Hi,If there are any fellow taxidermists out there that can relate to my problem,please respond as I am having a hell of a time dealing with my german shepard who has been suffering with liver cancer.For the past 10 years he has worked next to me on my taxidermy projects,and knows my feelings,waits for me to wake up everyday,you know the rest.He will lay down and watch me finish projects for hours.....Anyway ,for the last 8 weeks I have had his fluid drained....25 lbs. every week,and now he is finally suffering.The vet told me it would be around March 1st that he would die.Beau is now hurting.I made an appt. for Wed. morning.I am having a hard time even though Im a 48 year old 6'4" big guy who has raised 3 kids alone for 12 years.Can anyone give me some help?My eyes are tearing up.Thanks,bye now.
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I know it's hard. I had to put down my chocolate Lab of 14+ years a couple of years ago. Her arthritis was SO bad that she was hurting pretty badly. I made the appointment a third time because I cancelled the first two - I just couldn't bring myself to do it. But finally, my wife convinced me that death is inevitable and certainly much more humane to end her suffering. The whole family went - kids included. We said our goodbyes and held her as the doc gave her the shot. It happened very quickly, but she just laid her head down and was gone in a few seconds.
It was EXTREMELY hard to do. But you owe it to your pooch if he/she is in pain. You're the only one that will KNOW when that moment has come. And the only help we could give is sharing our experiences. Ultimately it's your decision and you'll know when the time is right. I encourage you to take the whole family as it will be a learning experience for all. Good luck...
Mike Im sorry to hear about your freind.I think if he could talk he would say its best to go now.One thing I beleive is that our time here is short and that the love you have shown for your dog will be rewarded some day.When you put him down you will never forget him and you will always treasure the time you had with him.Give another dog a chance at a great life with you.
Thank you Marty.
Thank you Paul I
feel what your going through, my golden had cancer (a true friend). Thinking about him now I'm tearing up. The Sunday before he was to go in for his first Cemo. treatment he just couldn't take it anymore,we went outside and he saw his ball and picked it up and handed it to me, I threw it about 10 feet he tried like hell to bring it back but couldn't. I carried him back inside the house and luckily have a very wonderful vet that came over and after talking for over 2 hours finally did what he knew what was inevitable but what I didn't want to beleive (hard seeing the keys now). I'm sure he was a great friend. JOhn
Thank You John
I feel so sorry for you.
I had to do the same with two of my dogs; one at the vets office and one; my choice, The vet come to my house.
It is never easy to see our loved ones go. And you will surely miss your companion forever. I had to put my best friend of 31 years down last spring, and I still think of her. I know nothing will ever replace her. Your love of your friend shows in the fact that You are more concerned with his suffering than your own. Remember him fondly, and cherish the time you shared. One day the tragedy of your loss will fade, and the sweet memories of your friendship will fill your heart.
A web site that may help WWW.petloss.com
This poem is titled RAINBOW BRIDGE
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....
Hope this helped some it is hard to loss a friend.
Our animals give so much to us, and all we need to do in return is feed and water them. They do the rest. Theyre loyal, they are so easily pleased. But we, as the owners, have one more responsibility. We must be honest to ourselves and do what must be done when its time. Some folks selfishly hang on too long as the animal suffers, and its sometimes hard to come to terms with this. But its a matter of giving back to an animal that always gives to us. Its one instance when people CAN give animals human descriptives. It makes it even harder then.
Im one of those fortunate ones, who can take the dog out and do it myself. I feel the same grief and loss, but I cant explain why Im able to. Its the last opportunity I have to be with the animal, and its sad.
Thank God for an animal that allows you into its world while asking for so little in return. We are so fortunate for our friends, arent we? Mike, its ok for big guys to have feelings. I still cry listening to "Amazing Grace"...Mike, thanks for feeling as though you are with friends here and sharing this with us all.
