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October 27, 2009 / allyo


The vet is coming on Friday to put Cory to sleep. This time there won’t be a reprieve, although a part of me has always believed that Cory would live forever. He’s obstinate like that.

After receiving this great advice at Ask Moxie, I decided to follow my instincts and have Jamie present. MD is ok with it, although I don’t think he would have thought about it without my prompting. MD is a little weirded out by it happening at our house, but I think he’s grown comfortable with the idea. This is the first time he’s had to experience a pet being put to sleep even though he always had dogs growing up. One of his dogs was hit by a car and the others “went away.” For real though I guess.

My stepmom is absolutely beside herself over this and is convinced that we will scar Jamie for life and I’ll regret this decision later. She tried to drag my sister into the argument by saying how traumatized she was when they put their first dog to sleep. My sister was much older and they waited far too long to have the dog put down, and besides, my sister told my stepmom to not put her in the middle. And to drop it. Heh.

I had a bad experience with a childhood dog as well. And that’s one of the reasons I want Jamie to experience this now. Cory is almost 14 years old, he’s dying at home surrounded by those that love him most. I think that’s a good experience. Hard, yes, but traumatizing? Please. Maybe with an extremely sensitive child but Jamie reacted to the news exactly the way the vet said he would. A few crocodile tears, protests of, “I love Cory and I don’t want him to die!” and then, “Can we get a puppy? Just a medium sized one.”

The other reason we’re doing it this way is that I find it really hard to sugar coat things with Jamie. I was kept in the dark about a lot of stuff when I was a child and sure, a lot of it was inappropriate for me to know. But I’d be better off today  if I had been given more information about things that affected me. And quite frankly, how is it less hard to come home one day and find your pet gone?

Anyway, I’m not trying to say this is the very best way. We all make the choices that feel right to us. And this feels right. No matter how much it pisses my stepmom off. Who is so stubborn that she’ll never admit I’m right.

MD and I are grieving pretty hard. We’re taking turns though so that’s good. Taking care of a sick pet is exhausting. The last few days have been really bad with 4-5 accidents in the house daily. We’re limiting his water intake which means he will feel even worse, but otherwise we’d be drowning in pee.

If I sound disconnected it’s because I am. I want to try and enjoy these last days if at all possible. I’ll cry plenty when he’s gone.



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  1. Dawn / Oct 27 2009 7:43 pm

    I’m so sorry, Allyo. I am with you that he should be there (unless he doesn’t want to be). I had my cat die in my arms when I was much older than Jamie and what was awful was that my cat died but I was grateful to be there for it. (Even though it was scary — she had distemper and had a fit before she died.) You are a good mama with good instincts.

    We’ll see you Saturday and if you need anything Friday, let me know.

  2. MystikMomma / Oct 27 2009 8:25 pm

    As a child who attended her own sister’s funeral at 4, I think this is the best choice. Cory is a part of your family and Jamie needs to be there, as he is part of the family. How awful to keep him out of the loop, when he is most intimate with who and what Cory is, his pet, who is aging and in need of some peace.

    Jamie is familiar with death and he also know that Cory is very ill. I think he will cry, make you cry when you see his tears, but you will be there for him to make him feel better and he will be there for you to make you feel better. This is what we do, we grow, learn, live, experience and love together as family.

    Sometimes we forget that our children were born with adult souls that are very experienced and skilled in all things. It is our own shortcomings that we put on others.

    I applaud you and your decision and send my thoughts. Cory is a special dog, a dog who won my heart! He lived a good life with you in your loving home and that is the best life EVER to have lived, one with LOVE!

    You are blessed to have had him and you are blessed to find comfort in your family unit.


  3. LittleWit / Oct 28 2009 8:04 am

    *Hugs* I know it’s been a hard decision especially with the reprieve. I think it’s wonderful that your vet is willing to come to your home and allow the process to be one of love. Want to come over for pizza and movies afterward to grieve?

  4. Thorn / Oct 28 2009 11:26 am

    I’m not a parent, but having just lost a pet unexpectedly, I know I’d be grieving very differently if I’d had a chance to say goodbye. I think Jamie will understand this. Of course it’s going to be difficult, but it doesn’t have to be traumatizing and doesn’t sound like it should be. I hope you all can find the peace you need.

  5. Tracy / Oct 28 2009 12:39 pm

    I’m sorry. It’s hard.
    I lost my greatest dog ever a couple of years back, and I still miss him. The vet did help him go peacefully.

    We’ve faced a lot of life and death issues here in recent months, and I am ever more convinced that Declan’s questions and urge to understand are better off answered, experienced or dealt with. That said, I do give him as much information going into big situations as I can so he has some idea what he’s getting into and can make a different choice if he wants. Participating in a burial or spreading the ashes can be good for closure, too. You know what’s best for Jamie.

    Take care.

  6. museumgrack / Nov 4 2009 11:16 am

    I hope that the family is doing OK, I know that this is a really hard time for you guys.

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