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Shiloh Has Bone Cancer


Shiloh's Mom

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My beloved Shiloh was diagnosed with bone cancer on May 31 this year. I took her to WSU for radiation treatment the first of June. She was given a prognosis of 2 to 6 months. Tomorrow it will be 3 months.

She is on homeopathic vitamins and lots of love.

I am afraid I won't be able to deal with losing her. I almost completely lost myself when I lost her mother to a vet giving her too much anesthetic for a ACL surgery. I got so far down I had pneumonia with a partially collapsed lung.

Shiloh is my everything girl. Five obedience titles, registered therapy dog, backpack, weight puller, camping companion and bed mate. She just turned 9 on May 14.

I am afraid I won't know when her time has come and she will suffer because I am selfish and don't want to let her go.

I have never written to one of these forums. I read one grief article and it said to start a journal which I have done.

I just don't know if I can cope when I finally have to make the decision to let my best friend go over the rainbow bridge. I will miss her so much that it hurts to even think about it.

Shiloh's Mom

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Shiloh's Mom,

First of all I hope you have taken the time to read some of the posts on this site, there is several from avsqr_dancer who recently lost her 2 year old dog. I think it would be useful for you to read what she had to go through in trying to get Tawny treatment.

We can all tend to be selfish when it comes to our pets, they are like a member of our family. But also realize that you love Shiloh very much and want what is best for her. You won't want to see her suffer, so in your heart you will know when it is time. Pray to God to give you the wisdom anda to help you with descisions and you will know you are doing what is best for her. I will pray for you during this difficult time and keep coming back here there are a lot of people who have gone through what you have gone through and are here to help in any way.

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Hi,

I am avsqr_dancer that Derek wrote about. He is right. You will know when it is time. It was one of the hardest decision I ever had to make, but when I realized that the treatment didn't work, and there was nothing left to be done, I let her go. I did not wait for her to suffer horribly, but soon after she started exhibiting some of the symptoms the vet warned us about, My DH and I decided it was time. I won't pretend that it was easy. But it was the last "gift" that we could give her, to let her die in peace without having to suffer any more than she had already. It happened 2 1/2 weeks ago,and I still miss her every day and the pain is intense. But I do notice that each day, the time between the pain lengthens, so in that way it does get easier-slowly.

I wish you strength in this very difficult decision and do know that those of us on the board do understand what you are going through. Tawny was my "child" so it is a terrible loss and will take time to work through all the grief. Unfortunately, none of us can take away your pain, but again, we do understand and it definitely helps to know there are others who share this intense grief over the loss of a beloved pet.

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Thank you for your replies.

Shiloh is doing good for now, eating great, still playing with her sister Jackie and enjoying life. I have had a "talk" with her and told her to let me know when it is time. I have done a lot of reading on the subject and all the books and articles seem to say that she will let me know when it is time.

I am really worried about her sister Jackie. They have been best friends since birth and I am worried I will lose Jackie too when Shiloh's time comes.

It hurts so much now and Shiloh is still here with me. I try to be happy in front of Shiloh so she does not have to see my pain but I know she sees through it.

Thank you again for the replies, it helps to know that people know what you are going through.

Carole and Shiloh

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Hi Shiloh's mom,

Yes, I believe that Shiloh will let you know when it is time. With Tawny, she stopped eating and stopped drinking, especially critical for kidney failure. Her last night with us, she started having some tremors and a bit of difficulty breathing. But her last morning with us, she did play a little bit with her brother, ate a few treats, and was coaxed into drinking a bit of water. Hard as it was, we decided that it was her time, and no use prolonging the inevitable so that she would suffer any more. I too worried about her brother as they were littermates and constant companions. It hasn't been easy, I know that he misses her, but I have explained it to him as best I could (considering) and he is basically doing okay. Animals really are remarkable in so many ways.

Feel free to write here or to email me any time you wish. It helps me to both read and respond to others going through the same things.

You and Shiloh remain in my prayers.

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Hi Shiloh's mom,

I am so very sorry that your beloved pet Shiloh is really, really sick right now... I will keep you both in my prayers and ask God to give you the strength to get through her sickness... Take care and God Bless you both Shelley

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Shiloh's Mom, You came to the right place for support. I've been reading this bb for awhile and just today registered. The compassion here is sincere and everyone understands the grief at losing a dear friend.

For your worries that you won't know when it is time to let Shiloh go. If you listen with your heart you will know. Look into her eyes and watch for what I have always called the 1000 mile stare. You will recognize it. It is when your dear friend is looking at you, but at the same time gazing off to the future place where others are waiting. It is a very soft look in their eyes, as if they know they will be soon in a place where there is no longer any pain or discomfort and only peace.

Talk to Shiloh, as you have. Let her know it's ok to let you know when she through fighting this terrible disease. Listen closely and you will hear. Open your heart to her every thought. Don't dwell on the time she will be leaving, but live in the here and now. Love on her and absorb every little bit of her you can for now.

When the time comes, give her the gift of your heart and send her on. It truely is a gift we give to our friends. I've come to realize the definition of euthanasia is "taking their pain and makaing it our own." It is one of the hardest decisions we, as pet owners, ever have to make. But it is one of the most important and kindest decisions we have to make.

