Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Secret #2 revealed

Remember when I wrote this post, about two secrets?

One was an upcoming new grandbaby. Janae is finally feeling a bit better, and I can't wait to see her with a baby bump!

The second one is not so happy. We don't have any pets anymore.

The Cat - Miah went back to live with Jeremy, Leslie and Landon. Jeremy actually gave Miah to Leslie their first Easter. They had her two years, we've had her eight years, and now they have her again. Landon adores her, although it's not a mutual thing. Miah is still mostly hiding from him, but she's a very affectionate cat, so eventually she'll get desperate for love and resurface.

Dublin - the two year old golden retriever went to an agency that provides foster care til they find the right home for him. He is presently only a few miles from us, lives in a big fenced yard with a female lab/shepherd mix. He gets to play ball every day, and is currently on a diet to shed about ten lbs. I've never really had a skinny pet yet. It was very sad to tell him goodbye, but I know he's going to be better where he's going. We requested a family with children big enough to not be knocked over by him, but young enough to dress him in costumes, give him scraps from the table on the sly, and let him be their best friend when they've had a rotten day. The agency - Angels for Animals - tells me they will sell him and take the proceeds to support their organization, and they'll report back to me after he's placed. I'd adopt him but then that would be back-pedaling.

Elway - I still get a bit misty eyed thinking about it, and a lump in my throat when I try to talk to anyone about it, but we had him put to sleep. He was not quite 11 years old, but had had a rough time. Two blown knees, arthritis, hip dysplasia, constant ear infections and other issues that are best not mentioned, but I don't know that Elway had many days he actually felt good. He'd gotten to where all he did was sleep, he didn't want to go outside, or take walks, or play ball, and mostly hid from Dublin who still has a lot of energy. After meeting with the vet, I sat on a blanket on the floor and held that dog til his last breath, sobbing all the time. Since I wasn't able to find Lindy, I buried Elway with her.

It's been 39 years since I didn't have a pet, and it still feels very odd. I find myself waiting for Miah to come crawl under the bed covers at night, and when I get up in the morning and nobody is waiting to be fed and let out, that feels very strange. Surprisingly I miss Dublin the most, and that may be just knowing he's pretty close by. Everything in me wants to go see him, give him a pet and a snuggle, but I know that would be heading the wrong direction in getting over it, and also confusing for him.

A few months from now I think we'll enjoy being at this stage of life, with no pets except the angel fish in the aquarium. Right now it feels odd and quiet and when I see the neighbor's dogs outside, I don't go over to pet any of them. I still miss ours too much.

Life - letting go to grab onto new things. I told Don this doesn't cancel the need for a pet forever. I figure somewhere down the road, maybe in the not too distant future, when we're settled in Texas, I'd like some little fluffy dog that doesn't shed and can travel with us. White, with bows in her hair. Just not right now. Some things, like pool tables and dining room sets and extra dishes I'm letting go of with no problem. Those four leggeds have been a bit harder than I expected.


Judith said...

Your love, not just about the animals, so shows through, and must be almost the hardest part of leaving Penn. I'll be praying for you as you go through it.

Diane@Diane's Place said...

I held my 17 year old cat as she breathed her last in my arms. I made the decision to have the vet end her life, one of the hardest decisions I've ever had to make, so I understand completely, Bev. And I sobbed too, for hours, during and afterward.

Even knowing that she was miserable and suffering, it still hurt so much to make the decision and let her go. It felt to me like the ultimate betrayal, dealing death rather than loving and nurturing. The practical side of me knows that I made a right decision, a merciful choice. But the loving, nurturing side of me almost couldn't bear to do the right thing, knowing how much my loving companion trusted and depended on me to do the right things for her.

Enough of that, just know that I've been there and I love and respect you for making the right decisions, even when it's hard and painful to bear.



BS HONEY said...

I'm so sorry. I Too, know how it hurts.
I always say, "I'll never get another pet." But I do, and I think it helps with the loss.
Right now We have a fur baby, a sweet and beautiful part persian cat, rescued from out local animal shelter.
Things will get better soon. If not, there are lots of animals, begging for homes, in shelters.
Best of luck with all that is going on in your life.

Melissa said...

I'm so sorry that you're going through this sadness, most especially with Elway. The other two will soon be very happy in new homes.
I know the pain you're feeling with having to put a dog down. Three years ago my 8 year old pug was on the verge of respiratory failure (had a few other serious issues too) and I struggled so much on whether I made the right decision. I sat with her until her last breaths and even after for a while. I'm starting to cry all over again as I type this because I miss her so much and the dog we have now just isn't her!
At least you know that it gets easier with every day that passes although the good pets never leave our hearts, that's for sure.

secondofwett said...

