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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Love Never Dies...

Companion: Golden Retriever - Bentley

Owner: Human - William

April 7, 2001 – July 10, 2012


My Bentley went to Rainbow Bridge on July 10, 2012. He was a very good boy. It was never easy.

June 19: Bentley did not finish his dinner. I was shocked. I thought it was summer. About two hours later, we went for our routine walk. He vomited some food during our walk.

June 19 – June 25: Bentley became weaker. There was no need to use leash. He must be declining. I thought this was normal. He slowed down only because of his normal aging and hot weather.

June 26: Bentley went to see his new vet. I fired the original vet. The one he used for his whole life. This was his second time to this new vet. This vet came from some referrals. So he must be at least average. I was very picky. Bentley had no problem to get on to the Jeep. As usual, he was happy to go for a car trip. Within 5 minutes in the appointment, I saw my vet became serious. I was told Bentley got Lymphoma. What? Why? When? You did not tell me anything three months ago. Last year, my original vet also told me Bentley would have a few more years.

Desperate with Tears, I listened. Lymphoma is Terminal and there is No Cure. Based on his experience by looking, and touching, it was now stage III or stage IV. There was no time to waste but too much information to absorb.

I was told three unacceptable options:
1) Untreated – Bentley would last 8 weeks.
2) Treated with Prednisone – Bentley could have improved quality life average up to 3 or 4 months.
3) Treated with Chemotherapy – Weekly treatments and strong commitments, Bentley could live 8 or 9 months average.

No, these were not my options. I have plans for Bentley in the next two years. I was thinking to spend more time with him in his senior years and work at home probably 2013 because I know I have 3 or 4 years remaining. But I must accept the truth.

Vet explained Chemotherapy to me and his past experience with patients (dogs and owners). Many dog owners would never do this route if ask again. Many dog owners regretted the long process, and saw the dogs to go through weekly treatments for a prolonged life of 12 months.

Based on Bentley at 11, I thought I picked Prednisone – aiming for 4 months or longer improved but short lived quality life. I still took time to think about that. I did not give firm agreement about Prednisone or Chemotherapy. I got some supplements home to start to build up his immune system to fight illness. On the same night, Bentley was not eating again. Things were day and night. I was nervous and scared. I discussed with the vet on the phone what was happening. Both vet and I decided to start Prednisone right away so as to make him to eat again. I was still not sure about this choice.

Two weeks of Roller Coaster – That Were Very Intense Two Weeks!
Bentley and I were the only members in the household. I needed to have time off from work. I was desperate to buy personal time.

June 26 – July 5 (10 days – Bentley took daily 50 mg prednisone and some health supplements):
There was no improvement on existing lymph nodes. The existing nodes were even getting slightly bigger. There were new nodes appearing.

June 26 – July 1 (I have hope):
Bentley ate and pooed. His energy level was back to about 75%. I thought there was hope. I thought that Prednisone treatment was magic.

July 2 – July 5 (Bad Bad and very Bad):
My poor Bentley was difficult to get up, to walk upstairs. He was even weaker than June 19 – June 25. How could that be? He was in the treatment! Now I learned some good days and some bad days. On July 5, Bentley saw the vet again. Vet wanted him to have 75 mg prednisone daily and hoped to control the lymph nodes and improve his illness.

The thoughts about End of Life and Quality of Life hit me so hard. Friends told me I would know when the time was right, but I was not sure. Did I wait too long and allow him to suffer? Was he suffering? Around July 6 and July 7, I felt the time was nearer. I did not let go of Bentley’s treatment.

July 6 – July 9 (4 days – Bentley took daily 75 mg prednisone and some health supplements):
I learned to live one day at a time. Bentley was quiet but he always put on a happy face. Bentley panted heavily. He was difficult to get up. He walked a few steps and lay down for a few minutes. I knew Bentley walked for me and pleased me but he must lay down to rest. Seeing and dealing with this situation, my heart was broken. I could not lift or hold him all the time. It was only me and Bentley. I felt lonely and no help.

