I can't accurately express in words how solemn and depressing today was. We put down our sweet dachshund. He was 12 years old and didn't deserve death at all. He did nothing but love.
He had been through two back surgeries, he was on insulin for a couple years, and he had lost his sight. He had been through a LOT for a dog. He was doing great up until a couple weeks ago when his eating habits changed and he was throwing up in the yard. We thought something was seriously wrong but the vet said they didn't find anything and that he must have just had an upset stomach.
He eventually got better and started eating normally but then he woke up one morning and had a terrible limp and couldn't stand up, which led to him not eating great once again and not drinking at all. We took him to the vet again and they put him on Prednisone and we watched him have good days and bad days the following week. He would walk some days and others, he'd sit in his bed, not moving at all. We'd have to bring him water and take him out to use the bathroom. It was tragic watching the up and down.
We had been mulling over putting him down for the last 7 days but since he seemed to be eating and walking a little, we didn't think we were quite ready. I didn't think we'd ever be ready. This morning he didn't seem to be suffering and he ate okay but we just didn't have much hope that he'd get better and experiencing the roller coaster was too much for our hearts to handle. Mom made the incredibly difficult call to the vet to ask them to come out to our house and put him down.
So they came... The hardest part was not knowing whether he would have gotten better. My mom is agonizing and feeling guilty because she thinks we put him down too soon. But watching him struggle, not knowing what each day was going to bring was so heartbreaking to me. I hated not knowing if he was in pain and whether he was going to get better or not. It was torture. So we spent this morning watching the most traumatic thing -- him being put to sleep, looking so peaceful and innocent, not having any idea what was going on. We spent the rest of the day mourning. Who knew animals would be so hard to let go of?! I have dreaded this moment since we got him but I thought somehow, as time passed, it would be easier...
He was the most loving dog in the entire world. My family went through a lot the 12 years we had Bentley and he was always there to lick the tears off our faces and greet us with a wagging tail when we came in the door. They never stop loving. It's crazy. As hard as it is, especially not knowing if it was the right time, all I can do is honor his sweet life and be thankful for the time we had with him!!! If you have an animal, give them a hug tonight.
You can see his shaved back in this photo. He had like twenty staples. I think he had just gotten them out here.