I have been there, I had three nice hounds die in the last 5 years. One I only had two years, but he won his place in my heart. I had to young dogs, out of a nice English Redtick female, she died at 13.5 years old, and he was her replacement to help these young dogs. It was working beautiful, and the progress the pups made with him, help to ease the lost of there mother. Then in November, the second year I had him, he died quickly of a liver disease. He had quit making blood, he spent a week in the vets, and had one blood transfusion, the last time I saw him alive, he was weak, I had cooked some venison, in cubes and took them to him, he could hardly eat two pieces, I sat with him for about an hour, then he sat up and ate all the rest of them. The vet thought that was a good sign, I said good night to him, and the next day he was dead.
Now to get to your situation, I had an English Redtick male, his name was Bo, he was born on my place, the first pup his mother ever had. I just happened to go out and check on her. No pups, but what was that sound, I went out and looked in the kennel, and there was this little puppy barely whimpering. I rushed in and picked him up, and put him under my arm pit. I kept rubbing him and keeping him in my shirt, all the time talking to him and his mom. I think she didn't really know what was going on and when to relieve herself, and had the pup. Anyway he came around and soon she was taking care of him and he started nursing, and as they say the rest is history.
My youngest son, picked him to be the one we kept, and the others were sold. He turned into being a loving hound, to my son and to me. He had a nose, he could wind a raccoon up in a tree 200 yds away. It was great to watch him actually stand on his hind legs, smelling the wind trying to decide where it was, and then he could tree them, sometimes since the raccoon had been up the tree a while and there was no scent on the tree, he would just sit down and face the wind treeing, I would stand behind and look up into the trees, and just a short distance you would find the raccoon. He loved to run bears and bobcats, and had a good cold nose, just like his mother and aunt.
At 8 years old, I noticed him one day acting like he was drunk. Pretty soon, he could not walk without dragging his one back leg, then it got so he only had one good front leg, and the back ones, he actually walked on the backs of his feet and drug them, after spending time a two vets, they did not know what was wrong with him. This happened in late August, I kept him and treated him, and in September, even dragging his feet, when I would let him out of the dog box to go the bathroom, he would take off for the woods. I would have to run after him and catch him, and carry him back. As winter came he got worse, he started loosing weight, and now his feet would get sores from dragging them. I was told, that he should be put down, he was not living a quality life, and that he was slowly dying. I could see it in his eyes, he was giving up.
I had seen a movie, I can't remember it exactly, but it was about putting down your own dogs or something like that, and not leaving it for others to do. There was two friends, one was what you would have called mentally retarded, and the other normal. They would go around to farms and work, the retarded one got lured in by a married woman, well, she heard her husband and was worried about getting caught, and started screaming, so the retarded guy, put his hand over her mouth and wound up killing her. He got scared and left, and his friend found him hiding by a creek, there was a group coming to get him and hang him, and his friend wound up shooting him, when he wasn't looking,after calming him down, saying things would be ok, so he would not have to go through the fear of hanging.
He was trying to have compassion for his friend, he could have stood and watched him hang, but chose to let him go calmly.
This was where I was with Bo, I could have put him in the truck, and took him to the vets, but I thought of that movie. He was laying in his house, close to his mom and aunt, and was comfortable. Comfortable as he could be. I sat there with him for an hour, then with tears in my eyes told him good boy for one last time, said good bye, and put him to sleep. It has been one of the hardest things I have ever done, but looking back, it was one of the best things. He didn't have taken from his home, wondering what was going to happen.
I took him up north, to a hill, and facing the Southwest, and the swamp, laid him to rest under a White Pine tree. He now has his aunt and Drum, and when the sun comes up they can head off into the swamp together, to hunt.
Sorry, this got so long, but what you have to do, will last longer, than just that moment, make it a moment you will live with, and only the good the memories, will last for ever.
