These pictures were taken during the last weeks of Ben’s life.
Gone but never forgotten. I will always miss Ben, as I miss all my past dogs. Ok I admit it I am a big softy where dogs are concerned and especially my dogs.
The last few weeks was a trying time for us as well as Ben, but he good naturedly accepted what was happening to him and knew I was trying to help.
I took him to the vet first as he was not himself and seemed shaky on his feet. To me it was obvious something was wrong. but it was to vague for the vet to pinpoint and they asked me to get a urine sample first thing the next morning which I did. I waited while the did the results and asked me to bring Ben in for a blood test as it looked like he had diabetes. The blood test confirmed he did indeed have diabetes and the vet asked me if I was prepared for the commitment as he would need to be on insulin for the rest of his life. Without hesitation I said I was, and I began working with the vets to bring his sugar levels down, I would do the bloods and pass the results on to the vets and the vets would adjust his insulin levels accordingly. It was coming down.
But he had lost the use of his back legs we had to carry him into the garden so he could wriggle around and do what he had to do. This was no life for a Labrador as they are an active breed. I then had to wash him down before carrying him back into the house. We only had one warm day where he was with us in the garden all day.
He began to feel pain, there was nothing I could do to ease that pain and I hated to see him in pain. I told the Vet and the vet asked me to bring him in and he diagnosed a physiological disorder where his brain just didn’t know what his legs were doing. I would have carried on with him despite the pain if once the diabetes was under control he would regain the use of his legs. But the vet had found his legs could not support his weight and had severe doubts he would ever walk again. None of us know what caused this problem. but the result was I could not keep him in pain for no good reason. So crying like a baby I asked the vet to take the pain away and I cuddled him and spoke to him till he was gone.
Its not an easy thing to do, But I had to be with him at the end as I have been for all my dogs.
The vet asked if they wanted them to make the arrangements and I said yes. Did I want the Ashes? No. To me the ashes were just ashes. Ben’s body was just an empty shell without his life force within it. And his presence had left his body and he is now free of pain and hopefully meeting up with his past family.
The house is now very empty, but I feel his presence is still with me. I didn’t think I would be having another dog. I have had Labs and lab crosses for the last 40 years and I can not now cope with a large breed like a lab, particularly when they are not well.
At 61 and suffering with COPD I would have to have a much smaller dog.
You are out of pain now my Ben. I miss you terribly, rest in peace my faithful friend.