Measuring Accomplishments


I was talking to a friend the other day who was making the difficult but necessary decision to euthanize a beloved companion dog of very old age and seriously failing health and had some questions about the process. One of her concerns was a surviving also old dog — would she become distraught and should she go and watch her canine friend go to the rainbow bridge?

I said I felt that unless an animal died in the home and surviving animals might want to sniff for closure sake or whatever you want to call it, I didn’t think taking the dog into the hospital to “watch” was a good idea at all. Dogs do mourn, and do have feelings, but I don’t think they need to have the stress of watching it happen in a vet hospital no matter how humane the process.

I recommended some rescue remedy could help for both the dog and the people involved and some special treats or a walk or a belly rub or something the dog valued before the euthanasia and I think it helped my friend and her dog.

I was talking to a friend of mine today about how one values accomplishments. I argued it’s not in the # of degrees or formal education you have, the $ you earn, the things you own, but by the way people think of and/or remember you when you’ve gone from their lives (because of life changes including moving away, evolving, up to and including death) or even how they value you when you’re an active person in their life.

Dogs don’t generally receive degrees or careers from informal or formal education, very few have jobs so to speak, but I would have to say, in my experience anyway, they accomplish a whole heck of a lot just being loyal, true, honest, funny and simple in the way they need their needs met and the way we feel by meeting them.