Sunday, March 09, 2008


Martha and I thank all of you who expressed your condolences over the passing of our little dog Punkers. It’s been a tough five days—no, a really rough five days—and it seems like time has slowed down to a stop.

Molly, our terrier mixed-breed, is grieving too. She isn’t playing or eating (her two favorite things), and she sits by the door waiting for her buddy to come home. I can’t very well explain to her what happened, so she’s been getting a whole lotta extra love and tummy rubs instead.

Molly, waiting for her buddy

We got a nice card from out veterinarian assuring us that we did the right thing for Punkers. There is always that seed of doubt after telling the vet, "Put her to sleep," but this poem is reassuring. No, it isn't high art, but screw high art—this is the kind of poetry that moves me.

If It Should Be

If it should be that I grow weak,
And pain should keep me from my sleep,
Then you must do what must be done,
For this last battle cannot be won.

You will be sad, I understand;
Don't let your grief then stay your hand.
For this day more than all the rest,
Your love for me must stand the test.

We've had so many happy years—
What is to come can hold no fears.
You'd not want me to suffer so;
The time has come, so let me go.

Take me where my needs they'll tend
And please stay with me until the end.
Hold me firm and speak to me
Until my eyes no longer see.

I know in time that you will see
The kindness that you did for me.
Although my tail its last has waved,
From pain and suffering I've been saved.

Please do not grieve - it must be you
Who had this painful thing to do.
We've been so close, we two, these years—
Don't let your heart hold back its tears.

Author Unknown

We love you, babe


Lola Magnolia said...

Charlie, thank you for the mention! Now will you tell Schwartz to stop raiding the litter box?! Blech!

Lemme' tell you something about euthanizing one's pet - it is the kindest thing one can do for them. I remember when we first moved here and my neighbors had a dog that was blind, dragging one leg behind him and had tumors all over it's body and yet they refused to put him to sleep. I realize these pets become part of the family and it's hard to imagine life without them but there's no excuse, in my opinion, for making a pet suffer. You gave Punkers a great life, be happy for that.

Charlie said...

LOLA: Every responsible pet owner knows that euthanasia is inevitable and that it goes with the territory of owning a critter.

We knew an old couple in Denver who were the same as the people you describe—they let their poodle suffer instead of themselves, which is pure selfishness.

It is for them that the poem was written, but they probably can't read either.

As far as Schwartz raiding the cat box, I'd say that's one less shitty job for you. Just don't let him sneak up and kiss you.

Stinkypaw said...

Thanks for the mention, I appreciate it.

As for your decision, for having taken the same one over a year ago, I know. It wasn't easy but I couldn't stand the thought of seeing my little pooch suffer either. That was the best way we could show our love for our furry babies.

Thank you & Punkers will be waiting...

Mary Witzl said...

I know what this feels like, and how awful it makes you feel even when you know that it is the right thing to do.

I come from an animal-rescuing family. We were infamous in the neighborhood as the people who took in all kinds of animals (we had 21 cats once and three dogs once); in time, people began dumping their cats and dogs on us. We had so many, that it was inevitable that this would happen more than a few times, and it hurt every single time.

It sounds awfully schmaltzy, but I am convinced that I will one day meet all the cats and dogs I have lost on some different plane.

Rhonda said...

the final act of love between a pet and its person is often the hardest choice to make.

Have no doubt that when a new pooch enters your life, Punkers had a paw in in the picking of him/her.