He's gone, and that was the hardest thing I've ever had to do
I put my dog to sleep today. After 14 years of endless devotion and love that he gave me, I did the most painful thing I've ever done and have known it was time for awhile. He hasn't been able to walk unassisted for over a year, but now couldn't even stand with help. He started showing signs of pain - panting all the time, little yelps from time to time, and I couldn't let him feel pain anymore just because i wasn't ready for him to leave the world. I held him and looked into his eyes as he died. Fuck, i don't wish that feeling and pain on anyone. I sobbed like a child while holding him to me.
My heart is broken. I don't even know what life is going to be like without his sweet presence. I love you, Hercules. I hope Mom is over there to meet you.
|February 17, 2024 10:57 PM
Oh, honey -I really feel your pain. I had to put my beloved kitty cat down not too long ago, just shy of her eighteenth birthday. As awful as you feel, you have to keep telling yourself it was time, and you did the kindest thing in the world for him. Sob your heart out and let yourself grieve. We'll be here for you.
|December 4, 2023 3:10 AM
Find strengthen the knowledge that he lived, knowing he was loved his entire life
|December 4, 2023 3:16 AM
OP I thought you were making soup. Now your dog's dead? MMmhmmm
|December 4, 2023 3:17 AM
I am so sorry OP. You did the right thing. The grief is so real. Have a good cry and know we are here for you
|December 4, 2023 3:17 AM
Yes, i'm the soup poster. I made it and only saved a jar-full, realizing it would be hard to eat it and reliving the pain/decision.
I gave him turkey for his last meal. He also had a little bit of the tamale i barely was able to swallow earlier today.
It was time.
|December 4, 2023 3:20 AM
Sorry, OP. :(
Give yourself time to grieve, and when you're ready, get another furry friend. It does help.
|December 4, 2023 3:21 AM
I'm sure he was a good pup.
Tell us about him.
|December 4, 2023 3:24 AM
I'm sorry, OP. It's one of the hardest moments of our lives, period.
|December 4, 2023 3:30 AM
Love and best wishes to you and to Hercules OP. Take care.
|December 4, 2023 3:32 AM
Oh, OP. I’m so very sorry about this. I hope it helps to know that what you did was so humane - you removed his pain and that is such a gift. Still, the loss is deep and will sting for awhile so take care of yourself and know you were loved by a fine dog.
|December 4, 2023 3:33 AM
I'm so sorry, OP. had to do this with my 19 1/2 year old kitty a few years back. I got home one day and found her dragging her hind legs. It was sudden. She'd been having problems with incontinence, so I had litter boxes everywhere. I had to make a fast decision because the July 4 weekend was coming up and not acting would have prolonged her misery. It wasn't a hard decision to make, just to deal with.
I received a new puppy for my birthday three weeks later. The distraction really helped me. Two years later he got a little feline sister. She's also a black kitty and I still accidentally refer to her by her predecessor's name.
|December 4, 2023 3:35 AM
r9 he was a black pug, and I got him when he was just 8 weeks old. I could hold his entire body in my 2 hands.
I was visiting my friend in Oregon and we drove by a sign that said "pug puppies," and she said "oh, let's go look!" There were a few puppies left, but this one came over to me right away and licked my nose when i held him. He claimed me. I hadn't planned on getting a dog and ended up taking a flight home instead of the train trip with him in a little under-seat carry-on pet bag.
We got back to the SF and i had to teach him to walk on a leash. We would walk in Golden Gate Park because i lived right on the Panhandle, not even a block away.
He was the cutest little pug ever. When I took him to be neutered, the vet said to me "he's quite fancy, are you sure you want to get him fixed?"
He grew into his name...was a shorter dog, but had a very beefy chest. He was a patient dog and was there for me during some of the worst times in my life, and some of the best too.
