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Posts: 4
Not sure if getting it out publicly will help, but here we go...

Had to have my best buddy Boo Boo put down Saturday unexpectedly. At 13, he has had a few health issue and arthritis, but we really thought he had years to go. Long story short, normal day, he was fine but got antsy before bed time and couldn't lie down for long. I knew something was wrong as you can just "tell" when you've been with someone that long but hoped it was just another bad hip night or belly ache. He threw up, took a rest, then collapsed an hour later trying to walk. 

At midnight, I knew I was in trouble and we decided to head straight to the ER after he collapsed outside, was gasping almost, and I had to carry him in. We never fully figured out what was wrong, but believe something ruptured as the doctor said she though he had a mass or that something had broken lose inside. Had X-rays a month before, but it was the type of thing I guess you would only see with a cat scan which we didn't see the need to do considering what he came in for that day. Needless to say, I'm kicking myself for that a little and for making the decision to put him down rather than have them try to save him.

Deep down I know it was the right call as he was super attached and I don't think he would have had a good recovery being away from home. That combined with the doctor saying it was 50/50 for just the surgery, not what they may find after or if it could be fixed, made it seem like the right choice but does not make it any easier at all.

While I knew this would be rough and would be for anyone, it's hitting me particularly hard because of the situation we had...

I work from home, so I spent 24-7 with my dog. Woke up, we ate breakfast, I would work while he napped, then it was time for lunch.... same thing, then supper with some playtime and walks mixed in. Daily routine for the past decade basically, slept in my bed every night and was the light in our household. I help take care of my mother who has health issues, so it was just us and the pooch. 

Needless to say, the silence is deafening. Hard to get out of bed, and I actually lost my job the week before thanksgiving so I don't have a routine at all now which makes it worse. My mom is helping but hurting as well and I thought the hardest part was burying him, but I was oh so wrong about that. Getting 13 years of toys bagged did me in yesterday, just like typing this is doing me in today....

Obviously, any advice would be appreciated. While I've had dogs in on and off throughout my life, this was the first one I raised from a puppy and my father got him for me a few years before he died which kind of makes it worse. He really was "one of those dogs" that everyone loved and never had a mean bone in his body. Runt of the litter as a pup.

We have already decided to get a new one and were thinking about it when Boo was getting older to give him a buddy but I didn't want to split attention... it just didn't feel right. 

I know there's no set time limit to wait, but again, I could use some advice from people that have gone through this. I tried to look at shelters online but unfortunately, several dogs looked just like mine and I lost it. 

Posts: 629
Good Afternoon, Dear Adrock,

My heart is heavy for you today; as I read the words about you and your beloved Boo Boo the love that you feel for him came through every word.

Dear Adrock, if I may, my wish for you in the coming days is to know that first, as you stated in your words, it is very clear that you made the right decision to send you beloved on his journey, rather than opting for treatment with no guarantee of success. I can understand very well. My little buddy Van Gogh, a truly special Tiger Maine Coon Cat, was sent on his journey several years ago after suffering a collapsed lung, a severe infection related to the infection, and other complications. I too, was faced with the decision of treatments with no guarantee of success, and potentially, further complications. I could no let my little buddy suffer any further, so like yourself, I made the decision that it was better to set him free.

Dearest Adrock, one decision that we all make when we welcome our beloveds to share our lives is to offer them a life filled with joy, companionship, and to keep them safe, healthy, and free from pain and suffering. Sometimes, with great sadness, but just as much, if not more, love, bravery, and selflessness, part of that promise involves knowing the time that may come when we must send our beloveds on  ahead of us in the journey that we share. I do very much believe and know that our beloveds know that when that decision is made, it is made with the love and care that we promised to provide from the moment we welcome them into our lives to the moment that they make their journey on ahead of us until we join the, in the future.

 Dear Adrock, it is also so clear through your words that you have a very clear perspective of your beloved and your future. I know that if and when the time may come for you to welcome a new beloved into your life, as you had thought of, let your heart and spirit guide you. There is no right or wrong answer as to timing, as it a very personal decision to make. If and when the time is right, you will know it. And if I may say so, any future friend will be well served to share your life. But please forgive me, as those words are very premature. For now, please know that my thoughts, hopes, and prayers are with you. your family, and your beloved Boo. May you find solace in knowing that many here in this wonderful community share in your grief, and know that your Boo continues to love you, remember you, and awaits your reunion in the years ahead.....

All is well with love,

Posts: 1,010
First let me say that I'm so sorry for the loss of your precious Boo Boo. 

From everything you have written I know that you gave Boo the best life and he knew he was loved and cared for.  That being said, it's so very hard when we have to say goodbye to our babies that brought so much love and devotion into our lives.

I will tell you our story - we had a little buff colored cockapoo named Brandy that we got when she was 8 weeks old.  She was the joy of our lives - we are empty nesters and she truly was our furry little daughter.  We had her for 17 wonderful years...she started to decline right after her 17th birthday.  It was hard for us to accept the fact that she was older and in declining health.  She had been so healthy for her whole life.  But she developed doggy dementia and would get stuck in corners and not know what to do.  Then she stopped eating.  We had to make that awful decision and believe me, it almost killed us.  We were beside ourselves with grief.  The house was just so quiet and lonely.  Like you, I had worked from home and she was with me constantly.  At first we said, never again, we can't go through this mind numbing grief.

