Angel: Today it was time.
As I posted here, a few weeks ago I made an appointment to have Angel, my 16-year-old Briard, put to sleep. Making that call to the vet was devastating. I kept second-guessing myself, as I wasn't at all sure it was Angel's time. I asked for a sign, and I got one: Leaving the house to keep the appointment, I walked down the porch steps--and Angel jumped off them in one leap. We turned around and went back in the house, and I canceled the appointment.
Then suddenly this past week--although in reality it's been a long process, and not sudden at all--I knew it was time. I have wanted so badly to be 100% sure Angel's quality of life was diminishing, and when she fell a couple of times this weekend, and turned for home in the middle of our walks, I was convinced. When I called the vet to make the appointment this morning, there was no second-guessing.
I told the vet Angel was a tough dog--unusual for a dog her size to live so long--and she proved me right. It took three shots instead of the usual one to put her down. It wasn't terrible, though, because she was heavily sedated and not conscious at that point.
I may have told the story before of how I got Angel, but I'll tell it again because I love it. My daughter Jill was a teenager, going somewhere with her best friend and her friend's father. They passed a puppy who had that frantic look of a dog that had been abandoned on the road. Coming by again later, Jill spotted the puppy sprawled on the ground. She had been hit, but not injured.
Since this was in the days before cell phones, Jill knocked on a door and asked the homeowner if she could use her phone to call her mother. The woman said she could use the phone, but added, "You mother isn't going to want to come pick up a dog." Jill said, "You don't know my mother." Like I said, I love that story.
My DH drove us to get the puppy, and on the way home she rested her beautiful head on my arm. From that moment, I knew she was my dog. But right now Jill is taking care of her again until I get there.