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Archive for January, 2013

Elle1(2)Have you ever had an animal come into your life that touched you so deeply you couldn’t quite figure out why at first? I’ve had a few, and all their memories are strong within me forever. They touched my soul and later, I knew why we were together. Sometimes I didn’t know until they had gone from this world, why they were meant to be in my life, and the reason, but I am better for it. We had something to do and I know one day I will be with them again and for now, they are always with me in spirit.

I don’t want to be a downer, especially with it being the new year, but my husband, Ron and our new year started off a little strange. We’re doing our best to remind each other, its not a “bad beginning” just an end to one life and the beginning of a new one. Its healing for me to write and share this story. 

On New Years day, our little Elle, or “Miss Elle,” one of our precious dogs, began acting a little odd in the afternoon. We checked her over and discussed that we would wait until morning and see how she was doing. If she was not better, we would take her to her own Vet. We truly thought she was constipated from eating rawhide. We rarely gave it to them, but for Christmas, it was a treat.

About eight at night, she took a huge turn for the worst. She went outside and didn’t come back in. I went out to find her and as she walked up our ramp, she looked right at me and stumbled, fell over and began screaming and arching in pain. I thought it was because she could not pass something, so then thought she may have a bowel obstruction. When Ron held her in the bathroom, she arched her back in pain and I said, “she’s dying.” We called our Vets office and they were not there. We called the closest E.R. and told them we were bringing her in.

It seemed like the longest drive in history and each time we hit a bump or had to go over speed bumps, she would cry out in pain. I held her close in one of my favorite blankets. When she had two really bad episodes, arching and screaming, I told her to give it to me and I begged SpiritGod and the angels to help her. It was horrible, but I had to be strong for her. After the last “seizure,” as we came to find out later that’s what they were, she found a place close to me and the door, and finally seemed to rest. I checked often to see if she was still with us. She didn’t make another sound until the E.R. tech came to the van to take her from my arms. When we walked to the front desk, I noticed she was bleeding from her mouth and I could see blood in her eyes. What I thought it had been, an obstruction, changed to the same issue she had in the summer, a autoimmune problem with her blood not clotting. They took her in the blanket straight back. We never even had to sit down before they took us into a room. A nurse or Physician’s assistant, came in and got more information, as I was filling out a form. It wasn’t long before the doctor came in and said Elle was critical and was bleeding into her brain and actually her whole body was bruised and bleeding inside. She said they would get us an estimate on what they needed to do and let us know. 
 

When the physician’s assistant came back in, she had a form showing what everything would cost. We looked at the bottom line and about fainted. Yes, we love her and yes we wanted her to get better, but something in me, perhaps my Mother instinct, became stronger and I asked, “What are you telling us, that you will not do ANYTHING until we pay this?” They told us over the phone it was a $95.00 just to bring her in and it had to be paid that night. We could have paid some of the bill that night, but it was just after the holidays and it hit us hard. I came right out and said, “The doctor has not even told us her prognosis! I need to know her prognosis before I can say what we will do next! I was not yelling or angry, but I was to the point. This was my “Princess Elle” and “I” was not ready for her to go yet… until she looked us in the eyes and said, “She will not make it through the night.” 
 

We kept hearing another dog crying and it brought to our attention that she was in pain. They said she was not moving or crying, but when they moved her, she was very uncomfortable and would cry out. I looked at Ron and he looked at me and with tears in our eyes, we said at the same time, “we need to let her go.” We told the assistant, that we didn’t want to put her through anymore pain and suffering, that it wasn’t the money, it was about Elle. She said she understood and she was sorry, as we both began to sob, not holding back. I apologized, but I knew this woman had been through this before. Somehow that helped. We said we didn’t think we could handle watching them inject her and end her pain. She said she would give her something to help with pain and bring her to us to say good-bye. She also asked if we wanted her to make a clay pawprint of Elle’s paw for us that had to be baked at home to set it. We said yes, of course.

Once she brought her in, we decided we should be with her to the end. We spent some time with her, saying good-bye, telling her how much we love her and how special she was and had been in our lives. She was so tired, not responding to anything we said or did, just wanting to rest. We knew it wasn’t just the drugs, but that she was done with all this. We could still feel her love. Then we said there was no need to prolong her pain. We were grateful she had the iv catheter in already and so the injections were easy and quick. Within two minutes, she was gone. She had been so ready to leave her sick body behind and cross over the Rainbow Bridge, where some believe animals go to be reunited with us one day in spirit. We cried, but we also knew she was free of pain and was now being introduced to all our other dogs, cats and birds that had passed over the years. I even saw her running happily, giving them a run for their money. Whole and free. That made me smile.
 I asked if we could take her body home to bury with our others and the assistant said, “of course,” that she would wrap her for us and put her in a box. I told her no box, to just wrap her in the blanket she came in because it was one of her favorites.

The last couple of days, we’ve cried more than we’ve ever cried over losing one of our loving pets. Maybe it’s because of her energy, her sweetness, but fiery temper, the way she seemed so regal and “princess like.” She radiated love and light and made me feel happy every time I saw her. I found her on a pet list, someone was trying to find a home for her because they didn’t want her anymore, they felt she barked too much and she wasn’t what they wanted. I was thrilled to find her and could hardly wait to have her here with us in our home! She didn’t disappoint us, not ever. She only brought us smiles, laughter, love and joy. We really miss her but we know we did the right thing.
 

One day the pain of losing her will be gone, at least not how it is now, even though we know we lost her in body, but never in spirit or in our hearts. We have five more dogs at home and a number of birds. We still do occasional rescue work, our most recent finding a good home for a stray kitty. We know there will never be another Elle, no not ever, but we do know we’ve been blessed and we’re grateful to have had a few years with her.

Rest in peace dear Elle. Thank you.~
 

~Gone yet not forgotten although we are apart. Your spirit lives within me, forever in my heart.~ Author Unknown

Please read about Thrombocytopenia, a blood disorder in dogs that is life threatening. Pass this information on to anyone who has dogs or that may have symptoms. Thank you. 

See Elle’s story about when she first got sick and was in the hospital in summer 2012 at http://www.mystickblue.com/DonationsforElle.html
Also read my story and tribute to Meeko, Little White Fox, called, “Today I Missed a Friend.”

This story and page is Copyright Fran Hafey Mystickblue All Rights Reserved ©2013.
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