Frazzled Marc, half way through my 40s!

Frazzled Marc, half way through my 40s!
Frazzled Marc, half way through my 40s!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Losing a Pet

Losing a pet is traumatic. It is one of the few times a hardened man will break down and cry. It is one of the very few times I cried along side my father. Still to this day, I remember back to the times when I have lost my dear furry friends with pain and sadness. It stays with you as does the similar pain of losing a family member. Maybe that's why many people now call our pets, "animal companions." With all due respect to those who do not have pets, it is hard for them to understand the connection that you develop over the years with your cat, dog, bird, or other animal friend.

Today, my brother and his family lost their dog Bingo, who was 15 yrs old. They, as a family, are in extreme pain over this loss. Bingo had lived through the loss of his best friend, Bo, a Lhasa Apso, dealt with various cats, and moved from one home to another. He led a gallantly happy life and was the quintessential loyal dog friend. Adam, Teresa, and their kids, Angelica and Johnny, took such good care of Bingo, even when he was at his worst, physically. Hats off to them, Bingo lived a good life, loved you all, and he knew he was loved by you all as well.

My father and I cried when we lost Gretchen, our beautiful German Shepherd.  I cannot go into detail about this day, 20 some odd years later, as it is still too, too painful. Even when a pet's death is expected within couple months from ailing health issues, it doesn't make it any easier. My cat Smokey's death is too painful to go into detail as well. What matters is how well we treated our pets and took care of our pets, right up to the end. Many said, with Smokey's illness, that he should have been put asleep months before. I refused to and nursed him back to health, often feeding him liquid pet food, little by little into his mouth with a syringe, and he rebounded for another several months. I am so thankful I had those last precious months. I am so glad I did not listen to others who did not understand the connection I had and currently have, the connection that we all have had and currently have, to our "animal companions."

Our pets love us unconditionally. Maybe that is why it is so painful when we lose them. They are there when we are single. They are there when we come home alone. They are there for a cuddle, a lick, or a snuggle when there is no one else.  Always happy, and always forgiving. They become your companion through thick and thin. They are the ones that always greet you with a meow or a tail wagging when you come home from a hard day at the office.

To my brother and his family, I am so sorry for your loss. Take as long as your need to grieve.
Love, your brother and uncle, Marc

For those of you who have never read about Rainbow Bridge, where our pets go when they pass, please read. It will make the loss a little easier.
http://www.petloss.com/rainbowbridge.htm

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