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Old 09-12-2008, 10:06 PM
 
Location: North Carolina
527 posts, read 858,206 times
Reputation: 715

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Two weeks ago today I lost my beautiful Princess. There was no advance warning at all. Just the week before I'd taken her to see an old friend of hers who had moved away to the coast. The two dogs were so happy cavorting all over the place. Never would I have dreamed in one week she would be gone. She always used to wait at my front window, hearing me park the car and knowing I was home. That night she wasn't there. Instead she was lying on the carpet but unable to stand up. I thought she'd had a stroke, maybe. She was 12, after all, but a happy, perky dog. I took her to the vet and learned a tumor had ruptured in her spleen and that she was bleeding internally. The emergency vet said she had DIC and that they suspected hemangioma sarcoma. They gave her less than 10% chance of surviving the surgery and less than six months to live. The situation was hopeless to me so I had her put to sleep. Even if she would have woken up from the surgery, my Princess would be suffering, and I couldn't put my always happy little soul through that. Not believing in cremation, I had her buried in a casket in a pet cemetery. Still, I wonder if I did the right thing.

My heart is completely broken. I got Princess at the pound just after my mother died. I'd been through losing both my parents in less than two years of each other, and I lost two other dogs the year of my mother's death too. Being alone with no family, she was my lifeline. She was a border collie mix, with wavy black hair and the most beautiful smile. Her smile won me over at the pound. We'd moved and been through a lot together and her presence helped me cope with my own loneliness and sadness. Even though I had no one, she was there for me every day. She slept on my bed, had a morning ritual of asking for two dog biscuits, had been through three pink piggie stuffed animals (her favorite), and whenever anything dropped on the kitchen floor she'd make sure to clean it up for me.

I am so depressed as nothing is going well here for me, and now my best friend is gone. Thank God her sister, Nicky, my cat, is still here. She has been such a comfort, coming to my side, laying on the sofa next to me, etc. Cats aren't dumb. They know when they lose someone too, and they feel our own grief. I have so many losses but losing my Princess has taken away the ray of hope I had for each day. I don't even want to celebrate Christmas this year. Will it ever get better?
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Old 09-15-2008, 02:08 PM
 
Location: Arvada, CO
719 posts, read 2,466,214 times
Reputation: 493
It will. Its been almost 2 weeks for us, too, and we're still pretty crushed. See posts in adjacent threads. Hang in there! You'll soon remember the good times, and the grief will subside. And know this: your Princess wants you to BE HAPPY!
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Old 09-17-2008, 11:38 AM
 
Location: coos bay oregon
2,096 posts, read 8,578,501 times
Reputation: 1307
oh...im so very very sorry for you... Princess sounds like she was an incredible and wonderful friend.
Grief takes time. And she was well worth grieving for! You might try doing things like donate a bag of food or some towels to the shelter you got her from. Or even better, if you can, some time. Remember how much better you made her life and all the love you gave her, and try to think of a good memory when the ache hits.
Sending you cyber hugs....
Tiffany
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Old 09-17-2008, 09:10 PM
 
Location: North Carolina
527 posts, read 858,206 times
Reputation: 715
Thank you so much. Right now it is so very hard to think of any good memories. I cannot get my mind off the last picture I have of her in my mind here in my apartment, that being her sitting on the carpet, unable to stand up. The shelter where I got her is back in Miami, but I do still have the bag of her dog food here, so I could take that to the shelter here. Helping some other dogs would be therapeutic. What I really wish is that I could find a grief support group because this has brought back my other losses too, all fresh, all over again. I literally have no one to come home to. Still though, I am so grateful for finding this site and seeing wonderful people like you.

Barbara
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Old 09-18-2008, 10:08 PM
 
Location: West Cobb County, GA (Atlanta metro)
9,191 posts, read 31,711,485 times
Reputation: 5220
Quote:
Originally Posted by miamian in nc View Post
Helping some other dogs would be therapeutic. What I really wish is that I could find a grief support group because this has brought back my other losses too, all fresh, all over again. I literally have no one to come home to. Still though, I am so grateful for finding this site and seeing wonderful people like you.

Barbara
Very sorry to hear about your sudden loss.

You might want to try the meetup.com site to see if there are any groups in your area with folks who are going through or have gone through the same thing - or if there's not, even start a group of your own via that site. Donating time at a shelter is a good idea, but don't "rebound", either - that is, immediately adopting a dog to try to fill in the grief you're experiencing. When the time comes to maybe one day adopt another dog, you want to do so with a completely clear mind so you make the right decision.

Now, this isn't for everyone, but I once knew a couple who lost both of their dogs suddenly within a month of each other. Similar situation as yours whereas they had no idea either dog had health issues so it was unexpected with both. They were afraid to get near a shelter due to the "rebound possibility", but wanted to do something, too. One of the charities they had always donated to was the Best Friends animal sanctuary in Utah (link: http://www.bestfriends.org/ ). So, what they did was, they took a vacation which they did every year anyway, only this time they actually went to Utah, and for that week, donated time to the Santuary. They helped feed the dogs, walked them, played with them, general volunteer stuff. Since they lived in WV and it was in Utah, they knew they had much less of a chance to make a rash decision and adopt dog(s) and bring them home, but were still doing some good. It REALLY did help them, and they came home after that week feeling so much better overall. I realize not everyone can take a week off of work and go to Utah, but if you CAN, maybe there's something like that you can think of to do.
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Old 09-19-2008, 08:26 PM
 
Location: North Carolina
527 posts, read 858,206 times
Reputation: 715
Thank you so, so much for your wonderful advice. You're right, I could not handle another dog right now, for it would feel like a replacement. Someday again, I probably will, as I have never been without a dog. Princess was such an exceptional dog that I know right now I couldn't love another like this. Someone locally had mentioned Meetup also. Today I searched and found there is no pet loss group here in my area, so I am thinking about the possibility of starting one. Surely there are others going through the trauma I am too.
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Old 09-19-2008, 11:27 PM
bjh
 
Location: Memphis - home of the king
42,365 posts, read 26,567,183 times
Reputation: 128743
It does sound like you did the right thing. A 12 year old dog is like an elderly person. Everyone dies, and you took the responsibility to make sure your friend's death was not prolonged and painful.

It is so hard to lose such a good friend, but it will get better yes.
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