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Tuesday, November 16, 2010


Please forgive my ramblings. I can't wrap my mind around the fact Betty is gone. Why was she seizure free for 9 months and now she's gone?? WHY? 

She had a few mild seizures over the past couple months, but she was doing good. We were managing it. I'm still in shock that within 2 days, she's just gone from horrible, continuous seizures. 

I can't stop questioning if I could have done something different for her. Was there something in the house that was a trigger and WHY didn't I recognize it?
Several doctors and a very dear friend with her own seizure dog have told me that this happens with seizure dogs. That this is the most frustrating thing about dogs with Epilepsy. One day they are fine and the next they are gone. But I still can't stop screaming WHY?? 

The loss of Betty is overwhelming. The sense of guilt I feel for not saving her is killing me. Should I have tried more medication? Should we have given her longer to adjust to the larger doses of Postassium Bromide?  Was it too much medication? Did she suffer? Was she scared? Did she know how much I loved her up to the end?  Someone please give me the answers to help ease my pain!!!

Stella and Gunther have both been in my lap trying to comfort me, but I feel guilty for loving on them because Betty is gone.  Would she think I'm just moving on? How is it to know something logically but emotionally all I can rationalize is that I want my Betty back.



Pink Thumb said...

We are so so sorry. We are shocked. We loved Betty too and have enjoyed following along on the blog. You did everything you could and she knows you all loved her as do we. Just remember she's in a better place now.

Basil and Guinness send their snorts and kisses.


Frankie Furter said...

I feel so badly for you. I don't know if this will help or not but I am going to share it with you.
Very often... both People and Animals... will have a wonderful period of Extra Wellness right near the time that they cross over. I have always looked at that time as being a GIFT to everybody.

peejer said...

I know you are questioning yourself & keep thinking what-if. We did the same thing when we lost our pug, Otis, to epilepsy. It was heart wrenching to lose him so quickly without warning. Betty loved you very much & you can be certain that she knew you loved her too. In time, the pain you are feeling will lessen & you will have all the memories of her to hang onto. Give Stella & Gunther extra hugs & kisses because they miss her too.

Hugs to you from Kailey, Kammie, Peejay & Rudy.


Sequoia & Petunia said...

We are sure Betty knew how much you loved her. She was always on your lap and she knew you loved her no matter what and will always be there for her.


Joan said...

Shannon, I am so sorry to hear the news of Betty. I truly know of your pain - your words are close to my heart. I, too, wish for my little Skippy Wu Pug - for I wish she were here as well. It has been a little over four months without her. We did the very same thing at first - lots of WHY? Not now. All I can tell you is to take each day at a time. However, in doing this please try to focus on all the many, many beautiful things that both you and Betty shared together. One day at a time is what it's going to take. Allow yourself to experience all the overwhelming feelings however, please focus back on the beauty - that is what has helped me significantly. Sending you love and hugs.
P.S. Also, try to figure out ways in which you can honor her years with you. Even the littlest of ideas are huge and will help heal your heart.

5puggums2mamasanddadandhiscat said...

Shannon, I understand where you are coming from. Here is our true story:
Megan had just lived with us for 6 months when she passed away unexpectedly. She didn't have epilepsy but she did have an unchecked congenital heart disease that there was no way of knowing she had until we found out at autopsy. The vet said that the night before she died...she was throwing up blood...not food...although we thought it was food since we recently have tried a new treat on all the pugs. My mom and I promised her and ourselves before bed that night that we would take her to the vet that Monday morning if she still seemed to be in pain. She panted, as she usually did, but usually it subsided after awhile. At the time, we had George, Gracie, and Toby...Toby being just a puppy at the time and George and Gracie just having had there 1st birthday a few months prior. They had their usual romp before bedtime...so we thought nothing of it...this was normal. In the morning when we woke up, Megan could not be found...she was sleeping with me that night and then vanished when I woke up...highly unlike her. We found her cold, lifeless body in the basement. That about killed us then...we did a lot of what ifs and were very shocked and sad...and today, almost 4 years later, we still ask why? could we have done something? Our trusted family vet told us that Megan had the best 6 months of her 3 years of her short-life with us and that she knew she was loved. Technically, the vet said that when we got her spayed, she should have passed away on the table because the pre-vet screening and most well-doggy checks do not do sonograms of the heart and her heart must have been in terrible shape then and she wouldn't have survived it then...but because of God she did and she is still a cherished member of our family. Her ashes were spread in our backyard...we always do private cremations because we want the remains to be just of our baby and to show that this was a loved being that will never be forgotten. Tears well up in my eyes as I convey this story to you. You will always ask what if, but the better questions that always seems to trump out the rest, are "What would her life been like without our love in it?" Was she loved unconditionally? YES...that's all that matters.
You never quit grieving but time does pass by and it isn't as intense as it is in the first year of the death...I'm always saddened when I think of that night and how we found her the next morning but I miss her most of all and no body can replace that little angel, ever.
Much luvums,
Mindy (Mama #2, The Slimmer Puggums)