I didn't deserve him. I thought i just heard him snore, too...but then it slapped me in the face that he's really gone.
|December 4, 2023 3:35 AM
My sincere sympathy OP, it's an extremely painful experience to go through.
|December 4, 2023 3:37 AM
I’m so, so sorry. I know this pain. Their lives and ultimately their deaths are so poignant because they always live in the moment and don’t know this adventure is ever going to end. But we know. And it hurts like fuck.
|December 4, 2023 3:38 AM
I’m so sorry OP, but what a lucky puppy he was, to love and be loved by you.
|December 4, 2023 3:39 AM
I'm sorry for your pain. It really sucks.
|December 4, 2023 3:40 AM
He's gorgeous OP/ R14. What a little sweetie.
|December 4, 2023 3:41 AM
Please, that’s African American pug.
|December 4, 2023 3:42 AM
So much love to you OP. So sorry for your loss ❤️
|December 4, 2023 3:43 AM
So sorry, OP. I had to make that decision in May, and yeah it sucks. My dog was almost 16. Her holistic vet saw her at noon that last day and said if my gal rallied — as she had many times before — then we would do what we could going forward. But, by midnight it was very clear that there was not going to be any rallying. We went to the emergency vet hospital.
It was a peaceful parting. I made it home and got some sleep. When I started to tell family and friends I broke down crying and didn’t stop for hours. She’d been my nearly constant companion for over 15 years.
It takes time, but the memories are a comfort and the sharpness of the pain you are feeling will ebb. Hugs, OP.
|December 4, 2023 3:52 AM
Been there too many times, OP, but in time the heartbreak turns to pure love when you think of him.
|December 4, 2023 3:54 AM
Goddamn it OP, making that call is excruciating. I’m so sorry— there really isn’t anything that can be said to take away this kind of hurt.
My only consolation is that we will see them again.
|December 4, 2023 4:00 AM
r25 I also believe i'll see him again and I'm not a religious person. He claimed me like we were meant to be together, and i also believe in souls living beyond physical death. I know, i'm inviting people to debate it, but i couldn't have made that decision without believing that.
|December 4, 2023 4:06 AM
R22, I’ve had a couple live that long and those are really hard because they have got to be scrappy as hell to make it that long— meaning, you have seen them come back from the brink multiple times.
It’s like a movie where the protagonist has so many brushes with death but always survives, and just when you think he’s really gone for good, the hand reaches up from the ledge. You get a little spoiled with them rallying, but deep down you know that there will come a time.
I'm sorry. Scrappy old gals forever.
|December 4, 2023 4:08 AM
R26, I was hesitant to say that for the same reason, but my experience, with one in particular (though I loved them all) was similar to yours. I would have given my right arm or a leg to have him forever young. I agree with every word in your post.
|December 4, 2023 4:11 AM
This is really hard. My mom died in July, my cat (that was living with my daughter) a month ago, and i found out this year that an estranged friend/ex-lover died as well.
Fuck all this death.
|December 4, 2023 4:13 AM
Love to you, OP. I'm so sorry.
|December 4, 2023 4:34 AM
He was an adorable little puppers.
|December 4, 2023 4:40 AM
I’m so sorry. I did the same last summer and it just feels like an insurmountable grief. Just take it one day at a time. Try to eat healthy food and get enough sleep. It will get better. The grief remains but you get better at living with it.
|December 4, 2023 5:03 AM
This visual image helped me a lot.
|December 4, 2023 5:05 AM
You did the kindest, most noble thing by being with him and looking him in the eyes as he passed. Vets say too many pet owners abandon their dogs as they are put down because they can't take the emotional trauma. But vets say the animals are looking for their owners at just such a time. Knowing you're there gives them comfort. Kudos to you for your compassion.
|December 4, 2023 5:07 AM
It’s the hardest thing. We had to say goodbye to your 16 year old rescue last year—and it was soul-crushing. It took about 8 months, but we have taken the plunge again with a new shelter dog, who is a joyful delight. I like to think that our old dog sent this one to us…
|December 4, 2023 5:16 AM
Thanks R27, she was a scrappy ole gal. As I would tell her, she was a pain in the ass, but she was MY pain in the ass. Every inch a diva princess, she was aloof as hell while craving the attention she appeared to disdain. She had enough personality that she could have boxed it and given it away.
