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Unexpected loss of my dog.

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Home Forums Loss of a pet Unexpected loss of my dog.

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  • #24321

    I lost my 8 year old Staffy on Saturday and I’m feeling devastated. She became unwell, but I thought she would just spring back as she always did. I stayed up through the night monitoring her but knew something was very wrong. I took her to the emergency vet and she had a cancer that was bleeding into her abdomen so she was put to sleep. I can’t shake the gut wrenching feelings of guilt that I left her in so much pain for too long before acting. Im ashamed that her last hours on earth were horrific for her and I waited for far too long to help her. I miss her terribly, she played a part in almost every part of my home life and filled a huge void for me as I wasn’t able to have children. I haven’t been to work, my appetite has gone and I just lay on the lounge. I’m just so sad and ashamed of myself. Not sure how to move forward.

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  • #24325

    Hi jc39,

    I’m terribly sorry to hear of the loss of your staffy, I’d love to know more about her – what was her name?

    Pet loss can be a complex experience, with her in your life for 8 years it can only be expected that you feel grief losing her. They become members of our family and we develop a love for their personalities, so please do not feel ashamed for the way you feel – it’s totally normal!

    I understand that it must be tough knowing she was in pain in her final hours, but she got to leave this earth with you (her best friend) by her side. I’m sure you provided her with immense comfort and she would have been so lucky to have someone that loved her as much as you do.

    Guilt often comes up surrounding death, we wonder what we could have done differently and how things might have changed should we have taken a different path. However, I urge you to not blame yourself for this, it is clear how much you loved her and how much she meant to you and you did everything in your power to help.

    Maybe in a few days when this isn’t as fresh for you, you could take some time to reflect on ways you can honour your beautiful staffy. If you’re feeling up to it I’d love to hear your favourite story about her!

    She was clearly lucky to have you as an owner and I’m sure she would want you to look after yourself and treat yourself with the same love you gave her.

    vm Lollie

    Hi JC39,
    I can deeply empathise with this experience you are going through as I have had a similar journey a few years back myself with a beloved rottweiler.
    My dogs are also my replacement children and I also had one with an cancer that was found very late and nothing the vets could do, so I feel for you very much on what you are saying and experiencing in this moment. My heart feels for you in this moment and I wish I could give you a big virtual hug.
    It hurts us so much when they are our ‘babies’ and we feel we could have done more to help them in their time of need.
    It sounds to me that you did everything you could as soon as you noticed any signs or symptoms and you were there holding her paw when she needed you the most.
    You are going through a grief process so please allow yourself space to grieve the loss of your beloved family member who spent every day with you.
    I hope you have some supportive people around you right now who understand and can assist you.
    I do agree with vmladybug that when you feel a little more able to, thinking of ways to commemorate your precious girl and your time together may girl you something to cherish for her memory as hard as that is to sometimes think about.
    Some places make beautiful garden stones, or memory books, or take paw prints to make them into tattoos or art work, or you could plant a special flower in a pot with her favourite toy guarding it. There are a lot of ideas available and I am sure there are some wonderful memories you have of your time together that you can think of a special idea for you and her.
    Until you feel comfortable getting there please know everyone on here is supportive of you and you can call and talk to one of the helpline volunteers if needed at any point.

    With your daily inability to move forward managing appetite, work, etc make yourself some small goals and try one thing at a time. One small task at a time can be healing for us when we are grieving and that is okay.

    I wish you all the best and in time please do update us on how you are and if you do wish to share a memory or story as ladybug suggested I would also love to read these 🙂


    Thank you Ladybug and Lollie, Sorry for your loss Lollie, I hope you are doing OK.
    I appreciate your kind words and the support you both showed with your responses.
    My girl was named Moose. She was just the sweetest girl. We received her ashes back today and which was tough but it also felt good to have her home. I am feeling a bit better today after a walk and chat with my brother and have started planning some ways to commemorate Moose. Thank you for the lovely suggestions.
    It has really helped putting my feelings down into words and receiving such kind and supportive words in response. Thank you


    Hi jc39,
    just checking in with you since your last post – hoping the weekend was ok and that your day today was better again. Similar to what you described I experienced guilt and pain after we had our beautiful staffy, Darcy, put down over 10 years ago. I’m grateful we were able to end his suffering humanely but I still feel bad about the months leading up to it (medical procedures which, in hindsight, I wish we had never agreed to). But I’ve learned to forgive myself with the knowledge that we did what we thought was right at the time and Darcy’s life was made up of so many happier, sweeter times than just his last 6 months.
    Thank you, Jc39 for beginning this conversation with your courage to share. Thank you Ladybug and Lollie for your replies, full of kindness to help light the way ahead for Jc39. I didn’t realise I had needed to share this aspect of my experience until I read your post, talking about your sweet Moose, Jc39. And so, through your loss, for which I am very sorry, you have helped others. Thank you.

    vm Lollie

    Hi JC39,
    I am glad to hear you are starting to feel a little better and 100% we all know and can agree that moment the ashes come back is not an easy moment to go through.
    How wonderful to hear your brother is being supportive with the loss of Moose (I love the name) and helping you plan some ways to commemorate how special Moose was, and still is, in your life journey.
    I would love an update, when you are ready, on any decisions you come up with, ideas you have had, or just how you are going.
    Take care of you and I’m hoping you are eating and sleeping better since we heard from you first

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