Dr Jim’s Personal Euthanasia Experience

We got a new family dog when I was 13 years old. We had always had dogs, cats, pheasants, and even a pony as I was growing up, but Bandit was special from the beginning. He was a “recycle dog,” already a year and a half old when we got him. He was a Rhodesian Ridgeback, rejected because his ridge wasn’t complete, and he kept escaping from his previous owners.

I quickly became attached to him. He was easily trained and was very loving. He did have an annoying habit of running off through the neighborhood. We were worried that he might be killed on the streets or highways he was crossing. Once he was neutered, he stayed at home more.

Our relationship deepened as we grew up together. I have had other dogs, but none that I have been more attached to. He was my buddy. He got me through my teen years. When I went to college, I missed him almost as much as I missed the rest of my family. He was always excited when I came home to visit.

The inevitable was happening, though. Bandit was aging. His arthritis was managed with pain meds but he had a respiratory condition that worsened with age. He had emphysema and coughed frequently. My parents would tell me how bad he was. They told me how he would only sleep standing up next to a wall, and then he would suddenly fall down and found it difficult to stand up. I was in denial. I was in vet school at the time and I knew what was going on but didn’t want to accept it. On a visit home, I saw my friend and companion suffering and realized what needed to be done.

However, there was a complication. Bandit had figured out that Dr. Beckett, our local veterinarian, had neutered him. We don’t know how he knew, but he did. He hated Dr. Beckett. He would bark and circle him whenever he came over, which was frequently because he boarded horses on our property. I did not want him to have an alarming last experience, so I got the euthanasia solution at vet school and took it home. I stopped my buddy’s suffering that day. It is still one of the most difficult things I have ever done. It brings such a flow of emotions, even now, 33 years later.

When I slipped the needle in his vein, his look was not of fear but of trust. His suffering and struggling ended as his life ebbed away in my arms. The loss of my best friend crept in to my consciousness. I recall digging a grave for him in our field next to the barn as tears streamed down my cheeks. It was a time of purging. I realized his suffering was over and I needed in my heart to remember the amazing amount of rich times we had together. I still recount those growing up days, filled with the adventure, warmth, and love that Bandit gave me. I feel privileged to have been able to stop the condition he was in, and I know he appreciated it also.

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Kayla Wrasman
Kayla Wrasman
posted 2 weeks ago

Our dogs love going and they saved our older dog's life when she had an allergic reaction 💕

Abigail Lee
Abigail Lee
posted 6 months ago

We absolutely LOVE Tipp City Vet! All of the staff are professional and friendly, always happy to see us and my girl, Ollie! I have been bringing Ollie here for care for about 2 years and always had a wonderful experience. They are thorough and make sure you feel at ease about your pet.
About two months ago, we started bringing my girl here for doggy daycare once or twice a week and she loves it! She has a chance to get all her Aussie energy out while I'm at work. She's always so happy when I pick her up!!
My family has also utilized their lodging services several times. You can board your pets separately or together. They offer extra play sessions, bathing, etc. And if you're still worried about your pet, you can text their lodging phone number and they will send you pictures of your pet! Great for nervous Dog Moms like me!
Can't say enough good things!

Alice Hennessey
Alice Hennessey
posted 1 month ago

I love Dr and Mrs hendricks. Wonderful people and the care they give my Bella is very special!

Vickki Slusher
Vickki Slusher
posted 1 month ago

Cannot say enough about Dr. Mathias and his whole team of professionals! Years ago I had a sick cat that other vets said they couldn't save. I brought him to Dr. Mathias and he was able to treat him. He lived another happy and healthy 10 yrs! I now have a dog and live south of town, but still make the trip to Tipp City, as I wouldn't trust anyone else with her care!

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