A sad day here…

This is very different from my normal posts so I apologize in advance.

Today started like most summer days.  I slept in.  I gave the dog her thyroid meds.  I had a little something to eat and then went for my every 3 months blood work.  The kids were watching tv, reading, and generally having a summer day.

Nikita, our 12 year old Siberian husky, was moving from floor vent to floor vent like usual.

Now, she hasn’t been doing great lately but I’ve attributed it to her age and her thyroid problem.  We started giving her thyroid meds about a month ago when she had some major skin issues and then got very lethargic.  We thought it might have been the antibiotics she was on for the skin so we took her off those.  Since then she has had good days and bad days.  This morning looked promising but then when T wanted to get a picture of her she didn’t want to lift her head.  I just figured it was a bad day.

We already had an appointment for blood work for her at 1 to check the thyroid levels since she’s been on meds.  She wasn’t excited about the leash and I had a hard time getting her in the car.  By the time we got there the tech expressed concern at how she looked and the fact that she had lost a large amount of weight since we were there a month ago.  She asked if it would be ok to have a vet examine her.

The short version is that she had late stage cancer.  There was fluid in her belly, her oxygen level was low, and she was in pain.  I accepted that ok but when I asked how I would tell when it was time for her to go and the vet started with “Well…..”  That’s when I lost it.

I brought her home.  The kids said goodbye.  My parents came over to say goodbye.  While we were home she started shaking and couldn’t stop and started having trouble walking.

She went peacefully with Mark and me by her side.

I am incredibly sad and will be for some time.  In the July 2011 Self-Care Retreat Shirley talked about taking care of yourself through relationships and she added pets in there.  Nikita was definitely a part of the better things in my life.  She was funny and loving and even though I complained about the dog hair, I will miss her terribly.

 I suspect the first snow of the season will be hard for me this winter.  But I know I gave her a good home and loved her as much as possible.  Sleep well snow dog.  We love you and will miss you.


22 responses to this post.

  1. Oh, Jen, I am so very, very sorry about Nikita. She was such a beautiful dog. I’m so glad everyone got to say goodbye. Losing a beloved pet is so incredibly hard. Please take care of yourselves.

    My heart goes out to you all! Big hugs,


    • Thanks Shirley. I knew things were getting bad but I don’t think I realized how bad. It was incredibly difficult to say goodbye but she was ready.

      Originally the vet kind of didn’t want me to take her home but I knew we all needed to say goodbye. The vet was simply worried she would get worse and she did. I was impressed with how the situation was handled. While it doesn’t take the pain away it makes it a little easier.


  2. I’m so very, very sorry 😦 I have a precious dog, and I know how much it must hurt. I’m praying that God will comfort you during this loss.



    • Thank you so much Peggy. I am comforted by the fact that she is no longer in pain. Watching anyone we love in pain, whether human or animal, is very hard.


  3. Posted by stefanie on August 18, 2011 at 7:01 PM

    I am sorry you have to go through the loss of a beloved pet. It is hard but you will always have good memories of Nikita. It is hard to see them go but it makes it a little easier when they are given a good life and go peacefully.

    My thoughts are with you and your family.


  4. I’m in tears, feeling your pain. Hugs.


  5. I’m so sorry to hear this 😦 It sounds like Nikita was definitely just like another person in your family. Losing pets is so hard, it’s just as hard as losing a family member. I lost my dog a year ago, he had a thryoid disorder and took a turn for the worse with cancer shortly after. Apparently it’s a precursor in a lot of cases. Again, I’m so sorry to hear that you had to make the decision and lose Nikita, but she would have lived a bit longer in a lot of pain and that would have been so selfish. I’m glad you all got to say goodbye to her 🙂


  6. I am so sorry that you had to say goodbye to Nikita. It sounds like you 2 had an amazing relationship.


  7. I am so sorry Jen. Please take care of yourself. Hugs.


  8. I am so sorry for your loss. Dogs become so much a part of the family. Their love is known for helping us through some of the darkest of times. I have an almost 11 year old siberian huskey and your loss deeply touches me…. I hope that you are able to grieve fully and deeply and emerge on the other side soon ready to share that special love with another furry friend.


    • Thank you so much Stephanie. The funny thing is that when she came to us almost 9 years ago we wanted a small dog. Someone at Mark’s work was looking for a home for her and I said “A husky??” She ate stuffed animals and had to have her stomach opened up and fluff removed (twice!) so she became our $2000 free dog. But she was part of our family and will be missed terribly. Enjoy every moment with your husky.


  9. Jen, my heart is just breaking for you right now and I have tears running down my face. We lost one of our Wheaten terriers very suddenly a couple of years ago and now our other one (her brother) is almost 12 and has cancer. We are just waiting for when we will know the right time to let him go. I am sending you and your family huge furry hugs right now. I am sure your sweet snow dog is romping through huge fluffy white piles of it right now.


    • Thanks so much Kim. I am so sorry for your loss and what you are going through right now. Knowing when to let go is so very difficult. I find myself occasionally questioning yesterday’s events but I know in my heart she was in pain and ready to go. May the decision, while not easy, not cause you too much more grief. It definitely sounds like he knows he is loved.


  10. So sorry for your loss. I understand how heartbreaking it is to lose a beloved member of the family. We had to put our twenty year old cat down this year due to illness and the hurt never quite leaves. Be gentle with yourself. It will always hurt, but it does get a little easier with time. Take good care of yourself as well; right after we put Oscar down, the stress led to a horrendous flare for me which sure didn’t help. Peace to you and yours.


    • Thanks Jackie Ray. Last night my knees were swollen which has never happened before. I’m trying to be kind to myself but I am one of those people who often push themselves too hard. I am so sorry for the loss of your cat.


  11. […] I decided to be gentler with myself.  I have had a wonderful summer of fun and laughter with some sad moments mixed in.  But I truly believe that life is meant to be lived.  I wouldn’t want to miss out […]


  12. […] done a lot of baking and cooking and enjoyed my first Vegan MOFO.  We lost our beloved Siberian Husky Nikita and welcomed the sweet mutt Skylar to our home.  We found out that T has a wheat intolerance as […]


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