A New Angel in Heaven

by Kelli
(Vancouver, WA)

My dog Angel had been with us for 16 long and wonderful years, but it was time to go. She was barely able stand, let alone walk, and she had symptoms of liver cancer for the past several months. We couldn't remember the last time she had wagged her tail, although she still looked at us with love in her eyes.

The day she stopped eating, we knew that she was forcing our hand. She was telling us it was time to go, and we couldn't postpone it any longer. The next day, after work, I went to the vet and made the arrangements. I set the appointment time for 6:00 in the evening - the same time she would eat dinner.

My brother came by to say goodbye. He wouldn't be there when it happened, but he wanted to see her one last time. After all, she had been his first pet as much as mine. We all gave her a treat - I gave her a sausage, which was always her favorite.

I carried her into the vet, followed by my dad. We were going to be with her when it happened. She never wanted to be left alone, and we certainly weren't going to make her face this without her family.

When the vet said it was time, she laid down against me like she used to when we were together on the floor - me reading a book, her snuggling against me. The injection caused her to fall asleep within seconds, and her furry head rested against me for that last time. As she was going under, my dad and I were stroking her and telling her that we loved her so much, that she was a good dog and our best friend.

When I left the vet clutching her collar, I left my heart on that floor with her.

The house is filled with memories of her. I keep expecting to see her on her favorite spot on the floor. I keep expecting to come home to her. It's like it's hard to believe that after 16 years, she's never coming back.

She knew it was time, when it happened. For the first time ever, she wasn't afraid of the vet. It was like she was telling me that it was okay. That she loved me too, and I was a good dog and her best friend.

The grief clutches my throat like a vice, and the tears run hot on my cheeks as I sit alone in this empty house and wail for my lost love. Sometimes it feels like the pain will never end. How does one get over losing someone who shadowed your every step for half your life? Everything has changed, and nothing is what it should be.

I put her things out in the garage, but I don't know what to do with them. Throwing them out seems like throwing her away, and giving them to my next dog just seems crass.

Angel was my everything, and I can only pray that in time the pain will lessen.

Comments for A New Angel in Heaven

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Oct 14, 2015
Sorry for your loss
by: Jim

Just lost my 8 year old boxer to cancer out of the blue, I feel your pain and know it --cks big time. Try and be strong and know your dog is protecting you from above still. You must go on and find happiness, your dog would want you too. I am trying but yes it changes everything and the peace, joyful life life once was BUT it can be again....believe.

Oct 10, 2015
I feel your pain
by: Stephanie

I just went through this same experience only two days ago. It's horrible. Her name is Molly and I had her for 15 wonderful years. She was my shadow and I feel so lost without her. My heart goes out to you at this time. The only thing that's just getting me by is knowing she is now with Zeus (our other baby who was also put to sleep only in June) in doggy heaven. I miss them so very much and will for the rest of my life.

Sep 28, 2015
Passing of a beloved pet.
by: Rex Gladding

I feel very sad Kelli, as I read your story. It brought me to tears. I always remember my lovely Border Collie "Max" who passed naturally in 2012, we think, of liver cancer. But I can relate to your sadness. It's such a long time to be with your pet and then it's all over. I have pictures of Max in my room every where, and of Chelsea who grew up with him, sh is still around (14 1/4) Max was 13 1/2 when he passed. All my love and prayers to you Kelli xxx

Sep 20, 2015
Another Angel
by: Anonymous

I feel and share your pain. Six days ago, I had to say goodbye to my wonderful labrador retriever. He would have been 11 next month, and I got him when he was 2. Our time together was way to short.
Russell was my best friend, therapist, confidante, exercise buddy, and volunteer companion. He was a certified Therapy Dog, and he was loved by residents and staff alike at the seniors' home we had visited almost every Saturday morning for the past 6 and a half years.
Staff members have come by, crying, to tell me how badly everyone feels.
But we all know that it was time. Russell was diagnosed with a mast cell tumor in early July. Surgery would have drastically altered his face, and there was a large chance it would come back after the chemotherapy.
Until the last 10 days, I hadn't seen a great change in Russell, other than he was more tired. Then things began happening rapidly. Six days ago, he looked me in the eyes, and if ever there was a plea to let him get away from the horrible itching and discomfort he was experiencing, it was in that look.
I am alone. After a special breakfast, we drove to the vet's office. We went into the room, where a home made quilt was folded on the floor. I knelt down. Russell - all 102 lbs of him, sat on my lap. I hugged him, stroked him and never left his side, until Russell had left me. I am devastated.

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