AAAHhhhhhh.....I wasn't going to post to this thread.... I knew it would be too emotional to do it, but finally decided maybe it would be good for me.
One of my wolf shepherds (yeah, I know, I said I wouldn't mention them any more...) my heart and soul dog. When he was seven years old, we found hermangiosarcoma of the spleen, I actually found it myself, stroking his side one day--I could feel it. So he had surgery before it ruptured, although the two vets who did the surgery said they couldn't get it out in one piece, they had to take it in halves. When I came to take him home the next day they asked me if I wanted him to have chemotherapy. At the time I was going to struggle to make payments to them for the surgery, I knew there was no way I could afford chemo for him.
The next 5-1/2 months were great--he healed fast and had so much fun and energy, I realized that he had been ill for a long time and I had missed it. He was like a puppy again.
After those happy months he began to cough. The cancer was back in his lungs, and there was nothing we could do about it, it was too far advanced. My vet told me to take him home and enjoy him for as long as we could, and we would know when it was time.
I took my boy's huge head into my arms and promised him I would not let him suffer. I would know enough to take him back before it was too late.
One morning I knew. I just knew it was time, yet I told myself I had to wait a couple days, I had to be sure...
That was on a Tuesday. Friday I took him in to my vet, and his eyes showed the pain he was in. I had broken my promise to him, it was in his eyes. Yet he was so stoic--if it was possible for a dog to be forgiving, I could see that in his eyes, too. I cried so hard as the life drained from his body, and I cry now, 31 years later.
I have never forgiven myself for breaking that promise to him.