Last week, we had to put our precious dachshund Andy down. This is the saddest time of my life. He was only 5 and had always been so full of life. Just one week prior, he was fine. But, one day he was crying at the bottom of the steps and I went down to find him just standing there. I picked him up and brought him upstairs. He seemed okay, just took things a little slower. I didn't know what had happened, but I knew something was wrong the next morning. I called the vet right away and had an appointment that evening. During the day, he was losing his balance and starting dragging his back legs. The vet examined him, said there was nothing broken or dislocated, so he gave him a shot and sent home some medication. I was also to put moist heat on his backend twice a day. I did everything the vet said, but Andy only got worse. Monday was a holiday, so Tuesday morning I called to report there was no improvement. He referred me to a specialist. They could only see him the next day, and that day I knew he was dying. It was so heartbreaking to see him just lay around, not able to move. We were given some options, but surgery seemed unlikely to help because he had no feeling in his back end and he had become incontinent. A cart may have been an option, but would be very tough with a bi-level house. The new vet told us if he had been her pet, she would put him down. I knew it was coming. It didn't make it any easier. My husband and I didn't want to see him suffer. I still wonder if we could have made it with the cart. It happened so suddenly. My heart aches. I am having a very hard time dealing with why he had to go so young. I know this breed has problems losing their backends, and I know I did everything I could for him, but I just can't believe he is gone. I still think I'm going to see him when I walk into the room, or hear his cry. My words can't express how much he was loved. He was the most gentle dog who just wanted to be around us. He always made us laugh and was a wonderful companion to our family. He will be greatly missed. I will leave you with a beautiful poem the vet sent to us with her sympathies:
Just this side of heaven lies the Rainbow Bridge.
When a beloved pet dies, it goes to the Rainbow Bridge. It makes Friends with other animals and frolics over rolling hills and peaceful, lush meadows of green.
Our pets do not thirst or hunger. The old and sick are made young once more; the maimed and ill become healed and strong. They are as healthy and playful as we remember them in days gone by.
Though happy and content, they still miss someone very special, someone they had to leave behind.
Together, the animals chase and play, but the day comes when a pet will suddenly stop and look into the distance...bright eyes intent, eager body quivering. Suddenly recognizing you, your pet bounds quickly across the green fields and into your embrace. You celebrate in joyous reunion. You will never again separate. Happy tears and kisses are warm and plenty; your hands caress the face you missed. You look once more into the loving eyes of your pet and know you never really parted. You realize that though out of sight, your love had been remebered.
And now, you cross the Rainbow Bridge together...