Quote of the Week

"One cool judgment is worth a thousand hasty councils."
- Woodrow Wilson

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Getting old sucks. For man and beast alike.

At little after 1:00pm today, I did one of the most difficult things I’ve ever done. The physical act wasn’t too hard at all; in fact it was pretty simple. I just made a phone call to set up an appointment. It’s what the appointment was for was the hard thing to do.

At 9:00am tomorrow morning the Veterinarian is going to put my dog, Buckshot, to sleep.

Buckshot is a happy go lucky yellow lab. Tail is always wagging and a grin is always on his face. For the last fifteen plus years, he’s been my constant companion. But fifteen plus is very, very old for a yellow lab. While his tail still wags, not much else works right anymore.

Buckshot has been deaf as a post for a year or so now, and hard of hearing long before that. He doesn’t move very quickly. But over all he’s been fine moving at a slow pace. Knowing he’s been on bonus time for years now, I’ve accepted long ago that this day is coming. I’ve just hoped I would somehow be able to avoid it. Maybe luck out and find that old Buck peacefully past in his sleep.

Over the last few weeks, it’s become evident that I can no longer avoid things by waiting. Buckshot has now pretty much stopped eating, he struggles to get up and his breathing is very laborious. Even though he is losing muscle mass from not eating much, his belly as swollen on one side to suggest a tumor is growing rapidly. Trying different dog foods has not sparked an interest in eating more. While he still seems to be grinning, and his tail is definitely still wagging, Buckshot’s body is giving out on him fast.

This was a very tough call for me to make. I don’t want to cut my dog’s life one moment short, but I don’t want my dog to struggle. I have to accept the truth that my dog is already struggling. It’s time.

Tonight I’m going to drive him across the street to see the neighbor dogs one more time. It’s strange to think I’m going to drive him the short distance he used to bolt across when my back was turned to play. After that it will be some extra play time with me. Thinking I’ll end up spending the night on the floor with him, just so I can soak in all the time we got left together.

Getting old sucks. For man and beast alike.

Update 11/22/2016:
The day after this post, Buckshot was peacefully put down his Veterinarian. The Vet confirmed that Buckshot did indeed have a large tumor growing in his abdomen; and that it was indeed time.