getting more blind but still healthy enough for day to day. We always let him out in the yard to enjoy some sun and he never goes near the pool, but maybe I’ve been too careless and didn’t consider he’s getting older and not as alert as he used to be. My husband found him in the pool. We reviewed our cameras and it all happened within seconds. He didn’t accidentally fall in or anything... he just walked right in. I’m just confused and don’t understand. He never comes close, he hates water. He lived a long life but could have lived longer and I can’t help but blame myself for being so careless. We picked up our pool fence a few days ago and haven’t had a chance to schedule the installer yet. Yesterday could have all been avoided if we had just been more cautious. I begin my leave in 5 days as I am 36 weeks pregnant this week and could have spent so much more time with him and through summer... I just wish I hadn’t been so careless.

Posts: 2
Last night mine drowned.  She was 15.75 years old, Lady Belle, the beautiful and way over sized (not due to weight but due to height) Cavalier King Charles Spaniel born in the UK and raised in Texas.  I am glad to find this message board as it has relieved me somewhat.  She has been mostly blind and deaf for a while now, and has seriously struggled with balance the past year, worsening.  I let her out after a late dinner with her three (average sized CKC) companions at about half past 8 in the evening.  I loaded some things into my car and came back within 10 minutes and the other three were ready to come inside.  I looked outside and she was floating in the pool mouth under.  Being trained, I administered CPR for about 10 minutes in between uncontrollable wailing.  I then drove her to the emergency clinic about 10 minutes away.  No use  DOA.

I take solace in some of the posts above knowing that my thoughts and feelings these last 24 hours are not alone.  My Belle suffered from hip displasia, was definitely addicted to pain meds, and had deteriorated in the last two months and seriously struggled with balance.  I bought her traction socks and traction strips around our tiled house.  I am inconsolable at the moment, but I know this ends at some point.  I have three of her pack mates with me and my wife.  The three seem to be just fine.

I am grateful that y'all before me have shared, as it has helped me.  The grief of responsibility comes in waves for me (should I have been outside every time she needed to go?  was my vigilance sub par?), but I also know it probably offset the inevitable Decision.  I was gone for no more than 5-7 minutes.  I try to justify that that was reasonable.  Regardless, I am at this time inconsolable. 

Please continue to share.  It has helped me.  I hope my posting helps someone else.  Requiem  aeternam et lux perpetua luceat ei. Requiescat in pace.

Posts: 1,821
I believe sometimes our babies feel they need to take the 'decision' from our hands - in any number of ways. As to the comment that drowning is 'peaceful' . . . . when I was 25 I did drown (obviously someone did revive me) - caught in a Rip Tide. My first reaction was panic, which blocked me from remembering basic rip tide responses - and I was, at that time, a strong expert swimmer. But after a few moments, likely only seconds, everything suddenly became very still and quiet - no roaring waves, no panic, soothing warmth, and utter peace. I actually felt extremely calm. Someone once told me you sometimes need to remember that accidents are just that - accidents.  I hope you find peace and know (each of you) that your babies knew only that you love them and were/are the place their hearts are safest.

Posts: 1
To all those that have posted on here and shared their stores, thank you, I'm so sorry for all your tragic losses. It is strange how reading stories of similar experiences somehow helps, but it does. I, too, had a very similar experience one week ago with my almost 17.5 yr old Beagle - my soul mate and best friend through thick and thin since I was in grad school. He was definitely deteriorating...blind, partially deaf, signs of dementia, hip dysplasia, could barely walk, and had lost that zest for life he once had. In recent weeks he stopped drinking water, so I was adding it to his food...oh, boy, he still loved to eat though, that ravenous Beagle!

We took a trip a few hours away to stay at a friend's vacation house that was vacant...and it had a pool. He hated water so I wasn't too concerned about it. I fed him his breakfast outside on the beautiful back patio and then something drew me inside for a moment...I still don't know what it was - one of our kids maybe (I have two small children under 5) - anyway, it was maybe 5 or 10 min, but suddenly my head popped up and I screamed his name and ran outside and there he was inside the water floating. I jumped in, pulled him out and began CPR, but he was gone. I knew he was gone the moment I grabbed him.

