Saturday, July 18, 2009

sad day

Our dog Soleil went to sleep today. We took her to the vet, where she received an injection that slowed her heart and breathing until she died.

We are filled with sadness and miss her terribly, but it was the right thing to do. She has been declining rapidly in the last few days: she has a neuromuscular condition that has taken away her sensation and control in her hind legs. She has been struggling to stand, falling down the stairs, losing bowel and bladder control, and is no longer able to go out for the walks that she loves. She has remained a gentle, patient and loving companion despite it all, so it was very hard to say, "today is the day," but it was.

The vet gave her a sedative to calm her before the injection. She fought it like the stubborn and attentive girl she is, and didn't settle much. Andrew and I sat on the floor with the vet and the assistant, and cradled and stroked Soleil while the euthanizing injection was given. Soleil actually struggled a bit but soon settled down into a deep sleep. Her muscles slackened, and she snored loudly for a couple of minutes, then her eyes opened again, and her breathing ceased. A minute or so after that, her heart stopped beating.

Dr. Maya, the vet gave us big hugs, and assitants Jessie and Carrie were a bit teary. Solly's body will be cremated. We have kept her nametag - a blue bone with her name and our phone number - as a memento.

Soleil came to us as an adult "rescue" dog, picked up as a stray. We have never thought of her as a "rescue" but more accurately as a gift. She lived with us for six and a half years. She was a fine girl. We will miss her very much. Fiona says in heaven-for-dogs there is cheese, peanut butter and blueberry pancakes and all of the dogs sleep on people beds.

question: do you love a furry friend?

mompoet - hug that friend for me today