I just said Goodbye to my friend. Do not pity me. It was a gift that I could give to him. When I walked into the room, where I have visited with him so many times in his life, he lifted his eyes and whined under his breath. His family did not hear him, but I did. It was then that I knew. I could not let him down.
I have power in these situations. Families look to me to help them know. Usually I explain what I think medically, but remain non-committal because this is the family’s journey. Their hearts have to lead them to the decision when they are ready. But sometimes, only occasionally, will I make a stand. At these times, I must disregard the needs of the humans and only care about the needs of my patient.
In this case, bone cancer had ravaged my friend. He was living with pain, every second of every day. I know this intellectually and I explained it to the family. I had prescribed appropriate pain medication and increased dosing along the way to do what I could. But in the end, the pain won. I saw it in his eyes and I could not let him down.
I told them that there was no wrong answer, but the whole situation was wrong. We had to address the pain, at least his pain. For me and the family, the pain continues. I will miss his sweet face. He was always happy to see me, even today.
And so we all said Goodbye and he slept, with dignity and peace. It hurt us all, but not him. He has always trusted me and I did not let him down. I have honored my friend, my oath and my profession, but oh, how it hurts.
This is my dog, Skye. She was rescued last year from a bad situation and now she is “paying it forward” by being a therapy dog. We decided that we wanted to make it official and she passed her first exam last night. She is officially certified as a Canine Good Citizen! Love her and so proud.
Cats are predators and we make them house pets. We all want happy cats. Find out ways to make sure they are.
About The Vet: Dr. Kathryn Primm is a practicing small animal veterinarian. She has consulted on articles for national magazines, done numerous radio interviews and appeared on local television. She has contributed to an article for Woman’s Day in Feb 2014 and June 2015 and a piece for Prevention magazine on shelves now.
She has a social media presence on Twitter, Facebook , YouTube and Google+ and enjoys interaction with others about her passions, animals and communication. She is a regular contributor to Boomeon, the online community which can be found at www.boomeon.com . She has also written a book, Tennessee Tails:Pets and Their People. The book received recognition as Runner Up in the Memoirs category at a national book festival. You can read more about Dr. Primm and how to be the best pet parent on her website, www.drprimm.com.
People love dogs and dogs add so much to our lives. When you go to adopt, it should not be an impulsive selection. This dog is going to be your best friend for many years. He or she may see you through many life changes. Don’t you want to choose a partner who will make you the happiest and be the happiest too?
This video can help (plus you get to see lots of dogs!)
Please watch and share. Let’s help everyone get a Happily Fur-ever After!