I wanted him to be outside 4-5 times to have regular pees and poos. I knew some negative effect of prednisone. He drank more water and ate more. I hand fed him. He gained one big pound. Thanks God. I also live on ground level. It was considered easy out to the gardens and yards to do his business. But for a sick dog, Bentley walked half block in 5 minutes. We were both exhausted. I carried a backpack with me at all time when we were out. I had towel. I had treats. I had tennis balls. I had cell phone etc. Thank you! Summer daytime is always longer. I tried to enjoy every moments left. On July 9, vet came to my house. Vet told me some nodes were actually reduced in size. We should continue the 75 mg prednisone for a while and eventually smaller dosage. He told me that Bentley was not suffering but he was only tired. We further discussed to get him some rugs or carpets at home. Bentley should get new boots at home to help himself to get up later. I must start to prepare some diapers at home. Sooner or later, he would urinate and soil the home. We discussed homemade meals, some organic eggs, and yogurt in his coming diets. July 9 was not a very bad day for Bentley. Bentley felt good when vet or my friend came to visit. My friend came to visit him in the evening. Bentley was always turbo charged during those moments. He pleased the humans around him.

His poos were pretty normal for the last week. In the morning, July 9, Bentley’s poo was big and dark black. I thought it was okay because he ate his food. At night, he vomited his 25 mg prednisone I gave him that was mixed with his cheese. I gave him a new one. In the middle of night, Bentley soiled the house. That rarely happened.

July 10 (The hardest decision I made – I let him go):
I cleaned up the mess in the early morning. I walked Bentley when the light was out. He pooed again and he was bleeding a bit. He walked slowly. I knew it was our last morning together on earth. From June 19 to July 10, Bentley’s quality of life has diminished. I did not know what I could offer to make a major change. I knew I could hold him one or two more weeks with me. I made a house call. I hold him and fed him cookies / treats and he went to Rainbow Bridge by himself. Love Never Dies. I never forget My Bentley. I let him go. I don’t know how I’ll manage.
 

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In the Moment
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You're right, LOVE NEVER DOES DIE. You gave your boy the very best gift ever, the decision made with love and his welfare at heart. You took on his pain so that he could be free from it. Bless you and your Bentley. He will always be with you, only now on silent paws. Hugs to you.
 

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Love my Golden Boys!!
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I`m so sorry for your loss. You gave Bentley the greatest gift.....freedom from his pain.

RIP Bentley.
 

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I'm so sorry to hear of bentley's loss...he sounded wonderful...don't beat yourself up, sounds like you did everything possible for Bentley, the most important, relieving him from his pain...please post some pics of your wonderful sweetie, when u are up to it....RIP Bentley
 

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I'm so sorry for the loss of your beloved Bentley. It's so hard to watch them decline and know that their quality of life is gone. It is so obvious that you love your boy with all your heart. I understand your heartbreak. We had to send our boy to the bridge 7/26. It's so hard to contemplate a future without them and yet we don't want them to suffer any longer. Keeping you in our thoughts at this heartbreaking time.
 

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Finley and Banshee's Mom
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I so badly wish I had some words that would be of some comfort to you. I truly believe it is one of the hardest things you will ever go through. My heart goes out to you. Please post some pictures, we would love to see your Bentley.
 

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I'm so sorry. I feel your pain and am wiping the tears away as I remember walking that same path from June 23, 2009 through the day my heart dog Rusty went to bridge, also from Lymphoma, on September 29, 2009. RiP sweet Bentley.
 

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I miss my Buddy
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William, I am very, very sorry for your loss of Bentley.

There is a club here, named Club of Broken Hearts.

http://www.goldenretrieverforum.com/golden-retriever-rainbow-bridge/109359-rainbow-bridge-section-club-broken-hearts.html

Instead of welcome, new members are greeted with “I am so, so sorry”. Sadly, William you became a member, not by a choice, love for your Bentley brought you in this club. There are so many of us who feel your pain like our own, as your story is the same one we played in, just different names for leading roles. They will never be forgotten.

How could you forget morning sunshine, it was a golden smile that woke you up every morning. How could you forget a gentle breeze, it was happy tail wagging for your welcome home. How could you forget the last night when you knew the time was running out for you and your friend. How will you manage to survive this enormous loss? By acceptance that part of your heart went with him in heaven that day so he could remember you and you could remember him. How do I know all of these? As it all happened to me and I am still walking this walk, looking forward for a day to be with my Buddy again.


Run free, play hard, sleep softly sweet Bentley boy.
 