Drum, Black and Tan, Bo and Ruby English Redticks: http://www.allmounts.com/drum.html
Of all the professions I beleive taxidermists are a great people.They are very sensitive to the love for domestic and wild animals,as they carry on the preservation of all animals.I just want to thank all of you for your support and I am so very grateful to be in such a caring profession and sensitive people who surround me and yes we show more love and care for animals than any animal rights group in the whole world.Thank you ALL for helping me.Truly yours,Mike B.
I had a white german shepard named "Bob" I was about 13 or 14. I don't know exactly what his illness was, but he eventually got down so bad that he couldn't get up by himself. Back then there wasn't a vet within 30 miles and we didn't have the money to pay him anyway. My grandfather finally convinced me that it was time to end his suffering. I took my beloved best friend down to the turnaround road behind the house and ended his misery. I'll never forget the way it felt to have to say goodbye to him and to eventually be the one to have to take his life.
You have my deepest sympothy,
Of Mice and Men is the title. Mike, now that I can see the keys again I know you will remember forever all the wonderful times you had with your "pal", it is hard and painful and my thoughts are with you. John p.S. recently i've had a big lumox of a mastiff hanging out at my shop, still isn't the same knucklehead that was here before though.
I, too, have been down that tough road more than once. I, like the others above, am also having a tough time seeing the keys after reading your post. Nothing will make it easy, but time will make it more bearable. If he is suffering, take comfort in the fact he will hurt no more. It is so great to be blessed with such a friend(s). So sad to realize they have such a short lifespan, when compared to ours (usually). Remember the good times you've shared and know you did what was the best for him, no matter how painful it was for you. He would do the same for you.
I know your pain acutely. I have lost many pets over many years.
The rainbow bridge thing is very conforting. To know they are always around, somewhere.
There are many pet loss sites, e-groups, lists, and even free 1-800 grief counseling numbers to turn to.
Just type in "pet loss" in your search engine of choice and get a box of Kleenex handy. You will discover everything from fish mourning to an entire web-ring of ferret lovers who have lost.
People understand your pain - it is true grief, it is true loss.
You are not alone!
You will never forget your friend.
Do not hold in your pain. Whoever does not understand, do not bother with them again, they are callous, superficial beings, not meant for friendship nor your time.
The pain is just as real if it's a fish, a ferret, a dog, and in some kinds of people, the pain for loss of their pets is equal to or greater then losing other people.
Please recover well.
Man, your story brought back memories of my Aggie. She was a 9 year old mixed breed like myself. Upper crust minded folks often remarked why I was keeping company with a "scrub". My answer was always "are you a purebreed?" She had a heart of gold. I spent soooo much time with her from when she was a pup it was like she could understand my every word. She hiked with me, happy to carry her own backpack. Would bark, sit, stay, come and go away on command. Command is a strong word... it was more like by request. Funny, we both loved smoked meat and hated cats! Aggie fell off of a cliff on a hike with me one day in 1998. I have a blown up picture of she and I in the mountains. It's on the wall in my "hunting room". I've owned several dogs before and since her, but there was something about her. We just clicked. I still misss her very much. Although I loved that pup a whole lot, I'd bet she loved me even more. And that's what hurts so much. She was like one of my children. You really don't get over it. You just learn to get along with the pain. My condolences Mike.
Reading your post brought a tear to my eye and brought me back to Sep 15, 2000 when I made that decision on Woodie , my 11 year old yellowlab. I was just able to to be ready for another dog a month ago and now have a yellow female. I am a 35 year man and not ashamed to say that I cried for hour over the old boy. I will be thinking of you tommorrow, And will shed a tear with you.
We know your pain as we just had our "best friend, Sandy" put to rest on Sunday, Feb. 29. She brought us so much pleasure and we returned her to the One that can give us comfort in our days ahead. God Bless you and we will be thinking of you. Gary & Diana Kies, K & K Tannery
I know it hurts, and is a terrible loss. It is easy to say everything will be Ok and the pain will go away, but it takes time. When I went to college, my mother had my little dog put to sleep without my knowledge while I was away. When I came home to visit, and found out what happened, I was devasted. Its been 20 years since then, and i still think about the little rug-rat. Just think of all the good memories and how much he fullfilled your life, and you his!
