My dimly red glowing clock read 12:30 AM. I
lay in bed with heartache. Earlier that night, my dog Raven’s health had
declined severely -- the experts were stumped; we had tried innumerable
treatments over the past two days, and nothing had worked or even
suggested what the problem was. One day, she was acting like her usual
self, then all too suddenly, suffering was brought into her life and
sorrow was brought into ours.
My mom woke me up at midnight. She and my dad knew it was the right
choice to put her down. She could no longer walk; she could barely lift
her head and whimper, and the foul aroma of urine was surrounding her.
Raven could not control her bladder either. At this point, I also knew
it was the right choice: we couldn’t see her suffering anymore.
My mom said to give our last goodbyes. I stared disbelievingly at my
once energetic, cute dog like she was some kind of alien. Her black
belly was shaved; she had a slowly dripping IV sticking in her arm, and
she looked so miserable. I didn’t like seeing Raven like this, but I
knew if I was going to be a vet one day, I would have to be strong.
My mom, whose eyes were puffy and pink, sat on the chair next to her
head, and my dad lay on the hard white kitchen floor next to her, like
he had been all night. I slowly knelt down; my heart was being squeezed
by a force I couldn’t control, and I fought back the gut wrenching
I petted her soft black head. Her caramel brown eyes were staring
pleadingly up at me. My nine year old dog suddenly seemed five years
older with her sleepless, sagging eyes and sullen grey muzzle. I wished
I could do something more, but since no one could fathom what was wrong
with her, all we could do was bring her home to hopefully make her
“I love you,” I muttered to her, making everyone’s eyes blur with tears,
and I scurried off into bed. I lay down, curled in a ball, and
immediately wished I had said something more, but I couldn’t get the
courage to go back out there. I said one last prayer asking for Raven to
be in peace and to give me strength. I lay in bed staring at the wall
for a long time. It seemed like hours had passed, when only minutes had
gone by. I heard my brother come out and say his goodbye and return to
bed. Then I heard my dad get up and carry Raven to the car. I wondered
how he felt; he had to be the brave one to take Raven to the vet. I
heard the car engine gurgle to life and I knew my dog’s life was
slipping away. I saw the headlights move through the slits in my blinds.
This all too familiar sight brought me pain and grief; it would never be
the same again. There was a sour lump in my throat, a squeezing force at
my heart, but my glossy eyes showed strength.