I've been scarred by the vacant look in his eyes, the trauma plays out in my mind over and over and the black cloud of guilt overwhelms me constantly. I've been unable to function the past eating, drinking, sleeping, nothing. I was breaking down into hysterics every 15 min. My children have been terrified to come near me. So, I went to see a few pet loss grief therapists and it helped A LOT. There are even free hotlines you can call. Just wanted to let everyone know that there is help out there if you need it.

The past few days I've come to a place of peace and forgiveness - both forgiving myself and accepting his forgiveness. As someone else mentioned - for those who've lost an elderly pet in this way - maybe it was their way of relieving us of the burden to make this decision? These precious beings are so much more intuitive than we understand or give them credit for (how did he always know whether or not he was coming with me in the car without me saying a word?!). Another thing...I had always thought that drowning was one of the worst ways to go, but one of the therapists described the process to me (at my request) and she said at his age it's possible there was no struggle and was probably quite peaceful and quick - much like what @Ghatten described. That gave me so much comfort...although I will always want one more snuggle, one more kiss, one more look into his beautiful brown eyes and tell him how much I love him. But they live on in spirit and in our hearts.

If it helps anyone else...during one of the therapy sessions, we did a meditation and reached out to him in the other realm - I thought it was silly at first, but gave it a go. To my astonishment a vibrant vision of him came to me. He was his spunky, robust younger self, maybe 3 or 4 years old. He smiled, ran up to me and rubbed his face into mine like he used to and gave me a message - he told me he was fine. He said he needed to go, his body was giving out and he was finished here. He thanked me for his amazing life. I told him I loved him and can't wait to see him when it's my time. Then he trotted off into the distance and disappeared. It was one of the most profound experiences of my life...which stemmed from one of the most traumatic.

The universe is a mysterious place that we barely know only a fraction about. For your sakes and your families, please do get some professional help...and help without the use of meds if possible. I have also joined a pet loss grief support group near me and I am looking forward to sharing. Best of luck, light and love to all of you who have endured a horrible loss to a beloved furry best friend in this particular form of transitioning. Take care.

Posts: 3
I’m so sorry to hear of everyone’s tragic stories. My dear, sweet, best friend Triskit, a almost 17 year old Brussels Griffon drown in my sisters pool a week ago today. He, like many of the others was partially blind, deaf, and had vestibular disease and an advanced heart murmur, but really was very spry, active, and and not in any pain. I felt he still had much more time to be with me. He was literally my best friend. My Velcro dog who wanted nothing else that to be constantly with me. He celebrated me every time I Came in the door with a high pitched only for mommy bark. He loved me dearly as I did him. We could not be separated for over a few hours.
He went with us to Florida to my sisters house with a pool for my nephews wedding He had been in the pool before and could swim. But this time as soon as we got there he walked right in. He didn’t even see that it was water. He floated on his side and weakly kicked his legs, his head immediately stating to go under. I don’t know why he didn’t right himself or try to kick harder. Maybe he was shocked from the water temp. Within 2 seconds I jumped in fully clothed and saved him. We dried him off and he seemed no worse for the wear. We joked that we had both taken the “polar plunge”. But I knew that he could not be left out alone anymore.
Two days later after a full day of wedding preperations And a joyful wedding we took separate cars home. My sister and nephew in law arrived first and felt Triskit needed to go out. He didn’t want to go but they picked him up and left him out with my nieces dog. They said it was only for 2-3 minutes. We came home and I immediately asked where Triskit was. Marli, the other dog was barking frantically at the back door. My son opened it up and saw Triskit floating on the pool. My sister ran and jumped in and handed a lifeless limp body to me. I began to scream and scream and howl with grief from the depths of my being. My nephew is coast guard and began cpr right away. My wailing woke all the neighbors and they called 911 thinking it was a child. My son was sobbing my daughter vomited. I was screaming I need my phone, call the emergency vet! I need my keys! Over and over. We brought him inside and my niece continued cpr. She though he may have come back but there was some blood coming out of his mouth. He wasn’t moving at all and his eyes were open and fixed. I began cpr in the car as she raced to the emergency vet. Blowing over and over and chest compressions and everyone sobbed and prayed. But he was already gone. It was literally the most painful thing to ever have happened to me. We all vomited from the grief and wailed and sobbed uncontrollably for over an hour. I kept kissing him and petting him and telling him how much I loved him. The kids didn’t want to touch him. But I didn’t want to leave him. Finally I had to make the decision. He was cremated. But being a holiday weekend it wasn’t done until several days after we left Florida.
The next day I went to the emergency room because I was uncontrollably shrieking and couldn’t get grip on myself. The trip that was supposed to be a beautiful celebration turned into tragedy. We had to drive home 18 hours without him. Every time we stopped I though he would be in the car waiting for me.
I have talked to a couple of grief pet loss hotlines. And my therapist. But I totally get the “what if’s”. What if I had gotten home just a minute sooner, or insisted that no one let him out but me, or what if we did cpr too hard and that killed him, or why didn’t we warm him up and dry him? I have barely been able to function and cry all day. I can’t sleep and hardly eat. He was my baby. My constant companion. I’ve never felt grief like this. And he was the source of comfort in my times of need and now in my greatest need he isn’t here to comfort me.
I have his paw prints and I touch them over and over. Just to know that’s the last place he touched. It’s so hard to not go over and over the whole thing in my head. I want him back more than I’ve ever wanted anything in my life. I miss him so much. I almost don’t know how I can go on with my life. I’m dreading the grief I will feel when I get his cremation remains tomorrow in the mail.
I’m sorry to hear of others that have had this happen but it helps me to know it was a horrible accident and that he didn’t suffer long. Rest In Peace my beautiful fur boy.