I've just lost two of my "family" members over the last two years and I can share that feeling well. I console myself with the thoughts that I'm SUPPOSED to outlive my dogs and that no matter how much comfort is given, we all have to walk down that road by ourselves. It brings to mind a saying that I think came from Will Rogers. It says," If dog's don't go to Heaven, then I don't want to go there either." Literally, we all know that's not true, but if you own a pet who's part of YOUR family, you know the meaning of the words.
Now that you have us all swimming in the salty sea of our keyboards...lol...I too want to tell you the hurt will always be in your gut, but the love and good memories will fill your heart. And that hurt, is a true physical pain.
Jeff and I got Zeus, a chocolate lab "mutt" 6mths after we got married. Zeus was our first baby, saw us through all our kids, city life of jumping fences and running and finally the big move to the country with 20 acres of woods for him to romp. He got to live the country life for four years and was happy, and it made us happy to give that to him. He suffered through 2 strokes and each time we decided we'd probably have to put him down, he somehow pulled through, I KNOW it was for us.
He had arthritis, wobbled when he walked, (17 years old)if you bumped into him he tottered but I could not BEAR the thought of putting him down. Every morning it was our ritual to nudge him with our foot to see if the "old guy" was still breathing! Sometimes it took a while to wake him up and that was a scary thing, but eventually his old rhumatoid eyes would anciently open to look up at us and give yet another day of his love and loyalty.
Is there not anything more relaxing and anti-stress relieving as your arms around your dogs neck, nose into their necks and breathing in deep the scent of their fur?! Man I love that!
Anyway, after years of expecting to find Zeus just not waking up in the morning next to or on our bed, we most horrifically found him curled up next to a dying down bonfire we had the night before, dead. My thoughts on this is another possible stroke, he was confused or cold and found comfort in the warmth. His back was to the coals and he was curled up like he would be in the house. It was horrible and I'll never forget it.
That was five years ago and it still hurts, but all that he gave to each member of our family will ALWAYS and forever be a part of us.
Sorry to ramble. You'll still have him Mike.
as there are so many of us who have experienced the same. We take for granted that a loyal friend and family member can love us unconditionally expecting only a head scratch, if that, in return. The most blessed thing you can do to repay your friend is not to let him suffer needlessly. The very thought of anything happening to my 2 shepards puts my stomach in a knot. Believe it or not, your putting him down will be the most gracious act you can do and not anyone here can say different. Keep heart my friend, keep the memories of your friend alive always with pictures and the good memories you have, becuause until your time is done, you shall always have your friend in your heart!
Reading these posts made me stop,I went and gave my dog a hug..She is 5 years old and I don't have a clue what I would do if any thing ever happens to her..She is diffenitly the "LOVE-OF-OUR-LIFE"...ENJOY... http://antler.homestead.com/MISTY.html
my wife brought up a good point. When the inevedible time does arrive, be there for your friend. Do not let him go alone. As hard as it may be, let him pass on with you by his side as he would for you. Your presence will bring him comfort and ease his fear and your soul will thank you later. You are a helluv a man and you have my respect in the endeavor you have to do and I hope I can be as brave when I have to. You & yours are in our prayers.
Respectfully, Mac & Audrey
Thank you so much for helping me through this as today I spent all day with Beau.Tomorrow at 11:40 PST the wonderful vet will put him out of his pain.My son Mark(19)will take us and I made arrangments to pay before because I dont want to be writing a check in tears afterwards.Today when I told Beau that Mark and I are taking you for a ride in the truck to the doctors and you wont have to hurt anymore,he started wagging his tail.His tail hasnt moved in 4 days.I will be holding Beau and whispering in his ears the whole time as he is put down.Thanks to you all for your help.You have no idea how this helped.Please keep in touch.Mike B.