Photograph via snooOG

r/petloss is a community of support for Pet owners whose Pets have passed away. This is not a place to post lost Pet stories or any other news about Pets.

The Rainbow Bridge

Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge.

When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge.

There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together.

There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable.

All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigour; those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by.

The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind.

They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent;

His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster. You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again.

The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.

Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together

r/petloss is a community of support for Pet owners whose Pets have passed away. This is not a place to post lost Pet stories or any other news about Pets.

  • Rules

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All I feel is guilt. Just screaming into the void

It has been almost 2 months since this nightmare has begun. A quick look into my post history can explain what has happened. I have begun therapy and I’m ready to do what I have to do to heal. But my heart is still in so much pain and I live with unbearable guilt every day I’m alive that no one around me can truly understand.

But a new kitten has been presented to me. From a farm nearby. These people have several cats that live in their barn, and they are never neutered or taken to the vet. True farm cats. But this kitten was found in a wall in the barn, next to presumably his sibling who was already dead. No more than 4 weeks old, and none of the momma cats would claim it. They immediately reached out to my roommates mom who reached out to me. I am excited, as there is just a deep void in my life, and owning a cat simply makes my life better. If i don’t take him, he will just join the other cats. He has been socializing and indoors for about 4 weeks, and I worry about how he would adjust to outdoor life after being indoors for so long. I don’t know much about that, admittedly.

As much as I want and almost need this, I have next to no confidence in my abilities to care for this little kitten. It goes without saying that I will NEVER repeat my same mistake I lost my boy to. But deep in my heart I am pained with the knowledge that I failed my boy. I did not protect him and I couldn’t save him. I was so dissociated from my day to day life that living life in a complete haze was normal for me, and gave me massive consequences. But my only goal was to make sure he always felt love from me and didn’t have to know a life where he wasn’t loved. I still have love to give.

And i just can’t help but continuing to justify my decision to take this kitten. The guilt the guilt the GUILT is unlike anything I’ve ever felt before.

1 Comment
06:03 UTC


The spot of carpet where he’d nap doesn’t smell like him anymore.

We are approaching three weeks and I’ve blocked off the area to preserve the smell. At night I lay there talking to him. It’s all I have left of him and it’s gone.

I’m hurting so much it feel like I’m drowning.

I miss him. I miss him. I miss him.

1 Comment
06:03 UTC


My dog was hit by a car today and died

My sweet lil guy was hit by a car. He was an Aussie shepherd. He would have turned three in September. We had him since he was 8 weeks old. The sweetest dog I’ve ever met. He only had love. We were excited to see him grow and mature even more. I can’t believe we won’t get to see him tomorrow. I can’t sleep. My biggest fear is he was in pain and scared when it happened. My husband was there immediately and held him until his heart stopped. I feel that we failed such a gentle and young soul who needed our protection. His favorite food was apples and yogurt. He always had a sweet tooth. He was so gentle yet brave when he needed to be. He absolutely loved training and learned so quickly. He was hungry to learn and be the best companion he could be. The worst part was looking in his eyes and seeing nothing. I cut some of his hair off before we said goodbye. I took the curly bits behind his soft ears. I could have pet those ears for hours and I did many times. I just pray so so hard for my little guy that he is at peace and knows he was loved. Every cell of his was loved by us. The mama bear in me desperately wants to know he was not in pain or afraid in his final moments. Thank god my husband was there to hold him.

1 Comment
05:37 UTC


I think my dog is dying

I had her before i could even walk and now im pretty much about to enter my 20s she was really the only thing i had most of my life keeping me intact i got her around the age of 1-3 she was given to me by a mom’s friend she, was around 2-4 years old and i grew up with her and shes always been by me even when i was homeless and going through some tough sh*t. Fast forward since Saturday shes been just sleeping not even eating and walking much and when she goes to poop it looks like a half diarrhea redish color. I pretty much know now that any day I’ll wake up with her gone and i dont know how I’ll cope with that. I have no one else in my life realistically. I just wanna know how ima get though this in the least painful way or how to grieve this loss. I get that she is old as hell and its her time but i really feel as if i could have spent more time with her and this hurts more than anything physically. Worse I’ve never felt like this.

1 Comment
03:45 UTC


Feeling guilt over losing my cat

I am feeling guilt over having to put my cat down on Thursday.

Recently, we got another cat to help with her separation anxiety. We got the cat about 3 weeks before we had to put her down. The cat we got had been in a shelter for 3 weeks, and had been treated fully for an upper respiratory infection upon arrival to the shelter and was cleared of it. We isolated the new cat for a week when he got into the new home. Our old cat got sick about 2 weeks after bringing the new cat into our home.

We had taken her to the ER on Sunday of last week and they prescribed an antibiotic and appetite stimulant for her fever and lack of appetite. The vets didn’t know what was wrong with her/what was causing this even after doing blood work.

This Wednesday we brought her in again because symptoms had gotten worse. It was bad. She was diagnosed with sepsis+pneumonia and/or cancer+a bone marrow disease. The vets were not able to tell us the cause of this even though we have them a full history of our cat+cats the sick had interacted with. We chose humane euthanization because there was no way she would have survived and we didn’t want her to pass alone.

I am feeling guilty. What if the cat we brought into the home gave her the pneumonia and that coupled with the bone marrow disease is why she passed? This could have been avoided if we didn’t get the new cat. I am feeling so guilty. But the thing is the vets did not suggest this was the case.

Would the vets have told us if they thought the new cat had transmitted an infection to the sick cat? Shouldn’t they have found it through the bloodwork? How can I reframe my thinking to give myself grace so I do not feel so guilty?

1 Comment
03:29 UTC


Cancelled autoship today.

My little Nugget Puppy ate a prescription dog food for weight loss because she was a little chubby.

I found a piece of her food that she left all over the place when she ate. She was a messy little lady.

Finding it reminded me that it was on autoship from chewy.com.

