Tough Decision on Monday

Whether a dog dies, is lost or stolen, or must be placed in a new home, this is the place to gather together to give and receive love and support when you experience the loss of a beloved dog.

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Piper- (2011-2012)

Barked: Wed Feb 8, '12 7:16am PST 
We had to make the hardest decision I think I have ever made last Monday…

When we first brought Piper home we were really taken aback by some very strange behaviors she was displaying towards our Collie. We contacted her breeder who recommended training classes with someone with quite a bit of GSD experience and so we took her to them. It didn’t really seem to help much. Although was only 10 weeks old she was lunging and snarling at the other puppies for just sitting too close to her (too close to her could be five feet away sometimes though). She did come along in training and it did seem to help with Violet.

Over the past year we continued to work with her…we had some rough patches but I think we got lulled into a sense of security because we figured out what her triggers were and stayed clear of them. Something that became concerning was her aggression towards children.

We started working with a behaviorist who was pretty concerned with her nerves, but recommended we start something like agility classes to build confidence since she was not overtly aggressive with anyone except children at this point and was just standoffish.

Well…on Sunday evening we hit strike three and it was bad. The worst that it has ever been. We had Piper and Violet, our collie, with us at a friend’s house that we had been to many times before. Unfortunately they had someone stop by that they were not expecting who had their little girl in tow. I had ahold of Piper the entire time because she started giving crazy eyes the second she saw the child, but she literally ripped away from me jumped behind my fiancée on the sofa and lunged and bit the little girl in the face…the little girl was just standing there, she never made eye contact she never even moved.

The mother was horrified, as is to be expected in such a situation, we were horrified as was to be expected in the situation. We quickly got Piper outside so she was away from the situation so that we could gather our things and leave. Then Piper did something she had never done before…she leapt over 6 ft high railing and an elevated porch and charged the mother as she was getting into her car…
We finally got our things and Piper gathered called our behaviorist who was really bewildered by the whole situation, she recommended we take her to the vet which we did, we took her to the ER vet to have a blood panel run and see what the heck was going on…

Her panel came back normal that night, the veterinarian recommended Euthanasia, we weren’t sure that we could do that. We took her home and that morning when my fiancée was in the kitchen Piper went after her…when I came into the kitchen she acted like she didn’t know who I was and went after me. She had done this several times since we had her, and we had gone to a few counseling sessions with our vet over it. He had recommended ongoing training and had done some xrays and bloodwork, all of which were normal as had been the panel last night. There wasn’t an option for a psych med for this type of problem so we continued to try to maintain. Monday was the first time she made contact with us (really the first and a half but the first time she grabbed a shirt and we pulled her away in time.)

We took her to my vet at 4:00pm Monday afternoon and he recommended the same thing, he said it sounded psychological and with the fact that we had plans on having a baby within the year he couldn’t recommend a dog with this problem to stay(we struggle with infertility, otherwise we would have considered putting it off for a few years but our reality is that the option may not be there), not to mention the fact that she was becoming untrustworthy with us as well. He said rehoming her would be completely irresponsible and we agreed with him, Piper couldn’t really function away from us. We ended up deciding on doing it…it was the hardest decision I’ve ever made…

It’s been a difficult couple of days. The house feels very empty…I’m home a lot right now and the gaping loneliness is horrible. Violet is having trouble functioning without Piper. She won’t eat hardly at all, she won’t go on walks. She was very codependent on Piper, we couldn’t take her anywhere without her as she has anxiety. Piper helped me get through a pretty rough patch of PTSD from the military as well, just the companionship helped a lot.

Anyway…we are all very sad about this. It has been difficult but I thought this post would help me with some closure, I think my fiancée and I are thinking about taking Violet to meet and greet a litter of aussie puppies at a rescue this evening…we’re worried about her, and me to be honest. I somehow feel guilty for thinking about it but we think Piper wouldn’t want us to stop doing what we need to do to be happy either.
It’s been a difficult year…

You know you- want to pet me
Barked: Wed Feb 8, '12 8:43am PST 
I'm so sorry. What an awful thing to have to go through.
I went through something similar with Mikey. Although I got away without him biting a child, my fear and my regular "what if's" moments have been such a thing.

It's such a difficult thing to go through.

hug To you and your family hug
Max - "2005-2012"

Mommy's Little- Angel
Barked: Wed Feb 8, '12 9:50am PST 
I'm so sorry about Piper. I can't even imagine having to make a decision like that. She is at the rainbowBridge now running and playing without a care in the world. Just think about her being at ease and happy now. It will take time to get over this. My Max has been gone 5 days and I hurt just as much today as I did the first day. She knows she was loved by you, you did everything you possibly could to make life easy for her and your family. I'm sure she appreciates that you loved her that much!hug

Piper- (2011-2012)

Barked: Wed Feb 8, '12 9:50am PST 
Thanks, yes it's really a difficult thing to go through. You gain such a trust of your own dog and then to have her look at me, or my fiancee, with no recognition is unsettling...

And I can relate very much on the "what if" moments...the difficult part for us has been learning to be "ok" with feeling some amount of relief. Logically its understandable having been fighting with these issues for a while but emotionally it feels horrible.

I love you Sug- forever
Barked: Wed Feb 8, '12 10:56am PST 
I am so sorry to hear this story. I have had to put down a seemingly healthy dog also due to aggression problems. And I have to weigh the pros and cons of rehoming a dog with biting/aggression history. I just want you to know that it is not an easy decision (which I am sure you already know) but I respect and applaud you for being responsible. As much as you feel like you failed her you were strong and were with her to love her to the end. It does get easier but the pain never goes away (as tears are streaming down my face as I type this).

Just remember Piper is free and happy and no longer has the issues you have had to deal with and that once again you will be with her to cross the bridge.

RIP Piper
Turner - Gone Too- Soon

Hi I'm Turner- Wanna Smell My- Butt?
Barked: Wed Feb 8, '12 12:09pm PST 
R.I.P. Piper. You did the right thing. You tried for a year, you sought out professional help throughout the entire process. You did more for Piper thank most people would. Do not feel guilty. In no way are you guilty of anything but loving Piper and trying to make Piper's life normal. hug's to you during this really tough time.

Do you even- lift?
Barked: Wed Feb 8, '12 1:16pm PST 
Oh my goodness, I'm so sorry! What an awful thing to have to go through hug

It does sound like there were some psychological issues going on besides just weak nerves. To attack unprovoked like that is truly scary, especially when it's against the people she loved most.

She had a good life with you, even if it was too short. You were there with her as she passed, and she knew she was loved rainbow

Akita Pals- Always.
Barked: Thu Feb 9, '12 5:04am PST 
We are so sorry you had to make this decision. hughughug You did all you possibly could and whatever was wrong with her,she is better off now not having to live with it. So sorry for your loss,we know it is difficult but you did the only thing you could.hughugflowersflowers

Always hug your- puppy...
Barked: Thu Feb 9, '12 8:08am PST 

....I just can't find the words that would let you know how sad I am for you...


I came, I saw, I- chewed.
Barked: Thu Feb 9, '12 11:15am PST 
Oh, I am so sorry you had to go through such an awful decision. You did all you could. Keeping you in my thoughts and sending hugs your way. hughughughug
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