Unexpected Pet Loss – Remembering our Beautiful Dog Zoe
Reader Beware – Have you ever lost a pet? This post is a departure from my original content and contains information about the circumstances that led up to Zoe’s death this weekend. I feel compelled to share – hopefully my story will help others in similar situations realize they aren’t alone.
This past weekend was a whirlwind. Saturday was Halloween and we had a busy afternoon planned out with trick-or-treating at the local businesses in Downtown Bangor. After Downtown Bangor we were going to drive to my families houses. We decided to bring Zoe along as she was such a good girl and obedient. She loved going for rides and always hated being alone.
As we were finishing out our trick-or-treating we arrived at the last stop – my moms house – for dinner. We had brought Zoe’s food with us and she was still on various medications from her recent diagnosis with pancreatitis. I gave her the pills and her face started twitching and she started drooling a lot. We thought she may be having an allergic reaction (her face was puffy) so we gave her benadryl. We gave it a bit of time to work and when it didn’t we headed out to the Emergency Vets.
At the vets the assumption was that she had gotten into a toxin. They were doing the initital exam when the first seizure happened. Unbeknownst to us that seizure was the beginning of a rapid downfall. After the seizure the Zoe we knew was gone – she didn’t respond to her name or recognize our voices. She walked in circles to the right constantly, stumbled, seemed frightened by shadows and any rapid movements, and drooled non stop.
As the seizures continued they became more violent and she became less responsive after each. Monday morning after a seizure she was in a coma and we took her to the regular vets. They told us that based on her symptoms she was having a neurological problem – most likely a stroke, brain bleed or a brain tumor. We left her for evaluation and the situation did not improve and the seizures continued to come.
In less than 48 hours we had gone from a healthy dog to having to make a decision to stop her suffering. If you are a pet owner you know how hard it is to make that decision. We spoke with the vet and asked about the chances of her recovering and being Zoe again and we were told the chances were slim for her brain to recover.
So with both of the kids at school (not aware of the situation) we went and held our beautiful puppy one last time and said our goodbyes. We sat the kids down when they got home and explained that Zoe was too sick and the vets couldn’t do anything to save her. We also said that now she was with Tool in puppy heaven. Boo Boo and Buddy handled this much better than I ever expected.
Our family experienced the grief of losing a pet in the spring so unfortunately it is still fresh in our minds. I feel incredibly guilty – with Tool we knew and had time to do special things for him. With Zoe – we didn’t have a chance to do anything. I feel as if I was robbed of the chance to spoil her and spend extra time with her. I know I can’t control it but its hard.
Zoe was 6-1/2 – way too young to die. She was a cute little girl – everyone loved her. She greeted you at the door with a toy in her mouth and a wiggle, waggle, stomp, stomp. She growled to get your attention if she wanted to be pet. She was the kids jungle gym and Buddy’s best friend. She was obedient (most of the time!) and loving. She was a master pancake beggar 🙂 She was so many things. So many things that you don’t know you will miss until they are gone.
Our pets are our family and right now our house feels so empty. We are dog people and need the presence of a dog in our house. I’m sure it won’t be long until I write about a new puppy joining our family. A new puppy won’t fill the void left from the loss of Tool and Zoe but it will make our house feel more normal.
We need a dog to greet us at the door, to come running at the sound of the refrigerator opening, to lay in front of the pellet stove, to leave toys all over the house and bark at any “enemies” that approach! Our house is quiet and lonely in a way that I never expected.
So pardon me during my grief. It will come in unexpected waves, with random reminders. Time will ease the hurt – I know that – but I just wish the time would pass quickly. I want to thank all of the people that expressed kind words to our family – it definitely helps.
My only hopes are that she knows how much we love her and that she has been reunited with Tool in puppy heaven.
I will leave you with the same poem I shared in May.