Today, for the second time this year, I had to have a pet dog put down. And, like last time, I had LuckyL there with me.
Snoopy had been the family pet (one of) for just around 16 years. A long, long time. She walked in through our security doors one day, when we still lived in Randfontein (LIU).I remember we were sitting in the living room, and LuckyL pointed towards the door, and said "Goggy....!" And when we looked around this little ball of white and black fur had rolled in and made itself at home under the dining room table. It had walked in off the road, trough a Security fence, past a "Killer" Stafford shire terrier, and into our lives. I'm not too sure why we called her Snoopy, but we did, and she stayed. She grew up a beautiful and loving dog. A kind of mix between a Fox Terrier and a Jack Russel, I think. Didn't matter, she was great with the kids, clean, and protected us with her little body and big heart. Never took any crap from any of the other dogs we have had over the years, and was always "the Boss".
She eventually went deaf, but that wasn't an issue, except if she was sleeping in the middle of the driveway when we got home, it would take a few blasts of the hooter for her to become aware of the car! When Kaizer went blind, she would kind of lead him around the yard, and he would herd her out of harms way, (typical Shepard). After we put Kaizer down, she was a bit lost and lonely, but that soon changed when we got the puppies. In fact, it became a bit difficult for her. While we still had Kaizer, we used to feed the dogs, and leave their food out, and refill their bowls daily. basically, they ate whenever. When we got the new puppies, we decided to do it right. Feed in he morning, wait for 5 minutes, take away the bowls. Again in the evening, same story. They quickly learned that when it's time to eat that's what they do. No time to run around sniffing butt, and drinking water. And it works. But not for Snoopy, she was used to eating as and when she wanted to. So, we took to feeding her in the garage. And she took to sleeping there at night. So she could eat at her leisure. It was also warmer for her there at night, and even during most days, this past winter.
Anyway, last night we were going out for dinner. All piled into the car, my loaner from the car hire company, and as I reversed I felt the car roll over something. Instinctively I thought of the dogs, and LuckyL started crying quite hysterically, like he knew it was Snoopy! With her being deaf, and partially blind by now, she didn't hear the car start up, or see it reverse till too late.
Anyway, I jumped out the car, and saw she was hurt. There was some bleeding on her left back leg. I ran to the garage and got a towel which I used to cover her, and gently lifted her into my arms. not the passenger seat, and the Princes drove us down to the vets. We got there and saw that they closed at 7pm. It was 7.22 pm. Damn, Call the after hours emergency number!!! As the Princess was dialling, they two vets came out of the building, locking up. So we quickly got inside, they know me, and checked her out. Now I saw she had a wound on her left front leg as well. She was shaking, obviously in shock, and couldn't stand properly.
The vet wasn't going to do the whole x-ray / scan thing at that time, but after getting her history and age from me, told me that at her age, we were blessed she was still around, her life from here, even without the injuries, would be measured in weeks and months, and that if she had major injuries, it was unlikely they would ever heal properly, so we should consider having her put down. We agreed to get her comfortable, and pain free for the night, and he would check her out the next morning, after which we would make a decision.
Difficult. I felt (still do) like shit. I had driven over my own dog for fuck sakes!!! Anyway, there are always a lot of if's and but's and if only's.... but the deed is done.
Got the call today from the vet at about 1pm. Pelvis basically shattered, and broken hip. Also, internal bruising. I called LuckyL, who was just getting on the the school bus to go with the drama group to Randfontein. He was doing the lights and sound for their stage show. I told him to get excused, tell the teacher he would meet them there, and go to the vets to say his goodbye. I then called SleepyK's mom, and asked her to accompany LuckyL to the vets. I was a longer drive away. As her offices are close by to home and the vet, it was simple for her, and she agreed. I then left for the vets offices.
I got there, and found LuckyL "chatting" to Snoopy. He was not a happy boy. I mean, she's been his pet for basically his whole life!
Anyway, after about 2 minutes, i asked the vet to administer the meds. Both LuckyL and I had a hand on Snoopy, who was lying there very calmly (read - doped up). And she passed. One last goodbye to a very special family pet. There will always only be one like her.
So, now Snoopy is gone. "Don't blame yourself Dad" says LuckyLsms he sent me last night (11.30pm) and again today when I drove him back to fetch his bike. However, I know I drove over my dog. And this killed her. I also know that she was very old, wouldn't have been around for very much longer I suppose.
Go well Snoopy. Say hi to Lobo and Kaizer for me. Thank you for picking us as your family, all those years ago.