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Posts: 12
Hi all,

A few weeks ago, I made the toughest decision of my life. I came to the decision that I needed to put my best friend to rest, after a long struggle of extreme behavorial issues. Please see my last post for further information on that. I've been noticing that my guilt from this still is very at large. I am stuck between knowing I made the right and responsible choice but still beg to see her just one last time. Does anyone have experience with that, that has some coping tips? I'm very glad to be a part of this family. I received some very great responses on my last time posting. Thank you in advance.

Posts: 1,821
I've never had to make this decision because of behavioral issues - known plenty of others who did. I have, however had to make the decision several times. And yes, I felt very guilty afterwards - still do at times. The thing is that guilt is our grief boiling up - lashing out. As an example (because the facts were sooo clear in his case), when we lost Dracula guilt ate at me for a long time - he had cancer and had been a week at the Veterinary Teaching Hospital on IVs and all kinds of attempts to help him. They had finally said he needed to be let go - he would only get worse and that at that point he was only alive at all because of the IVs he was tethered to. So I drove the 2 hours to him to pick him up - our plan being to have him with us for one last night. They said he may not even make it home, but I decided he needed to see his family one last time. We did get home and I had already alerted our vet that we would be in the next morning (this was a Sunday night). Only 1/2 hour after getting home he began to howl in pain - it was horrible. I called my vet and we agreed that he could have some pain meds that were for a different kitty who had just had a dental and she could meet us at the clinic in 1/2 hour. In my mind I know we had no choice - he was in agony, screaming in pain - my heart is a different story and it keeps asking was there more I could have done. I could give other examples, but the tale tells my point. Besides, that was 5 years ago and the page is getting to blurry to see through my tears. Allow you grief - that is where healing begins and be aware there is no set timetable. 

Posts: 12
Thank you Ghattenwolf. Very thankful for your words and to have you as a friend :) I really enjoyed your words on my last post as well. I know I will make it through this. Take care my friend.

Posts: 1
Many years ago I had an aggressive dog. Her personality changed abruptly at 2 years old. She lunged and nipped at strangers and we feared she would bite, especially a child. She was even aggressive with us putting her teeth on us or snapping. We had her fully examined medically and she went thru a behavioral training program but she remained untrustworthy. We could not risk harm to anyone over our want to maintain her. We decided to euthanise her and have always concurred it was the best decision. albeit painful.

Posts: 12
I am very sorry that you have had to deal with such a terrible situation and for your loss sbcvulcan. Thank you very much for sharing your experience as it helps me cope knowing there are others that have endured the same situation to reach out to. After she began turning on people she loved for years, I knew there wasn't anymore training that would correct her. I had already blown alot of my savings within the 14k that I had spent on her between training and medical treatments. A lawsuit from one slip up would have had me in debt I wouldn't crawl out of for many years and mostly likely her forced to be put down. I still feel as it was my fault. Thanks again for sharing your story of your pup with me.

Posts: 26
Hi Kyeg

I’m so very sorry for your loss and the circumstances around it.

I too have had to do this. We have a rural property which is large, but not fenced. Bordering our property are farms. One day, my two dogs, Kaia and Brute went missing. When they came back they were panting hard. Turns out they had got into a paddock and attacked the sheep. We were lucky this time as the Farmer was very understanding and could see how distraught I was over it. He was a good guy as he was under huge pressure from many in our rural community to make us put the dogs down.

From then on we had to tie the dogs up when they were out of their run. I hated it but it was the only way to keep them safe. Fast forward 18 months. I was going to work when I noticed that my husband had let the dogs out and they weren’t tied up. I told him he must tie them up but he said he was about to feed them and they knew it so weren’t going to go anywhere. I went to work. He was wrong.

I got a call at work to say that they’d attacked sheep again but again, the Farmer (different one this time) was understanding. I was soooooo relieved. But. The dogs had got into a dog fight on their way home with another neighbours dog and this neighbour was one of the ones who was very vocal about wanting our dogs destroyed. I was devastated. For their dog who had been attacked (two on to one) and I knew we had run out of chances for our dogs.

So I had to get Kaia and Brute put down together. I remember being in the car on the way to the vets and both dogs had their heads out of the windows as happy as could be. I was sick to my stomach of what I was about to do to two beautiful, loving, healthy, young dogs that were my babies. And afterwards the guilt for not keeping them safe, and for not fighting the neighbours (I would’ve lost but the dogs would’ve had more time). They were not aggressive with people at all.

You will get through this but it’s going to take time to heal your wounds. The guilt will lessen and the good memories will take over but it’s a process and not a fast one.

We did what we did to keep our beloved furry ones safe and we did it with nothing but love. If we didn’t care it wouldn’t hurt and that’s the price we are paying.

Sending you hugs and love. X

Posts: 12
Hi Raychel,

I am very sorry that you had to come to this difficult decision and am very sorry for your loss. It has been a very difficult week for me. I am missing my pup more than ever. Your response reminded me that I need to get back to reading all the love and support that this community offers. Thank you so very much for sharing your story, as I know I have now made a new friend to grieve with and support on here.

Posts: 17
On Sunday night I too laid my very best friend Penny to rest after years of fighting with our other dog and seriously injuring Paisley multiple times. 4 years ago we got Penny as a rescue she had history of abuse and we tried to give her the very best life for the four years we had her. The guilt is eating me alive. I feel as though I betrayed her and nothing is putting my mind to ease that I made the right decision. Throughout the years she has bit people, she has also bit my husband and myself when we try to break up fights. I have a 2 year old son. I would never forgive myself is Penny would have ever done anything to him. A large piece of my heart left on Sunday night.

I'm so sorry to hear that anyone else has also went through these emotions. I'm so thankful I have came across this site to help me begin to cope. Reading through everyone's post about losing their previous pets that were so sweet to them but unpredictable to other people or animals breaks my heart. I know first hand now the horrible feeling that takes over your mind and body after an event like this.

Much love to all of you.

Posts: 12
Hi Morgc927,
I'm really sorry that you have had to come to this extremely difficult decision as well. As said in my last response, this week has really been hitting me hard (it's now been over a month since I laid my best friend to sleep). The most difficult thing that I've been trying to comprehend is that my beloved Pheona was never abused or neglected. I raised her from twelve weeks old till the time I had laid her to rest. I always treated her like a queen. She had many medical problems. I spent over $14,000 on her between making sure she was as comfortable as possible while dealing with any current medical problems, as well as training. My vet thinks her aggression stemed from always being in some form of discomfort despite how hard I tried to keep her feeling as well as possible. It seemed as once we stopped a medication, she quickly would have something else come up and would need another treatment. Part of me says I did the best I could with her. Another part of me tells me I have failed her miserably. Unfortunately the feelings of failing her are overpowering me lately. Though I know I will heal in time know that I am a part of this family. Thanks so very much for sharing your story with me. I don't have words for how much each persons responses help me on her.
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