Just saying her name makes tears well up in my eyes, and a lump in my throat. Those of you who have lost their dear pets know the feelings I am describing.
Kenya, the love of my life, after 16 1/2 years of mutual love, loyalty and affection was dying from kidney failure. How could that be? She was always strong, active, playful, didn't look her age. Naively, I thought she could go on for at least another 5 years or more, and then die peacefuly, at home, in her sleep. Instead, in the last few weeks she quickly took a rapid turn for the worse. The last few days before she died, her unchanging beautiful face began to look weak and drawn. Despite her frail weakness she still would respond to my call, looking up with her big beautiful green almond shaped eyes, she managed to respond with her sweet trying to please cry, even getting up on wobbly weak legs to show her unfailing loyalty in wanting to please me. What should I do? Maybe it's an infection, or a bad tooth that can be easily fixed, I must take her to the Vet. But what if it is something worse? They may suggest to put her to sleep. What should I do? I felt so helpless, I couldn't save her. I had to decide. Should I let her die at home? Or must I make the dreaded decision to have her put to death? Those of you who have been through this, you remember that feeling, don't you? "It is the right thing to do, merciful, otherwise she will die a painful death", the Dr. said. "She will feel no pain. We will give her a sedative that puts her in a peaceful sleep, and then inject her with a drug that will stop her heart". "No hope Dr?" I asked. "No, I am sorry", he said, his eyes welling up with tears. "I know how you feel, I had to put my dog, my best friend to sleep just a few months ago and he was ony 10 years old. I would have done anything to extend his life another 3 years, but I was only thinking of myself not him. I did the right thing for him by relieving his suffering."
So, with a pain so deep in my heart, and stomach we conceded. I hugged Kenya, kissed her, and told her I loved her. She was then sedated. I could not be present for the final blow of stopping her heart. I left the room. A few minutes later the Dr. came out with my Kenya in a box. We took her home, and my dear husband buried her in the back yard, her final resting place.
Ophilia too feels the loss of her big sister Kenya. After all she and Kenya have been together for at least 11 years. Whenever Kenya would be outside, Ophilia would cry at the side door to tell us, "let Kenya in," and as soon as we did Ophilia would rub up against her with a joyful cry. There were times they would be huddled together on the bed or couch, and at times they would have a spat, like most family members, but never held a grudge.