Paul and I took Orion to the vet yesterday morning to have him euthanized. We had been talking about it for a couple of weeks but Tom was so upset and didn't want us to "just take him to the vet and have the vet kill him!"
By Friday last week Tom was ok with spending one last weekend with Orion and then saying goodbye on Monday morning. The kids went off to school and we took Orion to the vet around 9:30AM.
I had never been in the room with a dog was euthanized before. It kind of caught me by surprise. The vet said he would get sleepy with the first half of the syringe and then he would stop breathing with the second half of the syringe (overdose).
We finally got him into a laying down position but since Orion is Orion he was far more interested as to what the vet was doing with that syringe, so his head was up. She was 3/4 of the way through the syringe and he was still bright eyed and sniffing her hand. I joked that he must have my tolerance to sedatives. We should have used a horse tranquilizer!
Anyway, it was completely sudden and unexpected he didn't get sleepy he just dropped dead and his head fell from an up position and flopped backward onto the floor kind of hard, but he was gone by the time his head hit the ground. I just kept staring into his eyes. They looked different. I closed his eyes before we left the room, we just left him lying there by himself. I hope the vet came back soon to wrap him up and take him away. I'm not going to lie. It was hard to watch but I'm glad I was there.
Poor Orion had been reduced to hardly eating, lost 30 pounds in the last year, could barely walk, and had now bowel or bladder control. He'd often just pee or poop where he was lying down because it was too much work to get up. Or he'd walk to the back door and then trip and fall into a sitting position before he could get to the grass and he'd just pee on himself because he couldn't get up. This happened more and more in the last month. I hadn't seen him truly wag his tail in happiness in several months and he certainly didn't care if I pet him or not. He used to nudge me if I stopped petting him, but he just didn't care anymore.
The way Abby reacted was so different from Tom. I asked Abby if she noticed who was missing after school and she said, "Well, I noticed Orion was missing when I sat down to do homework. Now after the housekeepers come and vacuum up his hair we are going to have the cleanest house for a long time!" Orion's hair would get everywhere. She helped me clean up some food and water bowls so we can freecycle them later this week.
Tom on the other hand, ran to his room but tried not to let me see he was crying. I gave him the picture that was on our bookcase, it's a small frame in the shape of a dog and it has a small photo of Tom around 3 years old leaning onto Orion's back. He took that frame to his room. Then he came into my room long after bed time and asked what did I do with Orion's dog collar. I guess he was upset I had already thrown away one of the dog beds. I told him it was on top of the fridge and if he wanted it he could have it, it still smells like Orion's shampoo.
RIP Orion You certainly gave us a run for our money these last 14 years.