Pets and passing away – Pet podcast # 11 on Pets.ca – www.pets.ca
Pet podcast #11 is about planning for your pet’s demise. Our pets will pass away one day and we should plan what we are going to do now. This is a bit of a personal podcast since I am going through this exact planning right now. Thanks SO much for the personal support from the amazing Pets.ca bulletin board members.
You can download this pet podcast directly by clicking the preceding link or listen to it almost immediately, with the embedded player below.
Please note that this is an audio transcription. grammar and punctuation may not be perfect.
Hi there everyone and welcome to the Pet Podcast on Pets.ca. My name is Marko. We are coming to you from Montreal, Quebec, Canada, and today is February 18, 2007. For today”s show, we are going to talk about preparing for the end. We are all going to go one day and our pets are going to go as well and unfortunately, we found out on a personal note that our cat, Zak, has cancer and the vet suggests that he only has a few months left. So, I know that although this is a very sad time that we are not the only ones going through this. People all over the place are going through this because death is a part of life. So, this podcast is dedicated to making the last little while that we have with our pets as bearable as possible.
First off, I would like to say that when we did find out about it, both my wife and I were devastated. As you can imagine, we love our fur babies to death, both of them, and to hear such terrible news is really heartbreaking. Now, one of the greatest things about Pets.ca in general is the bulletin board and I have nothing but absolute praise and thanks and true appreciation for the comments that I received when I posted our news on the bulletin board. Our members are amazing who are all pet lovers and we just support each other so much. I do not post that often. I am more the admin of the bulletin board, but every once in a while I do post something and this was possibly one of the more personal things that I have posted and again, thanks so much for those warm words of encouragement from the various members that left and probably will leave even more feedback in the future. It is so much appreciated.
I am going to try to keep this podcast not too sad and not too personal. Death is a part of life, but it is a celebration of life, too. We are all going to go and if we find out that one of us is going to go, be we human or animal, let us make the most of the time that we have left. Let us really celebrate the last days and not fill them with morning and regret. Let us really celebrate it and I think that is what I would like this podcast to be about.
So, let me start off by saying this, that oh my God have I been taking a lot of photographs this weekend of Zak and Zig as well, but primarily of Zak. He is still in good shape. He does not know he has cancer. He is still the same. Things might get worse in a little bit, but for now up until the bad, terrible time, he is still good. He is still a great cat. I would suggest that it is a great thing to photograph your pets now, to take videos of your pets now, take video now while they are still in top form. This is the way you want to remember them. This is the way I want to remember Zak, frisky and loving and healthy even though he is not healthy, he is still showing health now and now is the time to record those memories. Likewise, oh my God has he been receiving rubs and cuddles all weekend long. He is really enjoying it. Now is the time to do it. Celebrate each rub. Celebrate each hug. Look at him tenderly. Just last night, we are all so busy with work and stuff. I have computer work to do and Zak plopped himself down on his back and wanted rubs just like he always does. For a half a second I forgot about it, I forgot about that news and I almost walked by him. Well, I stopped and I picked him up and I gave him incredible cuddles and that is what I intend to do. That is what I intend to do until the very end.
That is what I suggest for our listeners, too, even if it is not the end of time for you and your pets. You just never know what is going to happen. Life is so unpredictable that we really have to seize the moment. I mean our pets give us such unconditional love. It just takes but a few moments to really reciprocate that love back even in good times or bad times, healthy times or unhealthy times. Our pets live a heck of a lot shorter lives than we do, so let us make the best of the time we have together and give them those cuddles and rubs whenever we can. Aside from the sad fact that they are going to go, just cuddling them is good for them, it is good for us. We heard it lowers blood pressure. It is just a beautiful thing to do. So, really celebrate the lives of your pets now while you still have them and cherish the moments that you have now while you still have them because when they are gone, if you have not given them the time, I suggest that you will regret it. I know that I am not going to regret any of the time now because it is a special time.
