Last night, my husband Billy, our youngest daughter Jacqueline, and I had to make the hardest decision a pet owner can make. Although to be honest, TJ made the decision for us. Over the last 3-4 days she has been eating less and less and the last 48 hours she has refused all food, which also makes it hard for us to give her the daily meds she needs.
My two dogs, TJ and Mini are sisters, miniature poodles from the same litter, and they celebrated their 15th birthday in April of this year. My mother bought them when they were 8 weeks old and she gave Mini to my husband & I as an anniversary gift. She and her husband Tony kept TJ. They named her TJ to combine their initials, Tony and Josephine.
At that time we shared a two family house with my mother and Tony so Mini & TJ were together everyday. Soon after we moved to Florida in 2002, my mother bought a house next door to us so again, they were together everyday and they loved running back and forth between our two houses. After my mother crossed over on 07/07/07, TJ came to live with us and her sister Mini.
TJ had developed heart problems last year and even with daily medication her quality of life started to decline in the last couple of months. She’s lost a lot of weight over the last month and she’s been eating less and less food. Over the last 48 hours she stopped eating completely.
Last night we made the decision every pet owner hates to have to make. TJ spent her last night in her home, surrounded by love, not only from her humans, but her sister and our one year old cat Mini-Me who she and Mini rescued last August when he was 10 days old.
This morning Billy and Jacqueline took her to our vet, a place she’d been going to for the last 12 years, even since we moved from NYC to Florida. My husband and daughter were with her as she crossed over, holding her and comforting her.
She brought so much happiness into our lives with her adventurous and kind spirit and we will always keep her in our hearts.
When our vet told us we could lay her to rest on our property or have her cremated my husband called me, and through his tears, asked me what I wanted to do. We decided to bring her home and create her final resting place in our backyard, a place where she loved (and I do mean LOVED), to chase the squirrels that invaded her domain on a daily basis.
Billy came home to prepare her spot, while my daughter & I gathered items to put in with her. Jacqueline wrote a letter to TJ from all of us, and we also included rosary beads and a butterfly which represented my mother. We wanted to sprinkle some of my mother’s ashes with her and we keep a smaller size of her regular urn for times like this.
Update: A few days after I posted this, I received the sweetest sympathy card from my vet. I just love them and they’ve been wonderful to all my pets.