I have some catching up to do. I’m going to backdate this post a bit.
I adopted a dog from a rescue. She was a “hospice foster”. I knew that when I got her. Her name was Esther. She was around 8 years old, a beautiful, gentle pitbull. She was underweight, had poor structure, had a mammary gland tumor, and really bad teeth. She had clearly been used for quite a bit of breeding. I didn’t like this name for her. Esther just didn’t fit her beautiful personality. I renamed her Mamma.
This girl came into my life around the end of September last year. She was a sort of impulse decision. Her rescue posted online she only had a few hours to live unless she was pulled. They claimed no behavioral issues, she was solid around people and other dogs as well as cats. Basically, she just had medical issues.
I thought, I have the finances, the resources, and the space. I can help her. So, I pulled her in hopes of fostering her until I found her a forever home. After just a couple days, I realized how hard she was going to be to place. She did have quite a lot of medical problems and she deserved to just retire. So, I decided to keep her. Make her a permanent member of my pack, and have her retire with me.
She had a skin issue, making her super itchy, so when you pet/scratched her, she actually twerked to get more aggressive scratching on her backside. She would wag her tail happily and rub her back all over your fingers. She would look at you with those big brown eyes and you just had to smile.
She played tug, but was too old to have any force behind it. We took her to the park last week, and she played tug and was acting like she was a puppy. She enjoyed herself so much, and you could see her eyes light up when we got there. We got home, and she crashed. She was so tired from all the excitement.
The next morning is when the problems started. She couldn’t get up to go potty, and I had to carry her up the stairs. She had a seizure that morning. Throughout the week, she continued to have seizures, and couldn’t stand all the way to potty. She started to fall, or rest her knees on the ground to squat. She couldn’t do the stairs, and she stopped eating. I decided instead of pumping her full of meds, knowing full well she wasn’t going to get any better, I made the decision. I knew this time was coming, but I didn’t realize it was going to be so soon.
The whole week, she got to spend time on the furniture, sleep in my bed, eat a cheeseburger, and go on a walk alone with me. Just me and her. She got playtime just with me. And the morning of her appointment, I let her shred her tug rope. I normally don’t allow any of those things. I wasn’t a trainer that day. I was a dog mom who was losing one of her ‘kids’. But I had to keep it together for her. I had to be strong. I couldn’t show her I was weak. Even though my heart was breaking, all she saw was my smiling face, and positive energy. I battled it all morning.
The vet gives her the pink juice… she’s gone before they even finish the injection. She was ready. I ordered a paw print for her. I hope now she doesn’t feel any pain.
I feel sad and heartbroken, but also relieved and happy. I was able to spend the last few months showing her what it’s like to be loved and cared for, and to be part of a family. The love of a rescued elderly dog is very much a different story.
I’m sad I had to say goodbye, but I’m glad she was with me for the final days of her life. Everyone who met her loved her. She loved people. I’m happy I didn’t adopt her out and the new family had to make this decision a few months after falling in love with her like I did.
Goodbye, Mamma. I love you always. Rest in peace now girl, the pain is gone.