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Millie

Discussion in 'Portrait' started by Ray Sachs, Feb 16, 2016.

  1. Ray Sachs

    Ray Sachs SC Legend

    Sep 21, 2010
    Not too far from Philly
    you should be able to figure it out...
    Millie was our dog - she died yesterday at about age 17, 13 of them spent with us. She brought more joy to our family than I can possibly explain. It was her time - her quality of life was reduced down way too close to zero for us to selfishly hold on to her any longer. She'd really been in pretty rough shape for the last year and a half or so, without much in the way of hearing or sight, being anxious or asleep most of the time, and needing more and more drugs not to be anxious. Having to make a decision to end the life of a being that you love so much is the hardest thing I've ever had to do. The past week as we came to grips with this terrible decision was among the saddest and hardest of my life. She was the same sweet sweet dog right up until the end. And when given half a chance, she was the happiest dog I ever knew. She had a good last weekend, with plenty of love and attention, but yesterday we tearfully had to say goodbye. Here are some memories of her...

    She was also my most willing photographic model...

    8511776474_187b919bcd_b. XZ2 testing-12-Edit by Ray, on Flickr

    24440448503_7908986ff9_b. P4240814-Edit by Ray, on Flickr

    In 2008, she was attacked by a much larger dog, who nearly killed her. But after a rough month or so of healing, she came back strong - this was a few weeks after...
    24440442993_064e55cc56_b. IMG_0326 by Ray, on Flickr

    14561357892_422d0120b6_b. Happy Millie by Ray, on Flickr

    Always the center of attention at the dog-park. She was in the center of the action before her attack, and a bit more reticent afterwards, but always a sweet-heart...
    25040980886_ba69da8e4b_b. PA104554-Edit by Ray, on Flickr

    14563363726_f97cf3cb9e_b. July 4th on July 5th by Ray, on Flickr

    Just a few weeks ago, with my wife, her very favorite person...
    24476632592_d136a9d747_b. Blizzard!-40-Edit by Ray, on Flickr

    -Ray
     
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  2. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    When we finally made the difficult decision to put one of our cats down last year, the vet said that it was a wonderful we were giving her (our cat Kiki). Hopefully you can take some comfort in that thought as I did. You gave Millie one last excellent gift. I'm sharing your photos of her with Lucy and Charlie.
     
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  3. Lawrence A.

    Lawrence A. SC All-Pro

    Nov 8, 2012
    New Mexico
    Larry
    Ray, I'm so sorry. I've been there more than once and know what a heart wrenching decision it is. No need to explain the joy she brought you; anyone who has lived with and loved an animal understands perfectly. The pictures you made of her with your impeccable photographic skills will provide sweet memories and comfort.
     
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  4. Never easy to say goodbye, although you seem to have some nice memories. :crying:
     
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  5. Briar

    Briar SC All-Pro

    Oct 27, 2010
    Scotland
    Karen
    So sorry Ray. It does feel awful making that decision but take comfort that she is not suffering anymore. Went through this with our two dogs. Have an idea how you feel. Thoughts are with u and your family. Take care, K x
     
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  6. Lucille

    Lucille SC Veteran

    324
    Aug 20, 2012
    Hepcat City
    I am so sorry Ray, my heart breaks for you. I have lost a few, and a part of me died with them. I love my doggies, they are like my kids.
     
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  7. christilou

    christilou SC Hall of Famer

    Jul 13, 2010
    Sunny Frimley
    aah, I am very sorry for you and your family Ray. A friend of ours recently had to make the same decision for her 17 year old Jack Russell. I think when both hearing and sight become impaired, the world can become a very frightening place for a doggy and you must take some comfort in knowing that when the time came you were able to make a good decision for her. I know you must be heartbroken and Little B and I send our heartfelt sympathy.
     
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  8. Ray Sachs

    Ray Sachs SC Legend

    Sep 21, 2010
    Not too far from Philly
    you should be able to figure it out...
    Thanks so much everyone. I've contemplated this moment for a few years, but nothing prepares you for depths of conflict you feel. I'd love to think that having been through it once might make it a little easier if faced with it again, but I'm pretty sure it will be just as gut-wrenching, heart-breaklngly difficult. I know we needed to do it, looking back we probably erred on the side of waiting too long rather than acting too quickly, but knowing that doesn't make it any easier. I've lost friends and both of my parents, so I understood how deep the sorrow would be, but to have to take the action to end a life is something I've never had to do before - it's a whole different level of painful...