Mollie Jo and Bobo said...

We really have no knowlege on the subject but just wanted to let you know we are thinking of you!

Wags and Licks,
Mollie Jo & Bobo

Minnie Moo said...

I am positive Betty knew exactly how much you loved her. You were wonderful to Betty, and you should take peace in the fact that Betty is in a much better place, away from pain. Hang in there.


Minnie Moo

Lilo, The Great Rock Eater said...


I wish there was something I could do to ease your pain. Please know that you did everything you could for her and you gave her the best life you could while she was with you. Betty touched us all and she will continue to live in our hearts!


Jess & Lilo

Pearl said...

Shannon, I'm so glad you are rambling here. We may not have answers, but we can surround you with love and support as you work through all of these emotions.

There was NOBODY more diligent about Betty's care and well-being than you. And the very frustrating truth is that sometimes, diseases like epilepsy are stronger than our efforts. We can't care enough, research enough, medicate enough, or love enough to beat them. And that's a hard pill to swallow.

The questions you are asking are normal and expected, but please remember that you are attentive, loving, and wonderful to your dogs. And Betty knew that. ALWAYS. Right to the end. And she still knows it now.

I wish I could answer all of the why's. For now, I think of you constantly and pray that as you walk this road, you feel our support surrounding you.

Wilma said...

Oh Shannon,
My heart just aches for you. As much as all of us wish we could take away the pain you feel right now, we can't. I hope you feel the love,warmth and support that your blog family is sending to you. I hope it lightens your burdens if only a little bit.
I have no doubt in my mind that Betty felt the deep love you have for her right up the the end. It was your love that gave you the strength to do the hardest, most selfless act. To let her go. She would want you to hold Stella and Gunther close to your heart to help you heal, and to help them. You need each other, and she knows this best. You gave her the best 9 months of her short life. I am sure you did everything in your power to help make her days with you her happiest.
It seems so unfair to have lost her so soon and suddenly. I hope you continue to reach out for help through this most difficult process.
I can't bear to think of the day I have to say goodbye to my beloved babies. But I do know, to have a community of people who really understands the powerful love we have for our animals to turn to, will make all the difference in the world.

Wil's Mom ~ Kathy

C.l.o.v.e.r. said...

Oh I am so sorry about Betty. And so sorry about the way you are feeling. I wish I could answer your questions for you... All I can do is send love and hugs your way. We all know how dearly loved Betty is and what a wonderful life and home you provided for her. We are here for you if you need us.
Love Jess, Clover and Chewy's mom

Salinger The Pug said...

Oh sweetie....I wish I could be there just to sit with you!

Think of it this way...poor Betty's body was worn out and maybe it was just her time. Personally...I think the last 9 months you gave her were a great gift that she likely wouldn't have enjoyed if she hadn't found you!

Keep kissing on Stella and Gunther. I'm sure they're happy to lick away your tears and snuggle away some of your pain...no matter WHAT the reason!

Please keep talking and just know that ALL of your friends in bloggerland are here for you and will continue to be here for you to help you through this tough time.

Laura (and Salinger, but he's being all uppity and won't come up in my lap....typical!)

mayziegal said...


My heart is breaking for you. I know all of the emotions you're going through. Our cat Molly had a congenital heart defect and we lost her at the age of 4. For the longest time I questioned myself and whether there was more we could have done for her. If we gave up too soon. It's completely normal to do but it's also heart-wrenching.

But here's the thing - what you did was done with a heart filled with love and with the desire to do what was best for Betty. It may not feel like it now, but you gave her a gift by releasing her. The selfish thing would've been to allow her to suffer. But what you did was a kind, unselfish, giving act and you absolutely MUST remember that. Betty wouldn't want you blaming yourself. And she certainly wouldn't want you to feel guilty for giving love to Gunther and Stella. In order to heal, you have to allow yourself to love them and you have to be gentle with yourself.

