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I Lost My Only Real Friend


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I lost my dog on January 26. I ve put up posters, ad in the local newpaper, I go to the dog shelter, everyday. I had her for 11 years. 11 Years, of love. I lost my two boys to Muscular Dystrophy, I had them 9 1/2 years. Now, I just, well I dont know. I'm thinking that I'm the kind of person that is not supposed to keep things, like for a long time, ha.  I tried to get a much needed appointment withe my tdoc, shes full, maybe alot of her patients have lost thier dog too!!. I really need my dog back. Another thought I had was: How long should i wait before i should get another dog???? I know when i was grieving Human death, your supposed to wait a year before you make any major move, which I did. I got the dog. But I'm not real sure how long I should wait to get another animal. Or even If I should. I havent had a relationship in three years, theres an option, NOT. Any ideas how long, folks, I miss Chili so much.  Thanks for listening.

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I'm so sorry. ;)

I picked up a puppy this morning cause I was afraid she'd get hurt and put ads in the local paper to try to find her owner. :) I really hope the same happens for you and you get her back.

You seem like an animal lover, so if you got another dog, you'd probably bond to it right away. You'd still miss Chili, but at least you'd have a companion.

*hugs*

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I'm so sorry about the dog.  I've known a few people who had to let a cat or dog go recently and I dread the day when I have to make that decision for one of my babies (two pain-in-the ass cats I've had for 12 years).

9 1/2 years and 11 years is a very long time so try not to think you're not fit to have animals.  Sure, keep looking for your wonderful friend, but know that you're doing everything you can. 

As for getting a new dog, everyone's different.  My downstairs neighbor had to put her old cat out of its misery and adopted a rescue cat within 2 weeks, but my therapist lost her sweet old dog 6 months ago and still hasn't replaced him.  Listen to your gut feeling.  Ask yourself the question several days in a row to make sure it's really how you feel.  It's not a betrayal to get a new dog.  You can give lots of love to a new pet; you can rescue some little furry bundle of love and pour all that love and friendship into a new relationship.

Again, it makes me tear up to hear about it.  I hope you feel better soon.

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Have you looked for your dog on Petfinder.com?  Maybe she's not at your local shelter, but wandered off quite a distance.

When you're ready for another dog, check out the canines at Petfinder.  They publish the pictures and stories of lots of pups that are available for adoption.

I hope you find your Chili!

olga

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Oh, sweetie. I am so, so sorry to hear this. I have gone through this myself.

Here is a recent thread that, though it deals with the death of a pet, has a lot to say on what you are going through: How do you come to terms with the loss of a pet?

I wrote it there, but I'm going to repeat it here (again, this was regarding the death of a pet, but would still apply to your loss):

...everyone is different, and we all grief and move on in our own way. For some people, getting a new companion animal soon after the death of another makes sense. For others it doesn't. You need to do what is right for you and to move at your own pace.

I used to run an animal-related nonprofit organization; during that time we provided grief counseling for pet loss. I spoke with many people going through this. I can say that when to get another companion animal is highly individual. Respecting your own feelings and instincts as to when the time is right will go a long ways towards making the best decision for you.

If you go to the thread linked above, you will find other links I've listed in a post there. There is a great deal of help and information available for what you are dealing with.

Again, I'm so sorry.

revlow

PS - I just read the post of NARS that came through as I was writing this. She is saying the same thing, and NARS is one of the wisest people I know here at CB.

PPS - Excellent suggestion by Olga.

Take care.

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I'm going to put the links here as well. Here are some websites that offer help and information on pet loss and grief:

http://www.vet.purdue.edu/chab/loss.htm - List of resources re: Pet Loss and Grief

http://www.vet.purdue.edu/chab/hotlines.htm - List of Pet Loss and Grief Hotlines

http://www.vetmed.ucdavis.edu/petloss/Emotions.htm

After re-reading your post, I wanted to emphasize again that help is available. There are Pet Loss and Grief hotlines. You'll find a list in the 2nd link. Perhaps calling one of these would help until you can see your tdoc.

Best,

revlow

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Thought I'd let you know that one time I did find my cat who had been missing for over 6 weeks. I knew the area she should be in (long story, but someone was supposed to be taking care of her for me while I was in the process of moving). I mapped it out, printed up about 200 flyers, and went door to door. I stuffed every mailbox in the area. Yes, that's not exactly *legal*...but it worked.

It is different with dogs; they can travel much further. And, unfortunately, sometimes people will find a stray and take them along to wherever they live (even with good intentions of trying to find the owner), rather than taking them to the local shelter where the owner is most likely to find them. If they don't live in the same city where they found the dog, this can be a problem. A few more suggestions:

1)

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Definitely make sure you check local vet offices.  I know the clinic I work at maintains their own Lost & Found book.  We also have a bulletin book where photos, descriptions, and other relevant info can be posted so anyone browsing though the book in the waiting room can readily access the info.

Make sure that you are personally checking shelters, particularly if Chili is a mixed breed.  Sometimes one person's description of a mixed breed bears little resemblance to the next person's description.

Post photos and a personal message about Chili on your flyers, I think it really improves the odds that someone will remember and consider your flyer.  Many people assume that any wandering dog is a stray without a home, or a pet that has been abandoned.

Most of all take it easy on yourself.  Accidents happen and sometimes animals simply escape despite our best precautions.  If you honestly can't find Chili you will know when the time is right to get another dog.  It is such a personal decision that I don't think there are any hard and fast rules about when the timing is right.

If you get a new dog consider getting the dog microchipped or tattooed, these both will dramatically increase your odds of getting the dog back.  Rabies tags and pet ID tags are also an excellent idea, we've been able to track down some very worried owners through rabies tags.

Good luck and take care.

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You summed it up well, Alissha. All of it. And the point about people's descriptions of mixed breeds is so true!

One thing that also can improve the odds with the flyers: printing them on colored paper. I know that sounds pretty idiotic, but anything you can do to catch someone's eye the better. At the time I did the flyers for my cat, I did them in Pepto-Bismol pink (I think usually called "Cherry" at the print shops). I'd just read an article about psychological studies on how this particular shade of pink makes people more relaxed and receptive. Who knows? Anything that can set it off from the sea of white helps. Even just quickly highlighting some words or making a border with a bright highlighter will grab attention.

But most important is what Alissha said about "photos and a personal message about Chili on your flyers" -- doesn't matter what color paper, that's what people will read and respond to.

Take care.

revlow

PS - Alissha, sounds like an exceptional clinic where you work.

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