My heart is with you, and I will keep you in my prayers and thoughts.

sue

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Wow, Sue,

I never thought of euthanasia that way before, but that is so true. My DH has often said that we are actually kinder and fairer to our animals than to human beings. I remember when my father was dying from pneumonia, with fluid filling his lungs, I made the difficult decision not to use any heroic measures. It couldn't save him, but only prolong the suffering and the inevitable. At that moment, I wished they could just have given him the shot to end his life. But we don't do that for humans. So he basically had to drown in his own fluids, but at least he was unconscious with a morphine drip, as needed and was able to die peacefully a few hours after I said goodby and gave him "permission" to leave.

I'm sorry I got off the topic, but I guess I never really understood euthanasia until that moment in the hospital.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I had to take that final trip to the vets on Sept 1. It was the hardest thing I have ever had to do.

Shiloh was fine on Thursday and on Friday she was in pain. I gave her pain meds but she was still very uncomfortable. I gave her more pills and it wasn't working. I asked her if it was time. She always looked and followed me with her eyes. I couldn't tell. Finally she was yelping whenever she moved and I knew I couldn't hold her here anymore.

I told her how sorry I was that she was in such pain. The vet came out to our car after a half hour. I lay with Shiloh and told her how much I loved her, that she was going where there was no pain. That she made my life so much richer. That she would see her precious Mama and I would be with her soon. Afterwards I wanted to tell the vet to do me now. I had a half hour with her before they took her away.

I want to camp with her, I want to walk with her, I want one more time in the ring with her. I want her to jump on my bed for her tummy rub then jump down and lay down at her favorite place for the night. I just want to be with her.

In the morning before I remember I wonder where Shiloh is.

On less food dish, one less head to count, her favorite spot is empty.

She was such a sweet, gently girl. I miss her so much.

I am making a rock garden in her memory where I can just sit and think of her.

I will scatter her ashes at our favorite campground where we camped, just her and I a few times this summer, and part of her ashes will go on our favorite part of our trail where we ran so often. She was on my first sled team and was always my "steady Eddy". She was just a true and honest girl.

The house is empty to me now. And my heart feels the same way.

Shiloh's Mom

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Shiloh's Mom, Please accept my condolences on your loss. Shiloh may be gone from this world but she will always be with you. Her spirit will never be far. Look to the sky at night and you will see her twinkling in the stars, listen to the wind, when you feel a gentle breeze it will be her telling you she is ok. Watch for a blade of grass bending beside you as you walk, that is Shiloh walking beside you on silent paws. The love we have for our friends can never die. Nothing will ever be able to take that away from you.

Right now take the time to grieve. I hope, soon, the good memories come to replace the ache in your heart.

Mourn the loss,

Grieve the separation,

but most of all celebrate her life.

Be kind to yourself.

hugs

sue

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It is two weeks today. It doesn't seem to get any better. I still look for her everywhere. I thought time would help. Not so far.

Thank you for your reply.

It helps.

I keep waiting for her to send me a sign that she is O.K. I got a sign from her Mother when she crossed over and Shi'kis our little 6 month old puppy that died of a liver aneurysm (two days after we found out about Shiloh's cancer)so it has been a bad couple of months for us. Two dogs in less than 3 months.

Sometimes I think I am done. It is just too hard to lose these precious creatures.

But then I think of "The Dance". I sure had some awesome times with my beautiful babies.

Thanks again,

Carole

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my sincere heartfelt condolences to you. i too am hurting for my baby that left me on the 8th of sept. i have been hurting so much that my wife wants me to see a shrink?? i think we just get too attached to these babies, they give us so much joy and love in a world so full of hate and intolerance. a place like this where we can come to be in good company really helps. we must be strong for each other and pray that we can have the strength to carry on for those that are left here in this world. the ones that have left us know how much we loved them and want us to be happy. we really grieve for ourselves, because it we believe that there is a better place than this world and that all good animals go there then surely our beloved babies are happy sitting with the savior. yes we are selfish in that we want them to be here with us forever, but they surely have to be happier sitting with the father and all of gods creatures than being here on this troubled earth. god bless you and i pray that he will take both of our hearts and mend them and even thoughti do not know you personally i think you mush be a really good person to have loved a creature so much and surely god will bless you in every aspect of your life!!!!!!!!!!!

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I know I am selfish for wanting Shiloh here with me, but most of my grief is in wondering if I did the right thing. Was it her time? Was she ready to go? It is hard to be left behind without her. She was so much a part of my life, every part. She went everywhere I went and it is very lonesome going by myself.

I don't even want to camp without her now. We loved to camp together and she was the best camping dog ever. She would sit and watch the squirrels with me and take nice liesurely naps in the tent. She backpacked with me, she was my obedience girl, therapy dog, room mate, everything.

I feel like I am being disloyal if I ever want to do those activities again without her.

I know your pain in you loss. Time is supposed to help us heal, I am still waiting.

Thank you for your reply,

Shiloh's Mom

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