The Loss of Jake

My sweet, amazing almost 12 year old rescue Jake passed peacefully in his sleep yesterday. There’s no apparent reason except his age. He laid down, in his favorite spot, while I made dinner and never woke up, never made another sound.

My heart is broken. I’ve always said the best thing about getting Snowflake was Jake. I’d of never adopted Jake, but chose to so he could stay with Snowflake. Jake was too sweet & nice, I knew he’d be snatched up quickly. Even for a senior dog. But Snow was listed as a jerk. Nobody (in their right mind) was going to jump on this grouchy old man.  So I did and got incredible Jake in the process.

I’m sad. So sad. I knew this would be the outcome going in. I knew I was adopting two senior dogs whose time would come sooner than later. I told myself I was okay with that. It wouldn’t be that bad. It would be easier than a puppy as with a puppy you never think once in the beginning years how you will feel when you lose them. Yet, with these seniors I thought often in the beginning that our time would be short.

I didn’t realize I’d feel like it was too short. I didn’t realize the space they’d create within my heart. The hole that would be left. I had no idea my heart would ache just as it did when I lose a dog I’ve had since puppyhood. I knew they would die, I just thought a piece of me wouldn’t die too.

It still does. I’ve still lost a piece of me. I’ve still cried for 24 hours. I’ve still been just as sad.

I’d do it all again though. I’d adopt them just the same. Even if I only got a year. Even knowing it’ll break me all over again.

When I found him I went into mass panic. To begin I just sat there. Speechless. Repeating what should I do over and over. Then I remember telling myself to breathe and feeling like the world was closing in. I lifted his head and there was blood. Just a small amount. On my fingers. It was an instant flashback to the awful day Jamie died. Blood on Danielle’s fingers. The doctor saying sometimes when you die blood comes from your mouth or nose because it’s all relaxed or something and not flowing. I’m going between pure panic of what I’m doing with Jake to pure panic of a moment that happened 16 years ago. I had no idea I remembered Jamie’s death that intensely. Not until that moment. I remember it clear as day, yet it was like I was feeling it all over again. That beautiful baby should be 17 and today I miss him as much as I did the day he died.

I finally calmed myself down enough to find a bottle of Xanax. Take a pill and crumple on the floor in sobs. Petting my lifeless dog. Calling the funeral home who also cremated pets hysterically at 8:45 p.m. because I was worried his body would go bad overnight. That guys a Saint. For real. Wrapped him in a blanket. Put him downstairs. And cried myself into a fitful sleep even with medications.

Today I dropped him off to be cremated. They’re the nicest people ever. I’ll have him back in a week or so. I still had Kiwi in the freezer so I dropped her off too. Ugh, rough.

The other dogs are off, sad, pitiful. Laying around. Not their selves. Dogs grieve too. Dogs hurt too. I feel the worst for Snowflake. He’s had Jake his whole life. Now his brother is gone. Forever. It’s heartbreaking.

So the world keeps spinning. My heart keeps beating. Even tho it feels like there’s a giant missing piece. And it will continue. Forever. No matter how much it hurts.

But someday, I’ll find another perfect senior dog to pour my all into. To love. To grow another piece onto my heart. And yes, someday it’ll end the same way. But the joy I’ll get, the love that dog will feel. It’ll all be worth it. And I’ll do it again and again. Because even tho it shatters me, there is a dog out there who’s an amazing soul and deserves nothing more than to feel nothing but love in his final years. And that, that I can provide whether it be for a day, a week, a year or five.

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October 19, 2021

I’m sorry about your loss. This is heartbreaking to read. I worry about the day when my ESA will leave me because even my husband says he doesn’t think we can live one without the other, that’s how attached we are.

I will remember you and Jake in my prayers tonight, and the rest of your family (and fur kids) too.

October 19, 2021

I’ve had a number of senior dogs and cats and have had to make that hard decision to say goodbye often, so I thought it might be easier if they died quietly at home or in their sleep.  And then it happened with a lovely old cat a few years ago.  It’s not easier.  It’s never easy losing a friend.  I’m sorry you’ve lost yours.