Saturday, January 30, 2010
Helen was given to me by Helen, therefore, her name. Mom said we got into trouble one day for pulling all the tissues out of the box. I was putting them back in and Helen was helping too. She would carry one over and stuff it in the box opening with her nose. I wonder if Mom used those tissues after that?
I was in trouble again, who me, I never did anything wrong to get into trouble! I think it was playing in the clay with my good clothes on, Mom was coming after me with a switch. Helen stood between me and Mom and growled! Mom was so shocked that I missed that whipping.
Helen lived to about sixteen. She was worn out. Sometimes, Helen would cry when she moved. I was home alone, when she started crying again. It was awful.
I called the neighbor and asked will you shoot my dog? Terry came and he was shocked when I handed him a gun. He said I thought you wanted me to give it a shot. No, I said, Helen is suffering and I can't stand it any more. Can you put her down?
I had already dug a grave in the barn lot and found something to wrap her in. I told Terry I had taken her out there and said my goodbyes. If you can wrap her and just throw enough dirt over her so I can't see, I can finish.
Of course, the tears are rolling. I cover my head with a pillow and never heard the shot. Terry came back, handed me the gun and said it's over, Gail. She went easy. I hugged him with tears flooding and went to the barn lot and cried on Helen's grave until Mom and Dad came home.
I told them. I know they were proud, although they never said a word. Dad's hand on my shoulder and Mom's sad eyes said it all. Helen was not suffering any more. It was the hardest thing I have ever done, making that decision.
NOTE: I know this may sound harsh to some but the times were different. You only used a vet if it was an animal that made you money, like a work horse or a cow. Dogs were special but they only got rabies shots. If your dog died, you got another one and life went on. After all, it was just a dog.