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Posts: 8
I got Buddy, a clumber spaniel mix, from the local humane society in January of 2015. He wasn’t hyper and jumped right in my lap when I first met him so it was love at first sight. He was fill grown and I’m guessing around 2 or 3 years old. He had food aggression and I tried to work with him. He was great at first but started getting really skittish and nervous around other people. If someone woke him on accident he would growl and lung but never really connected. If a stranger came around he would bark and growl but didn’t cause any harm, just scared them.

I tried to work with him and give strangers treats to give him but he didn’t care one bit about them. I think in his previous home he was abused because at night when I would take my belt off he would cower in the corner and shake thinking I was going to hit him.

He also nipped at me a few times, brought some blood but nothing serious. Fast forward to August of last year. I went through a divorce so buddy and I moved in with my dad shortly and he bit my brother causing him to get 10 stitches in his hand. My brother told me not to put him down. He was really playful with my brother but for some reason he just snapped and had that look on his eye. After that, he ran up to my brother and sat in front of him and it was like he knew he made a mistake but couldn’t help it.

I moved to a new house with a big back yard and I also work from home so I was always with him. He usually loves dogs but went after a few in the neighborhood but I was able to get him back before he attacked. Also, I’m dating someone with a 7 year old and 12 year old. He was terrified of them and if they came around he would growl and lung at them. He connected with the 7 year olds head but didn’t bleed at all.

I just had to watch him around other people and he was just so scared of them. Even if he was outside and the wind blew the trees he would run back to me and get as close as he could.

This past Sunday a stray dog was in my yard and he ran and attacked it. He had a death grip on it and was shaking it. I had to hit him with a stick because his shock collar wasn’t doing anything. Seeing that really scared me because what if it was a kid?

My dads best friend is a vet and dad has been talking to him about the situation throughout the year. After what happened Sunday, he suggested that he be put to sleep.

He was my best friend and perfect around me. Never chewed on one thing he wasn’t supposed to his whole life. Everyone I talk to say I made the right decision because he had to be miserable in life being so scared all the time. I know keeping him here would be selfish but living alone will be extremely lonely. I miss him so much and it’s been 24 hours since I made the toughest and hardest decision of my whole life.

In a selfish way, I almost wished he would come down with a medical problem that would force me to put him to sleep or he would pass away in his sleep. The saddest part is they had to tape his mouth because he was biting and lunging when they were administering the medication. It’s as if he knew what was happening and I had to sit there and tell him it was ok but I was lying.

He was with me through some of the hardest times of my life and he knew when I was down. Would jump in my lap and lick and face and was always there to greet me.

I know if I kept him something bad would happen because he would go from 1-100 in one second without a single warning. At least now he is at peace and not scared. I am struggling with all the what if’s and I miss him. He was the best and this house is so lonely without him here. I feel like I failed him because I might have done something to make him skittish and scared.

Posts: 1

Hang in there Greenpj22,

You did the best you could for your fur baby. You gave your dog an awesome life. Think about it if he had been living with someone else? You did the best. Many here, have been in the same situation. The pain and guilt is immense but that's only because your truly loved your dog. You did the best for your dog. You feel this way because you cared and loved your dog. Guilt should not be present. 

I had to put my fear aggressive dog down about a year ago. She was 6 years old.  I still think about her everyday. The nightly crying sessions have turned into me thinking about her life and our time together. I'll always have those memories and you will too.  


Posts: 8
Thank you so much! I’m glad you are slowly being able to cope with it and looking back at the good times. I’m so glad I found this group. It has really helped me with the second guessing and what ifs.

Posts: 8
After reading symptoms of rage syndrome, it seems like buddy had it coupled with fear aggression. If I would walk by him sometimes he would snap for a second or two and then act as if nothing happened.

Posts: 1,821
1st - i am so very sorry for your loss - making the decision is always heart breaking - and seems so much worse and even unfair when they are young and/or physically healthy. it is never easy - and i can only imagine how hard it has to be when they seem so healthy physically. But the sad truth is they are not healthy - mental illness is still illness.


The truth is your baby was sick - no, not a physical ailment that could be seen this time - but still sick. And as with some physical ailments, some mental ailments cannot be successfully treated. You set your baby free. Even when we free our beloved companions from catastrophic physical ailments like end stage cancer we often go through feeling that same way, it is normal. Guilt is very often the 1st steps on grief’s path, the what ifs and if onlys are simply our grief tormenting us. When we loose these precious souls why really doesn't matter - love is a shared bond and when that bond seems severed it hurts. But your baby will be with you always - free of the aggression they could not control - simply in a form you cannot see.

