This past weekend was one of the toughest of my life. My wife, Ashley and I lost our best friend, Winston. He was a 9-year-old full-of-life Pomeranian who showed no signs of anything being wrong. As a matter of fact, most people thought he was a puppy because he had so much energy. His sudden death has hit us both very hard and I can empathise with anyone who’s had to go through something similar.
It was Saturday afternoon around 5, we were all just kind of relaxing and everything was fine. My wife took Winston to go potty, then gave him a treat as we always did. Instead of eating the treat in the kitchen or living room (which he usually does) he went into our bedroom. A few minutes later, we called for him because it was odd that he was not in the living room with us. When he didn’t come, we thought it was a bit strange but nothing too out of the ordinary so we didn’t think anything of it.
I took a shower and when I got out, Ashley was on the phone with her Mom, who asked her to measure Winston because she was buying him a gift. That’s when we checked under the bed (where he often hung out) I saw him but not in his usual spot, he was in the middle of the bed and his eyes were open. We called for him but when he didn’t respond at all, we knew something was wrong.
We started to panic, I threw the mattress and box spring up and we checked on him but he was not giving us any response. I had assumed the worst, I thought he was already gone, but after about 30 seconds, he moved slightly and breathed a little. We knew we had to do something quick so we rushed to the animal hospital down the street. We were both crying and Ashley was holding him in her arms, he was not moving and we couldn’t tell if he was still breathing or not. We got to the animal hospital in about 5 minutes and they rushed him into the emergency room.
After about 10 minutes of pacing back and forth and fingernail biting, the Vet came into the room with an empathetic look on her face, that’s when it hit both of us like a ton of bricks. She told us he didn’t make it. They brought his body into the room and it was still warm. We both cried and said our goodbyes, making arrangements for his cremation.
It’s been 4 days but it still hurts like crazy. For anyone who has never gone through losing a pet and thinks “oh it’s not that big of a deal, it’s just a dog”, you are 100% wrong. Winston was family to us. I never had a pet growing up so this was my first time going through this. He was my buddy and it really hurts to know that he is no longer with us.
Every time we come home, he is no longer greeting us at the door with his favorite toy, Heggie (which is a stuffed hedgehog, I know, real creative). His food and water dish still sit in our kitchen with food and water in them because I don’t want to move them. His blanket that he loved sleeping on is now on our bed because it smells like him. I know in time, this will go away but man, right now, it stings. We both have found ourselves crying over the past 4 days, it comes and it goes.
I don’t know why I wanted to post this, but talking about it makes me feel a little better. I also want to thank the awesome amount of support that listeners have sent me on Facebook and on the phones over the past few days. Your thoughts and prayers mean the world to me and Ashley. If you have a pet (or child, brother/sister, parent, grandparent whatever) tell them you love them, and cherish the time you have with them. You really never know when something can happen.
Thank you for taking the time to read my story. And to Winston, who is in Doggy Heaven eating all sorts of burgers and pizza, thank you for being the best little doggy anyone could ask for!