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Please don't say, it's just a dog

Discussion in 'Off Topic Threads' started by senior smoke, Apr 28, 2011.

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  1. senior smoke

    senior smoke Well-Known Member

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    Please don

    Almost every Saturday I drive North of Milwaukee to visit my 17 year old disabled nephew. I taught him how to shoot, as he shoots from a wheel chair. A couple weeks ago as we were driving to the gun club, he seemed down and out. I asked him if something was wrong?

    He has a dog that is going on 17 years old and his health and eye sight is getting worse. The dog may also be losing his hearing. He told me that his parents have been telling him that the time is getting near where they will have to discuss the possibility of putting his dog to sleep.

    I told him there is a special bond between a boy and his dog. I mentioned that this is life, your born, and someday we all die. I told him in my life time I have had three dogs, and the hardest thing I ever had to do was take them to the vet and say goodbye to them.

    As I was speaking I could see out of the corner of my eye that he had tears streaming down his check. I told him I have seen bigger and tougher man than me cry over losing their dog. I told him a dogs love for it's owner, is something very special that no one can break. I told him that losing a dog is part of life.

    As we entered the gun club we signed up to shoot. He went to use the facilties, and I was talking to a friend about the decision that has to be made about his dog. He said it's only a dog, he will get over it. I told him you obviously never had a dog. He said I never did. I said if you ever did, you would realize a dog is more than just a pet to someone. For 17 years, this dog has been a brother to my nephew. When no one at school would talk to him, or would make fun of him due to his disability, he knew he always had his dog to come home to and his dog didn't care that he had a disability. My friend said he didn't mean it that way. I said I know you didn't.

    This morning I received an email from his mother stating that they took my nephew and his dog to the vet this morning and the tough decision was made, as his health was getting worse. My sister in law requested that I make sure and come Saturday as he is taking his loss very hard. I told her I'd be there bright and early.

    Steve Balistreri
     
  2. recurvyarcher

    recurvyarcher Well-Known Member

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    Awww...I am very sorry for your nephew. It's not just a dog. I hate to hear when somebody's heart gets broken like that.
     
  3. bodybuilder

    bodybuilder TS Member

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    I had to make that decision a year ago. My best friend a cocker spaniel I had for 8 years was very sick. We went everywhere together, He was only 8 I felt cheated expecting him to be around several more years. he was suffering so bad I felt it would be selfish of me to let my best friend keep suffering just because i did'nt think I could deal with it so I made that hard decision. I buried him in my backyard in a special coffin with a headstone. I miss him everyday and it still hurts. i'm getting near 49 years old now and have been though alot as everyone has but that was the hardest day of my life!
     
  4. wolfram

    wolfram Well-Known Member

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    You never 'get over it'. You just move on.

    Be there for your nephew as I know you will. Give him some time and then when you think it is appropriate, take him to see a new litter of pups.
     
  5. Russ-in-Pa

    Russ-in-Pa Well-Known Member

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    Steve. I sent you a PM.
     
  6. senior smoke

    senior smoke Well-Known Member

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    I hate to say this but I have had dogs that I liked better than some humans. I have never had a cat, but I am sure people get close to them too. What I always liked and was also amazed about a dog is even if you have to scold them, they don't keep a grudge towards you. They are a very forgiving animal. Here is a short story.

    A friend of mine called me years ago and asked me if I would take his Basset hound? His daughter had allergies but asked me if it would be alright if she could see the dog anytime she wanted. I spoke to my wife and we agreed to take her. One day I come up with the bright idea to take the Basset hound pheasant hunting. This dog was like Cleo the Basset hound on the old tv show from the 50's. Don't think anyone will remember that show but the dog weighed 70 lbs, and moved slower than molasses on a cold January day.

    So I take my 870 with a skeet barrel on it, and take her hunting. I open the car door and she would not come out of the car. I pick up the big lug and she will not walk. I put some shells into my gun and she attempts to hide under my car. I finally get her out and she is now walking. Her legs were so short that she could not jump over the corn. She then stopped walking again. So here I am, walking with an 870, and a 70lb Basset hound in my arms taking her back to the car. Another hunter sees me carrying her, and he ask "did you shoot her"? I said no, I guess she is just not a hunting dog. I told my friend this story and he shook his head and said your a dumb sob.
    Steve Balistreri
     
  7. RickN

    RickN Well-Known Member

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    Lol...Steve I have two farmers sitting in my outer office and they just asked me whats so funny? Told them I was just reading something on the computor.
     
