Content Warning: Death, Trauma
There’s one meme / share post that I despise seeing. It seems to do the round on Facebook more than any other platform, which for some reason makes sense, or maybe it’s just that I despise Facebook more so it mentally matches for me.
Anyway, the post is about being there when your dog is put down. That you HAVE TO be there because the dog will panic and look for you in their final moment, that if they don’t see you, then you’ve let them down, that you’re scum of the earth.
I always hated the post.
I couldn’t be there when my sisters dog/our family dog when I was in high school was put down. I copped some flack from that from certain people. There were reasons and I’m not going into them because decisions are allowed to be made and I have no need to justify them. It was the correct decision at the time.
And then, as you may know, our beloved dog Vala got sick earlier this year and was awful and rapid and anxiety inducing and terrible and the worst week of my life. I find it incredibly hard to even think back on it, let alone write about it.
The only kind option was to put her down. She wasn’t there any more anyway. She was lost to what was going on inside her body.
The vet, our kind, amazing vet who helped us with her health issues for so many years, explained how it worked. They would administer a sedative similar to putting a dog under for surgery. Once it was confirmed that they were under, they deliver a massive dose that stops the heart in a few seconds.
Now, I can’t tell you if that’s what every vet does, or even if that’s exactly what she said (though I’m fairly confident it’s accurate). I have a lot of trauma around this and have had what a friend told me are PTSD dreams about it.
But what I can tell you is that there is no panic. If there is panic, your dog is not being put down properly.
Yes, the dog may have panic at going to the vet if that is how they already are. But as to the rest of the process – no. It’s utterly untrue.
Please believe me that if you share that post, I really do hate you. You are not there to place judgement on what someone can or can’t do. Do not fucking shame someone. Do not lie about the experience.
It was scary, awful, and peaceful. I hated it and it was BEYOND the right thing to do. This meme / share post traumatises the hell out of me.