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chowell

I lost a piece of me this weekend....

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I hope I don't bring everyone down with this thread but this site is my life pretty much all year now so unfortunately for you guys, many of you are like family now. I had to put my 8 1/2 year old golden retriever, Abby, to sleep early Sunday morning. She was extremely sick. About two weeks ago, I noticed she was not eating. We had recently switched food so I switched back and she ate again for a day or two. Then she started vomitting and I noticed she had started losing quite a bit of weight. Well, on New Years Eve, she was very sick. I took her to the vet and they did some X-rays and some blood work. Her liver appeared to be 1/3 smaller than normal, and the spleen looked enlarged. She also had lost 14lbs. Due to the holiday the next day, she could not be seen for an ultrasound until Saturday. He gave us some nausea meds to try and help her eat because she was on day two of not eating. Each day she was progressively getting weaker and sicker. Saturday came and we got her in for the ultrasound. The doc came in and told us that her liver looked fine, but her spleen was saturated with cancer. It appeared to be a very aggressive, fast moving cancer that dogs can get. Two weeks ago, she was just Abby. All of a sudden, she was deathly ill. He gave us some options for surgery and Chemo but as sick as she was, he said it probably has spread. I asked him if she was his, what would he do? He said he would lay her to rest. I was not ready at that moment so we had him give her a shot of cortisone and an anti-nausea med to try and get her through the weekend. Saturday was a horrible day. Her breathing changed to a fast, short breath. She was up all night and was miserable. I knew what had to be done. My wife and I took her yesterday at 8am, said our last goodbyes, and had the vet lay her to rest. She looked so peaceful and I knew she felt well again. Some of you may think she was just a dog, and some of you know exactly how I feel. We still have our other golden, Chloe, who is six now. I feel terrible for her but she seems to be doing OK so far. Our twin boys of almost three don't quite understand yet and just know she went to doggy heaven. Thanks for letting me share this with all of you. I hope I didn't bring you down and whether it be pets, or people, make every moment count. I am thankful I had her for the holidays. Hug and kiss your loved ones every chance you get!!!

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Wow, that hits close to home. My lovely golden (pictured in my avatar) is about seven now and while I still think of him as a "young guy" he's starting to get some gray in the face, and I know something like this could happen at any time... He's already had one tumor removed (non-malignant, fortunately) but over Christmas I felt what I think is the start of another one... I also lost our previous golden back in 2001 (about a month after 9/11).

Anyway enough about me -- I'm so sorry for your loss. I know how much of a family member these guys can be. It will definitely leave a hole in your life. Hang in there...

-Tim

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I am truly sorry for your lose. Our thoughts and prayer are with you and your family.

Here is a little poem that may help, it has always given me a little relief.

Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge.

When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge. There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together. There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable. All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor. Those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by. The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind.

They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent. His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster.

You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.

Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together....

Author unknown.. .

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Sorry to hear about your loss...it always takes a piece of you when you lose a pet. We had to put down our beloved golden Daisy 2 thanksgivings ago, also due to cancer. She was with us for 11 years and we still talk about her all the time. She loved everyone and always wanted to be ON you, not just by you and was the biggest cuddlebug ever. Goldens truely are a special breed but it just sucks that cancer is so prevelant in them.

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I am new to the boards, but I wanted to send my good wishes to you. I have a 9 year old labrador retriever who is definately getting on in age. I love her to death and am thankful for everyday I have with her because I know that her time is coming. She become very grey around the face over the past year.

I am so sorry for your loss. No matter what others think, you're pets become part of your family and the loss of a pet can be just as hard to handle as a person. I think it's helpful that you have another four legged friend in the house to comfort you. The pitter patter of paws can be a comfort.

I also have a jack russell that I got last year to help me prepare for the loss of my lab and to keep me company when the time came. Trouble is, he's gotten so darn attached to her that I'm worried how he's going to take it. I'll probably have to take him down the local shelter to pick out a new friend.

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Again, I'm so sorry for your loss. May your memories of good times past guide you through this difficult time. Post some photo's of you have some.

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I understand how you feel. My dog is 17 now and I worry a lot about the day that probably isn't too far away when it will be his time to leave this life and move on. As of the moment, he's still happy and relatively healthy, although he is not nearly as healthy as he used to be. He has mini doggy-seizure type episodes and sometimes won't eat.