You gave your baby a safe place and you loved them - and you gave them a lifetime of love and care in their time with you then allowed a dignified good-bye allowing them to leave with dignity surrounded by love. You gave them chances where many would not. Please know you did try and in the end had no real choice - what were your baby's options? Life in a cage? Intervention 'on the spot' by the authorities when things got too out of control? Someone scarred and their death happening at the hands of someone trying to stop them? An end that likely would not have been with ones who love your baby or care if they is frightened? You gave your baby a wonderful life where elsewhere they may have known abuse, and gave them every chance you could and you tried to give them a home where they would be safe. When your baby passed to the hands of the angels it was be from love to love, they carried your baby to a place where they is free of the demons that made them aggressive and at that instant your baby understood that you acted out of love and compassion. Your baby is free and happy. Please know all you are feeling right now is normal and no matter what the circumstances is what we have all felt. I am so very sorry for your loss.

Know we are here for you and your family. Sadly, we have seen this tale before and we do understand and we know sometimes there is no choice.

When you can please share a photo. I feel certain there are so many wonderful memories with
your baby, and sharing those sometimes helps. And if you just need someone to sit by your side - well you now belong to a family that circles the globe.









It seemed the day was even grayer than even the greyest of days. The pup found she was suddenly at the edge of the most beautiful place she had ever seen. She could still feel Mom and Dad's tears, hear their sobs. "I'm so sorry Mom and Dad, I really did try but the demons are too strong and sometimes they pushed through." She lowered her head and began to walk away, to be sure she did not deserve to be someplace so lovely.

A radiant being in white suddenly stood in her path, surrounded by many other pups of all sizes and breeds. "Please," she implored, "I don't want to, but if you stay near me sooner or later the demons will win and I may hurt one of you. I don't want to hurt anyone, its best if I just go."

The radiant being just smiled at her - a soft compassionate smile, at that moment they reminded her of her Mom and Dad. "I let them down so many times, I didn't want the demons to win but sometimes they do. And I left them no choice, I let them down and hurt them yet again."

Hero, Seabreeze, Heather, Charlie, Molly, John, Stashie, Hershey, Samson, Morgan, Niko, Jordan, Timber, Dixie, Buddy, Tina, Snickers, Dizzy, Harley, Jack, Kimmi, Sammy, Fender, Tosca, Bruno, tried to gather around the newcommer but she backed away. Seabreeze stepped forward, "We won't hurt you little one." She looked to the radiant being and whimpered, "Please make them leave. I don't want to hurt anyone else."

Now the radiant being smiled and actually seemed amused. "Little One, reach within. Can you feel that? Can you feel the demons are gone?" The little one got quiet and after a moment looked up in amazement, "They ARE gone!!" Then she looked at the others around her, "But I've done so many bad things, I don't deserve nice friends. I don't deserve to be in such a wonderful place." Now the others all looked amused. Dizzy spoke up first, "We all felt that way at first." Slowly Dizzy's words filtered in. "You mean . . . ., I am not the only one?" she asked quietly.

Tina pushed to the front, "Of course not, all our humans had to make that same choice as yours. But now you're free - the demons are gone." The Little one thought on Tina's words. "What about Mom and Dad? Can I let them know I am free, that I'm sorry?"

At that moment all the others grew quiet, the Little One looked to the radiant being and realized they were gone. She looked to the rest afraid their silence meant no. Just then a large silver wolf walked up to her, she knew she should fear a wolf, yet, somehow knew she could trust The Silver One. "Have you all finished monopolizing her time yet? If you are done she still needs to be shown the reflection pond, to be shown . . "

Just then the Little One heard a familiar sound, her Mom and Dad. "They are here?" she asked, and she followed the sound. She found herself by the clearest crystal pond, and when she looked into the pond she saw her Mom and Dad." Concentrate on them, Little One. Send your love and thanks to them - from your heart to theirs - and they will feel your love." the Silver One said gently. As she watched her Mom and Dad seemed to calm even thought they were still crying, and her Mom looked up at her Dad, "She is at peace now wrapped in our love."

The Little One looked at the Silver One and the others, "Thank You." The Silver One looked at the others and back at her, "You can see them anytime you wish from here. The others will show you how to send them your love, Little One."

(c) Candace 11/13/09

All too often people do not want to discuss this type loss, so those who experience making the decision due to aggression issues feel they are alone.

All the names of the other ones are real – Fur angels we have seen at PetLoss because their parents had to make that sad decision due to aggression issues. i am sure there are other names also - newer names and names I have accidentally left out.

We understand - know that you had no choice and we understand that you are in pain. But your fur child is with the other fur angels - free of the demons she fought against so hard.




Posts: 8
so eloquently said! I really appreciate it and slowly the "what ifs" and grief are disappearing. It's still an uphill road but I know deep down I made the right decision. Some thing bad would have happened and he would have been put to sleep without me around and with a bunch of strangers.. plus the liability aspect of it as well.

I thought about trying to rehome him but I just couldn't do that. He was too attached to me and I'm almost positive something bad would have happened if I did.

All in all, this website has really helped and I'm grateful and lucky I found it.

Posts: 8
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