In the crazy time of my life, that spanned over 6 months, we lost our pup. Her name was Boo and she was the best dog I’ve ever owned. She was an American Shafier Terrier, more commonly known under the bully breed as a Pitbull. We adopted her when she was 4 or 5 (the animal shelter didn’t know exactly how old she was) because she had been in for so long. That was one of the best decisions Sarah and I have made over the years.
Long story short she lived an additional 5 years with us. She slept on our couch, our bed, our kids bed, anywhere really. She hoover’ed our floors. She could beat a rug with the best of them even though she had such a small funky tail. She would listen extremely well off-leash, and had no urge to ever run away except for:
there was one-time, but she was in the backyard and decided we had waited too long to let her back in the house. When we went outside and called for her she was no where to be seen. Her buddy, Aries, ran inside and starting barking. In a panic Sarah and I ran inside the house, grabbed a set of keys, and ran for the door. When we opened it she was sitting outside with a “Hi guys, where are going?” face.
One morning a couple weeks ago I woke up and walked upstairs. In an effort to turn on the light I walked right into her. This was odd for her as she’s usually a burrower, so I definitely didn’t expect that. She was laying down on her side breathing deep and slow. I called her my princess, as I always do to get some excitement going, and there was no beating of the floor this morning. Her tail remained motionless.
She was awake, I could tell by the way she was looking at me. I opened the back door to let her out to go “potty”, but didn’t she didn’t move. It was at this point I knew something was wrong. I ran downstairs to Sarah and said “Babe, I think Boo’s going to die!”. She woke up in a startle, looked at me like I was crazy and said “What?!?!”. I told her that Boo sounded like she was having trouble breathing, that she didn’t want to get up, that I just knew something was wrong.
Looking back now, I think my statement was kind of bold… Maybe that wasn’t the way to address what was going on, but in panic/awe/craziness mode the words formed themselves…
When I ran back upstairs, Sarah followed. She coaxed Boo outside, but Boo laid at the top of the stairs and dropped. It was at this moment that I thought to myself that this couldn’t be happening. She was fine the night before. Yes she had some allergies, and yes she was sneezing, but that wasn’t too un-ordinary for either one of our pups. She had a checkup/teeth cleaning 3 months prior and she was given a clean bill of health. What, why, how?…
We started looking up 24 hour animal hospitals and looking at their reviews. We found with 4.1 stars and decided they would be the best. Sarah grabbed a towel. I grabbed Boo. Bentley grabbed his blanket.
When we arrived, the animal hospital greeted us right away (I assume anytime you carry a dog in your arms they know something is wrong) by opening the door. We were given a room and told to fill out some papers while we waited. It didn’t take but the first vet tech to come in and take her temp before he knew something was wrong. Her temp was 94.1F which is borderline hypothermic for dogs. He told us he was going to take her back and try warm her up.
What seemed to be hours passed by. Sarah, Bentley, and myself waiting in the room for the Doctor to come in. When he did we didn’t seem chipper. He started off by telling us her heart was surrounding by fluid and to be honest I don’t remember everything he said. I do remember something about her having a tumor which was probably cancer related since it runs in the breed.
I cried – hard. I couldn’t keep the tears back. This wasn’t happening to our sweet girl, our hippo, our crocodile, our princess, our family member. How could something so sweet go out like this? She was the best dog ever. So loyal. So Sweet. So perfect.
We were given two options. Either puncture the sack of fluid, try to deal with the tumor, and go through Chemo treatments or… well I think everyone knows what the second option was. The doctor told us that if they try to drain the fluid, there was potential she could bleed to death. If you haven’t been in this position before, but you think you can relate, you can’t. It’s odd how at this point your memory takes over without effort. You start thinking about how it was when you first saw her in that kennel. You start thinking about the first time you took her home to meet your other dog. The first time you took her for a ride in the car. The treats you bought, the hours of fetch you played, the loyalty to your family she showed, the unconditional love she had, everything.
A couple weeks have gone by since we had to put her down. It was the hardest decision I’ve/we had to make yet (other pet owners will understand) especially because there was a “chance” she would be ok. I couldn’t make her go through all that so we could have six more months with her. It’s definitely not the same house anymore, and Aries misses his friend, but we’re extremely lucky. We are lucky to have found the most amazing dog anyone could ask for.
My brain is going off in a 1,000 different little thought process right now, so i’m sorry I’ve not written this in the correct order, or if I’ve left out some words, or even if it doesn’t make sense. I didn’t write this for you guys, I wrote it for me. To get this off my chest, so I can help the healing process. I’m not religious, but I feel extremely “blessed” to have what I have. Life is short. Love unconditionally. Always Forgive. Be Happy. And if you can, Adopt.