Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Charlie and the Rainbow Bridge

If you follow me on instagram, you'll have seen that in June, Charlie got sick. Very sick.

It started with him wobbling as he walked. After four or five days of him seeming a little off-balance/uncoordinated, I took him to the vet. They did an x-ray and found an old spinal injury (that probably happened a year or so before), and thought that it could possibly be causing his current symptoms. They could also see that he was constipated, so thought that if he could just get his bowels moving normally he'd improve.

He didn't improve. He just kept getting worse. Over the course of two weeks and five vet visits (including one to see specialists at the UNC vet school), it became clear that he was going to pass away. His condition deteriorated so much over the course of those two weeks that in his final days, he couldn't drink without help and couldn't move almost at all.

On one of his last days, when all he wanted was to be held, Ellie read to him. She read him a book she had out from the library about a girl, her cat, and "caterflies."

That was on Monday, June 18, the day we had seen the UNC specialists and knew that he was going to die. 

You know, I've been re-reading the Harry Potter series this summer, and just this week I read a passage that perfectly described how I felt that day. It's from Prisoner of Azkaban, near the end, where Hagrid is waiting for the committee from the Ministry of Magic to come and execute Buckbeak. The book reads: "Hagrid was not crying, nor did he throw himself upon their necks. He looked like a man who did not know where he was or what to do." That's exactly how I felt - like I didn't know where I was or what to do.

On Wednesday morning, Charlie passed away.

If you've lost a pet, you know how hard it is. I'm not great at describing the loss, but suffice it to say, we all miss him a lot. 

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