We just ended up with a kitten, and while I've gotten attached to the kitten and have decided to keep her, I am worried about her making him feel "replaced". My dog is a very sensitive guy and very attached to and affectionate with his family. The last thing I want is for him to feel sad and lose his will to keep going because I know deep down that the only thing that keeps him going is his strong desire to be with his family.

My dog has been with me for the vast majority of my life as I was quite young when we got him (I must have been 9).

When the day comes that he leaves, I am probably going to have a hard time dealing with it as it will be like losing a sibling or at least a best friend.

I know, and I'm sure that you know, that what's really important is that they have a good life while they're alive and enjoy every moment with their family. It's tough though to lose a pet. I don't know if pets go to heaven... but I like to think that they do. They're like family members.... just much smaller and more furry.

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Sorry to hear this...pets are such awesome pals and members of the family. Every aspect of daily life it seems they are involved with. Keep your thoughts positive and hopefully you find a new family member when the time is right.

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I'm so sorry for you. I know it's a real tough thing. I've always had a dog and it's tough to lose them. Last year my 9 year old black lab was found to be just riddled with cancer. There wasn't a thing they could do about it. It still hurts, my eyes are actually misty just writing this. I did go out and get a new Black Lab puppy, not a replacement, just another animal to love. She's just the best girl and my new best friend. There is nothing like a good dog, you can't beat their unconditional love. I hope your pain eases soon. I'm sorry

Edited by cozzi

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Thank you all so much for your kind words. It has been a rough two days. Probably some of the roughest I can remember. She was such a big part of our family. She was "the baby" until our twin boys came in 2006. There was so much comfort in just having her here. She didn't hunt with me. She wasn't a jogging partner. She was just a big ol' lap dog and very affectionate. I'm going to try to attach a few pictures. Let me know if they do not work. The first one is of Abby approximately three or four years ago. The second is on Saturday morning before we took her for her diagnosis. The other two are of our boys, Cameron and Bryson saying goodbye to her.

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I love the first photo of her, she looks so majestic. It will get easier as time goes by. Our four legged friends always leave paw prints in our hearts!

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You have my deepest sympathy, I have been through this before with a dog I had for 13 years and to this day I still think about him. I keep his collar on my dresser as a reminder.

Tony

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I know how you feel our family has put down over 10 dogs over the years, and none of them have been easy to do.

We had a Huskey-Shepard mix that was an awesome dog. He truly was a member of the family(like all family pets become). his name was Lucky. My dad found him on the streets outside of a University area around Christmas break, someone must have got him and either couldn't take him home or something. Anyway, he found him, took him to teh vet becasue he was still a puppy, and it was cold. We posted signs arond the area and took him home to care for him. After 2 weeks no calls or anything, so we kept him. He got the name Lucky because the night we picked him up the air temp dropped to -26 (yea, 26 below zero). He would not have survived on the streets.

Well, he became a memebr of our lives and family, and when he was about 4 or 5 he banged his nose on the railing of our deck and it swelled up and got hard. Tok him to teh vet and they had no clue. Then went to take a needle biopsy and the needle broke it was so hard. The vet told us to take him to the university vet hospital. After a few weeks of visits it wasn't getting better and he was loosing weight and getting weak. We were feeding him just chicken thighs and rice to help him maintain weight and energy.

The vets did biopsy after biopsy trying to find something. The put him on two meds that by themselves would've killed him. It helped slightly, he stopped loosing weight but that was it. Finally they got a single cell of something called BlastoMicosis. They immediately stopped the meds and put him on her stuff and within 2 weeks he was back to normal. After 6-8 months of fighting they finally figured it out.

A few years later, we finally had him neutered because of swelling down there and they found two different types of cancer in his testicles. Fortunately it didn't spread.

Lucky lived to the ripe old age of 16, a long time for the problems he had and being a large breed. It was a sad day for all of us, and even though it's been 5 years since he passed all of us still get misty-eyed when we talk about him. Lucky was a true gentleman, and a very proud dog. We had him cremated and placed into the cookie jar we used to keep his dog treats in. We also included a few of his favorite treats in theer before het jar was sealed and placed his collar around the jar. It all sits on a shelf in my mothers sewing room next to a picture of him.

