Grieving A Pet

Yesterday I received a very sad call from my sister-in-law letting me know that they were going to euthanize my doggie nephew Blake. As we cried on the phone together I flashed back on when I had to euthanize my dog, Clyde.

It was the worst day of my life.

Making the choice to euthanize a pet is a difficult decision. When the quality of life is gone I think it is the most humane thing to do. Humans should be so lucky.

There are a lot of different choices today versus twenty years ago. My veterinarian came to my home and we were under the pines. He was relaxed and I spent the entire week with him–sitting quietly under the trees talking and attempting to prepare myself for that day.

I arranged to get an all terrain red wagon and hauled him up to his favorite hiking spot where we often tromped. We sat gazing over the valley–I haven’t been able to go back since.

It took me four years to stop grieving heavily. My dog was my surrogate son, my protector, my friend, and my business partner. He helped teach people to not fear big dogs and helped aggressive dogs learn to make friends.

He was special and so was Blake.

When my brother got Blake, I happened to be heading up to spend some time with them. Black as a cute little black retriever–smart as a whip. We had him house trained in no time and my brother began training him to be a hunting dog–one who took home trophies and loved his life with my brother.

He grew into a big stopping dog with a strong mind and strong heart.

Today my brother is off fighting fires and so had to say good-bye to his beloved dog two days ago. My sister-in-law has her hands full with a new baby and is so distraught that a friend is helping them by taking Blake to his favorite vet.

Some people don’t understand the impact an animal can have on your heart. They don’t get the deep emotional  growth they impart upon their humans.

I do. I’ve seen it, I’ve felt it, I’ve lived it–am living it.

There isn’t much you can do to relieve the pain of loss–whether it is human or non-human but you can be loving, be understanding, and be there if they need you.

RIP Blake–we loved you deeply…may Clyde be there to show you around the new terrain.

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  1. I’m sorry to hear about Blake and I hope everyone is doing OK.