ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Saying Goodbye to a Best Furry Friend

Updated on August 5, 2010

It is coming up on almost three years since I lost my beloved terrier mix, Mickey. He was a rescue puppy, the first dog I ever owned on my own, and one that I was blessed to have known for 13 years. His diagnosis of cancer came as real blow, especially because the type (hemangiosarcoma) generally occurs in larger breeds.

As difficult as the news was to deal with and accept, it gave me a chance to prepare for life without him, even as we fervently battled his disease together. We weren't ready to give up without a fight. However, I later realized that I actually began the grieving process at the time I received the diagnosis from the veterinarian. It didn't change the fact that I was dedicated to helping to enhance his survival and overall quality of life, but I knew I couldn't change the ultimate harsh reality. I wasn't going to have him forever, and the realization that I was losing my best furry friend was more than I could bear.

Together with my husband, we began the essential equivalent of veterinary hospice in our home. We provided Mickey with his copious supplements on schedule and coaxed him to eat as best as possible. When circumstances warranted, we administered subcutaneous fluids after being taught and receiving the necessary supplies from our veterinarian. To cover our bases, we also put together a list of animal clinics with emergency services that we kept handy. And, we engaged in the difficult conversations about what to do next and when to do it.

I had always promised Mickey that I wouldn't let him suffer, so it was a no-brainer that I would euthanize him when necessary. I agonized over the decision, though, especially around the timing of it. I didn't want to cheat myself or him of precious time together, but I didn't want to prolong the inevitable either. I knew my dog well enough to know that he was putting up a good fight for me, and he may have needed me to give him permission to go to sleep and let go. Colleagues and friends assured me that I would know when the time was right. In the end, they were right.

Another aspect of this process was where to do it. I felt strongly that Mickey should not leave this world in the cold surroundings of an unfamiliar, clinical environment, preferring instead to have him put down at home, if possible. We were diligent in our research and had actually identified mobile veterinary services available to perform the procedure when the time came.

As is typical of life, though, the process of life and death is not something that adheres to a convenient schedule. It was roughly midnight when I phoned the nearest emergency animal hospital asking if they would take us and help Mickey leave his disease and us behind. Because I didn't think it appropriate to call any mobile vet at such an hour, we bundled Mickey up in his dog bed and transported him to the local clinic. By one o'clock in the morning, he had peacefully left this world to run and play somewhere over the rainbow. I stayed through the whole procedure and felt my precious mutt take his last breath as I bid him a teary farewell. When I returned home, I was promptly sick to my stomach.

I am grateful that I didn't have to go through this experience alone. It was the hardest thing I've ever had to do. My husband was there by our side through it all.

Mickey left us the day that the local Catholic church was to conduct services for the blessing of the animals in honor of St. Francis of Assisi. We found significant comfort in that. His remains were cremated, so I now keep his ashes close to my bed, a place where we spent special time snuggling together.

Saying a final goodbye to a beloved furry friend is a heart-wrenching and extremely painful experience. The void left behind is a place of vast emptiness. One way that I've tried to move beyond the grief is to continue to honor Mickey's memory by supporting non-profit organizations engaged in funding studies to research and find a cure for canine cancers. This has helped me tremendously in the healing process, but I know that there will never be another Mickey in my life. I am truly grateful and blessed to have had him for as long as I did, and I hold onto and treasure the memories of our times together. I know we will be reunited again one day.


Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image

      Kenne 

      6 years ago

      I'm very sorry for your loss, I understand the difficulty and pain that comes with it.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)