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Sorry to hear about your loss. I'm glad that your other dog is doing well. When I lost my shepherd to bloat many years ago, my golden took it really hard - worse than we did. He didn't eat much for about 10 days and just howled outside. Finally he got over it but he was really lonely.

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We are having her cremated also. I would love to bury her here at home and create a memorial, and although I do not plan to move from this house, I would be devastated if I had to and leave her here. I figured her ashes was the best way to keep her with us wherever we go. I am having the hardest time with this. I have a few good hours and then it hits me again. I guess this is only day two but the pain is intense. I loved her so much! She just didn't give us any warning. She just got sick, and now she is gone. I always thought she would give us 12+ years. She was never overweight. She didn't seem to have hip problems. No signs of excessive wear and tear. I thought she would just get old. Thanks again for all your kind words. Your words and support have given me something to look forward to every few hours when I check this thread. Hug your loved ones every chance you get!

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My hubby and I had a dog that was always well and then suddenly went down hill very fast in 2001. He was 14. He was part doberman and part black lab. We noticed he lost weight and was dragging a lot. We took him to Petsmart and they told us his liver was enlarged and they said his blood work indicated cancer. They gave him 2 weeks to live tops, and they wanted us to put him down. We decided to take him home and die with us. He lived for 6 weeks more, but got so bad....we had to take him to get put to sleep. It was the most horrible thing next to losing a real human person Ive ever experienced. We have his ashes and i think about him all the time. Also, my hubby's dog, a lhasa apso who was 14, we had to have put to sleep in 2006 because she lost weight and was falling down and not eating. We cremated her too.

My sympathies are with you. It does get better, but it took us several several weeks to get to where we didn't cry all the time. It does get better. I still can't believe its been 8 years since Fritzy left us and 2 for Boo. Just reading your post made me sad again, but I know what your going through. Our other dog noticed the other was gone. I know its bad, but we got a new puppy after Fritzy died in 2001 and now shes 8 and very fat and I worry daily she doesnt have a lot of time left. We have 3 dogs. All shih tzu's. One is 8, one is 3 and one is 10 months.

Edited by snowlovergeorgia

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Yea, the other pets in the family sense and know when "it's time". When we put Lucky down, we had the vet come to our house (he's a friend of the family), and we put all the other dogs in the backyard. We tried to give them treats to occupy them, but they would not take them, they wanted back in the house. Well, when the vet gave the injections, and we all were loving on Lucky, all of a sudden we heard a chorus of howls coming from the other 3 dogs that were sitting at the back door watching what was happening. This was the first time those dogs ever howled, Lucky was the only one that howled, the other dogs only barked. They howled for a good 2-3 minutes, and then all laid down on the deck with sad looks on their faces. They knew what had happened and paid their respects to their mentor and "big brother". The other did mope around few a week or so, but we gave them extra love and attention.

It's been almost 12 years since Lucky passed, and it still gets to me. I've had to stop 2-3 times already writing this because I got choked up. It's hard to have such a well loved member of the family pass, but you know that he/she is in a better place, and is there without any cancer, looking like the young, playful, energetic pet. Remember your pet for the happiness he/she gave you, the fun times you had with them, and the joy they brought to you and your family.

When the time is right another pet will find you, whether it's just getting up one morning and saying "let's go to the animal shelter and get a puppy", or coming home one day and seeing a stray wandering on the streets and you stop to pick it up. I've always said the the best pets are the ones that find you, not the ones you find.

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Thank you all so much for your kind words. It has been a rough two days. Probably some of the roughest I can remember. She was such a big part of our family. She was "the baby" until our twin boys came in 2006. There was so much comfort in just having her here. She didn't hunt with me. She wasn't a jogging partner. She was just a big ol' lap dog and very affectionate. I'm going to try to attach a few pictures. Let me know if they do not work. The first one is of Abby approximately three or four years ago. The second is on Saturday morning before we took her for her diagnosis. The other two are of our boys, Cameron and Bryson saying goodbye to her.

