We put down the older of our two bichons yesterday, and the past few days have been a swirl of decision making, self doubt, sadness, relief, and sparring with my husband over stupid details sparked by all the pent up tension.
I'm not going to bore you with the details, but I will say that the decision was difficult because, even though he was 12, Leo wasn't completely incapacitated or even actually at the point of constant suffering. But his diabetes wasn't being regulated, and our life with him had become untenable...up 3 and 4 times a night for the past few months letting him drink and pee. Giving him two injections of insulin a day which he was increasingly coming to resent and so he was starting to snap at us. Other impending medical issues meant huge expense and unlikely success. But he was a beautiful, loyal member of our small family during those golden years as our kids were growing up. He did all the normal doggy stuff that becomes embedded in family lore. He loved to lick, play fetch, and sleep: between our legs, under tables, behind doors, wedged in the most unlikely places. He liked to perch on the highest pillow in the living room and keep watch over the neighborhood. His favorites were the most obnoxiously loud squeaky toys. He found and opened his Christmas gifts every year no matter how well we hid them. But probably his biggest contribution to our family is that he kept us laughing, and like so many dogs do, he provided us with an outlet for tactile love and affection as our family of four started to grow up and out. He spent much of his last months on a blanket next to my computer. He had incredibly expressive eyes. We'll miss him. Back to cooking today, it keeps me grounded.
Sue/the view from great island