I don't know if anything I said has helped. At times like this, words seem so hollow. But please know how many people love and admire you for making the most difficult decision of all and setting Betty free. And yes, I can absolutely say with 100% certainty that Betty KNEW how much she was loved every second she was with you.

Bless you,

Manda and Oisín x said...

You gave her the best 9 months of her life and we know she will be forever grateful to you for that.
And we are certain that Betty knew exactly how much she loved you, you saved her after all.
Remember even though she may be gone in body her soul will live on with you.

LOTS of love
Amanda and Oisín

bullie_mama said...

You know, us humans want to hang on forever, but what it really comes down to is the quality of life for our beloved furry children. We spent so much money and time trying to keep our precious Panda alive. In the end, it came down to the fact that he was in pain, he was sad and feeling bad. It wasn't the life he wanted or that we wanted for him. You have to know that you did all you could, and you let Miss Betty go to the Rainbow Bridge knowing how much her Mama loves her!
I cried for a year, still cry every now and then. It sucks, and I think it always will. Panda was only 7 - way too young. But we had a great 5 years with him and he was spoiled rotten! He couldn't have had a better Bullie life. I hope you can come to peace with the fact that you gave Betty the best life a little Smushda-face could ever have dreamed. She's loved by so many and will always be watching you from above. I know it sucks, let it. Be sad, cry your heart out as much as you need to. But definitely give your other babies love and let them love you back. That's the best part about our little furry babies.
I wish you the very best - stay strong and just go through the mourning. It will get easier.
Sending loves and kisses!
-Sara and Miss Weezer

Diane said...

Shannon, you are sooo good!I don't know of anyone that does more for Pugs & Frenchies than you do! Betty knew how much you loved her. I hate to see you going through this torture but I certainly understand where you are. I guess we all question if we did everything we could. Thank God Betty had you & your family to make her so happy & comfortable in the end. We will all miss her terribly & we are so sad for your family. Big hugs to all of you! Diane

dw said...

Shannon, everything I know about you after following your blog for a while now tells me that you are a fantastic mama to all your babies! You did everything you could for Betty, and your gave her the best 9 months of her life. She knows that, and so should you. I am so sorry for your loss! Know your blogger friends are here for you, to ramble, to rant, to do whatever you need. Betty will be missed by so many people, even ones like me who never met her, but whom she touched through your loving words.

Lola said...

Lola's Blog Mom here,

We are so very sure you did everything you could do. It's always impossible to know if you should have done this instead of that. I don't know if it'll help or not, but after our mother died my sister and I questioned ourselves for a very long time as to whether we made the right decisions after she couldn't make them for herself. I mean there are so often those kind of questions when it comes to humans as well as our dogs and cats. The only conclusion you can come to is that you did the best you could with love and the best intentions in the world and that's all anyone can ever do.

Please give yourself permission to take comfort in loving Stella and Gunther. They need you too and it will be the best therapy for all of you.

Southern Fried Pugs said...

Letting her go was the hardest thing for you, but the best thing for her. My sister had a dog with seizures, too. It's so horrible to experience, but I am positive that you did everything you humanly could to make it easy on her. You wouldn't feel this agony if you didn't love her and do what's best for her.
Time and the love of Stella and Gunther will ease your heartache. Don't feel guilty for loving them. Loving other dogs isn't a betrayal. She gave you love, so you have to give love in the future. Withholding that love is the betrayal.
Losing our smooshy faces is the hardest part of having them. Focus on the good times and the bad will fade away.
You have our prayers.

Yoda & Brutus said...

Oh Shannon, we can't begin to express how sad we are for you and the smushie faces :(

We think it was just Betty's time to go - God needed his angel back with him in heaven.

We are sure that Betty would have wanted you to spend more time with Gunther & Stella since they need you too.

It is natural to go through the emotions that you are experiencing and it is always easy to second guess your actions after the fact. You gave Betty a wonderful 9 months of being nearly seizure free.

Pugs & Kisses,

Yoda, Brutus and Momma Cindy

Benny and Lily said...

We sre still so sad and in shock. Things always happen for a reason, you will never know why. But we are certain Betty was the happiest girl ever while she lived with you, Gunther and Stella.
Mom, Benny & Lily

Punchbugpug said...