She was a beautiful dog. It's obvious from your posts that you and her family gave her a great deal of love. I'm sure she really enjoyed being a part of your family, and recieving your love. take comfort in the good life you gave her, there are many people who own dogs that don't treat them well and don't deserve to have them

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Clark (?)

You have my sympathy. Pets become so woven in to our lives and hearts. We have the privlege of having them and the responsibilities of taking care of them. I too choked up reading this thread. I too have been with 3 of our dogs at the end. Our vet has told us that we would know when it's "time." It will get easier, choose to remember her healthy and happy and not the last few days. Your family will be in my prayers.

Mira

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That is the challenge I am facing right now. My heart breaks when I picture her during her last few days. I am trying to remember all the good times with her, and I do, but the image is burned in my mind of her lying there on the vet floor after she was gone. I was holding her head in my hands when she went. Her head just went limp in my hands. It was extremely painful, but I wouldn't have had it any other way. Today has been a little better. Only a few breakdowns. You guys are phenomenal people! This is why I posted here. I had a feeling that I would get some support from some great people. I was right! So many challenges. I had to vacuum up all the hair that was left in my truck from the transports all weekend. It was a mixture of emotions. I've never been fond of all the hair inside the truck, yet I didn't want it to go away since it belonged to her. I had a really hard time doing that this morning. Thanks again for all your support! I hope to meet some of you at the PLUS this year. My wife and I will be there. So far so good with Chloe (the other golden). I think she is feeling sad, but she is still eating and wanting to play. I hope she holds it together a little better than I have been able to.

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That is the challenge I am facing right now. My heart breaks when I picture her during her last few days. I am trying to remember all the good times with her, and I do, but the image is burned in my mind of her lying there on the vet floor after she was gone. I was holding her head in my hands when she went. Her head just went limp in my hands. It was extremely painful, but I wouldn't have had it any other way. Today has been a little better. Only a few breakdowns. You guys are phenomenal people! This is why I posted here. I had a feeling that I would get some support from some great people. I was right! So many challenges. I had to vacuum up all the hair that was left in my truck from the transports all weekend. It was a mixture of emotions. I've never been fond of all the hair inside the truck, yet I didn't want it to go away since it belonged to her. I had a really hard time doing that this morning. Thanks again for all your support! I hope to meet some of you at the PLUS this year. My wife and I will be there. So far so good with Chloe (the other golden). I think she is feeling sad, but she is still eating and wanting to play. I hope she holds it together a little better than I have been able to.

I know that for every person their relationship with their pet is different, but I am glad to know that you were holding her when she sent. I've been there - it is the most profoundly heart wrenching and helpless feeling, but I couldn't bear to think that someone would let their pet go alone. Thankfully time will eventually make that saddest moment of your time together fade so that you can be comforted by your good memories even though that seems impossible right now.

Kathi

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I am sending my condolences on the lost of your beloved pet. Your story brought back many sad memories of my past pets that we too had lost. It is so hard. Don't feel like you are not allowed to grieve. It is so natural. Give it time. My beloved poodle Sassy lived to be just shy of 17yrs. old. She chose to die in my arms one morning while my husband was traveling out of the country. I had to be strong for my kids, she would have wanted me too. (as I wipe a tear away while remembering it like it was yesterday) They are only on loan to us for a short while to show us how to love I believe.

Your beautiful children should be a nice reminder of her love. I hope that your grief will pass quickly and that all of her beautiful memories will come flooding before you soon to bring a smile to your face. I know she is smiling down on your family. Good luck.

Sandy

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Thank you all for your kind words. This site is filled with amazing individuals. I am happy to be part of this community. It has been a rough few days but I am starting to feel better about it all. My other golden seems to be doing OK and she and I are getting closer by the day. All we have is time........

Thank you all!!!!!!!!!!!

Corey

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To you Corey, and to everyone that has experienced loss of a pet, my thoughts are with you. I am so sorry for your loss.

This thread was so hard to read for me. It is however, so pleasant...everyone opening up to each other with their stories.

I am taking your advise...I can't wait to get off work to go and play fetch with my black lab, Tuesday. She is 6 and healthy, and I am so thankful. I also have a 5 year old labradoodle named Ace.

All of your pictures are so very nice. Thanks for sharing.

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