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Beau Went To The Rainbow Bridge Yesterday


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While not all life is celebrated, all death is mourned; whether it is in a passing prayer for the animal on the side of the road or an elaborate funeral for a beloved family pet.


Sunday, April 26, 09.....

My beloved Beau is losing his brave fight with lymphoma. Forgive me for humanizing him, I feel I must for if he were human, he would teach all of us very valuable lessons about living, enjoying life and fighting the good fight. He would advocate for those that can't speak for themselves whether they are human or animal.


I write this through a cascade of tears and sniffles for Beau is my heart, a huge piece of my heart.


I rescued Beau from the local animal shelter; a woman had seen him running around in her yard for several weeks and finally decided to call Animal Control who went there and picked him up. A neighbor found out about him knowing I had ferrets and she called me and said that I needed to go get him because the people at the shelter did not know how to care for a ferret.


Beau was pathetically skinny, to the point that he would have died had I not saved him that day, simply for the fact that the people at the shelter did not know what to feed him.... they were so ignorant, they even thought he was a girl.


They were keeping Beau in a cat crate and feeding him DOG food.


I rescued Beau in July 2008, shortly after my own diagnosis of syringomyelia. I felt drawn to Beau and told my husband that I was keeping him.

When I got to the shelter, they handed him to me and he licked my hand, I took him immediately. He smelled very strongly of urine and had a large scab between his eyes; which looked suspiciously like a cigarette burn.


Beau ate non stop for an entire month, he would clean every bowl I put in front of him and I fed him 5+ times a day. He gained weight and regained his energy.


I quickly realized that something was wrong with Beau. He did not walk like a normal ferret, he scrabbled his feet side to side like he was swimming, which lead me to believe that his back must have been broken at some point or he had a birth defect. Beau was also pretty blind. He banged into everything but quickly learned his way around following the other rescued ferrets that I own.


Beau also had a raging case of Mange and many of his teeth were broken.


In August 2008, Beau had a vomiting fit and was very lethargic, we rushed him to the vet who did x-rays and told me Beau had lymphoma and he had 3 months to live and I should think about putting him down.

I was devastated and tried to prepare myself emotionally for this and brought him back to the vet that same night. I asked if there was anything I could do for him and she said, you can use Prednisone and that will help, but it is not a cure. I eagerly jumped at that and started the Prednisone therapy to give Beau a longer life. I felt I owed it to him to help him fight and live a happy life in my house with my other rescued ferrets. Beau brought my ferret clan up to 4.


After that day, I religiously gave Beau his pred and watched him flourish, he actually was up to full weight, and loved to chase my cat! He would go up and down the stairs, which I have to admit, I wish now I had video taped him doing it because he was so friggin cute the way he would take one step at a time while the other ferrets charged up the stairs faster than I could !!!


Beau played, chased, and frolicked the way only a happy ferret can, he loved playing with me, loved to chase my husband around, he would love to lick our feet and most of all, he would roll around and love to play.


Over this past week, Beau has declined rapidly, he stopped going up the stairs, when I let him out of his cage, he would eat and go right back to snuggle in some warm dark spot and he stopped playing. He is incontinent of poop and now falls over when he tries to go to the bathroom. I regularly clean his bum. He is indescriminate where he poops now when he was so fastidious before to only poop in the litter box....

He is now having trouble breathing. He now cries when he poops and pees.


I am hoping he will just go to sleep and not wake up. I am hoping I will find him deceased in his little hidy hole.... am I a coward? Am I mean? I do not want to play God and put him down.... yet if it were me pooping all over myself, I would want someone to do that for me. I would want to go with dignity. I do not want Beau to suffer, I took him in to give him a good life and to take care of him and end the suffering he obviously had to deal with before I met him and unfortunately, that means knowing when to let him go and that is so damn hard!!!! A piece of me hopes that he will be okay yet deep down, I know he won't. X-rays don't lie. The way he looks now doesn't lie..


Animals do not stigmatize death the way we do, they do not agonize over feelings like we do... they just go into a hidy hole and go peacefully... they know....


I am going to miss him so much, he has brought more joy to me than I can even measure. I think it is not about how I saved him, but how he has saved me. About what he taught me and I was meant to find him. I was meant to learn what I have through him and I will cherish that always. I will love him as long as I breathe. I will honor Beau's memory by giving to others as he has given to me, selflessly, with humor and grace and with all I have.


Although I have only had Beau for 9 months, I feel like I have had him forever, like I have known his soul forever. I am intertwined with him and I pray for the courage to bring him to the vet tomorrow to help end his suffering. I am cowardly hoping he passes on today in his sleep as I am quite sure I will be in tears for a long time over this yet I am not going to let him linger in pain.

Thank you for letting me share this; thank you for being there with me and most of all, thank you if you rescue animals because you will benefit from it more than they will.

April 27, 09......