Shannon....the cost of fabulous love being the pain in your heart! It is certainly okay to question, okay to grieve, but you must not blame yourself. I believe everything happens for a reason. Many, MANY times I have shaken my fist at the sky and cried "why?", but we all must take solace in knowing each thing happens because of something before it. We must treasure every moment and hold tight to those we treasure for the times when holding is no longer possible. Your heart that feels so empty is really so full. Hug those babies and hold tight to memories of sweet Betty...until you meet again....

Amy Surber said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Soyberg said...

Oh, Shannon....how heartbreaking. I've never left a commment on your blog before, but I've followed it for awhile and have so enjoyed your writing and pictures (I have a FBRN Frenchie of my own). You know that you loved that smush-faced girl with all your heart and that nobody could've loved her better.....and she had to know how much you loved her, too. I know it's unbearable to think that she's gone, but please try not to question your decision as part of your grief--you have to know in your heart that you did the right thing in her suffering.....because you clearly loved her so, so much.

Just hold Stella and Gunther close and get through this as best you can. You are in my thoughts.

Puglette said...

shannon, i am so sorry that your are feeling guilty. i understand the terrible feeling of helplessness and loss of a pet that grew so close to your heart. please let stella and gunther console you, betty would want that as she loved them so much too. they are feeling a loss of their own and family needs to come together in times of need. please accept our love, support and friendship. you are in our prayers.

Tweedles -- that's me said...

Sweet Shannon
Your heart is aching from the deepest hole that reaches to the core of your being.
Sunshine and darkness, and your heart is still asking so many questions, why, why, why?
And you wonder if you will ever sleep again without this aching inside.
Shannon, Betty trusted you to know when she could not take anymore.
Betty knew how much you loved her.
Oh she loved you.
Your heart listened to Betty alone, and you did not think of yourself.
Unselfishly you gave the kindest gift. There is no greater love.
Betty was not afraid when she closed her eyes for the last time, and she is not afraid now.
You did everything you could.
You must know that.
What would Betty say,,, if she said something to you right now?
I think she would say she is being held by angels and that she wants you to kiss Gunther and Stella.
And she would say, she knows you love her. She loves you too.

BRUTUS said...

I wish I could answer all those questions for you. But perhaps what I share here will help ease your pain...

I have been in several situations where I witnessed first hand that animals have gifts that very few humans do. They can live in the moment and not worry about the future. They can surrender themselves completely to those who they trust. They have incredible grace. Things most humans can only aspire to in their dreams.

I understand how close you were with Betty and the kind of connection you have with her - I have to imagine it's the same sort of magic I share with Brutus. I believe that with connections like ours, in the moments when it matters most, their hearts can talk to ours and tell us what they need. Maybe we don't even realize it at the time, but I think that connection influences our choices for them. I feel certain that Betty helped you make the choices you did for her. You might not understand them now, but you did what you did for all the best reasons & did what Betty needed.

You may wonder "why" and "what if", but there are no rights and wrongs here. Could the outcome have been different? Perhaps... But would it have been better for Betty? Probably not, just different - but not better. You did your homework, you knew Betty better than anyone else - and that let you make what I cannot doubt was the kindest, most loving choice for her. And Betty most surely knew you loved her.

Don't know if that all made any sense, but I assure you it came from my heart - which is still breaking for you. Please let us know if there is anything else we can do to help.

Brutus & Carmen

kjpugs said...

Shannon- you made her life so, so wonderful. The loss hurts us more than it hurts them. She is so happy and seizure-free over the bridge. Please don't beat yourself up, hearing that makes me even more upset. You are one of the most wonderful dog owners I know and she was so, so lucky to have you.

Morro Bay Chuck said...

Listen to your friends Shannon, there is a lot of wisdom in their comments. Nobody could have done more for Betty than you did, and you gave her 11 wonderful months that she wouldn't have gotten otherwise. Go ahead and grieve, just make sure you continue to show your love and devotion to Bruce, Stella, Gunther and Mac, they need you more than ever.

agent99 said...