|December 4, 2023 5:20 AM
Op, I’m so sorry. About your pup and losing your mom and others. .
|December 4, 2023 5:34 AM
it doesn't feel real. i keep seeing the empty bed and can't even believe he's gone.
|December 4, 2023 1:10 PM
I feel for you, OP. I adopted a blind dog from a shelter when she was 8 years old and had been in the shelter for over a year. Nobody wanted an older, blind dog. So, I flew from CA to TX and picked her up. To their credit, the adoption agency was very thorough about what kind of environment she would be in and we were lucky to get her. She lived to 18 and we knew she was getting so sick that we had a vet come to the house. Because she was blind, it was cruel to move her to a vet's office. I made her an entire package of bacon and I held her until she died. It was the most difficult thing I've ever done and I'm so grateful that I made the decision. She was in pain and couldn't breathe well.
I don't give a damn what some people say, dogs and cats are the most loving things in our lives, even more than children. It is heartbreaking to say goodbye to them and we owe it to them to make it painless, loving and calm for them when they die. I am sending a big hug to you.
|December 4, 2023 1:22 PM
this was so hard. i can't still process he's gone. i keep hearing his little snore.
i didn't just sob...i wailed. i still keep crying every time i see he's no longer here. it's going to take 10 days to get his ashes and all i keep thinking about is his body hanging out, waiting to be cremated. i don't want him to be alone.
|December 4, 2023 2:30 PM
My sympathies to you OP. The only bad part about loving our pet friends is saying goodbye. But you did the right thing. Ending their discomfort is the very last act of love we can show them.
|December 4, 2023 2:49 PM
Love and light to you, OP. May his memory always be a blessing.
|December 4, 2023 3:16 PM
Hugs OP, it is like a shard in the heart. especially coming home to silence. I had to put down 2 cats (18 yr void and 11 yr Bengal) this summer, and the foreboding and scheduling was unnerving, because of all the self doubt. But I got a rescue kitten a month ago, and he is such a delight, my little stinky wormy void baby. .
Your pug had the best home and human, and you gave them a fabulous loving life.
|December 4, 2023 3:18 PM
Dearest OP you did right by him- you freed him from any more pain or trouble. Be sad, try to treat yourself kindly.
So very sorry for your loss.
|December 4, 2023 3:20 PM
I’m so sorry op. I know it’s hard but you did the right thing. You gave him a wonderful life filled with love
|December 4, 2023 3:21 PM
He'll be waiting for you on the other side of the Rainbow Bridge, OP.
I know this is agony. Sending you a big virtual hug. And now I'm crying too.
|December 4, 2023 3:37 PM
I feel your pain. I have been through this before. It hurts. LIke everything time heals. I know it doesn't seem like that now and I am SO SORRY. I will keep you in my daily prayer/good energy vibes that I send out. In time, I did get another dog. I have her now and love her so very much. It hurts, I am so sorry for your loss. Be kind to yourself during this process. Try not to dwell on it. Pick hours of the day where you are ALLOWED to think about it during 7am - say 11am - and that's it. So when the thoughts come up again ---- nope, not time to think about it and DO something else. Physically do as much as you can or watch a lot of television or read books. You can't grieve at all hours of the day, its exhausting. I tried this method and it worked for me. Be well, sending love, light, good vibes good energy and I do believe in this stuff. **cyber hug**
|December 4, 2023 3:47 PM
I'm so sorry, OP. I have a 13 year old dog myself; he has minor seizures that are becoming more frequent and I look at him sometimes and imagine the void that will be left behind when he is gone.
Like you said at R41, when I parted with my 18 year old cat ten years ago, I wailed like I would break. He was my spirit animal, that one. It was the worst day of my life.
|December 4, 2023 3:48 PM
(Also remove ALL of their stuff this sounds harsh but... put it away).
|December 4, 2023 3:48 PM
I don't know what to do with his stuff. i don't want to throw it away or give it away. So for now, it will stay where it is.
