Through research, I learned that if there is a terminal diagnosis for a pet, do not wait to put them down. As much as I loved my dog, I did not want her to get to the last stages of kidney failure, which I understand can be painful. As it is, Lily was exhausted. She was alert and interested in what is going on, but Lily spent most of her days curled up in her bed, resting. She had no more energy than that. She lost weight and seemed more fragile.
I tried to care for her as long as I could. She wore doggie diapers, took her medicine, tried valiantly to do her peeing outdoors like a good doggie does...as she always did....but there were accidents, lots of them. The floors in the house were covered with plastic tarp with newspaper on top of that. ..and the diapers. She pees so much that she soaked a diaper overnight and urine puddles were on the plastic when I got up in the morning.
I had hoped to give her a good summer. In my imagination, Lily enjoyed the backyard. She could pee wherever she wanted to outside. However, she deteriorated to the point that I knew she would not last out the summer.
I made the call to the vet. He had me come in right away...before I lost courage. Dr. Smith told me once more, that there was no treatment that would save my little terrier. When pet owners have their pet put down, the pet is usually pretty far gone. They lay there, unresponsive. It was different with Lily. She was alert, walked in, was interested in the other animals in the vet's waiting room. She did her usual thing: tried pulling me to the exit door. How I wished that I could take her home. Actually I could....for a very short time. However, the longer I keep her with me ...because I don't want to give her up....the more she will suffer and be closer to that awful pain stage. I made the decision to put her down while she is acting relatively normal...a hard thing to do, as one never knows if I should have come earlier, or delayed a week. There is no answer to that one.
Then then put her down. She lay on the table as if she was sleeping. All muscles were relaxed. I petted my lovely dog for the last time. Her fur is like velvet....so warm and silky.
Lily was adopted from the SPCA. I wonder why she was at the SPCA because someone obviously had spent a lot of time with her. She listened when I talked to her. She looked at me right in the eye and tried to figure out what I wanted. She was clean in the house, intelligent and loving.
She had no neurotic behaviors...only a few mannerisms that were lovely. Lily cleaned her paws like a cat. She liked to sit on my lap. She liked having a basket of her own to sleep in. Some one loved her very much before I got her. Perhaps she ended at the SPCA because someone died or had to go to a nursing home. I will never know.
The only problem she had was separation anxiety. She panicked if I left the house without me...barking all the time I was gone....going from one window to another window, watching for my return.
So, she came everywhere with me. Lily loved riding in my truck. She made friends at the bank and at the diner. Patrons gave her bits of bacon. She sat in the truck while I ate breakfast inside and people passing by would smile as they saw her in the truck. When I returned to it, the first thing she would do would be to stick her head in my purse to see what I had saved from breakfast for her.
The first night living with me, I set up a kennel for her. She was to sleep in there because I did not want her wandering around the house at night, possibly peeing some place. What a racket she made. Bark Bark Bark. The message was plain: no offense lady, but I don't sleep in a kennel. I opened the door. Lily raced up the stairs and jumped on my bed. I got the message and that is where Lily slept as long as I had her....which was way too short...two years to the month.
One day I brought up a basket of laundry from downstairs and set it on the floor. Lily jumped in. That is how I know that her previous owner had made a basket for her. So, I made another basket for her.
Lily is in heaven now. I cried terribly and miss her very much. My little dog was a perfect dog...intelligent, personable and loving. Her only flaw was her health and I would have done anything to save her, but nothing was possible.
At home, I do the clean up. Plastic removed from the floors, packed up all her belongings to donate to the SPCA. Her medications went back to Dr. Smith. He will use them on another dog from the SPCA. It seems terribly quiet in the house.
Labels: Tribute to Lily