Shannon, I know how painful it is to lose a piece of your heart. I've had to walk 3 beloved pets to the Bridge. It's never easy, but when a pet has had a long life it makes more sense. Betty was young and vibrant, so this make much less sense.
You did everything in your pwer - and more to make her life comfortable and happy. I am confident she knew that, and felt your love every moment, even till the last ones. Again, taking her pain away is a painful and self-less choice, but you made it because of your love for her. I know she would tell you to let Stella and Gunther help you heal, and ease your sense of loss. They miss Betty too, and you all need each other during this hard time. You will heal little by little. One day, a memory of Betty will make you laugh, not cry. (It's been 13 years since my beloved Otis lost his battke with cancer, seeing his picture now fill sme with joy at his silly antics!) And I hope that day comes soon.
Never feel bad for sharing your hurt - your fellow smush-bloggers understand.
Much love,
Gen, Foo and the UtterlyChaotic crew

Mango said...

Oh this post breaks my heart. Please do not be so hard on yourself. Betty was loved and happy and had a wonderful time with you. Who knows when a dog's body will decide that it has had enough even though the spirit wants to stay with us. And she will. She will be with you always in your heart. Her spirit will watch over your family and she will be waiting for you over the Rainbow Brdige.

Harry Pugalicious said...

Oh, Shannon. I feel so awful for you. I wish I had answers for you but I can say this, without a doubt. Betty knew you loved her and you did everything you knew how to help her.

Her time with you was short, but by loving her and giving her such good care you probably gave her longer in this world than she would have had.

It's not fair and it's heartbreaking. But Betty had a good life - no matter how short it was. She would want you to let Gunther and Stella know every day how much you love them - just as you loved her.

Only time will heal this pain, but I hope knowing all of us are out here thinking about you and loving Betty will help you get through this difficult time.

~Heather, Harry & LuLu

Anonymous said...

Shannon, my heart breaks with you. I know that there are so many questions in your mind right now and that is the natural course of things... We couldn't love our furkids as much as we do and NOT ask if there were something more that could have been done. We always wonder.

One thing that I know is true is that Betty knew just how deeply you loved and were caring for her those last moments as she did the 9 months prior. You and she had such a special connection and nothing could get in between the trust and love that she felt for you... no physical condition, no fear, nothing. She KNEW that she was loved. There's no doubt in my mind.

It will take time, Shannon, for your grieving heart to ease. In the meantime, please soak in the love of all of the community here, who adore you and your pups so very much. Bask in the sweetness of your time with Betty and do hold Gunther and Stella all the closer... they need you now, just as you need them.

Huge hugs and snorgle-snuffs to your whole family from Melvino and me...

Kitty+Coco said...

Oh Shannon...You take me back to when I lost my first fur-baby Nuke about 7 years ago. She was there through the most traumatic times of my life, and I could still cry every time I think of her to this day. She had the same thing as Betty, and just couldn't take any more. Even to her last day she was still playful which made it very hard to grasp. All I can say is that it is OK to let Stella and Gunther help heal your pain because they are probably the only two that can help at all. Betty would want you to love them even more now. Betty had the greatest home she could ask for.

Kitty and Coco's Mom Lauren

GAIL said...

I am sso sorry you are going through such pain. Of course Betty knew how much you loved her. Never question that. You gave her more love in 9 months than many dogs receive in a lifetime. She will always be with you. Loving other dogs is never moving on, it's just redirection. Betty would want her pug siblings to be loved as much as possible.

martha said...

I'm so very sorry. Betty was a wonderful little girl, and I can only imagine how sad you are. One thing I do firmly believe is that Betty had the great comfort of knowing how much you loved her. She definately knew!!!

Scout 'n Freyja said...

We are friends of Tweedles and found out about your horrible and immense loss. We are so terribly sorry that you lost someone so young. There are no words that we can give to you that will take away your pain but please know that you are not alone and that others mourn with you.

Melissa said...

Don't beat yourself up! You gave Betty one hell of a life, and sometimes there's simply no more you can do, it's just their time. It's never long enough but I know that she was very well loved and adored in her time with you.

Rest assured she's up at the Bridge bragging about her life and her super sweet mom for getting her that rockin' sweater vest.

Anonymous said...

Oh Shannon- I'm so sorry. Betty was a gift to me as your posts always made me laugh and smile. What a gift you gave her to have such a wonderful life and home-surrounded by everyone she loved! YOu need to allow yourself to feel the sadness- no right or wrong way to do it. It takes as long as it takes. Betty knew how much you loved her. Peace and comfort to all of you- Gerry, Lillie and HOlly