Canceling was so hard. I know she can't eat it anymore. But little things keep popping up that remind me that she's really gone.

It's so hard. I cry every time I talk or think about her. I hope soon I can talk about her without crying. I want to remember her and smile because she was my best friend.

01:37 UTC


Lost my sweet boy today. Feeling guilty and broken. Vent

Today my 12 nearly 13 year old cat passed away. He was one of our farm cats. He lived in our shops and was a great mouser. He had a bad accident in 2017 where he was run over by a truck but he miraculously survived and since then he came inside the house more because he had to be fed a soft diet and bowel movements monitored and he slept in the garage attached to our house, but he had free roam outside whenever he liked.

Over the last week my dad noticed he had been peeing more often but nothing else out of the ordinary. He killed 2 birds last week! Then two days ago my dad noticed he wasn’t eating as much which was unusual he loves his special food. Then he didn’t see any poop in his litter box. This morning he tried to walk all the way across the farm yard - my dad was worried he was leaving because he didn’t want to be around the house while sick. So he rushed him in this morning and the vet felt a large mass in his abdomen on exam. They did an ultrasound then said we could spend time with him until 1 when the vet came back from lunch to get the results. I was able to get there around 12:20 to see him. He was meowing at me, snuggling his head into my chest. His meows sounded different. And he wasn’t purring and he always purrs when being held. Then my dad noticed his tongue sticking out and thought he might be hot, so I set him down to take the blanket off and his leg splayed out in a very weird way and he wasn’t standing up. I picked him up immediately and I started to panic and my dad got the vet tech. By the time it took for the tech to come in he had passed away. He wasn’t struggling or anything and he slipped away in my arms against my chest. I wanted to wait for the vet to tell us the results anyway so we held him and cried. When she got back she was shocked he had passed over lunch hour because he was acting normal before. She said he had a large liver tumour that was pressing on his kidney so that explains why he was peeing more and not pooping over the last day. She said primary liver tumours are rare so he likely had a different primary and it was a metastasis. After his accident in 2017 he had a hard time grooming himself on the back end so he would get mats. He hated us cutting them or brushing him so we didn’t do it very often. Then of course we take him to the vet today and I’m just horrified that he had mats on his tail and hind end I just am mortified and devastated that it looks like we took less than good care of him. :( after he had passed I wanted him to look his best for his send off so I went to cut the mats off with a pair of surgical scissors and as I was cutting off the biggest one on the underside of his tail I accidentally cut his tail and could see the tendon and he bled a bit. I started wailing and saying sorry and buried my face in his fur. I feel so awful about that and thinking about it makes me want to puke.

I feel so guilty we didn’t catch this earlier and I feel like we let him down. I know he wasn’t suffering until just these few days but still I feel awful. I can’t believe no one felt his tummy mass when petting him… he had a prolonged “cat cold” last year and we didn’t take him to the vet and I wish we did because maybe it would have been different. As he was a farm cat we don’t usually take them in for regular check up only when something is wrong but I feel just awful since he really became more than a farm cat to our family.

I know that I am getting comfort from the fact that he was very loved by our family. Our dogs loved him and they would often cuddle together. He loved cheesies and he got treats all the time because he was always a good boy. After my dads workday was done he loved to come inside and sit on anyone’s lap and purr and knead. I am also getting comfort that once I arrived he was at peace and knew he was okay to pass once I was able to see him, hold him and tell him I loved him and thanked him for all his years of companionship. I really feel that he waited just for me. It is a different type of traumatizing to have a pet die in your arms but I’m getting some comfort framing it that way.

I’m not even sure what I’m wanting with this post. Maybe just validation that I’m not an awful person or pet owner, condolences, similar stories, etc. thank you if you read this long.

01:25 UTC


It hurts.

My older dog is only ten but his health has declined immensely and we are discussing how to put him down. It’s. Just. Hard.

00:23 UTC


My 8 month old kitty abruptly passed away, the grief is real, and I need to express it…

November of last year, my husband and I lost our first ever pregnancy about 11 weeks in. I struggled terribly with morning sickness and dehydration. Turns out the baby was missing a chromosome. After my DNC, I was an absolute wreck. I needed a distraction from this nightmare.

A few weeks later, my mom let me know her close friend needed to re-home a sweat little black and white tuxedo kitten. Although we already have 2 grown cats, I’ve been itching for a third. Even before the pregnancy I was casually searching for a kitten to maybe save from an old parking lot or the side of the road like all those TikTok’s. I knew this kitten was meant to be and I immediately said yes, we would take him into our home.

We took him home with us right around Christmas of 2022. Bowie is what we chose for a name and it fit him so well. He was an oddball cutie psycho kitty. I loved it. He brought life back to our home. Our 2 cats grew to love him so quickly. He was so soft and had a big personality with his little tuxedo style fur. He was also super affectionate. When he was small he would curl up in a ball and lay right on my chest. He would nuzzle my chin and would rest his little paws against my face. I would smother him with kisses and he would just take it. Even as he grew into a more full grown cat he would cuddle up in the same spot. He was bigger and heavier, but I still would gladly let it happen. He followed me everywhere, would wait by the door for me to get home from work, and never left my side. My little shadow.

This past Saturday (6/4) was like any other day. The three seasons porch was open for our kitties to spend time in and my husband and I were watching TV. All of a sudden, we hear Bowie yowl so loud, and then again. My husband jumped up to see what was happening and Bowie just collapsed in his arms. As soon as called for me, I knew something was very wrong.

Bowie was laying limp and wide eyed on the couch where my husband moved him. He was making gasping/choking noises. I looked down his throat and saw nothing. I pumped his little heart and gave him small rescue breaths until his body seized up and he went still. Pupils as black and wide as ever. We quickly placed him in a cat bed and noticed blood coming from his mouth and nose and that was it. He laid there motionless in his little bed, stained with blood. I checked his pulse, listened for a heartbeat. There was nothing. I feel like I saw the light leave from his eyes.

