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Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Say Goodnight Gracie

Yesterday was a day every pet owner hopes to avoid or choses to ignore.  When a sick pet has reached the end and you have to tell your Vet to go ahead.  “Put her down.”

Our dog of ten years, Gracie, developed some form of cancer many months ago.  A miniature schnauzer, she had become less than half her healthy weight at just over six pounds.  She was bones covered with a hairy skin.  Sad eyes and a balding nose.  Each test showed her white blood cell count increasing at an accelerating rate. 

She never really showed signs of suffering which made the decision so tough and why it probably wasn’t made soon enough.  Her only issues were her weight and well...chronic runny messes from her back side that were WAY too frequent.  Sadly, at times I would feel more sorry for myself having to clean up the nasty mess than for the poor dog who simply couldn’t help it.  Gracie, for this I am extremely sorry...but you have to admit it was pretty nasty.

In the end, it was clear that she would not make a miraculous recovery.  Her path was headed downward at an unknown rate.  It is possible that she might have hung on another few weeks or months, but at what point would her suffering finally become apparent?

My poor wife was at the Vet when the decision was made and she held Gracie one last time.  After numerous pets in our household, this wasn’t the first one to die.  Yet, you just never know how sad it is until they are in your arms for the last time.  

When I got up this morning, I attempted to do my normal routine.  I realized when I opened the door to the “pet wing” to let her outside that she wasn’t going to be there.  Her bed was empty and so was I.  This dog that I had cussed for months on end was no longer there.  I’m not going to miss the morning mess, but I will miss the dog.

We live life and see death.  It never gets or person.  It never gets easy.

Run in Peace, Rest in Grace.