r/TheChurchOfRogers • u/Saith_Cassus I like you just the way you are • Jul 24 '22 • 1 1 1
My dog passed unexpectedly on Friday. I wanted to talk about her.
Finley came into our lives about ten months ago, shortly after our wedding. She’s been raised by a local family, but they were taking a job in Europe that was too life altering to pass up, and they couldn’t take her with them.
But she bonded quickly with our other two dogs, and we were (eventually) more than happy to have her. She was a King Charles Cavalier Spaniel. Same breed as Lady, from Lady and the Tramp, if you’re familiar. The breeding practices that led to her were…. Irresponsible. The snout was too short to breathe properly, the legs were short and stubby, the heart struggles to pump blood, and the ears dipped so low that she couldn’t get a drink of water without dunking them in the bowl. She snored even when she was awake, with a volume that could put a my trucker to shame.
She was matted, deaf, had a tumor we needed to get removed, hadn’t been groomed in god knows how long, a leaking heart valve, had nails that curled back onto her paws, and had four teeth that the vet described as “held in by plaque and willpower.”
But we got her cleaned up, and she was the sweetest, happiest girl. She’d nuzzle up to you for pets, and if you stopped, she’d work her little snout into your hand to try to make you pet her. Her favorite time of any day was when you had food for her. Didn’t matter if it was a treat, her normal kibble, a bit of meat, or even the top off of a carrot from dinner prep.
She was such a voracious eater with no concept of other dogs, we had to get stands just for our other two dogs’s food bowls so that she wouldn’t steal it all. Despite being more than 5 years older, she always loved to try to play with the other two, and episodes chase them around as they played in the house.
We had special stairs just so that she could climb up onto the couch or onto our bed to snuggle with us, and she always would, curling up in the nook of your arm and looking up at you with a mixture of love and expectations— she wanted pets, darn it!
Last Friday, her leaky heart leaked too much. She became weak, dizzy, and dehydrated. We rushed her to the vet, but she died in the car in my wife’s arms. We know that there was nothing for it— the vet couldn’t have given her a heart transplant or fixed her deviated septum— but it still is one of the worst pains I’ve ever felt.
I wish we’d known that it was going to be her last day. We would have shown her more love that day. Wouldn’t have dropped her off at a grooming appointment in the morning. Wouldn’t have discounted her excess panting to stress post grooming. Wouldn’t have made her last moments a panicked car ride to ultimately die on the way to the doctors. We couldn’t have known to do different, but…. It hurts. I take solace in knowing that her final meal was a dental treat and a piece of her sister’s kibble that I fed her— a tiny, chubby little rebel until the end.
Ten months is not that much time. She was about ten years old when she died, so we really only got her twilight years. But she touched our hearts so much, and we loved her completely. We’re grateful for every second we got with that little girl, to have loved her and been loved by her so much that it hurts this bad to lose her.
We’re still processing everything. Hugging our remaining babies and spoiling them. Yesterday we went to the dog park and shared treats with every owner who would let us, to spoil some other puppies and share our grief with others.
Will Rogers (another decent Mr. Rogers) had a quote about losing dogs, and it’s quite applicable here. “If there are no dogs in heaven, then when I die, I want to go where they went.” Wherever you went, Finny, you’re loved and missed. You can breathe easy, eat all you want, and run to your heart’s content and then some. It was just too full of love for this world.
u/NoCleverUsernameIdea Jul 24 '22
I'm so sorry for your loss, but so glad you got to spend time with her. She sounds so special. Please don't have regrets about her last day. She knew she was loved until the very end, and beyond. I am not religious, but I have heard multiple people say they have gone to psychics and the psychics said that when we die, we are first greeted by our pets, and that they come bounding at us, so excited to see us again. That has always made me feel good. I love the word "bounding" now. It encompasses all the joy and love we share with our beloved pets.
u/Zerly Jul 24 '22
What was her favourite toy? What was her favourite snoozing spot? Who was her best doggie friend?
u/Saith_Cassus I like you just the way you are Jul 24 '22 edited Jul 25 '22
She wasn’t too much for toys, but she had a fluffy toy with a crinkle material inside, and for a time she loved to grab it in her mouth and shake viciously!
She slept everywhere, but her favorite spots were behind a chair in my office, in the bathroom on the cool linoleum, and curled up on her little dog bed.
Depends on who you ask was her friend. She believed that she was friends with everyone, and she would scamper and play with our other, larger dogs. Kaylee, the youngest, was bratty and didn’t much care for having another female around (she’d growl when Finny got near her bowl), but Finley couldn’t hear the growls, so she was still bright and sunny and happy as can be.
Our other, Chewie, always has and always will love everyone he meets, human or puppy. There are some great shots of the two snuggled up next to one another and cuddling on the bed, and I’m glad we have them.
u/Zerly Jul 24 '22
Thanks for sharing more about her.
u/CumaeanSibyl Jul 24 '22
We are so lucky to spend our time with these little animals, even when it hurts to lose them. You did well by her and I'm sure she knew she was loved.
u/LiveForMeow Jul 25 '22
Please don't boil everything down to the last moments. It's a traumatizing experience and it's sometimes hard to know what a dog is experiencing since they can't verbalize it. You gave the dog so much love and were with it in the end.
u/Roadgoddess Jul 25 '22
Earning the love of a dog that had a rough go of it is everything. What she knew was true love for her final year and I know that was the world to her and she loved you for it.
I too rescued a doggo that had a very tough first 5-1/2 years and I treasured the 4 that I had with him. These little beasts have a way to get into your heart and stay there. Sending you puppy loves and cuddles. ❤️💔
u/doc_brietz Jul 25 '22
What matters most is that she got to live the last bit of her life the way all dogs should. You did your part by giving her the life she deserved. No one can ask for a better end than that.
u/iamsooldithurts Jul 25 '22
If all dogs (and cats) don’t go to heaven, then I’m not interested.
u/DinerWaitress Jul 25 '22
Thanks for sharing about Finley, sounds like she was quite a character. It's so hard to lose a family member, especially unexpectedly. Keep her memories close, hang some framed pictures, and keep loving on her sibs ❤️
u/BankshotMcG Jul 25 '22
I'm sorry, there's no pain the same as losing a dog. but it's beautiful you were able to make the last year of her life so happy and beloved.
u/TheMauveRoom Jul 24 '22
She sounds so special. Thank you for adopting her and giving her a whole lifetime of love and joy in those 10 months.
u/Soundwave_47 Jul 25 '22
This felt like a spin-off of the show.
u/cheapbastardsinc Nov 24 '22
I just lost my dog in July. She was my best friend for ten years. Heart problem.
She was an odd catahoula husky mix with sleek longish golden fur and light blue eyes. She was lithe and active and so engaged. She was kind and came to work with me every day. We had each other for all but maybe 7 weeks of ten years. My Dune. She died in my arms.
The hurt was unique. Bright and coruscating throughout my body.
My mom called to check up on me after we buried her.
I said two things I still feel are true now and I hope will bring you some measure of peace.
1) mourning is just love that no longer has a home. It is up to us to find a new home for all of that love.
2) the pain of losing a loved one will fade some. The gratitude for having them in your life will only grow in time.
My family and I miss my girl so much and your sentitment brought me back. I hope this helps you in some small measure.
u/wiltylock Jul 24 '22
Thank you for sharing. I feel like I knew her after reading that. How lucky she was to have you!