Friday, February 19, 2010

Follow Your Instinct

I have a friend who is going through one of the most difficult times in a pet owner's lives.  She is making the decision of when is the right time to end the life of her best friend.  She has written me a note and asked for my opinion because she is having a hard time getting a straight answer, and she knows that I have been there many times.  I say what I say about everything else; you need to follow your instinct.  I told her that if she is asking me the question, chances are it is time.
Many of us, myself included, have learned to second guess our "sixth sense", you know, that feeling you have that tells you when something is right or wrong.  Kids have it, mothers have it when it comes to their kids, and even animals have it.  So, why as humans do we over-ride it?  Because of fear.  Fear that we are not going to make the right decision, fear that we are not going to make everyone happy, fear that someone is going to judge us for the decision that we did make.
You know that old saying that hindsight is 20/20?  Really if you look back (at least when I do, for sure) don't you always wish you had followed your instincts?  They are almost never wrong!  So when it comes to questions of utmost importance, you need to trust yourself and not listen to your fears or worries.  Sort things out in your mind; what is your heart telling you and what is just worrying you?  Go with the heart every time and you'll never lose!

In loving memory of Spike the cat and Lucy Rabbit.  Believe it or not, Lucy enjoyed this attention from Spike!

PS I do have a recipe for sick dogs that I used that I passed along to my friend.  I have to laugh though because the kids call it The Dying Dog Mixture.  It actually is good to get any ill dog through a rough time, but it can buy you time with your dying friend as well.  Make rice with broth (chicken or beef) without all of the junk like preservatives and add cooked ground meat.  If your friend is very ill, start with rice only in very small meals (1/4 cup max per feeding) and gradually add meat.  Serve to the animal slightly warmed.


Mishaun Search said...

Oh what a great picture of Lucy! She was literally the best rabbit! She was just like a dog, wasn't she?

About when to say good-bye, I have made the mistake of waiting too long and watching the final suffering of a painful death and I will never wait that long again. Although we have the instinct of when the time is right, we usually wait for a bigger "sign". The signs can be very small. The instinct will be there, but we also have a big part of us that goes into denial when we deal with death. Be careful that it is not your own denial that is holding on!
We have said good-bye to many good friends and it is always tearful and painful! Have peace with your decision.

Daisy said...

Having a thoughtful and caring vet helps, too. He/she can often gently advise whether the time is right or treatment will be helpful.
I love the kitty/ bunny picture!

lfhpueblo said...

Been there twice in the past. I agree with you, you do have to follow your instincts. If your animal is suffering, or has been so ill that they haven't ate or drank in days I feel they are giving you obvious clues.

Tiffany said...

Thank you for this, Judy... I talked to Dylan tonight. We are not quite there yet, but you, and Dr. Curt, and Amber are helping me through. I knew we had to be honest with him about what was happening, and it was actually therapeutic - justifying to an 8 year old what we were going to do actually helped me sort it all out for myself. Ug. It's freaking horrible. But I sure do appreciate your support. You're a good friend, Judy. You're always thinking of someone else...