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All Dogs go to heaven
Friday, October 27, 2006


Today is a very sad day. My family marks the passing of a dog we all loved. Our chocolate labrador, angel, succumbed to a cobra's venomous bite. I recieved the news from my brother as I was spending another lazy afternoon in camp. With a little time-off in tow, I drove home to see how my mum and sisters were taking it (They've always been closer to the dogs). As I did so, images of angel flashed in my mind, I had not noticed it, but in a way she had become a part of my daily life as much as any of my family members or closest friends.

The unwelcome feelings were oddly familiar. A mixture of sadness, anger, guilt and a tinge of hopelessness assaulted me. Sadness because I knew I would not be able to come home and see her lazily ambling towards me for an apple I had just cut. Anger at the vet for not saving her life. Guilt for not all those extra licks I had denied her whilst reading my morning paper on the patio. Hopelessness because I knew there was no way of bringing her back and letting her have that extra lick.

I came home after camp yesterday evening to change as I had made a dinner appointment with darren and gang earlier. Strangely, my dad had just come back with the jeep, and I asked him where he had gone. He told me angel had killed a cobra, and they had just gotten back from the vet. I had taken her to the vet before when she got some venom in her eyes (A number of snakes have fallen prey to her, and she enjoys chasing my mum around the house with one in her mouth), and she had turned out fine, so I thought nothing of it and left for dinner. I got back home from the gym (after dinner), and was totally shagged, so I crashed almost immediatly.

The story goes, that when my dad had brought angel down to the vet in the afternoon, the vet had decided she had not been bitten and an anti-venom did not have to be administered. Put it down to a lack of experience, but that crucial decision cost us heavily. At about 10pm when my mum came down to the kitchen for a drink, she noticed angel slumped in a corner and on closer inspection, she was frothing. She was rushed down to the animal hospital, but the vets painted a grim picture. Nonetheless, my mum asked them to administer the anti-venom and do all they could to save her life. AT 415 in the morning, the phone rang and the vet confirmed angel had passed on.

It was wierd having dinner just now, and not seeing angel at the door with the two other dogs. I always liked her temprement the most. In the morning, when I'm out in the patio reading my newspaper, she would come by, and look at me, then give me a casual lick as though she had done it accidentally. Rocky on the other hand would just force his way through and keep on licking me in spite of my protests. And lucky, well that ruffian would simply come up, stick his head up, bark, as if saying "Pat me, cause I'm a top dog!" I've got to admit, Rocky is probably my favourite dog, as I admire his brute strength, and yet his restraint from using it, especially when "fighting" with the ruffian lucky, who is our local "ah beng". But angel ... well she was something special, and the fact she killed so many snakes also means she protected the family from possible harm.

Eating my dinner, and looking out to that empty spot and the two dogs, I wondered, do they feel a similar sort of loss now that their companion is gone? (Rather childishly, I think to myself, will Rocky be lonely sleeping alone outside?) Where do dogs go after they die? Perhaps they have a greater understanding of this than we do, and so do not grieve. I return to my human tendancy, and try to imagine she is in a better place, a place full of people to lick, apples to eat, and tennis balls to play with.

We shall miss you angel.


Comments...

sorry to hear about angel dude... i would be just as sad if ah bop died

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I feel ya.
My dog died recently too. Guilt tops the list of emotions. Still can't bear to talk about him. Some ppl think it's ridiculous and over-exaggerated to get so emo over an animal. As i tried to fight back the tears i couldn't stem, i kept thinking to myself "it's only a dog, why are u so emotional." Yeah yeah, we've all got our rationalisations, explanations. I only wished...that there is a less painful way of dealing with death...be it your pet animal or your loved one. Something you can really trick your mind into believing (e.g. he's gone to a better place...i don't know if i buy that, to be honest) and you don't need to go through it over and over in your mind anymore of the million things you could have done differently. But more importantly, no pain and suffering. Death..always so ugly and undignified. To be honest, the thing that really kills me is to think my dog suffered before he died. That goes under the martyr category of "I'd rather be the one who suffered than my loved one." In summary, that is how i felt when my dad told me my dog died. Oh yeah, i was pretty pissed off with the vet too.

I feel ya.


-ironickat-

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hey ya!
don't feel sad for too long alright!

think of all the lovely memories of angel, try to talk about all the favourite things you associate with angel and do remember that you still have rocky and lucky!

take care! best wishes!

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OMG - where do you stay?
Why are there so many dangerous snakes in your area?
O_O

Anyway, so sorry to hear of your beloved angel's death....
Hope you feel better soon.
Take care,.. and stay safe.

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I had someone very close to me pass on previously, so i can only imagine how tough it must be for you but be strong!

er.. as the chinese romantics put it:
不在乎天长地久,只在乎曾经拥有。

i hope it's usage is apt here or slap me for the disgusting chinese. :p

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Hi all,

Firstly, thanks for all the advice and encouragement.

To tell you the truth, I'm not nearly half as affected as my mum and sisters were. My first thoughts were for my family, and how they were taking it. As a guy, I guess, I'm not as emotional, and merely hoped my presence at home that day would be a calming factor.

My sadness takes on a more contemplative and reflective nature. As suicidalconversationjunkie put it so aptly in chinese 不在乎天长地久,只在乎曾经拥有. It's a questioning kind of feeling. Like when I go upstairs to get a drink in the middle of the night, and it hits me that there are just two dogs outside now, instead of three. You never noticed that anyone of the dogs had entered your conciousness like that. And you feel a pang of sadness that just two will be coming to greet you in the morning. The loss is exacerbated by the fact they were all unique and each one has his plus or minus points, all special, and in different ways loveable.

Not to worry though, ever the optimist, life goes on and angel will surely be fondly remembered in many dinner conversations to come.

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