My husband and I yelled his name, screaming for him to wake up. I’ve never sobbed so hard in my life. Our baby was gone.

During everything my husband tried to call an emergency vet but literally every one that was close to us was closed. We felt absolutely helpless to help our baby boy. We had no clue what caused this and that thought still bothers me now. Did he eat something that got tangled up in his organs? Did he hurt himself internally somehow? I hate that we won’t know.

Instead of taking Bowie’s body to a vet, we opted for an at home burial. We wrapped him up in a soft towel and kept him in the bed he passed in to make sure he was comfortable in the after life. We found a spot for him in our backyard where we can visit whenever we need it. The pain of this event is still so fresh but we are trying our best to remember how much happiness he brought into our lives while we were at our lowest.

We love you baby Bowie ❤️

Thank you for reading and allowing me to share my feelings after a horribly traumatic event.

1 Comment
00:22 UTC


Dealing with guilt over loss of 3 year old pet rat

Hi all,

I lost my 3 year old pet rat last night while doing a very routine abscess draining and it has devastated me. I am trying my best to process my emotions and decided I would make an acct to post here. Reading past posts of similar experiences has helped somewhat with coming to terms but it still hurts and I can't stop with all of the what if's and bargaining.

For some background, I spent most of my college years interning at vet hospitals and shortly worked as a vet assistant after graduation. I am familiar with lancing abscesses and flushing etc. It was also in college where I began to keep pet rats (my first pair were from one of our labs, and they were very well loved by my entire family.)

My 3 year old pet rat who passed away last night was adopted back in 2020. For those who don't know, the average life span for a rat is usually 2 ~ 2.5 years, so he was already long lived. At age 3, he had a blind right eye, a chronic respiratory infection that he was on meds for, a mystery lump in his inner leg, a reoccurring groin abscess, hind leg degeneration, and overweight from his lack of mobility.

Despite all of his ailments in his old age, he was still rather spunky, had good appetite and even though he spent most of the day sleeping, he would still be alert and want attention late at night.

About 1 month ago, his reoccurring groin abscess had opened, and I had helped drain and flush the abscess. He had 4+ abscesses over the span of his life, all of which I had helped lance, drain, and flush. Each time his abscesses would heal wonderfully and even if he squirmed during the process, he would always lick my hand afterwards as I pet him and let him know he did so well.

Yesterday, I noticed that his groin abscess had returned again for the 5th time and it had opened, even if it was a small opening. I was on the fence about whether or not to drain it, maybe thinking I would wait another two days to see how it'd progress. At night, I decided that since I was going to change his cage anyway, I would just go ahead and help drain the abscess so that once his abscess was drained he could go rest in his nice clean cage for the rest of the night.

It was suppose to be like the other 4 times I've had to drain his abscess. He was supposed to live. Sure, he would squirm a little and maybe squeak a bit from it because it's not fun, but we were going to get the pus all out and flushed clean and he was going to be all abscess free and clean and rest in his nice clean cage, and we'd wake up tomorrow to each other's bright faces. This was his fifth abscess, it was going to be fine. It was about dime sized, smaller than the previous ones he's had in his life.

This time, I also finally had my dad home to help me with holding my pet rat for the abscess draining. This was going to be a lot easier than last time when I had to do it all alone.

My pet rat had just gotten done with his prep soak. He wasn't happy but I got him quickly dried off and everything was set and ready. Things were going the way they did normally before. My dad was restraining him fine, I didn't think it was too tight of a hold at all.

We had a hiccup where the entry wound to the abscess had healed up just from the span of morning to night, and I wasn't sure if we should continue, but the skin next to the entry wound was showing signs that it was ready to open, so I figured we'd be fine lancing.

He squirmed a bit erratically and we gave him a quick break as we went to get a lancet. I remember just petting his face and telling him how good of a boy he was... he was snuggled into my hands.... I look back at this as one of my "what if" moments.... He seems calm enough again, so my dad holds him again and we try to lance, but he is not having any of it, so we decide we will just stop and wait for the abscess to open again on it's own. I'm quickly disinfecting the area again and drying him off, he is kicking a little, but we have him unrestrained and I'm petting him and telling him he is so sweet and such a good boy and did so well.

As I'm petting him I suddenly see it. I see the light fading from his eyes and it hits me. His body is limp and he's now taking his last breathes in my hands as I was praising him and petting him. I start calling his name but he's gone. We try CPR.

I am in complete shock. He wasn't supposed to die. He was so strong for his age. How could he die? This can't be. The whole thing wasn't even 5 minutes. And I feel the overwhelming devastation and guilt.

What if I had just left the abscess alone? What if I had just decided to call it off at the break we gave him? What if I didn't have my dad helping me, like maybe he wouldn't have squirmed as much if it was just me?

I have been non stop crying the past 24+ hours. I did not get any sleep last night.

My boyfriend is an ICU nurse and he has been trying to console me. He told me older patients pass away all the time from bearing down too hard. Something about the movement causes older frail hearts to go waghhhh!!! and fail. He told me how could I have known? If we had known, we would have never tried to lance. Our pet rat was also so old with so many other comorbidities... his hind leg mobility definitely reduced some parts of his QOL (he wasn't able to groom himself as well, I had to help him groom, and he had trouble with a few things but was still happy and interested in food), he was already at the age where we didn't know if he'd be with us the next morning.

But it still sucks. It still hurts. I still feel so guilty. That wasn't the way I wished for him to pass. I didn't want him to pass from a heart attack while we were trying to drain his abscess. I wanted him to pass all snuggled up in his favourite box, next to his favourite wheel.

I looked at other pet rat forums for anything similar and found another devastated rat parent who had lost their pet rat when the vets were trying to aspirate the abscess. Their elderly pet rat couldn't handle the stress and passed at the vets, they also didn't even get to lance it.

