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Losing Sylvia

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On January 12th 2020 at 11:20am my beloved cat Sylvia was euthanized. She had mammary tumors and one was infected. She was everything to me. The words "humane euthanasia " just keep running through my mind like a nightmare. I thought we were just going in for antibiotics just to have them tell us they needed to put her down. I dont know what to do without her. I almost called for her this morning before I remembered what happened. I'm so heartbroken. I dont know how I'm going to be strong for my kids, ages 11 and 9. 

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I'm so sorry for your loss, my dear. I hope you'll let go of the notion that you must be strong for your kids. Letting them see your true reactions to the death of your beloved Sylvia gives them permission to feel their own feelings and teaches them that it's okay to mourn for those we've loved and lost. See, for example, Explaining Pet Loss to Children: Some Do's and Don'ts ❤️

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I am so sorry for your loss.  I had to have my cat put to sleep one week ago, her liver & kidney were shut down and she'd lost half her body weight.  Getting used to those everyday interactions are a huge reminder of our loss.  It's okay for you and your kids to cry together.  

A really good book for helping children understand death (it's interactive) is Waterbugs and Dragonflies found here, by a lady who used to be in our forum:  https://www.christianbook.com/water-dragonflies-explaining-death-young-children/doris-stickney/9780829818307/pd/818307?en=google&event=SHOP&kw=childrens-books-0-20|818307&p=1179710&dv=c&gclid=CjwKCAiAx_DwBRAfEiwA3vwZYoDeAZjSBQ1BbAtwsnA2AvMN_8-PiNJJM5EOlstZmbDNblYIjvSgPhoCoowQAvD_BwE

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I'm so sorry to hear about your Sylvia. It is devastating to lose a family member. My beloved cat died 10 days ago, also from a (very aggressive) mammary tumor. I feel comforted thinking she led a full and rich cat life, she was most loved. But I can't help thinking I could have done more. She was misdiagnosed at first, and I bitterly regret not getting a second opinion. But I trusted the, supposed, expertise. I could also have fought for her, opting for additional surgery once I did consult a second vet, and, finally, questioning the vet who claimed there was nothing else to do than end her life. I didn't. I felt she had been through enough, and she was in pain. But I'm racked with guilt. The end was 'humane' - she passed quietly and calmly in my arms. But still, the loss and the grief and the regret. I have read now that these are common feelings pet owners have, especially when illness and decisions about euthanasia are involved. So I think I know how you feel, even if it seems it was more unexpected for you. I hope you can find comfort in caring for your children (and yes, I agree with Marty, showing your children that open grief is natural and healthy will be valuable for them later in life - I never really learned to do this as a child), and in time feel thankful for the time you had with Sylvia. It will be a struggle for me, but once in a while I experience a glimmer of joy when I think about the unconditional love me and kitty shared. 

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@Maria N

I am sorry for your loss too...my cat had to be euthanized Jan. 6, her first symptoms displayed on Christmas so she went downhill really fast.  Sometimes the kindest thing we can do for them is alleviate their suffering.  When we keep them alive at their expense so that we don't have to lose them, it's not always in their best interest, but it's case by case and we try to make the best call (for them) that we can.  

https://www.griefhealingblog.com/2014/04/pet-loss-guilt-in-wake-of-euthanasia.html
http://media.wix.com/ugd/0dd4a5_e934e7f92d104d31bcb334d6c6d63974.pdf
https://www.pet-loss.net/guilt.shtml

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