Fandango’s Provocative Question #193

What’s the hardest decision you’ve ever had to make? What made the decision so difficult?

The first time we had to put down an old and ailing pet was terrible. It was hard for me, awful for Garry. It made us decide we would never ever let a pet get that sick or old and not give him or her the grace of passing gently from this world. It doesn’t mean we take it lightly. It is always difficult and inevitably painful, but somewhere along the way we realized that to our pets, we ARE gods.

They depend on us to do all the god-stuff. We feed them, care for them when they are sick. Love them. And when it is their time to go, we let them go as gently and peaceably as we can — as we would like to go were it our turn.

I suppose if one is going to have pets, you have to recognize that you will — usually — outlive your pet, often by many lifetimes. Along with the joy of having pets comes the obligations and none is more onerous than recognizing the time has come to let your pet pass on.

The first time is the hardest for owners and often takes longer than it ought. But there comes the day when your pet looks at you and you can see in their eyes that they are ready. You have to be ready, too.

Tinker Belle – Her Story

Categories: #FPQ, #gallery, #GarryArmstrong, #Photography, dogs, Pets, Provocative Questions

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4 replies

  1. It is a terrible decision to make. You don’t want them to suffer but you don’t want to rob them of any good life they might still have.
    People sometimes don’t understand that you grieve for a pet like any family member but at least we can do something to let them end their lives with some dignity and comfort which is more than many of us can do for each other.


    • It is a terrible decision. They can’t tell us how they feel and whatever we think, we could be wrong. Except that when our pet is “that age,” nothing will help. Bonnie was, ironically, VERY healthy — except she was mentally gone. She didn’t know who we were and after Gibbs passed (all on his own without that horrible year of anxiety), she didn’t recognize anyone. She didn’t know who we were anymore and was deteriorating so fast. And suddenly, it was all Duke.

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  2. You are so right. This is such a difficult and gut wrenching decision to have to make, one you agonize over for days, if not weeks. It’s painful and just heartbreaking. And yet, we keep getting pets and, as you noted, outliving them and then having to face it yet again. 😢


    • The vet said it was exactly the same and being a vet didn’t make it easier. He thought it made it even harder because you knew all the possible treatments — except nothing treats age and time. It took us a very long time to let our first dogs and cats go, but we are better about it now. We realized, finally, we weren’t doing it for them. We were doing it for US, just to keep them a little longer. But it was hard and it will always be hard. I wish we could do the same for each OTHER.

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