I looked at the vettech subreddit for how others have handled guilt when losing a patient, and I saw comments from people who had similar situations happen. They're treating their own pet the same that they'd treat any patient for something routine, and bam... next minute their own pet is gone. Also so many other comments of vet techs losing elderly patients just from restraining or just the stress.

I keep trying to tell myself the positives, that it was good that he had passed at home with people he knew and loved. I know when he was squirming it wasn't because he was squirming out of fear towards us. He NEVER EVER attempted to bite my dad or I. He was only squirming because the procedure is just uncomfortable. If he was at the vets, he'd be so scared and screaming just from being handled by strangers. He was too old to be sedated and at least from my experience we have never sedated for abscess lancing + draining + flushing when I was working in a clinic...

I keep trying to butterfly effect the whole situation.... but my friend told me that who knows what other thing might have possibly caused him to die?

Like what if we had successfully gotten the pus out? He could have still passed away after draining and flushing... He could have easily had an heart attack while we were removing the pus...

I'm just.... I don't know.... I want forgiveness from him. I want him to understand and know that we never were trying to harm him out of ill will or evil. I was only doing what I thought was right at the moment. We were only trying to help him. We only even attempted because we thought he was strong and healthy enough to take it. If we had known his little heart was going to give up, I would have never tried. I would have just treated it like his inner leg mystery lump...just left it alone.

I didn't expect to be without him today. I expected to see his cute face peeking at me through his cage bars, begging for pets today.

I don't know who I want forgiveness from anymore. Maybe I want forgiveness from myself. I feel so bad. I feel like maybe I'm just trying to make excuses for myself.

At least we have new house rules when it comes to 3 year old pet rats now:

- All ailments are to be monitored / palliative care.

- Any squirming while being handled, the rat will be released ASAP

- If QOL is deteriorating, then only intervention is vet visit for a euth.

- Any abscesses will be monitored and err on the side of waiting to see how it progresses longer. If abscess pops with a reasonable sized opening, then I can gently aid in draining and flushing.

I'm thinking about my other almost 3 year old rat a few years ago... he had a huge cyst on his hind quarters that had opened... I remember helping clean out the cyst for him... he squirmed and cried a bit because it just hurts / isn't fun...but he didn't heart attack and die on me while I was helping him... he passed away a week later after his cyst wound had healed up nicely.... it was at least easier to understand that he had passed away from old age and that I hadn't directly caused it because the cyst had already been extruded and the wound cleaned...

I hope I can at least sleep a few hours tonight.

Looking at his photos makes me cry so hard. He really lived such a long life!!! He had a lot of ups and downs in his life. He lost his littermate at 1.5 years, was a solo rat for a year, was introduced to some baby rats and seemed to be well integrated for 3 months until the babies became hormonal teenagers... he lost vision in his right eye from one of the babies and he was then put into his own solo cage for his own safety since the babies couldn't play nice anymore. He had hind leg degeneration that got pretty bad about 1.5 months ago, he was actually a little depressed a day or two from his lack of mobility but perked up again after he had time to get used to it.

He was a very shy rat when he was young. I felt like he was definitely more of a rat rat instead of a people rat if that makes sense, so I was so worried when his littermate passed. But he quickly became a people rat and he loved me so much, loved snuggles, loved it when my dad would play with him. He absolutely loved my boyfriend. He got to see my boyfriend the day before yesterday... he was so happy, came rushing out to greet him. He was a great shoulder rat and absolutely LOVED his wheel... he unfortunately lost the ability to shoulder ride and wheel run as his hind leg degeneration progressed...

He wasn't supposed to die last night. He was supposed to spend another month or two with me... he was supposed to pass away in his sleep after a day full of naps, food, and love. I feel like I took all of that away from him, from us. I'm trying to reconcile with the two parts of me right now. The rational part that is understanding what others are telling me and the emotional part of me that just is still so devastated. I miss him so dearly.

If anyone managed to read the whole thing, thank you for your time.

00:05 UTC



I know it's only been about 2 weeks, but I find I'm still incoporating Luci into most of my routine, and it's all still so thoughtless it seems like common sense to me. I still consider her in everything I can bring myself to do, which admittedly hasn't been a lot since she passed. Like, I need to make my bed this way to make sure the blanket is there, at her favorite spot. I need to put this cord here safely so she won't try to chew on it. I have to refill the bird feeders outside her window soon so she can bird watch. And then I realize that I don't need to do any of that.

I'm still can't believe she's gone, I guess. I don't think I'm going to get used to her absence any time soon, like my friends keep telling me I will. I still wake up every day expecting her to be nearby and to come sit next to me and purr when she realizes I'm awake. She doesn't. I miss her so, so much

00:05 UTC


My dog died today

He had hermangiosarcoma that spread to the lungs. I’ve cried so much I’m numb now. I look at his empty collar and leash. I look at his still full water bowl. We put him down to end his suffering. He wasn’t eating, had no control over his bowel movements, breathing was difficult, vomiting blood, and couldn’t even walk a step. The vet also agreed that it was time. We didn’t even know if he would last another day so we rushed to the nearby vet, carrying his body.

I can’t get out of the fact of how quick it is. Barely ten seconds after they administered the final injection, his heartbeat stopped. You can really see the difference between dead and live eyes. There was nothing in them, and worse, no matter what, they wouldn’t close. His eyes had rolled upwards and were dead. When I laid him in my lap, his body was entirely limp. Like an inanimate object. Nothing. Just two days ago his tail was still wagging.

We went into the vet with our golden which we raised since he was a puppy and came out with nothing. What’s even more unfair is how young he was. He was only 7. It feels like another layer of pain as he still had so much life left in him, but his body let him down. All over our house are pictures. There are more pictures of our dog than all of us combined. We get pillows and stuff with his face, I learned how to do digital art to draw him. He was and is family.

