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Ivan Died Last Night


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Beautifully written, and so heart-wrenching. Of course I burst into tears as I always do when it comes to this stuff! And at least there are still some vets out there (even in some Emerg.'s) who really do give a damn. I only wish I could at least say both of my furbabies' deaths were similarly easy, but they weren't, and I don't think that will EVER stop hurting me...

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Dear Marty,

Thank you so much for the article. I said earlier something akin to I'm still suffering from "third-degree burns" due to vet abuse. This is true; however, this is also true. Our vet who will be away until July 27, and cannot treat Callie now, could have written "Ivan Died Last Night." He loves his patients passionately, and treats his clients in a way that makes us all feel special.

One Christmas Eve, we awoke to see Ashely walking with her hind leg dragging. We knew she must have a disc injury, but we didn't know how bad it would be. This vet, who could easily have assigned another vet to work on Christmas Eve since he owned the hospital, was there treating, euthanizing, and crying. We saw him go outside to a vehicle to euthanize a huge dog as the family stood around crying. He managed to hold his own tears back until he and we went into an exam room. He said that he'd had to do that twice already, and it wasn't even noon. We've known this man for nearly three decades, and felt God put him there for us that day, for Ashely was seriously injured. We hadn't expected to have him treat Ashely on Christmas Eve, so were delighted that he could see her. He helped us with Ashely, and she recovered well. Jerry and I took turns holding her for six weeks. The only time she was on her feet was to use her potty box. All three Doxies are potty box trained. Jerry made their boxes so they stand on a grid over Wee Wee pads in a cut-short plastic sweater box, so never get their feet dirty.

Over the years, we've hugged and cried together over our vet's pets and ours. He has a cemetery for his pets in the yard near his house. He said that he hurts so badly when his are sick, and he hates it when he has to leave them at his hospital to be boarded. He came home early last year from a trip back East to visit his daughter who was in medical school, because his dog was caged in his own hospital. :) I remember when this daughter was a wee girl. She was home-schooled, and now she recently graduated from medical school. She's to be a pediatrician. She got her first training working with her father. The reason our vet is away until July 27 is that he and his family are in Hawaii celebrating his daughter's graduation. I knew she was graduating this year, but yesterday, I could think only of Callie. It crossed my mind that this is the time he visits his daughter, but I was too rattled to put it together.

We were delighted that the vet we saw yesterday is one we already know and like really well. We learned that she recently bought the practice, but our vet is still going to be working with her. We're happy all the way round about this situation. He will still "be there" for us with Callie, when it's her time to leave us ~ just like always. Hopefully, he will still be there when we lose our last baby, Beauregard, our little red smooth Doxie. Beauregard turned fifteen in May. He is deaf, and has cataracts that have dimmed his vision greatly. He has a cyst on his eye that sticks up like a tube, and which has to be lanced periodically. He has only five teeth left, all in the back. He still loves to play ball and laser light, and appears to be our last baby to leave us.

Thank you for listening to me prattle on about people you don't even know as I trip back through my memories of my babies. Now, the tears can come.

Blessings and hugs,


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Let them flow, dear Carrie. (((hugs)))

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The body is resilient, tough, and able to stand a great deal more than what most people would imagine. But that final connection to this plane is threaded finely, and can be easy to sever.

So true ... I cried. I have had to make that decision to "kill" a pet even when letting them go was humane (as the vet said, as our feral kitty we were trying to save was dying from anemia). And I've had to put a guinea pig to sleep and cried for a week or so afterwards.

I'm glad that I can cry for the animals.

Thank you Marty.

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Pet loss from the perspective of an emergency/critical care veterinarian: Ivan Died Last Night

Oh what a commentary. I cried thru all of it thinking of how soft and gentle the ER vet was when she

told me Gb had no quality of life and i agreed to the euthansia. I can see it all again. The

whole event is so clearly running thru my head. If only the rooms were not so sterile and

cold feeling -if only all our pets could have their last minute in our homes.

Thanks, Marty

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