At the end of the day, when an animal cannot make a decision itself, we are essentially the only ones who are responsible for doing the right thing for them. It is a heavy burden, and the right choice can sometimes be overshadowed by selfishness. Of course we want to keep our furry familiars with us, sometimes even when it is not the best choice for the animal.
A year ago today, a young woman who is very special to me and who I have mentioned in this blog several times as my partner in crime and sister made a decision to do the right thing for a dog that she loved very much. Bella was plagued by demons that none of us could really understand and after three years of blood, sweat, tears, and a lot of money to try to help Bella, my then 17 year old sister helped her best friend cross the Rainbow Bridge with dignity and let her find peace.
There was not a whole lot that Shay wanted more in this world than to be able to keep Bella with her... but she made the decision, as the only one who could, to cease her demons. Many times, she has questioned herself - even today, a year later, there are times when she wonders if she made the right choice. I know that she did. And so does Bella.
I spoke to a friend of mine last weekend who has an intuition for animals. She said to me that animals come here for whatever period of time they have, for a purpose - to teach us a lesson or show us something we didn't know about ourselves - and when their purpose has been completed, they leave us, to make room for the other animals that will teach us other lessons that they were not able to. When they depart this earth, it is their time, whether we feel that it is or not, so there is no resentment, no distrust of a human that may have to make that decision for their creature, because the time is right, whether we know it or not. I choose to believe this.