Saturday, November 19, 2011

Rock, Hard Spot Part Three

Lordy, this is hard.  I'm thinking I'd actually rather tell the abuse story, or the MS story instead.  If you haven't read already, here's Part One, and Part Two.

Perhaps I'll post some pictures first of the place where I buried the puppies.  Warning:  pictures of the dogs (deceasd, wrapped in a blanket are present)  I have to do this in order to let go and deal with the guilt.  It's almost like I'd welcome the judgement.

As I posted before, I had tried to re-home Muttin/Jeff way back in January of 2010.  Wow, it's coming up on 2 years I've been dealing with this.  Actually, much longer, because deciding to re-home them took at least a year to consider.  Going thru the pictures to choose which to post has been good for me.  It's in my face.  It's been so hard not to write about them when I have a memory of them ALL THE TIME, over the last year.  They were so much a part of my blog before that I really didn't feel like I had anything to say unless I could write about them too. 

They spent 3 weeks with the Humane Society, without one single bite.  There was interest until the information about them was told; 12 years of age, had to go together, Jeffrey was allergic to most dog foods, so they ate the RAW diet, specifically raw chicken.  I did say that cooking their meat was a possibility, if raw meat wasn't going to work for the new adopters.  I was also honest about Jeffrey's seizure activity, and his weakening bladder.  Not many people want to take on aging dogs, much less those with other issues.   I was insistant on telling the truth, so that whomever took them KNEW what was ahead, and the someone willing to take them on... would automatically be the right person.

They spent 3 weekends at PetCo, in cages at adoption fairs.  There were several other events they went to, and they were online as well.  After 3 weeks, I couldn't stand it anymore, so I went back to get them.  The lady keeping them in her home was soooo happy, because she said they just didn't seem to settle in like most dogs do, accepting their fate.  She said it seemed like they were just ... waiting.

However, she could have just been saying that.  I lost a little trust with the Humane Society, because they had said they would be easy to adopt out, but I sometimes felt they were just saying what I wanted to hear.  I called her every week to see how they were doing, and got the feeling that I shouldn't have, or that people didn't do that once they gave up their animals.  I had told her I was going to do that, tho.  Also, I happened to run into a friend, who had seen my puppies at one of the adoption events during the last week, and she had asked about them, knowing their story.  The kid told her they were 5 years old! and didn't seem to know anything about their food requirements.  The card that I had written up for them was not on their cage either.  After I heard that, I was sooo glad I had got them back. 

That first night, having them back home, I still knew that it was going to be hard to keep them.  It's hard to explain how happy and right it felt to have them back, but how fricking HARD it was to have them back.  Not to mention all the hassles I had to put up with the new landlady over the last 2 years, in order to keep them.

I admit, when I first got Annie, I saw the benefit of having her as a single dog, once the two littles had passed away - that I would be able to travel easier.  I could afford to pay for one dog on a plane, but had never been able to fly with the two littles because it was just too expensive.  Kenneling them AND paying for Annie's plane, etc., was just too prohibitive too.  I wasn't thinking of Annie as a service dog back in the beginning.  Physically, all three of them were a drain.  I simply couldn't walk Annie enough, she needed more than I could give.  To walk all three of them was impossible most of the time, much as I enjoyed it.  Muttin, as always, was the problem, running off at the most unexpected moments, and there were many times when a one hour walk turned into a two hour walk, and I paid for it at home.  If I didn't distract Muttin at just the right moment, off she'd run.  Teaching Annie bad habits.  If I walked them separately, again, too much physically for me.

Mentally, having to pay attention EVERY. SINGLE. MOMENT. to them when outside was beginning to be physically too demanding.  One of the MOST frustrating things was ... my feet.  They had always slept at the end of the bed.  They were TRAINED to sleep in their own crate, but they always snuck up on the bed at some point in the night.  I didn't care, but then the sensation of them touching my skin got to be ... like fingernails on chalkboard.   I WANTED them with me up on the bed as I watched TV or played on the computer, but physically, they were beginning to HURT me!  These days, it's even worse, but having only Annie is a bit easier, and she is farrrr more aware of my pain than Muttin/Jeff ever were.  All I have to say to Annie, is "Move" and she gets up and moves further away.  Muttin would argue.  Oh would she argue!

I was depressed when they were gone to the Humane Society.  I was beginning to sink into that depression because I still had them.  I wasn't upset with THEM.  I had learned my lesson - I was miserable without them, and oh so happy when they were back.  Instead, I was turning against myself again, because of the MS.  MS was what was making it so damn hard to have 3 dogs.

I was spending most of my time in bed, and they were constantly triggering the pain in my feet with simple, contact snuggling.  Contact that I WANTED.  Contact that ultimately kept me irritated most of the time.  Irritated, torn, and in pain.  I even considered giving Annie up, but her value as a service dog was obviously clear.  The two Littles were just too little to help me. 

To answer Anonymous's question in my last post, I don't know if one can just arbitrarily euthanize an animal just because it's become inconvenient to keep them.  I didn't talk to the vet.  I had my sister do the dirty deed of finding a vet who would do it.  I don't know if she explained the situation to them or not.  I do know that the vet who did it was very, very kind to me, and the puppies.  He explained to me in detail what would happen, and how they may or may not react.  He did it the expensive way, I know, first putting them too sleep with anesthesia first, and then killing them.  They didn't feel a thing.  I made them go at the same time, they didn't see one or the other go first.  I wrapped them up in my favorite blanket, and carried them out to the car myself cause I couldn't stand for them to be carried by anyone else.  And then my mom and sister drove us to their favorite hiking place, behind Bear World.  The ground was too hard to dig, so I buried them the way the Indians did it, covering them with rocks and branches and twigs.

I made Annie come with us, so that she wouldn't search for them endlessly, like she had when they went to the Humane Society.

It worked.

1 comment:

  1. Wow. I am beyond sad and speechless. I immediately cried when I saw the pictures and I am crying as I type this. I just cannot imagine how difficult it was for you to have to make that choice for your beloved puppies. In a perfect world, you would still have them and I understand all too well how a perfect world doesn't exist. I'm very sorry for your tremendous loss. I have laughed over the years as you shared stories of your "puppies" and now I grieve for the loss of their innocence. Just sad.


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