His fur was darker along his back and curlier on his behind. The fur on his ears always stuck out a bit. The way his butt wiggled when he walked. The way his nose twitches. Whenever someone let him, he’d lean in with his entire body like a snake curling around a branch. He’d sit right there or go up to strangers and sit down to ask for pets. He was the epitome of sweetness. His entire personality was sweetness. He’d never be aggressive at all.

We watched him grow thinner and his face began to sink in. Now we won’t ever play fetch with him again. There’s never gonna be another dog like him. He won’t ask for yogurt or fruit, he won’t go to the dog beach, we won’t see him paw at the water like it’s dirt. We won’t see the way his ears perk up when he sees a squirrel or the non subtle way he tried to creep up on them with no success.

We had him his entire life, he was supposed to live for so much longer. It’s so unfair. We didn’t think we would run out of time. He was still so young. There was still so much in him. But holding his body, seeing those lifeless eyes that wouldn’t close, eyes rolled upwards, completely limp, gone in one minute…it was like holding a shell. I can’t forget it. No one warned me about that part, seeing the body after death,

Rest well, my beloved golden. I’m sorry we couldn’t give you a longer life. We’ll always, always love you.

22:28 UTC


She's gone

Her name was Helga, she was the second dog I ever had in my life. Metis of a european shepherd and some other breed we don't know. She died 22 hours ago, in a car on way to the hospital. Vet promised she'll be alright. He freaking promised it few hours before that.. She had a severe case of pancreatitis from food poisoning, ate something she shouldn't during one of our usual walks. I promised her I will protect her once I took her from the shelter, as a puppy and young dog she was abused by her owners and had a lot of health issues, she would crawl all scared if you raise your voice even little bit, she can be in the backyard and I'm speaking loud on the second floor of the house, she'd crawl all the way to my room and ask for forgiveness for something she never did. Poor soul didn't know that you can be angry for anything apart from her. I've skipped the walk the day before, had let my brother to walk her out, and I wasn't there, in the car when she took her last breath and died in a delirium. I miss her so much.. I don't know how to continue on living, I can't do anything, anything at all. I just wish I could notice something was wrong before it was too late, I just wish I was there with her in the car, she didn't die alone.. that gives me some comfort, but I wasn't there, I never said goodbye. I will never see or hear her again and this kills me, it shattered me on so many levels. I didn't know I can feel such immense pain, she taught me.
I'm an atheist, but I will do anything just to get a chance at meeting her again, in death or whatever it takes. This poor soul didn't deserve such a death after all she went through.
I just hope that she's well, I can't stand thinking that she is gone forever, if there's nothing after death I lost her forever, because I didn't notice her eating something during a walk. I want this nightmare to end. KMP.

1 Comment
21:13 UTC


guilt of just continuing life

it’s been 4 days since our best friend passed on.

my gf and i work from home but ‘returned’ to work today. i’ve barely done anything. i rescheduled meetings and told people i need some time to get back into the groove of things. my gf has been more adaptable (to getting work stuff done) but her job is a little more high stakes than mine.

but besides that, i just feel so guilty. i don’t want to move on. i went outside and felt how beautiful it was out. i know Keegan loved this weather and he should be experiencing this right now. i bought a new blanket from Target and thought how much he’d love to fall asleep on it. everything we do reminds of us him. which is great & shows his impact on us, but heartbreaking at the same time.

we were 2 months away from moving. we specifically picked out a new apartment with both our dogs in mind. we live in a high rise now, which Keegan loved, but i was so excited to see him explore our new place. it’s double the size, has a deck, and is on a cuter street.

we went even as far as breaking our lease early to move in ASAP. i had an anxious feeling in me of “i sure hope Keegan makes it to our next place” for months. i anxiously crossed our dates on the calendar & was so excited it was only 2 months away! surely nothing would happen between now & then?

wrong. and i’m so devastated. everything just feels so void of joy. i have another dog (Clooney), but it’s not the same. Clooney & Keegan were 2 peas in a pod. they loved to snuggle and be with each other. they essentially resolved each other’s separation anxiety when we were gone too.

i know Clooney and my gf need me, but i just don’t want to move on without our Keegan. i’m not suicidal, but i honestly wouldn’t be opposed to falling asleep tonight & having the 3 of us go together and join Keegan. i know that’s morbid and selfish, but i can’t imagine our lives just “moving along” without Keegan.

i’m angry, hurt, remorseful, depressed, at peace (that i get to fall asleep with his ashes next to me every night) all at once.

20:56 UTC


Dog grieving after loss

I use to have two dogs one was about 8 years old the other one is 2. On Mother’s Day I had to put down my older dog. The day after he passed my younger dog seemed like he didn’t notice his brother was gone, typically he whines or whimpers. We thought everything was fine until I started noticing he just isn’t himself. He’s barely eats, he’s been hurting himself when he’s alone and he doesn’t really play with his toys or us as much as he use to. He’s been sleeping a lot and just wants to follow me or my bf. We’ve tried getting him more toys and giving him a lot of attention and treats and walks but it just doesn’t seem to be getting better. I don’t know what to do and I’m scared for my pup.

20:45 UTC


It's been nearly five months, I'm still in so much pain.

It’s been almost five months, but I still feel like everything is wrong. I’ve read so many stories here of pet loss from other owners here throughout those months too. I’ve felt so much in relation and common empathy with so many others here with how painful the loss still feels. It just doesn’t feel like it’s ever going to go away. I’ve lost pets before, I’ve lost family members before, but losing Charlie, my cat, my best friend… has hurt me more than anything I’ve ever felt.

I want to preface that I’ve been going to therapy regularly on a two to three week basis with a psychologist to help with some of these ongoing issues and other things that continue to go on, but despite everything I’ve talked over with my Psychologist, nothing seems to really help ease the pain or loss. Frankly, I’m not sure if anything will, other than maybe over time I’ll just learn to live with the pain. In my most recent session, we made the common consensus that after how much I’ve read and shared (indirectly) from reading so many of your heartfelt stories about your animals and how painful your own loss has been, that I would find a way to muster the strength and try to share about what I am going through since I’ve lost Charlie.

