About putting your pet down
I have to write this post. You don’t have to read it – it’s something I went back and forth about, but then decided that it might be a kind of public service announcement so you can prepare if you need to.
First of all, thank you for all of your kind wishes on Goldie’s passing. I know there are a lot of dog lovers and just kind souls out there. I thank you for every thought, word and prayer. It helps to have so many people who love my dog – those who knew her in person and those who just followed her adventures on my blog.
Ok, now to the hard part. I didn’t think about this and it has been the hardest thing and I hope I can help someone else get through this if they have to do it.
Goldie did not want to die. She struggled.
I had some fantasy world idea of euthanizing my pet. I could have taken her to our regular excellent vet, but I had heard that the Ventura County Humane Society was a wonderful place full of compassionate people who love animals, and indeed it was.
I didn’t want to have Goldie’s last trip be a trip to the place she had been poked and prodded so often. She knew what the vet was and did not want to go there.
So up we went to Ojai. Here’s what I thought would happen – the person would gently inject my dog with something who would make her sleep. Goodnight dear dog.
Here’s what happened – deep breath. We put Goldie up on a tall, towel-covered table and I had to wrap my arms around her to keep her from biting the lady, especially when the Humane Society lady had to poke her again after one vein did not work. I had to hold her as she struggled hard to get out of my grasp. I didn’t get that one final peaceful moment with her.
As soon as the drugs hit, she gently slumped down and lay there until her heart stopped a couple minutes later.
The hard part only lasted a minute or two, but I have seen it 100 times in my brain. I just did not know, so I figured other people wouldn’t, either, since no one talks about it.
My dog was tough and scrappy, and even though she was in pain and skinny and decrepit and barely able to walk, she fought like hell. She wanted to survive.
I’ve had a couple nightmares where she’s hurt and bleeding and running loose and I can’t catch her. I figure that is related to that experience.
Please don’t worry about me – I have great moments, too. Happy memories, beautiful photos. We had a great life.
I don’t want to freak anyone out and make you not want to be with your pet at the end. I just want you to know, in case. Because no one told me.