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It was all my fault...

Posted by: Gayle Nicholson Posts: 1 - Joined: Wed Jul 18th, 2012 10:08 am

#278 - by Gayle Nicholson >> Wed Jul 18th, 2012 10:21 am

I'm not expecting any sympathy for admitting this so I'll understand if you want to kick me out. I can't get over the dreadful guilt I feel for my beautiful girl being put to sleep last week.

She was always picking stuff up when we were out for walks and it was a battle to try and get whatever it was out of her mouth. Rotties have such strong jaws and Hera would sometimes just swallow whatever it was she'd found so I couldn't get it. I'm absolutely convinced I know the moment she ate whatever it was that killed her. I was there and I didn't try to take it out of her mouth, all I did was jerk the lead a bit and say "no". She swallowed it and a week later she was dying from a perforated bowel. My best friend had to be put to sleep before her time because I didn't do anything to stop her.

I should have done something but I didn't and now she's dead and it's my fault.

I don't know what to do...
Posted by: Shailen Posts: 100 - Joined:

#279 - by Shailen >> Wed Jul 18th, 2012 01:42 pm

Dear Gayle,

I know it is very hard to do but you really must try and not blame yourself. Assuming that whatever Hera ate on her walk was the cause of her perforated bowel, this situation that you find yourself in is one that many dog carers dread. And I include myself in that. I got a rescue dog last year and he is always darting about sniffing everything and occasionally he will start to eat something. As you say it can be very difficult to intervene just in time before it is gone and I panic quite often about what Max might have eaten; prying something out a dog's mouth may also result in a moment of loss of control and a bite. As you may know I am a veterinary surgeon who specialises in Emergency and Critical Care work and I have seen countless dogs that have eaten things on walks that they shouldn't have done. This is something that some dogs do and no matter how careful or vigilant we are, it is impossible to stop all incidents. I am not a believer in muzzling dogs on walks in case they eat something they shouldn't and in that sense this is one of those risks that we have to take.

Guilt can be overwhelming but it is a negative emotion that will not allow you to acknowledge and deal with your other feelings of grief around the loss of Hera. Try to leave the guilt aside. If you feel it will help, please do ring the Pet Bereavement Support Service; their details are here:
Shailen (The Ralph Site founder)

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