Monday, March 26, 2012

A Final Goodbye to Juliette, 3/9/07-3/20/12

Last Tuesday we said our final goodbyes to Juliette Rose Halpern. She has lost her 5 year long battle with kidney disease. She was the best farm dog a person could ask for. She was a careful guardian of her flock, a loyal gardening enthusiast, and a great younger sister to Khma.
Her troubles started a few days prior. Julies stopped eating and was barely drinking water, and she loved water! She would just sleep all day, barely moving. She didn't even really want to go outside.
We tried managing her fluids at home. 
It was no help. On Sunday after vomiting multiple times that day, we had to take her to the Emergency Vet Clinic. They ran blood tests and her kidney function was the worst it has ever been. They kept her overnight to give her IV fluid therapy, antinausea medications, and antibiotics.
Regrettably we said goodnight and left her at the Emergency Clinic overnight.
The next day, she wasn't much better. We took her to our regular vet to continue the fluid therapy.

She was able to eat a small amount of food after we covered it in baby food.
They rechecked her kidney function in the afternoon and it had barely improved. We decided to take her home and spend some precious last time with our baby.
She didn't have a lot of energy, but the time spent was well worth it.
She even slept at the head of the bed all night in between Kelsi and I, which she has never done. After Julies layed with us for 12 hours in the same spot without moving, we knew it was time. She felt so poorly that she just urinated in bed rather than getting up. She was also nauseous most of the night and kept swallowing to keep from throwing up.
We offered her a last meal of boiled Organic hamburger, thanks to Kelsi's mom.

She enjoyed every last bite. Licked the bowl clean.
We let her have the window in the car open most of the way to the vet, even though it was freezing. She loved it!
Putting her down was just awful. It was the most terrible experience one can ever experience as a pet owner. She went peacefully with Kelsi, Khma, Dr. Megan, and myself at her side. We brought her bed in to lay on for the procedure. It was very hard, but eventually we left her. She stayed on her own bed until the cremation service came to get her.
The vet gave us a clipping of her hair and paw print as a momento of her life.
Kelsi spent the next couple tearful days making an urn for Julies. It was a plain wooden box that Kelsi painted, and then covered in photos of Julies and us.

We got her ashes back on Friday. We put them in the bottom of the box along with her collar, hair clipping and paw print. We miss her more than anything. Life just isn't the same without her. I feel weird working outside without her following me around everywhere. It is a strange and uncomfortable feeling not having her at my side anymore.


6 comments:

Poppy said...

I'm so sad to hear of the loss of your baby. My heart goes out to you both....

Inky and Molly said...

how very sad to learn of her passing but it looks like she had the best time with you before she left...be strong!

Alex said...

I'm so sorry! I cried when I read this. I know how much this hurts.

Mr. H. said...

So sorry to hear about your loss...she lived a very happy life with you.

Mama Pea said...

I just found you through Poppy's blog. So, so sorry to read this very sad, but beautifully done, post. I cried all the way through it. We lost our 14 year old Zoey (Pudel Pointer) close to a year ago. We still think we hear her or think we catch glimpses of her out of the corner of our eye, but thinking of her no longer so readily brings tears and sadness. Keep all those wonderful memories of your good dog. It's easy to see what a wonderful life she had.

JeffJustJeff said...

I'm so sorry. You were all very lucky to have each other. Wrap yourself in the good memories. They'll get you through. I'm giving my dogs an extra hug tonight for Juliette.