But after about 4 months of loneliness we began looking at rescue groups and found a senior cocker spaniel who was 10 years old.  We decided to go to the adoption event and we fell in love with her.  We adopted Miriam and she healed our aching hearts.  She rescued us more than we rescued her.  We had 4 wonderful years with her and then had to say goodbye again.  As much as it hurt, we were so thankful that we had that time with our little white angel, Miriam.

So now we have taken the plunge August we adopted a 6 year old cocker spaniel named Bree.  We are enjoying having her and our hearts are full once again.

I just had to tell you all this to let you know that it is OK to take a chance and love again.  In your heart you will know when the time is right.  And Boo will guide you when you are ready.  You will honor him by loving another.

I am sending you thoughts of peace and comfort at this difficult time.  Please come back and tell us more about Boo.  It really will help.

Barb (Angel Brandy's and Angel Miriam's mom and now mom to Bree)

Posts: 4

John and Barb, thanks for your kind words, prayers and thoughts. While I know others are going through similar pain right now and countless others have in the past, it does help to hear from others and know they “understand” what you’re going through.

I have managed to get a few things done this week. Getting those toys together was rough (3 big bags) along with medicine, bowls, etc… and I know I still have to vacuum which I absolutely dread as he was a shedder. Again, I know you all “get it” as it’s not just hair, it was his hair and yeah… changing my comforter will be the last thing I do as he slept with me for a decade.

Barb, your right as it is just different when you work from home and have a pet by your side. We would have talks and walks at lunch, irritate the neighbor’s dog, check the mail, etc… you just get in a routine. When you don’t have that anymore, it’s just bizarre and as I’m not working at the moment, it’s especially hard as you literally don’t have a reason to get up. There’s no one to feed or walk, so why be in a hurry to get going?

I think one reason it’s hard is he was the first “real” dog I had that was mine and my dad got him for me before he passed away a few years later. When Boo died, it was kind of like the end of an era so to speak. A guy just had a slew of “country puppies” that he wasn’t taking care of, so I took home a mistreated flea covered puppy and gave him a good life.  I can honestly say it’s one of the best things I’ve ever done in my life. Not just for myself, but for the joy he brought to other people in my family, especially my grandparents before they passed.

Again, I know it will get better and it has (whether I like it or not) a little each day. You realize life will go on, your dog still loves you, and in my case, I really do believe we will see each other again. Needless to say, I’ll never move as we decided to bring him home and bury him here. Still have some things to do there, but unfortunately it’s cold and rainy so I don’t think we’ll get a marker down until spring.

Both of you are right about letting a new dog into my life as well, and I know I shouldn’t feel bad for thinking about it. I mean, you still do as that’s only natural I think, but I also know Boo Boo wouldn’t want us being miserable because he had to leave us.

Lots of thing to think about with a new pup however, and it’s going to be extremely hard to make myself look at the pups in the pounds and shelters (or online) without tearing up.  That makes me think it’s too soon maybe, but I’m really not sure there is a “right time” in some cases and I know Christmas is going to rough as he knew what that time of year was and loved to get presents.

I love animals too much to resent any creature I would ever bring home, and while it would be bittersweet, it’s hard not to smile at a puppy during Christmas. Just hate those conflicting feelings that comes with thinking about getting an animal too soon....



Posts: 60
I'm sorry about the loss of your dear dog.  I know how hard it is when a pet dies and also how difficult it can be to decide whether and when it's "okay" to get another pet. 

I've been the primary "mom" to four dogs in the past few years.  After S died, I waited seven months to get another dog, W. After W died, in January of this year, I got another dog, L, about six weeks later. It turned out that L had cancer when I adopted him.  He lived until early October. I wasn't planning to get another dog right away but then C appeared on the website of the same rescue organization from which I had adopted L, and so less than two weeks after L died, I brought C home. 

Different intervals between death and new dog in each case, but each time I had no problem loving the new dog. 

Posts: 4
We slowed down a bit, but will definitely try to get one before Christmas if possible as the guilty feeling has started to subside somewhat. Looking at all the dogs and cats that need good homes in the shelter system helped even though I know it will still be sad and bittersweet initially.

I can never replace my dog and he's always going to be with me... we were just too close for me not to feel that twinge every day and I realize that now. That said, I do feel I can give another dog a good home when the time is right and hope to so in the near future.

Thanks again to everyone who commented, you really don't know how much it helped in those first days.

Posts: 580
I am so sorry that you had to say goodbye to your Boo Boo. I know it hurts and your heart feels as if it'll never heal but in time you will remember the journey and all the precious memories that you made together. It sounds as if Boo Boo was your heart dog and soul mate. Boo Boo would want you to share your hearts with another and for the new one to experience the love that he knows lives in your hearts. When your ready, open your heart and lives to another deserving soul. Your post touched my heart because I used to call my Sweet Termy, Boo Boo. I still talk to him and say "I love you Boo Boo". You will never replace Boo Boo but you can love another in a different way and maybe the new one will help heal your heart, some.
Love and doggie hugs
Termy's mom
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