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Up to my elbows

This was not one of my stellar weeks. I ended up making an appointment to have Sam, my dog, put down. This was towards the end of four days of diarrhea all over my apartment. It’s hard to be optimistic about your dog’s prospects when he no longer eats, can’t take his medication, is weak and deaf and arthritic, looks utterly miserable, can barely climb the stairs, is having anxiety attacks, and is pooping bloody diarrhea everywhere.

At the same time, things at work were such that I had no choice but to go to work and leave poor Sam alone at home. Every morning I would wake up to a miserable dog and an apartment full of messes. I’d clean it up as best I could, and go to work. Then I would come home to more of the same. I spent a lot of time trying out different carpet stain removers (if you can recommend one that truly works, I’ll be forever in your debt).

Finally I decided it was time to let him go. In addition to all the physical ailments, he was also suffering from the indignity of it all. Dogs have a strong sense of dignity…Sam was clearly feeling humiliated, even though I was trying to be matter-of-fact about the messes.

I called the vet’s office to make the appointment, got about two sentences into what I was trying to say, and burst into tears as soon as I said the word “euthanasia.” I hung up and tried again an hour later. I made the appointment for May 4th – about 10 days in the future. Dr. Pukay called me back the next morning, and I told him about the diarrhea – he said not to worry unless I noticed blood in it. I told him there was, and he suggested I move the appointment up a week. I said I’d consider it.

So once the appointment was made, I felt sad but fairly confident that it was the right thing to do. No sooner than I had reached that point of acceptance, Sam started to get better. He stopped pooping. He started eating. He started taking his medication. He wagged his tail. He greeted me at the door. He got that jaunty spring back in his step. He smiled at me.

So…I think I’m going to cancel the appointment for the 4th. But I’ll wait until the 3rd before I do that…

Here’s Sam, feeling better, with the seedlings that are now taking over my apartment.

3 comments to Up to my elbows

  • I feel for you and Sam. I started calling Uma “Timex” near the end because every time she’d get really sick, she’d get better when we weren’t expecting it. And when she got better, it was worth all the previous hardship to see her happy face and wagging tail. Trust your intuition and you’ll know when it’s time.

  • Dakota

    It was good to read that things have improved. I hope it stays that way :)