I woke up every few to check on Beau to see if he was still with us... and the little trooper hung in there.... he had a terrible day yesterday and this morning. He didn't want to go without a fight. He had a hard time breathing and had squinchy eyes.... and did not want to be touched.....

On the way to the vet's office he scrached the crate door so much that he splintered each toenail. That made this heart wrenching decision all the more difficult. I wanted to turn around and forget the whole thing, but in my heart, I knew I couldn't do that... to see him in pain was so much worse than letting him linger...

He collapsed at the vet's office from exhaustion and pain.....

The vet came in, looked at him and said, "Oh yeah, he looks like he is in pain, you are doing the right thing".... A very small consolation but at least I felt like I was doing the right thing even though it was so hard.

I did not know the procedure for euthanizing a ferret and I do not feel it appropriate to go into that here, but I stayed as long as I could. I held him and told him how good he was. I also requested a necropsy to see the extent of the tumor.

I am crushed and I feel broken. I also feel angry that whomever had this little angel did not care that he was missing or worse, they just let him go.

I am finding peace in my memories of Beau now, watching him "weasel dance" in his own limited way; watching him chase the cat (Beau being blind, it was very easy for the cat to get away, but that didn't stop Beau from sniffing him out)....

I am sad beyond anything I can describe; sadder than at my mom's funeral... for some reason, I feel more for animals.... I think because they love us unconditionally and they can't speak for themselves. And they teach us so much!

My Heart:

My heart broke today

You took a piece with you

when you went away.

I cried today

You took a few of my tears with you

On your way.

My love grew today

You took some with you

On your way

My hand was empty today

I lost touch with you

As you went away

My memories are dear today

It is all I have

As you are on your way

My heart broke today

And will be whole

When we meet again

When I am on my way.

RIP Beau.

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I am so sorry for your loss of Beau. I can see how much you loved and cared for him. I lost my 16 year old heart kitty to intestinal lymphoma just four months ago.

I truly believe we will see our beloved pets again. Rest in Peace little Beau.

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Oh, Dana....I'm so very sorry :( :( :( ...for your shattered heart, and for all that your beloved Beau went through, both before you so lovingly rescued him, and for what you both experienced during his last while on this plane. Beau's life story had me in tears, bittersweet smiles, then tears again.

I fully understand how 'impossible' it is to "let go" of a hugely-loved kidlet and of wishing for them the dignity of transitioning on their own terms. In the end, unfortunately it can often be the details of their circumstances that pretty much decide for us what ought to be done. You stepped up to that plate when you needed to, and that is all you can fairly ask of yourself. (but I also understand your angst around it all) Putting yourself in his place in trying to make your decision, is also one of the fairest, most equal and honorable ways you could have possibly approached this, so know that you did as well as anyone could have.

Please don't feel you need to apologize for "humanizing" Beau. We humans are not really at any self-conceived 'top' of anything, but are in a spiritually-equal place with any other being. Would that the human species would choose to be as great, loving, tolerant and open-hearted as other species usually are. Perhaps the greater compliment would be for us to 'animalize' ourselves instead! So always remember...

"For one species to mourn the death of another is a noble thing" ~Aldo Leopold~

Life is life - whether in a cat, or dog or man. There is no difference there between a cat or a man. The idea of difference is a human conception for man's own advantage. ~Sri Aurobindo ~

And the same goes for a ferret, or anyone/'thing' we choose to love, respect &/or honor....

Your love for Beau, and his for you (and his other family members) speaks for itself, as does your heart-rending poem, none of which will go 'to waste' or unnoticed in the spiritual realms. :wub: May Beau be peacefully enjoying his fully-restored spiritual body now, sitting both beside you and inside your heart :closedeyes: , forever and ever, even through your tears....

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Thank you for your support! I don't post much here because I am still coming to terms with my "new me" and having to take care of Beau helped me get my mind off of my medical issues. I really connected with him as it was so obvious to me that he was also negotiating a tricky trail of life.

I spent last week doing things I knew I shouldn't; and I also went without taking my meds so that I would be better able to handle anything that came up emergency wise. On the day of his passing, I got home and all of my emotions and lack of meds really beat me up and I went to bed at 6 pm.

I would do it all again the same way because I took Beau and the responsibility of making sure he was properly cared for and got what he needed very seriously and with all of my energy.

When the tumor was discovered, the vets told me it was inoperable because it was intertwinded with his stomach and intestines.

Thank you all for sharing and for your continued support. My 3 ferrets have been looking for Beau and running to me as if to say, "Well, what did you do with him?"... I cuddle each one a few minutes longer each time. 2 of my 3 have adrenal disease and insulinoma so unfortunately, I may have to go through this again too soon.

Many hugs to you all....... and as I look through my pictures of Beau, I see his very strong spirit still alive. He will continue to be my inspiration to fight my own fight and not give up as much as I want to some days.

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