On Friday, I had to put down another dog. This one was Genny, a fourteen year old schipperke. She had lymphoma. When one puts a dog to sleep one does so to end the dog’s suffering. That is only the reason you do it. It is a wretched process. If I ever have another dying dog, I will only do it if the dog is writhing in pain or profusely bleeding. Genny was neither of those things. She had stop eating on Tuesday and by Friday was nothing but skin and bones. She was living on my cuddles. Over the last two weeks I laid her on my chest a lot. She was never one to lay still for long, so this was special for us both.
Unfortunately, tragically, the euthanasia process was not reflective of a gentle falling to sleep. The vet at the clinic that day was not the one I had taken my dogs to for fourteen years. This vet was afraid of being bit. She had no confidence. She told me we needed to use a muzzle. I knew this was a bad idea. I should have gotten up and told her I would bring Genny back when my regular vet was there. But I didn’t.
Genny had never been muzzled and it put her a state of distress. The vet gave her a seditive via injection and it was painful. That coupled with the muzzle, threw Genny in a traumatized state. It scared the crap out of her, literally. I think it caused an instant stroke. Her body went limp instantly, her tongue hung out and her eyes went vacant. I could hear her breathing though. Only then did the muzzle come off for the rest of the procedure.
The only bright spot is I held her as she died. It was the least I could do for her.
The idea of controlling the death of the pet is just that, an idea. I chose this because I put my sixteen year old dog to sleep in late August and it was the compassionate procedure that everyone thinks of. That’s because a compassionate competent professional performed the procedure.
If the practitioner says to muzzle your dog and your dog has never been muzzled, do not do it.
Find another practitioner.