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Rudy's Lucky Dad
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William,

I'm so sorry for your loss of Bentley. Losing a golden is like losing the most beautiful soul that walks the Earth for a time. It's sad that he went so quickly after his diagnosis. You gave him a wonderful fun life and did what you could to give him more time here. I hope this poem helps. I know it helped me when I lost my first, then second, then third golden. I'm one who believes we'll all see our beautiful boys and girls again.

Rainbow Bridge


Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge.

When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge.


There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together.

There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable.

All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor; those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by.


The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind.

They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent; His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster.

You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.

Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together....

Author unknown...
 

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Dog Lover
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William

William

I am so very, very, sorry about Bentley! I know how much it hurts!
I lost my Smooch within a matter of 2 weeks, and they thought it
might be lymphoma. I'm sure that Bentley is playing with Smooch at the
Rainbow Bridge-you gave him a wonderful life and will see him, again!
 

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where the tails wag
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Bentley sounds like he was an amazing companion, I am so sorry for your loss but you did what was best for him. IT hurts but you are so right, lover never dies.

Run softly at the Bridge, Bentley, full of energy and health once more.
 

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I am so very sorry for the loss of your loving companion, Bentley. My dear Lacey passed away on Sunday 8/5/12 from IMHA. I very much feel your pain.

The members on this forum have been so supportive of me in my sadness, and I know they will be for you.

Bentley is now happy and pain-free at the Rainbow Bridge.
 

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Carlos-Rhett's Dad 4ever
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My heart goes out to you on the loss of Bentley. Words are so hard to express about the love and care we give our companions when they are going though their final days with us. We will keep you in our prayers that you may receive comfort during your loss.
 

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I miss my Jesse
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My heart goes out to you and Bentley. We all know how hard that loss is here and I wouldn't wish that pain on anyone. Come here often and share your stories of Bentley and how much you miss him. It really does help.
 

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Super Moderator Leader
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I am so sorry for your loss of Bentley, my heart goes out to you. There are many of us here on the forum who have lost a beloved golden, I am one of them. We all know and understand what you are experiencing. Let yourself grieve and give your heart time to heal. Bentley will always be with you in spirit. Whenever you need support, we're all here for you.

Here's a poem that has helped me get through the loss of my Old Gold 1.5 years ago-


I'm Still Here
Friend, please don't mourn for me
I'm still here, though you don't see.
I'm right by your side each night and day
and within your heart I long to stay.

My body is gone but I'm always near.
I'm everything you feel, see or hear.
My spirit is free, but I'll never depart
as long as you keep me alive in your heart.

I'll never wander out of your sight-
I'm the brightest star on a summer night.
I'll never be beyond your reach-
I'm the warm moist sand when you're at the beach.

I'm the colorful leaves when fall comes around
and the pure white snow that blankets the ground.
I'm the beautiful flowers of which you're so fond,
The clear cool water in a quiet pond.

I'm the first bright blossom you'll see in the spring,
The first warm raindrop that April will bring.
I'm the first ray of light when the sun starts to shine,
and you'll see that the face in the moon is mine.

When you start thinking there's no one to love you,
you can talk to me through the Lord above you.
I'll whisper my answer through the leaves on the trees,
and you'll feel my presence in the soft summer breeze.

I'm the hot salty tears that flow when you weep
and the beautiful dreams that come while you sleep.
I'm the smile you see on a baby's face.
Just look for me, friend, I'm everyplace!
Author Unknown
 

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I'm so so sorry for your loss, they fill our hearts with so much love and when they leave us it leaves such a hole that only time can help to heal. The kindest act is the hardest of all to do, I remember taking my first boy to the vet for his final trip and when he looked at me and gave a little wag of the tail it killed me inside but I couldn't bear to see him suffer. I thought I could never get another one because the pain was just too much, but soon I knew I had to do it again because the joy they give for years does out weigh the tears.
I just had to look at the fact that he had a great life and I spoiled him rotten all of his days. The up and down rollercoaster of emotions is so hard to bear.
 

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I put my baby girl down a week ago today. She was 15 years, 8 months old. It was the hardest thing I ever did and the only dog I have ever had to do it to. It is very hard but they are with us in spirit, know that and smile. The days will get easier. I started studying animal communication - I hope someday to talk to my girl at Rainbow Bridge....
 
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