Angel: Today it was time.

alisandeJuly 27, 2009

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.

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shellm

Alisande,I have tears in my eyes reading your story.I am so sorry to hear this.RIP ANGEL.

Hugs,Shelley and Drake

    Bookmark   July 27, 2009 at 6:57PM
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Meghane

I'm so sorry about Angel, but knowing for sure when it's time is small comfort. She was a lucky girl.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2009 at 7:36PM
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quasifish

She's a beautiful dog. Thank you for sharing all that, I've got tears in my eyes too. Our prayers and deepest sympathy for you.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2009 at 7:46PM
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mazer415

Great story...My dog is now 14. He often has an issue about going for a nice walk, but he is finicky and has been that way since he was little.
I hate this part of being a pet owner...your dog was 16, and since Briards are large dogs she probably should not have lasted that long - a testament to your being a great pet owner. No doubt she will be at the rainbow bridge waiting for you.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2009 at 7:46PM
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weed30

I'm so sorry. Bless you for giving her a wonderful life, and bless her for letting you know that she was ready.
I know Jill and Angel are so happy to be together again.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2009 at 8:37PM
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Bumblebeez SC Zone 7

I'm so sorry but she had a great life.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2009 at 8:38PM
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junebug1961

Oh my gosh..I am so sorry for all of your losses. I'm certain that Jill is taking good care of Angel.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2009 at 9:09PM
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cat_mom

(((hugs)))

    Bookmark   July 27, 2009 at 9:09PM
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biwako_of_abi

What a beautiful and soulful-looking dog, and what a wonderful story of how you got her! I'm so sorry for your losses.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2009 at 11:04PM
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momof2doxies

I am so sorry for your loss. She was lucky to have you as her mom.

Linda

    Bookmark   July 28, 2009 at 6:01AM
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Ninapearl

what a touching story! i'm so sorry for your loss. angel will be in your heart forever, just as jill is.

((((hugs)))) my deepest condolences for your loss.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2009 at 7:27AM
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lilod

Your story touched me. You are fortunate to have had Angel for that long, she was and still is loved.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2009 at 8:22AM
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prairie_love

I'm so sorry. I read your previous thread and felt for you then. I am so glad you waited until Angel let you know "Now is the time". It's good to have that certainty. Even so, the loss is heartbreaking.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2009 at 10:07AM
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alisande

Thank you, everyone. When people say, "Your words of comfort really helped," they're not just being polite. It means a lot.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2009 at 2:36PM
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sylviatexas1

I'm so sorry.

You were lucky to have had her for so many years, & she was lucky to have had you.

Happy Trails, Angel.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2009 at 4:38PM
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ellyn101

I am so sorry too! - I just put my 16 year clover to rest this past year - it was the most devastating experience. I put my other 17 year old cat to rest 2 years ago. I am not pet-less - I miss my cats but I know that they do not have to suffer anymore.
Stay strong

    Bookmark   July 28, 2009 at 9:38PM
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susanjn

Susan, what a beautiful story! Angel knew you loved her very much. You have my sympathy for your loss.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2009 at 10:19PM
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debbiep_gw

I am so sorry for your loss.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2009 at 1:11PM
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petra_gw

I am so sorry. No matter how long they live, it's never long enough.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2009 at 9:13PM
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ladybugfruit

(((((alisande))))))) What a beautiful story to share about such a precious soul that found you. The stars are shining brighter now that your sweet Angel has gotten her wings. May your tears be peppered with smiles as you remember all of the little moments that made your connection with her so very special. My prayers and sympathies are with you.
LBF

    Bookmark   July 30, 2009 at 10:48PM
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angeldog

I have never been on this forum for pets until tonight. I'm always on the Home Decorating and Antiques Forums, but rarely venture out. Of course, the title caught my eye immediately. I have an "Angel" too. She's an 11 year old Springer Spaniel who is my shadow. She had an older "sister" Holly who I had to put down about 5 years ago. I feel your pain. I went thru the same thing with Holly, putting off the inevitable. And I was also dealing with my teenage son at the time who kept saying God would take her in His own time. Well... as right as that may be, I think God was sending me some mighty strong signals, her time was up. And I'm certainly reading the same in your story, Alisande. I'm so sorry for your loss. I hope Angel is having fun up there with your Jill, and maybe they've already met up with our Holly! All my sympathies to you.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2009 at 9:53PM
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alisande

Thank you to everyone who thought of Angel and me.

Angeldog, I had a Holly, too. I was in Florida when she died during a seizure in the middle of the night. She appeared quite unexpectedly in my dream that night, and I remember I said, "Holly! What are you doing here?" I bent down to pet her, and I realized she had come to say goodbye. I was still in bed early the next morning when I called Jill at home to see if we had lost Holly, and we had.

So yes, I wouldn't be at all surprised if Angel has joined up with your Holly and mine. There's so much we don't know, and I'm thinking all of it's good.

Susan

    Bookmark   August 18, 2009 at 10:09PM
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angeldog

That is an incredible story Susan! I do believe that we are visited here on this earth by angels and they will let us know, when WE need to know, that everything is okay with them. I'm forever amazed at the joy these four legged creatures bring into our lives. If only humans could love so purely!

    Bookmark   August 18, 2009 at 10:22PM
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todancewithwolves

Your post brings back memories of my dear Eirn with whom I had to make the same tough decision in April. Oh how I toiled over having to do that same thing. They also tranquilized him beforehand and he began to snore immediately - boy, that silly Cocker could snore. I thought I would die right then and there but I managed to keep it together until I left.

Your sweet Angel lived a long time which goes to show how well she was loved.

You have many fond memories that will make you chuckle and there will be nights when you just miss them so badly. They leave a big hole in your heart. With all my heart I believe animals go to heaven and they will be waiting there for us.

This is a true story that happened to me. I don't tell too many people for when I have they roll their eyes at me.

One Sunday afternoon, I found my sweet golden Cocker dead. I can't put into words how dear he was to me. He had passed in his sleep with no warning. He was 15-1/2 and healthy enough. He did have a heart murmur all his life. Anyway, I took him to the emergency clinic to have him cremated. A week later they called to pick up his ashes. I went there late at night feeling so very sad. There were no cars in the parking lot but for mine. There was an older man standing outside the facility, in the rain, gray hair and clean shaven. He had on a gray raincoat (no umbrella) and a large white dog standing on his left side with no leash. The man asked me, "Why are you so sad?" I answered, "I'm coming to pick up my dogs ashes". He said, "You will see him again". I thought nothing of it. I was in the office for less than a minute. When I came out he and his dog were no where to be found.

I was so distraught that night but in hindsight I wondered:
Why did a stranger ask me such a question?
How did he know the dog I lost was a he?
How could he have disappeared in such a short time in that large parking lot?
Why was he standing in the rain with no umbrella?
How come he wasn't wet from the rain nor was his dog?

Big hugs to you.

    Bookmark   August 19, 2009 at 6:17PM
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cindyb_va

What a great story!

Hugs to you ((())), I know this is tough, but you should be proud of giving Angel a wonderful and long, happy life.

    Bookmark   August 19, 2009 at 6:57PM
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Shannon01

My dh says the only fault a dog has is that they do not live long enough. So true. You were blessed to have your Angel for so long. Our german shephard almost made it to 14. Just prior to his passing I called the breeder to see if she ever filed his papers. She could not believe he was still around. Vet told us it was because we played with the Kong daily, his heart was strong.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2009 at 1:39AM
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