I am posting this story for the sake of my friend who is about to put her dog to sleep. It is a very painful and difficult decision. For me, I resisted the decision for the last two years of Sky's life. He was 16 yrs old and he was suffering. I carried him everywhere. I didn't care. I would carry him upstairs and back down. Then one day, Sky looked me in the eye and I knew. He wanted to stop suffering. I made the decision. But then, as my son Jason watched me crying in the days before that fateful decision, he said if Sky sees you crying, while he is dying, he is going to think he did something wrong. Sky was faithful and loyal to you his whole life. Don't let him go out thinking he has displeased you. Let Sky die with a happy and loving friend at his side. This story is our last moments together Sept. 5, 2006 .
Today, Sky had his Big Day.
Sky and I were laying on the floor together, on Sky's favorite rug. I told him that he gets to run free without a leash or wearing his harness. I reminded him of when he used to go out the back door and run down the alley—without our neighbor bugging or yelling at us!
I told him that his legs would work like new and he will jump up high like he did when we lived on the farm in Milton. I told him to find a river for us to swim in and don’t forget to mark the territory! I told him that it was a Big Day for him and I expect him to run and play.
I said that he should be on the look out for me because I would be along shortly. While we lay there, I praised him for being such a good puppy and such a happy dog. I said that I like happy dogs! Then I said that I could see green grassy fields in the distance with blue skies with the sun shining bright on a clear day. I asked, could you see it too Sky?
Then, Sky saw something far away in the grassy fields. We both ran over to see what it was and it was a fence! I looked at Sky and said, What? A fence in Heaven? You better jump over it Sky! I told him again what a wonderful dog he was and so loving to everyone.
I told him he will have lots of dog friends in heaven because I took a poll of all the dogs in the world and they agreed that Sky was number One. I did mention that Cris T.'s dog, Sammy, strangely enough also polled number one, but surely, that was a fix because everyone knows that Sky has always been number one.
We laughed and I kissed him on the head and told him he was the best, he was Daddy’s little angel, Daddy’s precious little angel who loves you very much! I said, Now go play and run because I expect you to go have fun. Then I said, Who loves you? That’s right, I do! Then I said, Who’s your daddy? Me! Who was your nurse last year? Me again! And that’s because you’re my precious little angel, aren’t’ you? Yes you are.
I said I love you Sky with all my heart. You are such a wonderful dog! I was lying next to him with my arms around him and I praised him. I thanked him for loving me so much and I gave him a kiss. I told him to look for Pierre and Bertha too.
At that point, his eyes were rolling in the back of his head from the anesthesia. Suddenly he looked at me straight in the eye with complete focus. I felt him say Thank you for loving me so much! I said, it’s OK Sky, you asked for my permission to leave, and I gave it. Now you go and have a good time running and playing. If you see God, ask him to lay off of me, or I might have to get out my big stick! No, don’t do that Sky! I laughed and kissed him again.
I praised him and reassured him that he was a good dog and how much I just love him. He died within minutes and the medicine made him howl as a wolf does. The vet warned me that this only happens with wolves. His feet will also begin to kick as if he were actually running. Even though his feet are running, he is actually dead. This was something that only wolves do when they die, as if running towards heaven.
But Sky did not really die. He went to heaven to mark it like I told him and to have fun until I got there.
This was Sky’s Big Day and I will surely be happy when I see him again. Sky, you are the best dog I ever had. Thank you for loving me. Dad.
|Sky and Dad|