That said, I know that one morning, my wife and I will awake or we will discover that Zak has passed. We are all going to pass. Zak will pass. What do we do at that time? Who do we call? What do we do? When we are faced with such incredible grief, we are often left with a feeling of helplessness or confusion, what do I do, and panic. I would suggest that now is the time to be making plans. Even if your pets are perfectly healthy, I think we should be thinking about what we are going to do with them when they do go eventually. Some of you might be thinking, “Oh, I”m just gonna bury my pet in my backyard,” which a lot of people do do. I guess it is a perfectly legitimate thing to do. I am not sure what we are doing yet, but we are discussing it now. I would say that for legal sake and legal issues, you may want to consult your municipality to find out what is allowed and what is not allowed. There are services where companies will come to your house and pick up the remains of your pet after your pet has passed. You should think about if that is what you want as well. They will come and they will perhaps even set up a burial or a cremation for you, but these are things that you want to be thinking about now while things are still good and not wait to the last minute. If you are at a loss as to who to call, I would suggest that you call your vet. Your vet usually has a bunch of resources at their disposal and will probably be able to give you local feedback on what to do, where to go, who to contact. Of course, you are welcome to use the Pets.ca bulletin board to find out these resources as well. If nothing is already mentioned, after you have done a search you could surely post something on the bulletin board and one of our amazing members hopefully living in your area or around your area will be able to provide you with some useful suggestions.
The other side of the coin, the other side of the sad coin, I guess, is if your pet is suffering and then you have to make a decision as well. It is probably easiest if you wake up one morning and you find your pet has passed. The decision was made for you, nature has taken its course, but what if your pet is suffering? You do not want to see your pet suffer. At a certain point in time, the most humane thing might very well be to bring the pet to your vet and have your pet put to sleep. When do you do that? It is such a personal decision. I am not even going to suggest when to do it. When you know that your pet is suffering, well then that is the time that you should really discuss it with your vet. If you are unsure, do not make the decision alone. Make it with your vet. Try and get your vet”s input into the whole matter, but certainly when your pet has stopped eating, has stopped drinking, and has stopped really becoming the pet that you know and love, at that point maybe it is the time to consider having your pet put to sleep humanely. If you are able to be with your pet, certainly if that is the root that we are going to take with Zak, I am going to be there until the end. It will crush me, but the last thing you want to do is have your pet suffering. So, again, I really suggest, I strongly suggest talking this over with your vet, posting about it on our bulletin board or other bulletin boards. There are other great resources on the net. Just get other support because these things are very difficult to go through alone and it is much easier to have the opinions of other and the council of others that have perhaps even gone through this before to help you make the best decision possible even though it is really a difficult decision.
Then at the end of it all, after your pet has passed and has been buried or cremated or you have chosen what to do with your pet, well then it is the time for mourning and I suggest again that not being alone is the best thing possible and in this day of internet chat rooms and forums and communication, it is the perfect way to get support from like-minded people. I know on our bulletin board and in another section on the site called Pet Cemetery, we give a lot of support to people who have lost their pets because we are all pet lovers on our board and we all understand and we are all devastated or most of us are really devastated, very sad when our pets pass. It is not something that is light. It is something that is heavy and anyone that suggests that, “Oh, it”s just a cat.” “It”s just the dog.” Well, that is their opinion, but they are just not like-minded and maybe you should seek support from people who are pet lovers and who give everything for their pets.
So, certainly, leaving pet tribute is something that would be very cathartic I would say. It would be a good thing to do. It gets all the sadness out and, again, it lets you celebrate their life and happy times as opposed to the sad times, which are part of life, but you want to focus on the happier times.
That about is going to cover it for today’s podcast. I apologize if there was any overt sadness in my voice. It is a bit of a sad time, but again it is also a time to celebrate the good times that are left, so… I hope I did not make anyone choke up or anything like that. It is the time to celebrate and really bond with my pet Zak and hopefully people are just bonding with their healthy pets. So, let us leave on a happy note. Let us bond with our pets. Let us look at them with tenderness knowing that they are not always going to be there, so let us celebrate the time that we have with them now. As always, thank you very much for listening. You can always leave comments at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also leave comments on the bulletin board. Just make your way to Pets.ca and click on the bulletin board link and you can enter in the conversation as well. You could respond to the blog, pets.ca/blog, and leave your comments as well. As always and at the end of every podcast, so far I believe it is every podcast, please have a really beautiful day and give your pets an extra scratchy under the chin for Marko. Bye for now.