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Pets Whether you prefer four-legged creatures, reptiles, or any animal in between, use this forum for any questions you have about your pets or pets you would like to have.

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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
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(Pet Death) Feeling guilty about not being there when my dog was put to sleep after all these years. - August 7th 2019, 04:05 AM

Hey all,

My dog was put to sleep when I was about fifteen, so this isn't a recent death. For the most part I am at peace with it now although it's still tough to think about how sick she was at the end.

Lately I've seen posts on Facebook a lot, about people's pets' last days, general pet death, etc, as well as one post that urges people to be with their animal when they are being put to sleep because you're the last thing they see in that environment where they may be afraid or hurting.

I wasn't with my dog when she was put to sleep. My dad and brother in law took her to the vet and if I remember correctly my dad was in the room with her, but I didn't go with her and now that's suddenly hitting me and I feel so guilty and bad. Misty was my dog more than theirs and I wasn't there for her because I didn't think I could handle it at the time. And now I feel really selfish about that because what if she was looking for me or felt scared or afraid because I wasn't there? What if her last moments were filled with fear instead of peace because she was looking for me to tell her it was all right? Misty was always there for her when I needed it and I wasn't there for her.

I also feel guilty because she was about 9 or 10 when she got sick and died and I feel like she could have had a few more years but we couldn't afford to take her to the vet to be examined and I feel like shit because I couldn't even do that to make her feel better, or at least TRY to make her feel better. I feel like I did something wrong or caused her death somehow.

I didn't know what I'm asking but I'd love advice on how to alleviate some of the guilt.

-Dez


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Re: (Pet Death) Feeling guilty about not being there when my dog was put to sleep after all these years. - August 8th 2019, 11:58 AM

Hello Dez,

I am so sorry that you are having a hard time with this right now and hope that you will be okay soon. Hugs.

When we have lost someone or an animal it is hard to go through this, because we love them so much and we want them with us forever. When we do not have them anymore that is when we start to think about what we should have done with them and we are really hard on ourselves. Please do not be hard on yourself about this, everyone will grieve in all kinds of ways and that is totally fine to do. I am so sorry that when you have been on Facebook and seeing the pictures that it is making you feel hurt and I really hope that you will be okay soon.

When you are on Facebook, ect try not to look at them if you can. Because, it will bring you down, it can help you some. Also would you be able to do something to get you're mind off of this for a while so that you are not thinking about it so much. For example would you be able to get out of the house and go for a walk. Or reading a book or putting on a funny TV show or movie or drawing or painting or calling a friend and being with them for a while so that you are not by yourself and you are with someone who can help you feel a little bit better. Sometimes talking to our family or friends about someone who passed away can help us feel a little bit better, because they may be feeling the same way and would like to talk about it too. If you want to, maybe get pictures of you're dog and you can have them with you. I hope that you will be okay soon. Sending you lots of Hugs


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Re: (Pet Death) Feeling guilty about not being there when my dog was put to sleep after all these years. - August 8th 2019, 03:17 PM

I had my dog put to sleep last summer, and I did not go, nor was I in the room with her. My mom and brother were though. I don't know if this will help or not (or how true it is) but I have heard that being present and being really upset when your pet is being put to sleep can be difficult because your pet will pick up on your tension. But at the same time, that might be what some people or animals want to have in those last moments.

It's okay that you couldn't handle it at the time. Bringing an animal to the vet and walking out without it is heartbreaking. You did what was best for you at the time and that's important.

Even though she was more of your dog than anyone else's, she was with people who loved her at the end of her life and she knew you loved her too. Animals are so smart, they know things like that.


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Re: (Pet Death) Feeling guilty about not being there when my dog was put to sleep after all these years. - August 10th 2019, 02:05 AM

Hi Dez,

I am sorry to hear what you're currently going through at the moment.

I had to put my dog down 2.5 years ago and I still feel guilty for doing so even though he was 17 years old. My Mum, brother and I were all in the room so he would know how loved he was.

When your dog was put down, she had people to comfort her so she wasn't on her own. I can sympathies on how you may be feeling and animals become part of the family.

If you need to talk, I'll be here to listen.


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Re: (Pet Death) Feeling guilty about not being there when my dog was put to sleep after all these years. - August 15th 2019, 05:05 AM

Thanks guys. <3 I just know that she was always with me when I was sick or sad and never left my side and then I left her. Which I know was she was made comfortable and all but I feel bad. And I can’t help but wonder if I could have saved her if we had more money.


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Re: (Pet Death) Feeling guilty about not being there when my dog was put to sleep after all these years. - September 13th 2020, 03:58 AM

Hello Dez,

I am sorry that you are going through this.


I too had a very dear dog who died at the age of 13. She accompnied me for 13 years and when she died, I wasn't there for her. I couldn't bear to think that the little white fur ball was dying there without me, my uncle, and aunt. The good thing was that my cousin was there to be with her. It was traumatic to our family. That day, my uncle, aunt, and I cried for a long time. When I was 6, she bit my face when we first met, and that little scar becomes something I remeber her with.

Even though Misty is gone, the fact that you both love each other deeply and you have had plenty of precious memory together will never change. The past cannot be changed, but she can still keep on living in your heart and in your memory forever. She will understand that you couldn't handle it at that time and she'd want you to not be sad as well.
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Re: (Pet Death) Feeling guilty about not being there when my dog was put to sleep after all these years. - September 30th 2020, 11:28 AM

I noticed this post was from last year, but this is sad all the same. I hate to think about dogs passing away. I mean, just imagine their faces!
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