  8. Force Break

    Force Break TS Member

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    Steve,get him a copy of "The Rainbow Bridge" to read. It helped me and puts it all in perspective.
    I have walked in those shoes too many times and because I am a dog trainer and trialer I will get that rotten feeling a few more times before they put me down.
    Live Well
    Wayne
     
  9. senior smoke

    senior smoke Well-Known Member

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    RickN:
    I can laugh about it now, but at the time I wondered if something was wrong with her, as I read Bassets were good hunters???
    Steve

    Wayne:
    I will look for the Rainbow ridge.
    Thanks,
    Steve
     
  10. jimrich60

    jimrich60 Member

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    Indeed, he is not "just a dog". Animals frequently become much more than just pets. They often are, in fact, much like another family member and as such, are just about as important in the emotional ties many of us have to them. The loss of a beloved "pet" can be emotionally wrenching and should be respected as such. The main comfort to be gained, in that taking such action when your pet is deteriorating and going down hill, is that you are truly helping that animal to avoid long days of pain and misery, when the end is near and inevitable in any case. My heart goes out to your nephew over his loss, as I too have had to "have been there and done that"

    Jim R
     
  11. CalvinMD

    CalvinMD Well-Known Member

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    they are definantly not just dogs...they are our truest friends and love us when nobody else does...I hope he finds a new friend who helps fill the void
     
  12. mkstephen

    mkstephen Active Member

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    TEN COMMANDMENTS FOR YOU AND YOUR DOG


    1. My life is likely to last 10 to 15 years - any separation from you will be very painful.


    2. Give me time to understand what you want of me.


    3. Place your trust in me - it is crucial for my well being.


    4. Don't be angry with me for long and don't lock me up as punishment...You have your work, your friends, your entertainment... I HAVE ONLY YOU!


    5. Talk to me. Even if I don't understand your words, I understand your voice when you're speaking to me.


    6. Be aware that however you treat me, I'll NEVER forget it.


    7. Before you hit me, remember that I have teeth that could easily crush the bones in your hands but I choose NOT to bite YOU.


    8. Before you scold me for being lazy or uncooperative, ask yourself if something might be bothering me. Perhaps I'm not getting the right food, I've been out in the sun too long or my heart may be getting old and weak.


    9. Take care of me when I get old. You too will grow old.


    10. Go with me on difficult journeys. Never say, "I can't bear to watch it" or "Let it happen in my absence." Everything is easier for ME if you are there. Remember that I love you.


    I feel your pain. Michael Stephenson
     
  13. shooter99

    shooter99 Well-Known Member

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    Steve, PM sent
     
  14. Jeff P

    Jeff P Well-Known Member

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    I've had at least 15 different brittany's to hunt quail and pheasants with growing up...we always had at least two running around. They were special. and I'm man enough to admit I cried each time one died. I still do. I don't so much remember their names now...but I remember hunts and points and retrieves for each of them. Special places and good times.

    Its hard to get over a dog...but a new puppy always helps sooth the hurt.

    that's my suggestion. Get a puppy.

    The last thing they teach you is hard it is to let go....
     
  15. neofight

    neofight TS Member

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    I know his pain all too well. Clyde was, without a doubt the most loyal friend i ever had. He came into our lives as a pup , went through training like a champion and was at my side for most of his 14 years.I worked with him every night after work, building a relationship that endured and a sort of understanding between us. As the years wore on, his eyesight diminished, his hearing was lessened and he walked with a little more effort.

    It's been 1 year since that day when i had to say goodbye to him. Watching him struggle to get up or walk to me was more than i could bear. I will never respect any one who says to me: "he was just a dog". He was way more than that. It gets easier as time wears on, but you never forget that 4-legged creature.
    neofight_2010_010418.jpg
     
  16. senior smoke

    senior smoke Well-Known Member

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    neofight:
    You had a beautiful dog and friend. You were both lucky to of had each other. I strongly believe you will both someday meet again.
    Steve
     
  17. senior smoke

    senior smoke Well-Known Member

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    Michael Stephenson :
    Thank you so much, as I have never read that before. It is deeply appreciated.
    Steve

    Jeff:
    Down the road I will buy him another dog, should he want one.
    Steve
     
  18. g7777777

    g7777777 TS Supporters TS Supporters

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    Sorry to hear that

    Gene
     
  19. Setterman

    Setterman Well-Known Member

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    I was going to big shoot and decided to let my setter pup out before leaving. I opened his kennel door and let him run while I cleaned his kennel and filled his water bowl. I then loaded my truck and called the dog. He didn't come, but I could hear him barking in the field behind the shop. As I turned the corner, my 8 month old "hunter" was circling a skunk, while barking and jabbing at the critter.

    Despite my desperate calls for him to heal as I walked towards him, he continued till the polecat finally took aim and fired. Tucker, being a rookie in the experiences of aroma intraption, discovered this was not a pleasant event, and immediately started heading post haste toward the Omega male.....me.

    Dressed in my best shooting garb, and knowing I had to pick up 3 other guys for a one and half hour drive to the shoot, I decided it would be best to beat my pooch back to the barn. Did you know a 49 year old trap shooter can't out run a 8 month old setter?....even with a 50 yard head start?

    Tucker not only passed me, he ran over me, and when he got to the barn, we both discovered I had closed the Kennel door. You got it, I had to catch the pup, pull him by the collar into the kennel, and neither of us smelled very classy.

    Back to the shower for me, different clothes, cologne, after shave, etc. Garlic cloves could not cover the scent de le peu. My stench was not appreciated in the vehicle.

    Been 7 years, and the guys still bring it up at least once a year. Tucker is 8 now, and still likes to roll in deer shit.

    Dogs are good at creating memories.
     
  20. wireguy

    wireguy TS Member

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    Steve, I am 59 and I remember Cleo well. Some gal always did voice overs if I remember correctly.
     
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