-Triskits mom.

Posts: 1
As sad as it is, reading these stories has really helped me. Just knowing I am not the only one who has gone through this situation.

My 14 year old baby also died due to drowning in my family’s pool three days ago. It’s hard to not think about those what ifs. I am the only one who knew she was outside because I am the one who let her out the door. I thought it was odd she didn’t come to the door to be let in after half an hour but it was nice out so I assumed she was laying in the sun somewhere.

2 hours later I found her in my pool. The image is forever in my mind. This is not how she was supposed to go.

The guilt kills me. Was she wondering where I was when she fell in? Was she scared? She was always there for me and I wasn’t there for her this time. Having to pull your dog of 14 years out of the pool is a horrible thing. It is not something I would wish upon anyone. I pray no one has to go through this.

I’m just left wondering, how has everyone else coped with this situation? I have moment last of happiness when I realize she is forever young again with our other dog who passed away 4 years ago. She is also there with all her puppies she lost earlier in her life. But when I’m thinking of that, the image of her in the pool floods my mind and I can’t think positive anymore. People around don’t understand how this feels so I need someone who knows how it feels to reach out and help me, please.

Posts: 2
kkimmel -

Time. All I can say is time will ease those images and feelings of sorrow. From time to time I still see my Zak's limp body in that pool and I dream of him often. People say that is him reaching out to comfort me and I actually believe that, as it helps me cope with losing him. My guilt has finally subsided after about a year, but my sadness continues as I think of him frequently. Each day it gets better for me and it will for you too over time. It won't be an easy journey but you will get through it and just remember you are in her thoughts forever.

Posts: 3
I found my PJ on the bottom of our pool just yesterday. He was 15 years old and my baby. I had to get him out, my husband wasn’t home I cried out to my oldest son at 615 am. Our cameras were off I don’t know how it happened. My husband thinks he had a seizure and fell in as he would never go near the pool.
I hate the pool I want to fill it in with dirt, I’ve been crying since yesterday I haven’t slept my young boys are broken hearted, my other dog who grew up with him is lethargic. I’m so hurt

Posts: 3

I feel your pain- I’m so sorry for this tragedy! I wrote about my dog Triskit above, who drowned in December. I didn’t eat or move, or barley function for a month. I lost 20 pounds that first month. But, slowly, slowly, the pain gets less. I still miss him everyday and wish I could hold him again, but in that first month I though I would never be happy again. You will grieve and it will hurt, but eventually you will begin to heal. I called several pet loss grief groups in the first few days and they helped a lot. I don’t think I can go back to Florida, or swim in My sisters pool, so I can imagine how hard that must be to look out and have to see that pool. It’s still hard to look at his pictures without breaking down, but I can start to look at them now and remember some of the happy times.

