Oscar went over the rainbow last night at a little after 8 o'clock. This is his last picture. Don't look at me, I am an ugly crier.
I contacted my vet yesterday. She has been the best vet I have ever had and she is closing her practice. Don't know where I will go next. She only see patients on Fridays. I had resigned myself to waiting until Friday. I was okay with having him with me until then and keeping him as pain free as possible.
But, she was booked all day Friday and told me to bring him at 8 o'clock last night. I agreed, then had a total panic attack. I thought I had one more night with him. I was outside sitting in the grass while he stumbled around in the sunshine for a bit. I began talking myself out of the whole thing. He was walking in the grass, I told myself. He had not had a spasm in his neck all afternoon, he was getting better and we did not have to do this awful thing. He even wagged his tail when I held him like a baby and crooned his name. Why would I kill my own dog, a dog I loved so much. I often wondered if it was a sin to love an animal as much as I loved this willful, stubborn, handsome little dog.
I called my bestie, Martha. She would understand, because she loves her dogs with the same intensity. She talked me down from my hysteria. She even told me I didn't have to do it if I didn't want to. Thanks, Martha, I love you!!
I was hoping he would fall asleep and just slip away. That I would wake to find him gone, or come into the house to check on him and he would be gone. I have had three dogs leave the world while I held onto them as the vet did her thing. It wasn't awful and I was glad I was with them when they left the world. But this is Oscar. I have never loved a dog for so long as I have loved him. He loved me right back. I was his one and only person. He could be downright mean to others. I confess that I loved being his favorite.
It was 5 o'clock and I noted that I only had three more hours. I texted HeWho drives to let him know and picked Oscar up to cradle him in my arms and sway from side to side like you do with a cranky baby. I had interrupted his nap and he was not content in my arms, so I laid him down and found things to do. I washed the dishes and did laundry, all the while checking on him, kneeling on the floor and dropping tears on his head.
The other dogs stayed clear of us. They knew. I think we ate something. Then, all too soon, it was time to go. I wrapped him in a warm towel and picked him up. He snuggled his head into my neck and lay there, perfectly content. He had not done this in a long time and once again, I was doubting my decision. It takes awhile to get to our vet. She is out in the farmlands and not easy to find or get to. He rode all the way without a whimper of pain. When we parked, though, he started to slip down from my neck and yelp repeatedly. I had just repositioned him when the picture was taken.
He stayed in my arms as she shaved his leg and applied the tourniquet to find a vein and he remained in my arms as he left this world. I rode home again holding my precious dog. He is on his way to the crematorium as I write this. My bed felt empty last night. Even the cat is subdued. None of my furry babies slept in Oscar's spot last night. I found myself slipping my hand over to check on him in the night and that spot was empty and cold.
I know he is in heaven now. He will find my Daddy and they will have a nice nap together. I just hope he can refrain from peeing on the angel wings!