Thursday, 7 November 2013

I Need To Write This Down.

I feel completely lost not having Sadie the German Shepherd around to take care of. Only to be expected I suppose after ten years of constant companionship.

There is a feeling inside me at the same time that I may be behaving like a big wimp over her death, but I can't make the feeling go away. Living alone with a pet might possibly make the sudden loss more hard to bear maybe. Of course I have lost beloved pets before and felt extreme grief, but this time it seems even harder.

The fact that it was me who had to make the final decision is still tearing away at me. This, even though the vet said her condition and her age made any hope of a recovery impossible.

Her last night was so traumatic. She refused to stay indoors with me, and took herself off to her outside kennel. I am sure she did this because she just wanted to be left in peace and to get away from my constant fussing. As it was I stayed up all night with her and was so concerned that I called the emergency night vet twice. Both times though she seemed to recover enough to relax a bit. As it was we already had an appointment with the vet for the morning and I knew that it was time for her suffering to end.

She is buried in the paddock at the place where she liked to lie down. She could watch the whole field from this place. She could see right down the drive and she could keep an eye on the wagon door. I like to think she is doing these things still.

Why am I telling you this? It is not for your sympathy I promise you. Although your thoughts and expressions of condolence have comforted me. Perhaps I am not telling you. Perhaps I am just writing my thoughts.

Some people will think this is too much grief to feel. She was only a dog. But she wasn't just a dog, she was my friend.


  1. You are sharing your grief. It is a normal and healthy part of the process. It is good to mourn your loss and to share it with others. You can laugh at some of the funny times you shared, remember loving moments, and even remember times you made each other upset. I hope you will write some thoughts about Sadie even if they seem painful. You will find that it will help you to be able to smile when you think of Sadie instead of feeling so hurt. We care about you and are here to help in whatever way we can.

  2. You are telling us, John, because you lost a dear friend and it does not matter if she had 2 legs or 4 and whether or not she spoke. Sadie was a friend by all definitions and 10 years of companionship was a long time and so the grieving will take awhile, but as Emma said the memories of the good times may help you.

  3. Why would you not miss your friend? Why would you not mourn a good companion?
    There's no such thing as 'just a dog' when that dog was your friend.

  4. I can fully understand your grief and writing about it is a catharsis. Expressing your emotions is very beneficial.
    I'm sure you feel guilt for making the final decision concerning Sadie but it was the right thing to do.

    I live alone in a remote part of West Texas. My parents are now deceased, and my friends and relatives all live far away. My faithful cat is my only companion. She sleeps on my bed and follows me everywhere. I'd be heartbroken without her.

    Perhaps you could write your memories of Sadie in the form of a book?

  5. Anyone who would say it was only a dog has never had one of their own. I remember when my Molly had to be put down, for months I would walk through the door expecting her to be there or I would swear I heard her walking through the house.

  6. John, I can only echo what the commenters above have already said. I understand that absence, the embrace that isn't there any more. You are grieving. Maybe it's too soon to consider a new canine companion, but who else demands walks of you and needs to sniff out old paths for the first time?

  7. You are certainly not being a wimp about it and I can understand it well. Just because someone is an animal it doesn't mean that they don't have a personality. You meant a lot to her and we all respond to feeling. It is one of the great things about having a dog, and she was totally there for you. I am sure you did the right thing in ending her suffering. Approaching death seems to be frightening for many people (some are not afraid, but most people seem to find it trying and disturbing). Why inflict this on her any longer than necessary? Her time had come and you did the right thing for her, so comfort yourself with that.

  8. John I am sharing your grief, please keep writing about Sadie. Real pet lovers will understand that she was your best friend, those that don't understand are missing out on a lot of love in their lives. I was just thinking the other day, when my old boy Bugsy was snuggled on my knee, the best kind of love is from an animal. Take each day one at a time. You are not a whimp. You are a kind and compassionate man. xxx

  9. John, you're not a wimp... far from it. What you feel is a natural reaction to losing a friend. Go with it, cry if you must, it's all part of grieving. You know it will ease, eventually, until then keep writing your thoughts.

  10. Don't ever shortchange your feelings that you have for Sadie.... ever.
    Only dog lovers will understand what you're really going through and none of us will think you are wimpy.
    You have lost a dear and loyal friend.
    Out of my six bow wow crew I had to make the hard decision for two of them.....I didn't want them to suffer anymore and the vet knew best.
    It is your time to grieve, and it's okay for you to do so John. Bawl your eyes out if you want pound the walls is okay to grieve.
    Sadie is still with you even in her favourite spot her spirit is with you.
    Lots of love and cyber hugs of comfort.

  11. John- I'm not sure I'm over Chips' passing yet. He was such a special friend. It only gets easier to bear, but you will always love her. Chips had a liver issue, and he wouldn't stay beside me at the end because he was too hot. It hurt because he'd always wanted to be right on top of me, but he just wanted to cool his insides by lying on the cold cement. I couldn't bear to make the choice to put him down and he suffered terribly at the end for it. I've resolved never to do that to an animal again which is why I knew when it was time to say goodbye to Maggie. Don't beat yourself up. I'm crying now, 15+ years after Chips is gone.

  12. Don't berate yourself John, you made the absolute right choice. It's very hard to know when the time is right to bid farewell to our much loved pets.

    It is great to know, and I'm sure a comfort to you, to have Sadie in her favourite place in the paddock. Give yourself time to grieve but also remember all those treasured moments you had together.

  13. Hey John just been doing a bit of catching up on your blog and sorry to hear about your lose. I true companion is hard to loose no matter what the species. I remember when dad last spanial had to be put down, he dug a grave so deep I didn't think he was going to stop, he was just so upset. I think feeling like you do is normal and I would make yourself feel worse by feeling guilty about making the decision - you did what was best. All my best

    1. Just re read my comment and relised that auto correct on my phone has made me sound heartless! It meant to say "I wouldn't make yourself feel worse by feeling guilty about it". sorry about that.

    2. Thanks Kev. No need for concern. I read your comment in the kind way you intended.

  14. Thanks for sharing your grief as it is healthy to express those feelings. We have just got a kitten and after one week already the attachment is set in. Probably so much more a loss when it's your best friend and constant companion. Was lovely chatting on Facebook with you.