I am still hearing his little snores at night. It might just be my brain's learned pathways. Maybe it's him trying to ease me into him leaving.
I do have an unnatural obsession with hoping he treated his body in a respectful way once I handed him over. That was the part that was very hard for me. Just thinking that they'd be un-gentle with him as they did what they did after he died. I always tried to be extremely gentle when lifting him.
I still come back from the kitchen or bathroom expecting to see him on the end of the bed. Life doesn't seem real without him right now.
|December 6, 2023 6:56 AM
I started another thread about the pain I've gone through losing Hercules. It's not gone. But I've reconciled with it. I still feel him everywhere through out my life.
Today, i took Herc's little bag of ashes out of the box. They fit into my hand just like he did fit into my hand when i first brought him home into my life. I held him to my heart and felt the weight of him on my life, my love and being/living on this planet. It felt good to recognize he was a huge part of my life - what a major impact that he had for me. I was able to feel him holding his ashes close to me, in those moments, again. It felt relieving and releasing to me. I cried, but it was a good cry, with all the emotions of love, sadness, happiness, joy and regret, - all mixed in there with so many other things like acceptance, unconditional love, devotion. He gave me those things like nobody else in my life ever has.
Sad but good and needed.
i just needed to tell someone. still in grief, but swimming up to the surface, a stroke at a time.
i realize there will continue to be waves, but as long as i can keep swimming, i'll be all right.
|January 13, 2024 4:55 AM
Sorry OP, I know it sounds silly but when I lost a pet fish I had for 10 years I cried like a baby for over a week. It was so smart it did tricks on it's own, it would do things to get my attention like splashing water out of the top of the tank around feeding time and then turn to see if I was looking, It even fallowed me and other people in the room like they were the attraction. Some friends even noticed and said I think your fish is looking at me, which of course he was. I can't not imaging losing a dog. That's why I have not had one since I was a little kid. The pain would be to great.
|January 13, 2024 5:16 AM
r55 - we're all really connected in this life, all of us living things. It's scary when we WOULDN'T see how important those connections are in our lives. I'm so happy you had that connection with your fish for that long - you had a language and a love and companionship. That's what life is about: commonality, love, companionship. <3 I'm sorry for your loss, but I'm happy for your gain of that friendship and love. But in the love and loss you (and I) experienced, we grow and can pass on more love to others.
This has been the most severe pain, but still I'd never take it away if it meant taking away all the love, walks, cuddles, food, laughs, even the stuff i didn't like, had I never had this being in my life. I feel that way about some past loves too. We have to weigh the good with the bad.
Hercules always tipped the scales on the BEST and heaviest side. No regrets. Or Ragrets, even.
|January 13, 2024 5:27 AM
My dog is ten and I've had her since 4 months old. When my husband died, she helped me since I knew she needed me so that gave me purpose. She's my darling dog but hope she dies first because no one else would want her. It will be killer, though. I don't like to think about the alternative of me dying first because it would fuck her up.
|January 13, 2024 5:36 AM
OP .. There's a BOGO at Petco.
|January 13, 2024 5:38 AM
Your sweet dog was lucky to have you as a human companion. My condolences, OP!
|January 13, 2024 7:36 AM
This just proves that you homosexuals are just clueless without a WOMAN around to give you practical day to day advice!!!
You put your dog to sleep and now you’re so sad? WAKE HIM UP for heaven’s sake!
|January 13, 2024 7:56 AM
“He stopped loving her today”
|January 13, 2024 10:40 AM
R54 I'm so happy to hear that you had a good, helpful cry. Now you're on the road to healing. It's interesting how things can seem so bleak, and hopeless, but eventually our minds will start to do the needed things for us to begin to help us cope and overcome.
Herc sure sounds like a special fella, and a good boy.
|January 13, 2024 5:42 PM
Give yourself time to grieve. I know a lot of people will say rush out and get another dog, but to me that feels like you are trying to bury the feelings than acknowledge them. One of my friends lost a cat he had for almost 19 years. People kept asking him when is he getting a new cat. But he waited about a full year before he actually adopted a new one from a shelter. That was probably the healthiest thing he could do. Plus, it gave him the time to not feel like he was disrespecting his pet by just replacing him overnight like a used car.
|January 14, 2024 4:57 AM
r66 you're going to be especially bothered, but I'm bringing home a new boy on February 9th.
