Like everyone other said, you can't be prepared for it.
My family's dog died in the age of 17 years this autumn. It was the saddest lost in my life. To my surprise after two weeks already I recognize that I have coped with the loss and starting to "forget" (or better say to stop think about) my beloved dog. What remains are the memories primarily of the last 3/4 years, where he suffered from pain (as my father didn't want let him go till my mother makes the final decision). So I had to really forced myself to remember back the days when he was healthy und running around happy and healthy. So it's maybe better do not wait to long to let your pets go, if there is no way for recovery. And finally even you will find out: life goes on ...
You must not hate it TOO badly if you're asking here rather than giving your Vet's office a call.
I live in a pretty small town and we don't actually have a vet. IKR?! Crazy! So it's actually a big hazel to get an appointment and transportation to the closest town with a vet. The lump is more like an annoyance for me and not my cat. If it grows or cause her pain I'd gladly contact a vet though
Something, Something, Something, Dark Side.
The problem with pets is that, if people see them suffer they put them down instantly, that's kinda cruel. You don't mind treating cancer or aids for 10 years but can't treat a pet for a few months. My pet had breathing and stomach problems for like a month, found the right medicine and now she has been fine ever since
That's all I can say. Remember to give him a great last day, meal, love and all that. And take pictures, so you remember him as years pass if you were attached to him.
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One of my cats is creeping up on 19 now. Every year I think the winter might get to him, and every year he proves me wrong.
It's weird, cos at one point we were all certain he would go; he wasn't very active and was looking "old". Then suddenly he had a second wind and is as fit and active as ever.
It'll be weird when he dies, since he's been there as long as I can remember (I'm 22 this year). I don't think we can ever prepare ourselves for when it does actually happen, even though we try.
I had to put my dog back in April. (some pics of her here if anyone is interested http://imgur.com/a/Mt0YZ ) She was a collie/cocker spaniel mix and we had her for 18 happy years. For her last two years she started to slowly lose her eye sight and hearing, became tired very easily, developed arthritis in her legs, lost a lot of her teeth to the point where it hurt for her to eat (which was the final straw for us to decide that she was in pain and that she shouldn't be kept alive just to suffer)
Sadly, there isnt fuck all you can do to prepare yourself for when they finally go... Death affects everyone differently, it's as simple as that really. Just be glad that you had the luxury of having a best friend for 12 amazing years and that they were loved and they lived an amazing life! You can also be glad if they are being put down they won't feel any pain at all, the first needle just makes them very relaxed and at ease, after they use the next needle they are gone in like 3 seconds
For me, I had no clue that me, a grown man, would simply burst into tears just at the thought of not seeing her greet me when I would come home in the evening or not have her trying to take up every space on my bed at night I found that having her ashes along with her leash and collar made me feel a little bit better after she went but for some people the thought of having something that reminds them of their pet makes them upset.
So good to be an ant who crawls atop a spinning rockCurrently playing: Bioshock 2,Far Cry 3
I know that feel, OP. But as many have said before, there is no way to prepare for it. It's going to hurt like hell one way or another, but the pain WILL pass in time. When it happens, just try to remember that he had a good life and was loved. That's what really matters in the end.
Buy another dog, it will help you pass over the loss faster. And don`t think at that as if you don`t love the old dog. Life goes on, he did what he was meant to do in this life, now grab a new pup and think at the good time that is coming.
Like everybody said, you can't do anything to prepare. Just make sure the last days are pleasant for both you and your pet. We used to ask the vet to come over when a dog needed to be put down, because most pets don't like going to the vet and become afraid. We didn't want our pets to die while being afraid, but to be in their own trusted environment.
One of those dogs made it very clear to us we were doing the right thing. He was terrified of the vet and as soon as we took him to the vet he became aggressive because of fear. However, when we had to put him down (untreatable brain tumor) and the vet arrived he did something really surprising. He walked to each of us (my father, mother, sister and me) put his head on our lap and after we pat his head he went to the next. After that he walked to the vet, looked at us and lied down in front of the vet. He just knew what was going to happen and he made it clear it was the right thing to do.
Last edited by Gliondir; 2013-02-04 at 10:01 AM. Reason: Typo
Can't really prepare for it, it's sad when it happens. I would only put him down if he was in pain.
It sucks. If the vet says (and you see) that your dog isn't enjoying being alive anymore it would be more than selfish to keep him around just so you don't have to put up with his death. And besides enjoying the time you have left there isn't really much you can do in terms of preparation. I cried every single time when one of my pets died even if i knew it was going to happen. And it helped me to get over it. Being attached to a pet and being sad when it dies is totally normal imo. You will come to terms with it, just give it time and remember you are allowed to be sad
And as some mentioned, having pictures to remember is also great.