Thursday, October 30, 2014


Sabine is pretty old for a rat, at over three years. She's almost entirely blind due to cataracts in both eyes, is underweight, and has no strength in her hind legs. And yet, she's managed to remain affectionate, energetic (or as energetic as possible since she can't climb), and makes happy noises when I pet her.

I'd said that so long as she's still making happy noises, is affectionate, and energetic, I'll give her more time. But now I wonder, does there come a point where it's best to help a pet on their way even though they don't seem to be telling you it's time?

I worry that I'll make my decision, one way or the other, based on my own emotions rather than on Sabine's needs.

I don't know if I'm thinking about this because it's so painful to always wonder whether Sabine's still alive when I check in on her.

I don't know if I should have helped Sabine on her way before now.

And I really don't want to think about this at Samhain, the day to honor and remember the dead. But I've watched Sabine get even thinner the past few days, and she also didn't make her happy noises one of the times I checked on her today. She even seems weaker. Whatever the day or holiday is, it would be pretty irresponsible of me to not to try to do what's best for her.

I'm not asking for advice, I'm just trying to get my thoughts in order. And I wonder if, when I have to make this decision again someday (I expect to always have pets, so it's inevitable), referring back to this post may help me.

With Beka, Sabine's sister, I came close to making this decision. She was very sick, and I planned to put her down if I became certain that she had no hope of recovery, but she died before I could reach that conclusion. I also made this decision together with my mom for Socks, the cat we helped on his way just the day before I lost Beka. But I've never actually had to face this decision for a pet that I'm solely responsible for before.

Again, I'm not asking for advice. I'm just getting my thoughts together.

Sabine and Beka


Debra She Who Seeks said...

Sending little ratty hugs to you and Sabine today.

Sarita Rucker said...