Triskits mom

Posts: 4
I am so sorry for your loss. To everyone here. 

Seeing that this has happened to not only my husband and I we sadly say, we find a bit of support. We took care of her so well and it ended tragically with her drowned in our pool. As you all say, it doesn't make sense how she died because she would go to the restroom out there in the patio all the time and knew that if we put something for her not to cross she wasn't allowed to cross to the other end of the pool area. I sometimes wonder if she knew it was time to go and did this to herself ? I don't know, I was in denial that day. My husband and I cannot even go near the backyard right now. This happened Friday few days ago. June 28 about 2pm ish. My husband found her. I cannot even bare to look at the pool. We are so devastated after taking care of our girl for so long and so well this happened. She was 13 yrs old.
We feel so guilty and we can't get that image out of our heads. How she died and we weren't here to help her.
All of your stories actually helped me to put my story out here and offer us some grief support. My beautiful sheepie story is posted under : Saved her life 2x couldn't save her now. I posted it yesterday.
We are just crushed w this =((((

Posts: 4
This is my story , I wanted to repost it here because I feel it is the most helpful here to us all. I THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH FOR YOUR POSTS... This has helped us so much. ! 

Friday June 28. I will never forget it . I saved my girls life 2x and I couldn’t save her this day! my poor sheepie old English sheepdog 13 year old Girl. She had surgery for pyometra and was a very close call . Surgery saved her. The 2nd time just this March 1st ... she had a cancer tumor in her breast and we took it out. Grew very quickly. Saved again. The vet told me she had good time after that but the cancer would eventually return one day we just didn’t know when . It wasn’t spread we took it out on time. I just wanted her for more time I didn’t care how long.

So tell me someone please , why did she die this way ???? Drowned in my pool! My husband found her after I had left her outside for a couple hours which is what we always did So she could go do her business. What kills me is my husband put something a cooler next to the pool so she couldn’t get by the other side . She knew this ! So why did she cross this ? She was a great smart dog and it makes no sense how she did that after knowing the cooler was placed there so she couldn’t get by !!!!! If makes no sense to me. ??? Did she do this to Die??? 
My husband doesn’t want to give me details of how he found her in pool . When I rushed to backyard I was still in denial she was out of the water and he had covered her. I just yelled at him and told him : it’s your fault !!!! You told me keep that cooler there and you always put it there to keep her from doing her business on the other end of pool and now look !!!! Just because you didn’t want to wash the floors again !!!! A few minutes later I took it back after realizing it was harsh. I was just upset and in denial . 
We are both so devastated. Like everyone else here we feel so guilty . I shouldn’t of left her, I shouldn’t of put that cooler back so she’d fall, I should’ve been here with her. 
My husband remembers how he found her and I can see it kills him. I remember how she looked and it kills me ! After we protected her and saved her life how could this happen this way ???
Her back legs had given up and she was bunny hoping already. She was falling on her behind many times and we would help her get up all the time but she never had problems outside. She also had severe arthritis. She was deteriorating and we didn’t want to see it. I’m sure she tripped And couldn’t swim out because of her back legs. She had fallen in once 2 years ago but I was here and I watched her save herself right away while I Was running towards her. Or I tell myself she told God to help her go without us seeing her die because we’d try to save her and she was ready to go. We just didn’t want to see it. I just think she still had time . I didn’t get to say goodbye to her as planned . I said to myself once she stops eating I’ll know she’s ready. I’m so distraught. We’ve only told everyone she was dead when we arrived home. No details. We are keeping this between my husband and I because we are just so heartbroken and it’s tragic to us. We cry everyday . We have no kids . She was our baby. Our home is empty and quiet now. She follows me around no more. All that kills us both . !!!! :((((
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