    -Ray
     
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  9. kyteflyer

    kyteflyer ~@¿@~

    Jan 31, 2011
    Newcastle, Australia
    Sue
    Oh, Ray, I am so sorry to hear about MIllie. She was a beautiful little girl and it seems like she had 13 great years with you. Making that decision is the absolute hardest thing to do, and I know exactly how difficult it is, and how you must be feeling right now. Please know my thoughts and sympathies are with you.
     
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  10. taqtaq

    taqtaq SC Regular

    135
    May 31, 2015
    Espoo, Finland
    Tuukka
    I'm sorry too Ray. I've had and lost few smaller pets, from hamsters to bunnies, and letting them go has always been a hard spot. Now that we have a dog I can really see how they can be more of a family member than, for example, a bunny. I don't even want to think about how it feels to lose one... Be strong!
     
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  11. Ripleysbaby

    Ripleysbaby supernatural anesthetist

    Sep 9, 2011
    Cumbria UK
    Garry
    Ray. I can't say any more than what's been said already. I am very sad for your loss. Buster is 17 now ,and when I looked at him just now I know exactly how you must feel. I absolutely treasure my time with my dogs as I'm sure you did with Millie. So sorry.
     
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  12. BBW

    BBW Administrator Emeritus

    Jul 7, 2010
    betwixt and between
    BB
    Oh Ray, I just heard of your heartbreaking news from Garry. I am so terribly sorry for yours and your wife's great loss. I do know how incredibly difficult it is, even when you know you did right by Millie. She was a soulful girl as well as a sweetheart I know.

    Thank you for all these photos. I am so sad for you all.
     
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  13. bluzcity

    bluzcity SC Veteran

    310
    Jul 30, 2013
    Memphis, TN
    Brent
    My secret wish is to look up and see all my dogs running to me when I transition to the next world. Unconditional love can't be beat. I'm very sorry for you and your family's loss Ray.
     
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  14. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    If that's NOT the way it is, I'm asking for my money back. Seriously.

    There's a pretty good story along those lines that sums up how I feel here...... Jokeindex: Dog Heaven (G)
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2016
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  15. michealj

    michealj SC Veteran

    233
    Feb 8, 2015
    Twin Cites, MN
    Micheal
    Our thoughts are with your Ray. It's never been easy. But wonderful memories keep reappearing.
     
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  16. Ray Sachs

    Ray Sachs SC Legend

    Sep 21, 2010
    Not too far from Philly
    you should be able to figure it out...
    I'm not a real afterlife kind of guy. I don't firmly DIS-believe it - I just don't firmly believe either. There are some things in this vast universe I don't believe we can possibly know and somehow I take comfort in THAT, rather than buying into something I'd never be sure about. I'm kind of aggressively agnostic - not just a squishy I can't make up my mind kind of thing - I just find it somehow right and comforting to accept that I don't have a clue.

    That said, Luke's story and the Rainbow Bridge thing can really get me weepy right about now. The idea of being reunited someday sure FEELS good, whether I believe it or not... I can tell you if any of it's true, Millie went to the best available afterlife... She always reminded me of my Dad in a funny kind of way, so I might have thought there was some sort of re-incarnation involved except that they overlapped for a couple of years and he loved her dearly too...

    And Luke, I forgot to mention earlier, but I really like the idea that what we did was one final gift to her. It was hard to feel like it was, but I wish someone would be able to do the same for me if I'm ever in that condition...

    -Ray
     
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  17. Ben Casper

    Ben Casper SC Regular

    45
    Dec 2, 2015
    Kent UK
    Ben Casper
    Ray, I am so sorry to hear about Millie. It is heart wrenching to lose a friend of so many years. I feel for you.
    Ben
     
  18. Lawrence A.

    Lawrence A. SC All-Pro

    Nov 8, 2012
    New Mexico
    Larry
    That's the thing that is so very hard. You know you are performing and act of mercy, but part of you feels it is an act of betrayal. It is one of the hardest feelings I've ever had to cope with.
     
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