My head hurts and my eyes hurt, the skin on my face is sensitive to the touch because all I’ve done today is wipe off tears and snot.
My dog got very sick yesterday. He started vomiting and was in too much pain to lie down on his stomach. We decided that if he was still that bad in the morning then we would take him to the vet. He was in bad shape, he was very, very sick—he hadn’t been that bad when he was in DKA (diabetic ketoacidosis, for those who aren’t diabetic or have diabetic dogs/cats/family), but it was just mystery vomiting.
Sure enough, he wasn’t better in the morning and we went to the emergency vet at 5:45am. They wanted to hospitalize him and run diagnostics, but we were still tapped out from his last hospital stay and the many house problems that’d arisen in the months since then. We let them run diagnostics and held off on admitting him.
When all the bloodworm and x-rays came through, they gave us the run down. His x-rays were fine and normal. His blood work was a wreck. The only thing that could be attributed to the vomiting was his low electrolytes. He was showing symptoms for pancreatitis, an enlarged liver, and/or cancer and he was anemic and he was in bad bad condition.
He was really bad. Again, he hadn’t felt that horrible when he was in DKA and the boo was actually dying then. The run more tests would not only drain us, but it would have made Kingston sicker before he got better. Along with the diabetes and his rapid downward progression, it wouldn’t be the last time he got that sick. He was going to get sicker and sicker—he’d get better in between, like he always does, but he’d still get sicker.
So my mum decided to put him down. And I guess I rationalized myself into agreeing.
It all happened so fast. We filled out the paperwork, they brought him back to the examination room for us and we pet him and cried on him. He was in so much pain though. Every touch past his shoulders made him whine and wince. The vet came to us with the anesthesia and administered it. Kingston passed before the shot was fully injected. It was hard to tell at first, because he’s not great at sitting up right and it was especially hard for him when he was so sick, so I thought he was just relaxed and sliding down onto his stomach, but he’d died, while I was holding him.
It took a long time for that to sink in because it looked like he was taking a nap. Kingston took a lot of naps. It was hard to leave my puppy there. A part of me wished he wasn’t actually dead—that he’d survived it and pushed through like he had everything else. He was alive five minutes earlier and not even 24 hours before he was perfectly fine and happy. He was feeling so great that he ate all of his food and more! Then he just got so sick, so quickly… It all happened so quickly.
And now that it’s all done, I’m wondering if we should have fought for him more. We were adamant about him not eating anything unusual and in replaying that day, nothing could have made him sick. He was blind and old, so he was under high supervision.
But what if that was it? What if I’d just put my dog down because he ate pen ink? What if I’d put my dog down and he would have been fine if we’d just done the treatment? What if it was all too fast and my puppy was put down because we didn’t take the time to really think about the cause? My mom was a doctor and she’d had to put down three of her dogs from cancer or other good reasons, so she was ready to go at the first sign of trouble (his diabetes). I was supposed to be the one who told her to wait, to try and see if he got better, but I just cried in the corner and let my dog get killed. I’m the one who’s been saying since the start that he would be fine, that he was no weak little dog, that the odds were ever in his favor, and that he was getting better and better—but when it came down to the actual part where we decide to put him down… nothing.
And Kingston hated the vet. He was shaking the whole time he was there. He hates the vet. He should have been taken home, but we put him down in the place he hated most. He was probably scared and confused, along with in pain.
It feels like we gave up on him and I really miss my dog. I miss my dog so much. He first got sick in my room, so it’s hard to sit in it. Now as it gets into the wee hours of the night, I’m missing the sound of his little, unsure paws coming into my room to get pet. He was a good boy and I can’t stop crying every time I walk into my room or into the kitchen where I held him in my lap for hours when he got sick.
I wish he could come back to me.