This is Oscar. Our beloved dog of 11 years and 3 months. We sadly had to have him put to sleep five weeks ago and my heart still aches.
I miss him everyday. I can still feel him and I can still hear him. Does the pain of losing a pet ever go away?
We noticed that he had a lump growing on the roof of his mouth. The vet barely glanced at it and I knew from her reaction that all was not good. My heart began to melt. She gave us all the options.
Over the following two weeks I watched him closely. He had changed. He looked old all of a sudden. He seemed to have lost his spark. I noticed how he would pant without reason. How he would screw his eyes up and look unhappy. These things were minor but I knew somehow they were linked to what was lurking in his mouth. I went back to see the vet. Yes, we could go down the road of biopsies and further tests but the bottom line was, even if this lump was not a cancerous tumour, it was still a lump that could not be removed as it was on the hard palate in the roof of his mouth. SO what did that leave us with? The vet knew when I walked in what we had decided. I told her we did not want to wait until he became really poorly. It was not fair on him. I also didn’t want to wake up one morning and find his mouth bleeding or crying in pain. There was also the consideration of the children…..what if he turned nasty? If he was in pain this was a possibility. He was the softest dog you could ever meet and was wonderful with our children…..but there is always that “what if?”.
The vet was so supportive and agreed with our decision 100%. She also said that due to the nature of the tumour it was likely it has already spread to his lungs……this may now explain the unnecessary panting. She said from the glance alone she was over 95% sure it was cancerous.
We gave ourselves a week to prepare and spoil him rotten! I can quite honestly say, mentally it was the worst week of my life. Were we doing the right thing? Should we give him a chance? Any anaesthetic would have killed him as he had a bad heart murmer but that element of doubt was still there. Again, even if we’d gone ahead, the chemo etc after would only have prolonged his life by maybe 8-9 months, and what a miserable 8-9 months they would have been for him.
That week before I spoiled him so much. He had all his favorite foods….chicken, ham, buscuits, watermelon (odd one I know) and he loved it! The night before I let him sleep on our bed with me and the hubby.
Then the day came. I made the kids cuddle him before they went off to school that day. They had no idea what was going to happen. What was rather surreal though was that my daughter mentioned when leaving the house that Oscar looked sad and poorly. I came back from the school run and sat and sobbed holding him close. I mean big proper sobbing, it was awful. But then hubby came home and as he walked through the door, he broke down. It had suddenly hit him and it broke my heart.
I won’t give you all the details, but his passing was remarkably peaceful at the vets. We sobbed and sobbed our way through it as he drifted off cuddled up in my arms., but we knew he was at peace and would not suffer. As we walked home with just his collar and an empty lead there was silence. We couldn’t talk.
We had to tell the children when they came home from school. We said that he was very poorly and very old and that he had died when we took him to the vets. Kids of that age do not need to know all the details. They sat and drew pictures and wrote letters that they wanted Mammy to send to Doggy Heaven. My heart was splitting in two.
We had Oscar from the day he was born when we lived in Greece and when we moved to the UK he came with us! He was our baby!
I miss him barking when someone is at the door…..I miss his claws on the wood floors, I miss him cuddling in when the kids had gone to bed. He was such a huge part of our little family and I will never get over losing him.
We love and miss you so much Oscar!!! xxxxx