I've said that when our Old English Sheepdog goes that that's it....no more.....I've even told family members not to allow me to give in....I really don't know whether I'll be strong enough....my hat's off to you.....putting a dog down and giving one away...well, that's got to be the hardest.

Barb said...

Thinking of you holding Elway as he takes his last breath breaks my heart. I've been there too, so I know how hard it was, but you did the right thing, in all three cases.

It's going to take a while to get over it and the feeling that something's missing won't go away until you get another pet.

We talked about this so much as it was happening, there's nothing else I can say except that I agree 100% about the little portable pet. We both did our time with big, labor intensive pets. I highly recommend a Shih Tzu. But good luck with that whole "bows in her hair" thing. :-)


Becky said...

Oh, Bev, my heart just breaks for you. To go from one pet to none was so hard for us. But to go from 3 to none must be life changing really.

I wish we lived near enough to adopt Dub for you. We'd be honored. He's a beauty.

Susanne said...

Oh Bev, hugs to you! It's hard enough saying goodbye to one pet never mind three! My heart is with ya!

Kelly said...

Oh Bev, bless your heart. After agonizing over putting to Gizmo (my 14 year old shih tzu) to sleep last summer, my precious vet consoled me with words that still bring me comfort. She reminded me that in life I did absolutely every imaginable thing to give Gizzy a good life, and that letting her go peacefully was the "last good thing" I could do for her.

I'm so sorry you had to go through the loss of all three of our pets at once, and I'll be praying for you. When the time is right for a small, portable dog- I'm with Barb, shih tzus are an amazing pet, and the best part, besides their sweet disposition, is the fact that they don't shed!And while our puppy doesn't care for bows, she is more than happy to wear sundresses:-)

pendy said...

Hard to let a pet go...I've been right there while one breathed its last and let me just say...there was a lot of sobbing involved. It was almost better after, though, than the days leading up to the decision.

Dena said...

you got me cryin' on this post. you poor thing. though i'm happy for your new adventure, i'm so sad about your sweet pets and you. we totally want Dublin! we just lost our golden retriever, do you think those pet angels will deliver to NC? :o)

Ann said...

Our pets are just as much a part of our family as the people in the family and it hurts just as bad to see them leave us. I pray that the pain will ease soon and you'll just be left with pleasant memories. Thanks for telling us your secrets so we can share in your join and pain!!

Jen said...

Our dog Lucky a dachshund is 15 this month. He still runs through the back yard and chased the kids...dont get me wrong he has his moments...his hearing isnt great...and we have arthritis. I know his day is coming..I prepare myself daily. i love this dog as if he were my child. So I get your saddness. I dont look forward to that lonely day. I'll say a prayer for you...a prayer for your mind to be pre occupied when that moment comes that your pets...are being mourned. hugs from kentucky friend.

Gretchen said...

I'm so sorry about Elway, Bev. Sounds like many of us have been in your shoes, and they're not easy shoes to be in--no matter how appropriate the reason. No one ever tells you the "right" time to put down a dog. Believe me, I looked, when I had to do the same. I wanted some voice of affirmation--some hand-holding, I guess. Through it all, though, I know it's better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.

He was well loved.

And so were the other two.

Hugs, friend.

Guess I need to touch up my face before going to VBS training. Thanks a lot. ;)

Linda said...

I'm so sorry Bev. When our cat died several years ago (at the ripe old age of 20), we decided no more pets. It makes it easier to travel and visit the grands.
However, after reading "Marley and Me" the other day I was all set to go out and get a dog. I think one day we will. I still miss Shep - the dog of my childhood. But not right now.

Karen said...

You are going through so many changes... I can so understand because I am going through some of the same circumstances. Changes are not easy but necessary at this stage of our life - - - we can get through this one step at a time!

Dan and Janae said...

Dan broke the news to me two days ago and I am still tearing up. We know it's the best thing for us,you both, and Dublin--but that doesn't make it hurt any less. I am praying that a good family will appreciate Dubby and his sweetness. I know Dubby will miss you both so much-you both made a sacrifice to be with him as long as you did. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for that!!! We love yall!!

Michelle said...

AWWW Bev.I"m so sorry to about Elway. I remember reading all those lovely "Letters Home " From Dublin and laughing and crying at the same time.{{{{HUGS}}}}