Charlie came into my life as a nine year old cat, but she was small enough to look like a kitten. I found out that she had a rather horrible past, but I couldn’t have been more lucky that she was coming into my life. She had just gone through a rather arduous process over the past two or three years of being nursed back to the health through the combination of a foster home, a veterinarian, and a local shelter to recover from acid burns that her former owner(s) subjected her to and other abuse for no reason at all. The foster home that she was staying at had a change in home environment and had to have a situation where she needed to be adopted immediately and a friend of my immediate family told me of the situation, I needed a friend, and I stepped up to adopt her. I never even knew of all the details until later. I didn’t know when I was going to have her adopted, but I came home late one evening, to have a family member in my apartment, holding her — telling me the words I’ll never forget for the rest of my life. ”Charlie, it’s time to meet your new best friend.” She was being held up in my family member’s arms and soon she allowed me to hold her. As I said before, she looked so small, she looked almost like a kitten. She happily let me hold her despite not knowing her very much and already she was purring. I was immediately in love.

The two of us within days became inseparable. She was always sitting next to me on my desk, she was laying on top of me napping with me (I’m chronically Ill and disabled), and whenever I had my frequent nightmares she learned to come over and cuddle with me, purr loud, or even how to wake me up when they got too severe. She always would purr as loud as she could to try and make me feel better. I honestly couldn’t explain how much everything she did, the little small things even beyond that, that she did on a daily basis meant to me, even though she already transcended being a pet to me. She eventually even became blind about a year and a half ago, despite all of that --- we managed to adapt lifestyle in the house and she remained the happiest cat in the world. If there was one place she could always find no matter what time of day or night, it was my room. It was always being with me and she could always feel when I was having nightmares, anxiety attacks, or anything in between. She'd come rushing to me and always try to make things better. It was something in common I feel we both had and she could sense it and didn't want me to go through it. I'd see her have nightmares sometimes too and I'd pet her, or sometimes wake her when they were too difficult. She'd purr just knowing I was there, or before I was blind, knowing I did that for her. She always felt better knowing she was safe and with me after.

Unfortunately, everything good didn’t last forever. I wish it could've. I wish I could just almost have my life on repeat again and again. This January, after having her for roughly 4 and a ½ years, she unexpectedly got very ill out of nowhere, and I had to take her to the vet’s. I knew something was very wrong and I had been crying for hours even before taking her. The day had been snowy, cold, and the vet was so backed up with COVID protocol I was in my car for hours just holding and hugging her. It was almost as if some kind of “fate” knew that it was my last day with her and I was having as much time possible left to hug and hold her, before I was going to have to make the hardest decision of my life.

When I finally got in to see the vet and talk about what was going on with her, they did present me with options. But, the options didn’t seem very good, after their examination where for one of the first times in my life, the Vet almost seemed to hint to me that it didn’t appear that the other options were almost favorable compared to… the obvious alternative. Normally, it has always been the Vet Techs who have told me other plans or things to do that have been more frugal with my fixed income, even if I had a family member there with me that day to help me if things had taken a larger financial turn. The Vet explained that she had roughly lost 5 pounds in less than 4 months, she had nothing in her colon, and other symptoms that I… honestly cannot even recall anymore because when she said some of them I started to almost blank out at the severity of the situation. I was being offered to do blood tests or other things to “guarantee” that’s what we were dealing with instead of guessing, but she had essentially diagnosed what was going on without doing so formally. I was devastated. Beyond devastated. I had to make the decision to put my best friend down, something that shocked even my family member that was there with me, that I was capable of saying and doing. I’ve blamed myself ever since, that what if there was some way, somehow to save her.

I loved Charlie more than anything in the world. When I say this cat was and still is my best friend, I mean it. I woke up in the morning with her being my world. I still wake up in the morning looking for her. At night, I still wait for her. During the day, I see things out of the corner of my eye and I think it’s her. I rarely want to go in my living room anymore because she used to lounge on chairs, couches, or sit in front of the sliding glass door. I’ve sat here retyping so much of this, crying, and still find myself unable to move on. I don’t know what to do or where to go. But, I finally have gotten enough courage that I wanted to talk to you all and share my own story, like so many of you have shared your own, whether early in grief, somewhere in between, or wherever else. Thank you for helping me muster the courage. This helps make me feel that she still has more meaning and that she’s not being forgotten. The most important thing that to me has ever come across into my life and made such a difference, that I never want to lose that impact. That will always be in my heart and I never want to lose. Thank you anyone for reading this. It helps more than you know.

20:17 UTC


Regret not going to emergency straight away

Does anyone else regret so much not taking their pet to the emergency straight away? Thinking maybe they would be ok until the morning, only for that to not be the case, and feeling so stupid and selfish for not going when it was so obvious

19:35 UTC


I hope this is ok to do here…

It’s been two months since my little boy left us, and although it gets a bit easier the pain is still at times unbearable. But even though I don’t want to call it an anniversary, I do wanna take the time to share with as many people as I can just how beautiful my baby boy was, and how the highlight of my life thus far has been having had the honor to be in the presence of a creature who just loved to love, that never left my side when I was sick or down, just the most perfect little guy that I was not deserving to have gotten to be their owner because a dog like him deserved only the best, and unfortunately he got stuck with me but he still loved me and my whole family so much and I just wanted you guys to see him. I know some of you will think he looks scruffy or you may think he’s not that cute but he was the most beautiful dog I’ve ever met and I miss him so much and I hope that even with him gone he can still make people smile like he did when he was around. I hope this isn’t breaking any rules and if not then thanks for letting me share my little boy. I’ll always love you Shadow, I know when my time comes and I take in my last breath, you’ll be the first one there to greet me and I won’t leave your side ever again. RIP mi bebé


18:50 UTC


Seeing little girls with their pets is breaking my heart

I hope those kids are smarter than I was and I hope they're taking their pets on all the walks they want, sharing all the toys, feeding them all the treats and taking all the pictures they can. I hope they're never teasing them and I hope they have no regrets.

