Losing a Pet

I noticed a lot of Bittoggers post when they lose a pet or have to put a pet down, mostly dogs. Posting about it is a good thing and the support from the guys is fantastic. There are lots of websites that help pet owners cope with their loss.

Here is just one. https://www.pet-loss.net/

I had to put down my 13-1/2 year old Chocolate Lab, Coco a while back so I wanted to share a few more thoughts on coping.

I found as the time neared (statistically), it helped to start photographing or filming everyday life with your pet. I took 250 photos and videos in the last few years of her life. Videos are great. Videos with the sound of their barking and/or panting are even better.

I find the issues were really divided into two. What is going to happen the day I put her down and how am I going to deal with it later?

As the dog's master it is your obligation to make the event as painless and stress free as possible. It helps if your pet has been to the vet before, and experienced lots of treats during the visits. My dog liked the vet. She knew she would be getting treats and have a chance to smell other dogs.

The day came when she could no longer walk. She had arthritis in her front right leg and one day her good left leg started to hurt so bad she was hobbling on her right leg. Effectively she could not walk. She went off her food for two days. She was still very coherent and I had to pick her up to take her outside to do her business. I had an appointment scheduled with the vet and I was hoping he could giver her some pain killers and give her a chance to recover. For the two weeks previous she was up and down. However, when she went off her food I phoned in and asked for an emergency visit, which they were good enough to accommodate us with.

So on the day, I still held hope there was more time. I put her blanket in the car and picked her up and placed her in the back seat. She was peaceful and nodded off during the 30 minute drive to the vet. When we got there she realized where she was and walked under her own power to the front lawn of the vet's office and had a pee then walked into the office. Because of Covid, I could not be with her during her examination and instead waited myself in the patient lounge. The vet came back and said she had a tumor in her left leg. I phoned my wife and she came down, happening to work only 5 minutes from the office.

We had previously agreed that if she had cancer we would put her down. Now here is the procedure they used which I highly recommend. In the examining room they gave her an injection of pain killer and a mild sedative. A staff member brought a blanket and placed it on the floor. They walked Coco into the room under her own power and had her lay down on the blanket. My wife was there with me. Coco was coherent and was happy to see my wife. We gave Coco a biscuit which she devoured. Then Coco got tired and slowly fell asleep. The staff member came by and we nodded our acceptance. They took Coco, who was fast asleep, to the examining room and administered the final injection. My wife chose to stay with her until she passed.

Its hard for me to type this, but I wanted to convey how well things went by using the pain killer and light sedative and being with her while she was feeling no pain and was still communicative. For the religious types you can imagine she went to dog heaven and for those who believe the lights go out, you can imagine she fell asleep and did not wake up.

I met with my son and one of my daughters and we gathered up all of Coco's photos and videos by searching for " dog" on my Ipad. This brought up the 250 photos and videos which we then moved to an electronic album. We have now moved on to the grieving stage and realize that dogs don't live forever and she represented unconditional love for which we are eternally grateful. Thanks for reading this. I hope it will help someone.

Snag
 
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4WD

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Texas
Coco is a fairly common name for labs … ours will always be remembered as the worlds number one tennis ball in the pool fetcher … but I loved to show folks she could bring back water balloons without breaking them …
She gave us two litters that we shared with family … the last offspring (Lola) died just 3 months back.
 
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Location
Virginia
I thought about the same thing with my cat Princess... In the last 4+ years I took 200 pictures and several videos of her...

I knew her time was running short... Though it surprised me it ended up being 3-4 years shorter than I expected.

It was brutal absolutely brutal losing her...

Though only a month later as I looked at those pictures... I knew I was in a good place to get another cat. The lady and I went to the local shelter... And my cat Matilda did exactly what Princess did when I first met her... She came over to me meowing... And when I rubbed my fingers together... She rubbed up against them just like Princess did. We took her home 2 days later. One of the Best decisions I have made.

Now I need to do the same thing with Matilda and my other cat Coco.

Take good care of yourself snag... If you need anything... Send me a msg... Anytime.
 
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We lost our male sheppard to Cancer last February. I was not ready for another dog but my wife brought home a male dog. He did not work out with our family so he had to go back.

She then found a female sheppard at a dog rescue place. I still was not ready for another dog but she got her anyway.

Now I really like the new dog. We named her Dixie.
 

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It hurts and theres no way to sugarcoat it, diminish it or work around it- just have to let it run its course. Our thoughts are with you and yours.

Making the decision is the worst part of all. ( unless you are the one doing the put down too)

We raise working dogs and go through this on a semi regular basis- it never gets any easier. They still come back at times in memories. ( don't believe its a bad thing either)

My experience is that the best treatment is a new puppy but that's not always best for everyone but it works for us.
 

JT20

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I kiss all of my animals every day. Sometimes, I wake them up to pet them and just let them know that I love them.

If you're like me, you like pets more than people most of the time and I try not to think about the day when they will pass. One of my little fur babies is a little closer to the end of the road than the others but she's eating more and doing better. Not sure she drinks a whole lot of water, i put a small amount in the bowl with her food and she seems to eat two cans (she needs a tooth operation, which I will get her soon) and I'm proud of her.

Excellent topic here and yeah, it can make a grown man cry. They are our family and it is up to us to love them and they keep us happy, and trust me, they know. Each have their own personality.
 
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I lost my dog Rusty back in 2013 he was 11 a lab Shepard mix I really miss him. But Dixie my purebred Lab that I got in 2017 is great one thing I can say about the two of them is they definitely have different personalities Rusty was scared of squeaky toys and would run and Dixie isn’t she loves them. I miss Rusty I was only 11 when he died. Dixie is 3 and is doing great.
 

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JT20

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I lost my dog Rusty back in 2013 he was 11 a lab Shepard mix I really miss him. But Dixie my purebred Lab that I got in 2017 is great one thing I can say about the two of them is they definitely have different personalities Rusty was scared of squeaky toys and would run and Dixie isn’t she loves them. I miss Rusty I was only 11 when he died. Dixie is 3 and is doing great.

Casey, 1998. Golden Retriever. He was "gun shy" and used to dig.

He developed cancer. Its really sad. :(
 

JT20

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My avatar girl is gone.....
I really miss her too.
Great post.

I would have to take a picture of a picture but I know there is one, somewhere, of Casey standing on top of the big rock we used to have in my backyard and pulling the winter cap off my head.

He was really handsome and if you've ever seen the big black bag of Purina Dog Chow, with the slightly darker coat Golden Retriever on it.. that was a lot like him. That dog may have been a Red Retriever but same beautiful dog.

Max passed away too, early 2010s (Pekingese) and buried him in the yard. He used to lick Casey's teeth. Silly dog, lol.
 

JT20

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That is sad. Rusty loved to dig so does Dixie.

He could hear the thunder hours before the storm. Dug up plenty of trees!

Never did figure out how to stop him from doing so. I was thinking about this in the "Dog Anxiety" thread but that was different. Gun shy.

I always felt bad for him when there was thunder. He was scared, and if he laid in the hole he used to dig he would be "kind of" okay!!
 
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He could hear the thunder hours before the storm. Dug up plenty of trees!

Never did figure out how to stop him from doing so. I was thinking about this in the "Dog Anxiety" thread but that was different. Gun shy.

I always felt bad for him when there was thunder. He was scared, and if he laid in the hole he used to dig he would be "kind of" okay!!
Haha that’s funny I a way of him laying in the hole after he dug it. Sometimes dogs can sense thing way before humans can. Dixie is scared of my neighbors motorcycle she runs under my carport and hides when he brings it out.
 
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