A week after my Hercules died, I helped bring 5 new puppies from my friend's pug couple (who i've dog-watched during a couple long vacations and known since she brought them home as puppies). I was there for 8 hours, weighed each puppy after it was born, then held them to my chest (with all their slime and birth stuff still attached) to keep them warm while their mama birthed the next one. I spent the night that night with them to help out if needed.
I've been there almost every day (they live about 2 miles from my work, so I pop over at lunch or after work when i can). I took a special shine to one of the pups, because he licked my nose at a very early age, just like my Hercules did when i first met him.
So, friends, i share with you a pic of my Hercules (with his friends and the parents of) and Apollo Blue, my new boy. I can't wait to bring him home. Although my Hercules is ever-present in my mind every day, and I talk to him and can't and won't ever forget him, I know that Apollo was meant to be mine. I'm looking forward to bringing a new family member into my life.
|January 26, 2024 4:47 AM
I'm so sorry OP. I can only imagine the pain. Be strong and know you have him a wonderful, happy live. You done good.
|January 26, 2024 4:55 AM
My heart goes out to you, OP. It's an awfully painful thing to have to go through.
|January 26, 2024 4:59 AM
Congrats, OP! Herc would love to know you have a new buddy!
|January 26, 2024 4:59 AM
Thanks, r70! I come home at night from work and can't wait for my new boy to be here with me. I also have a job where I can bring him into work with me, so he's not going to be sitting at home alone most days.
Please don't misunderstand me at all. I miss the fuck out of Hercules. I still cry often when I see things that trigger memories...pictures, etc. I have his ashes on my table next to my easy chair with his paw print. That pain isn't being put out to pasture. In the midst of that ongoing pain, I'm letting in a new life and light to my life, and it seemed tailor made for how it all ended up happening.
I know that Hercules would love Apollo and know that the two of them - and me - are linked by binds that are more than just happenstance. And Hercules will never die in my heart and soul. He's my boy forever. But I'm ready for more love and have that love to give to that new soul too.
|January 26, 2024 5:46 AM
R71 sounds like you've got more love to give and cuite Apollo is the lucky winner!
You've got Herc in your head and in your heart, and you've got lil Apollo right in front of ya!
|January 26, 2024 6:34 AM
I'm happy and still sad. It's so weird to have these two extreme emotions fight within me and butt up against each other, but I am a firm believer that life is about love. That's the fuel upon which i fuel this road trip.
It's all about love. No matter what, that's what it comes down to.
|January 26, 2024 6:55 AM
I'm bringing home Apollo Blue next week.
I know you'll roast and love this all the same, and I thank you all for being there, as you have been for the past 15 years.
|February 17, 2024 7:27 AM
more closure, r75 as this happened tonight.
and feeling a love in my life again that i wanted to share with everyone, as i shared my loss.
you could interpret as attention-seeking, but DL was the place I came to when i was devastated. I shared that here and nowhere else.
So i thought to share the end part of that intense feeling now.
|February 17, 2024 7:44 AM
This is a great ending to a thread.
I love airedales, but can’t take care of one. I used to lurk on twitter airedale threads to get my goofiness fix. Soon, because threads sorted by newest first, many started with an obituary for the beloved goof.
Too depressing. Reddit has a better format for me.
|February 17, 2024 3:27 PM
shit, if i wasn't suffering from poison oak, i'd definitely go there.
|February 17, 2024 10:20 PM
R14, after my beloved jack russell died i heard him bark it woke me up, it was very early about 5 am, i sat up in bed and proceded to get out of bed when i heard him bark again. I think it was his way of telling me that he was happy and fine. I think you just had a very special moment hearing him snore.
|February 17, 2024 10:37 PM
Best laugh of the weekend, OP!
|February 17, 2024 10:38 PM