Most of all tho I'm jealous. In few days it'll be 5 months since my baby boy died, at 6 months it'll be the longest we've ever been apart and when I'm 40 he'll be gone longer than he was alive. And I still can't believe that it happened and he's truly gone this time.

1 Comment
17:25 UTC


My childhood dog passed away on Friday and I’m not handling it well.

Hi, I (23F) lost my childhood dog on Friday. We had him since before I even started high school and I am not coping well because of how he passed and feeling like an awful person because I couldn’t afford to take him to the vet.

On Friday I showed up to my parents house because they called and said our childhood dog was barely breathing and hiding under the porch. Him being under the porch wasn’t unusual because it was his favorite hidey hole but when I got there and looked under the porch I just broke down. He was laying there, staring at me with flies on him and ants and I felt like I had failed him. I still do. He was 9 years old but I wish I could’ve done better. I wish I had the money to take him to the vet and to get him seen regularly…

It was traumatic for all of us. My dad and brothers sat outside crying and wondering what to do because he was a massive dog (Great Pyrenees) and we didn’t know how to get him out from under there.

After an hour my dad had to call a friend over to help get him out from under the porch and made my brother and I go inside. After all of it my older brother told me he had to go under the porch to try and get a rope around him to pull him out and our dog snapped at him and then passed…but my younger brother and I heard a noise and we were stupid and went to look out the front door window and my brother started sobbing and yelling at me not to look but I had to..he is my little brother… they were pulling him out from under the porch and he was biting the rope but the rest of his body wasn’t moving and my mom told me they had to shoot him to end his suffering…(we live in a very rural area..no vets around) and I was consoling my brother while sobbing myself and saying “they are hurting him. Tel l them to stop!”

But we didn’t go back in the living room we stayed in his room and played Fortnite honestly to not think about it….but as you can tell by how ridiculous my sentences are I CANT STOP thinking about it and I posted this in another sub asking for advice and they kept saying we were just abusing him. And his final moments we abused him… I just I need help coping.

I want to know if he knew how much we loved him and we did everything we could for him and if we hurt him by doing what we had to do and if he is mad at us?

I am really trying hard not to cry at work it is just eating my up inside. I hate it. I knew he was going to go one day I just wish it wasn’t going to be as fast as it was and- I don’t know what to say I just need people to talk to and support..

17:20 UTC


Advice needed for dealing with first day back at work

Thank you to everyone who so kindly commented on my previous post. ❤️🙏🏼 I've been ambivalent about things since Mel passed, and took a few days off to deal with it all. But I'm kinda going back to work tomorrow. (I wfh, so it's still work even though I'm at home), and I'm filled with anxiety.

The thought of dealing with people, phone calls, texts, emails, work - it's stressing me out so much I'm afraid I might have a panic attack. I'm afraid I might lose myself and snap at someone who talks too much or a client who nags me (regarding work again). I don't know if I have the patience to deal with forking idiots when my baby just died. Any advice would be much appreciated.

17:06 UTC


Said goodbye to my 12 y.o. dog this morning

Her name was Tia and she was such a good, brave girl. She was a brindle lab-pit mix. She never complained but I could see in her eyes that she was tired. The cysts on her skin and in her lungs were making it difficult to walk and to breathe. I got her from a rescue at a few months old; she was born there. She had a great life except for the allergies and chronic skin issues. She declined quickly - what started as soft fatty tumors quickly grew in size and density. I knew she probably didn't have much longer, but was taking her to a specialist this evening for one more opinion, a little hope to cling to. But I couldn't let her suffer any longer, even just for the day, and got her in to her regular vet first thing this morning. The vet agreed that it was time. I was with her until the end, and walked out with just her collar and leash in my hand. It hurts so badly but she was so tired. She was such a good, brave girl. I love you always Tia, thank you for being my dog 💗

16:32 UTC


The shock and not knowing why.

Hi, all. We lost our beautiful Golden Retriever (4.5 years) on 26th May in a really sudden way. No signs or symptoms that she was unwell at 8pm that evening (the last time I saw her.) She was running around the garden as normal and in good form. I went out for an hour and my dad came over to take her out for a walk at 9.30pm and she had passed away in the house. She was lying just as she normally would to sleep and nothing else amiss, her eyes half closed.

Has anyone else ever had this happen? We were too distraught at the time to seek an autopsy, but the not knowing what happened to her is really hard. 😞

16:13 UTC


He's really gone. Forever.

Sorry I've been spamming this subreddit - I still seem to be consumed entirely in my grief and I find some solace in letting my thoughts out. I will be the first to admit that I'm young and I've never lost anyone close to me in this lifetime. Losing Cookie was the first time I've truly experienced death. I've been deeply upset over romantic breakups but this is so...different. I wake up every morning with the knowledge that he is gone forever. There is absolutely nothing I can do. Nothing I can do to bring him back, to touch his soft, wavy hair one more time, to give him one last kiss on the head, to hold him one last time in my arms. The permanent state of death is overwhelming to me. This is the first time in my life I'm experiencing grief and it feels like it will never end. For every hour that I feel like I might be okay again, my grief comes back two hours later with vengeance. My old man dog seems to know that I'm hurting extra bad because he's been extra cuddly with me and now I'm scared of the day that I will lose him too.

15:59 UTC


I feel like I made the wrong decision and it’s eating me alive.

I put my 12yo lab down a few days ago and I am just crushed with no relief in sight. My worlds been flipped upside down. He started to get a little snappy and aggressive (although never towards me) and with him constantly limping, and after a few minutes of walking, that limp would become pretty severe. Combine that with slipping and falling down stairs frequently, there was fear of him really hurting himself.

He was still eating/drinking/going potty and looked happy for the most part so I never thought it was that bad but the wife and I just couldn’t agree on what path to take. After some weeks of thinking and watching him, we made the call to put him down. She stays home with him during the day so I really tried to take her opinion into account but it is just killing me now. I miss him so much and constantly wonder if the right choice was made and if he will forgive me.

I think about if we didn’t put him down and he still wouldn’t be able to go on walks, to the lake, go camping, to the dog park, car rides or anything due to him limping and him not liking other dogs right off the bat.

I don’t know. I feel like I let my best friend down. I miss him so damn much.. 💔💔

13:58 UTC


My Beloved Cat passed away and i can't accept it

He was such a good boy. The most lovable cat ever. I still remember the day i went picking him up, cuddling him in my arms until we got home.

He passed away yesterday, all of a sudden... He looked so healthy and was only 9 years old. I'm far away from home so i couldn't even give him a last caress and a last kiss. I will never forget how soft its fur was, it was unbelievably soft. I feel so bad for everytime i accompanied him out of my room because he was too noisy... i pat him a lot but i feel like i should have done it much more now..

I just can't accept it. I love him so much and i will never be able to tell him again, i will never have him running around the house to catch me to get some pattos. I'm devastated and i feel like a part of me has died, and gone forever. I can't get past the fact that i couldn't say goodbye to him.

I really needed to write something about him because i'm so heartbroken that my chest feels like it weighs two tons...

I will love you forever Dexter. I hope you knew it. I hope there's something after death and that you can tell how much we love you. I'm sorry for every missed cuddle opportunity. You were an incredible cat, companion and friend.

Goodbye my little fur brother. Rest in peace.

13:47 UTC


Putting my dog down on Friday

Just like the title says, my wife and I are putting our almost-17 year old puggle down on Friday. Over the last couple of years it’s started to seem like he was developing dementia, difficulty hearing, and he’s lost the ability to go to the bathroom on his own. He doesn’t really enjoy playing with any toys anymore and has no interest in going for walks with us. His legs have also gotten really stiff and he struggles to get up and down the steps on his own and he can’t jump up on our bed or couches anymore. There are days when he seems totally fine, aside from having no more control over being able to go to the bathroom, but overall he seems like he is tired and not himself anymore.

We’ve done our best to provide the best nursing to him that we could between changing his diapers and carrying him up and down the steps when he needs help, but it has recently become incredibly difficult to give him the care he needs after having our second child a couple of months ago, in addition to our four year old son. He has kidney disease and a UTI currently but it doesn’t seem like his body is totally shutting down, though our vet has said even with intervention it will only be a matter of time before he gets sicker. So between that and the decline in his overall quality of life, we talked with our vet a few weeks ago and made the decision to put him down this Friday, so we could make the most out of the rest of our time with him. At the time it felt like it was forever away, but now it’s only a few more days.

I’m not really sure if I’m posting this to try and help myself with coping through this process or just am looking for someone to validate our decision. I have been a wreck about this, especially for the last couple of days. He’s been with us for 15 of his 17 years and has been around for so many significant milestones in our lives.

In making the decision to end his life, I feel like I am letting him down, like we are making the choice more because he is too much of a burden right now rather than what is really best for him. And I guess that really is part of the reason this is happening, but I feel too ashamed to admit it. I am also very nervous and unsure of how to talk to our four year old about why he won’t be around in the house anymore.

I will miss him and love him forever, and I will never forget every good thing he taught us and brought into our lives.

1 Comment
13:38 UTC


17 year old family dog,

Our family dog, Eclipse, a border collie/lab, that we have had since she was a puppy, will be laid to rest today at the vet. I was told on Saturday what the family decision was. She is almost 17 years old. I’m a complete mess. I’m sad because her little buddy, a 3 year old boxer named Dira, that my sister has, is going to wonder where she is at. It took Eclipse some time from being the only dog for several years to suddenly now having to share her space. She fully and completely bonded and warmed up to her. Just watching Dira snuggle with her, lick her face even play fighting, especially with their age difference, was so sweet. My siblings would call me ‘Eclipse’ because they said we looked alike. I have an actual fraternal twin sister but they’d say Eclipse was my actual twin since we looked more alike.😂 I remember coming over to my mom’s a few days ago and I was so taken aback seeing her sunken eyes and her spine protruding from her back. She used to love food so much and was stocky with this cute little walk. She wasn’t always making it to the bathroom and there were pads over the floor. I know it was due to her age but it still broke my heart. She still mustered the energy to greet me at the door and follow me around a bit.
Eclipse’s last walk into the vet, her last breath and not coming back out, hurts so much to think about. I don’t want her to be scared or sad. Knowing she won’t be in pain or suffering helps but not enough to offset or level out my other thoughts and emotions. I don’t know why I’m taking this so hard. I have cried so much to where I have a headache. I can’t sleep either. I’m assuming anticipation grief? My baby 😞

11:28 UTC



My family got a cat several years ago, after a couple of years he left and never came back. He was unhappy, the cats next door would bully him, he would come back after fights. I was young, and I didn’t know what to do, my mom said he was happy, he preferred going off on his own. We saw him a couple times over the next year, left some food out for him and tried to get him back so we could at least find somewhere happier for him but eventually he stopped coming. I didn’t grieve, I was convinced he was happier. We haven’t seen him in over a year now, I’m older and I’ve moved out but now my mom is moving. And I think it’s only just hitting me. I don’t know what’s happened to him, I don’t know if he’s even still alive. I’m clinging to the hope that someone kind took him in but it’s killing me not knowing. I really don’t know how to cope and I don’t think the feeling will ever go away because I don’t know what happened to him. I’m sorry I couldn’t give you better Splodge. I’m sorry.

1 Comment
11:20 UTC


To those who lost a pet months or years ago and are still subscribed to this sub, any words of encouragement on whether the grief gets better with time?

We’re sending our baby to heaven tomorrow. I’ve lost two dogs before, but it never gets any easier.

I don’t know if I can handle the journey of grief again.

10:34 UTC

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