RIP: Casey

I did not expect my blog to take this turn, as most know I am working on a entry about my recent adventure to the great state of Alaska. But I cannot publish that story. Not today, at least.

Instead I must pay respects to my beloved dog Casey who after thirteen years of life was put to rest earlier this afternoon. K Dog

Enduring a rare form of tongue cancer for the last four months, Casey was no longer living a life worth saving. Unable to eat or drink in recent days, she quickly dropped weight and walked around in a zombie state. It seemed like over night she became a skeletal version of her former self.

All this week, my family discussed what to do and when to call it. Numerous conversations, tear filled and emotional, about what was best for our pack. Finally we concluded yesterday it was best to relieve her of the pain and to do so today. A decision never easy to make.

When I arrived at the veterinarian’s office, I decided I would not watch the procedure. I didn’t want to see her body become lifeless. I didn’t think I had the courage to stay the whole way through. I didn’t want to see an animal I have loved for so long leave her body. Too much for me to swallow.

But after some thought I changed my mind. I realized I owed it to Casey, a friend and companion who stood by me for so long and loved me no matter what. A dog who always waged her tail when I walked through the door and pawed me with affection even after a hard days work.

So when the time had come, I stood behind my mother and watched the vet inject the medicine. I didn’t turn away as Casey squirmed from discomfort. And I even continued to watch when our little girl jerked her neck around and gave my mom one final look of love. A moment that brought me closer to life and death than ever before. A moment I will never forget.

I am a marked man because of Casey. Because of her life and because of her death. Because of that final moment and because of our lasting relationship and endless love we shared.

We, as humans, so often love our animals for selfish reasons, not realizing or considering what is best for them. We put the animal’s needs second to what feels best to us.

Today we put Casey first and our feelings and emotions second.

RIP, Casey. You will be missed.


45 thoughts on “RIP: Casey

  1. Oh Ryan… I am so sorry. I know the heartfelt pain in your heart you are dealing with right now. When I had to say goodbye to my Labrador Ginger, who graced my life for 14 years, who was my baby, I truly understand. When I had to put Ginger down, I was not strong enough to stand and say goodbye. I remember driving her to the vet and she placed her paw on my shoulder in the car and I knew then, she was telling me, it was ok.

    This wonderful dog Ginger was the one that chewed a hole in my living room chair when she was a pup, this wonderful dog Ginger chewed the electrical wires off my husband’s motorcycle, this wonderful dog Ginger would poof going down the stairs in the morning when I was pregnant, this wonderful dog Ginger was the dog the sleep next to my side of the bed every night. This wonderful dog Ginger gave me unconditional love every day when I walked into my home after a long day at work. She would great me with such excitement and I would say, Mommy is home!!!

    As I clear my eyes, I understand your loss~~~


  2. Ryan,
    I am so sorry for the loss of Casey. It is never easy to do the unselfish thing. I have been in a funk all week and felt a good cry coming, but it never came. Today after reading your story the dam opened. I cried for you, for Casey and for your family. It was a cleansing cry. Death is scary to me and have never been brave when having to put down a pet, you have made me feel better about the times I have had to, but also guilty for not being there, for hiding from reality. You have taught me courage and unconditional love. Thank you.


  3. Oh, Ryan, I am so sorry. Man’s best friend is also woman’s best friend. My cocker Dottie, that I got when we were both puppies. She was my playmate, buddy and confidant during my turbulant teens years. I was in my twenties when she passed away in her sleep.

    That was fifty years ago and I still miss that little gal. What a wonderful companion she would make today. So sad to loose our pets, they really are our best friends.

    Be strong my friend.


  4. Ryan,
    I wrote my comments very early this morning. I just read what I wrote.

    My wonderful dog Ginger slept next to my side of the bed…

    Ginger would greet me with excitement~~

    My goodness, I do not know if I was caught up in the moment and the fingers and brain were not functioning at the same level or the misty eyes I was typing through…

    I have a picture of Ginger on my dresser in my bedroom and each night I see my baby before I shut the light off~~


  5. Ryan ~
    I am so sorry. I’m glad you decided to be by her side at the end. I’m sure she felt your presence and was comforted by that.



  6. I was expecting to read something about the cruise….and yet…..I find something that I wasn’t expecting. Why I stopped by your blog today, of all days – gives me goosebumps.

    Not 3 hours ago, I took my 18 year old Birman, Sheeny, to the vet to be euthanized. We have been holding on to her…hoping that the seizures she’s been having would resolve…and by some miracle…she would just get better. After a long night of worry…we made the decision this morning.

    Reading your words…knowing we’ve just gone through the same thing…

    My husband could not stay with me in the room…he waited in the reception area with the empty cat carrier clutched in his arms. She was my girl…I held her close and let her go – all at the same time.

    Your words, Ryan…a gift.


    1. Linda, does it surprise you to discover that my mother’s name is Linda? Coincidence? Don’t think so. Connectivity is more like it.

      We are all connected, going through the same events, feeling the same emotions, making the same decisions. No matter we are in the world, no matter how old we are, no matter what we look like and no matter where we live.

      Thank you for inspiring me to continue doing what I do and knowing I am exactly where I am supposed to be.

      Sending my endless love from California.


      1. I am a little lost for words…(and for those who know me…well…let’s just say this doesn’t happen often). My heartfelt thanks to you, Ryan for sharing your story and for listening to mine. You touched my heart. I’m sure your Mom is a wonderful woman 🙂 xoxofromSquamish

        Thank you so much for your caring words marejohn, Gloria, chriann, liz..dg…I really appreciate it.



    2. Linda, our thoughts and prayers go to you and your husband. We all deal as we can, but I am glad you were able to be with your “girl” one last time and let her know you loved her.
      I am so glad you came upon Ryan’s blog today. I think you both needed to share this difficult experience.
      What courage and love it took to do what you had to do for Sheeny. Hugs to you and your family





  8. Ryan, there is absolutely nothing to say other than I am so sorry. You were so brave to do what Casey needed for you to do and not what was easy for you.
    I pray that all the tears we are crying for you and your family over your loss will help wash away some of the sharpness of the pain you are feeling, the kind of pain that just takes your breath away, and helps to ease all of you into sweet memories of your beloved Casey.


  9. Ryan…. Love your blog… I don’t comment but I enjoy your writing very much.

    I couldn’t help but post today in response to you having to put Casey down. I’m still not over my beloved dog having cancer last year. I miss her every day.

    Just wanted you to know that you have another person out here that is thinking of you and your family.

    Stay strong and remember the good times with Casey… don’t worry, your memory of her at the Vet’s office will not be what you remember most… that will pass.

    The fond memories of her by your side will always be there when you need them most.

    CharlieTuna and LarryLobster


  10. Linda,
    I am so sorry to read of your loss of your Sheeny. I think her spirit brought you to the Written Road to find comfort. Ryan has a way with words that leaves everyone with a soft fuzzy. When he posted about Casey, he was finding peace within himself and sharing Casey with all of us. Ryan may of been looking for a soft fuzzy from all of us but as Ryan said, connectivity brings all of us together. You touched my heart with your devoted love for Sheeny. Put a picture by your night stand and before you turn the light out, you will see your baby….Take care Linda.


  11. Oh Ryan…

    So sorry. I am sure someone, perhaps your vet, has told you of the Rainbow Bridge…it was blog buddies who shared this with me when we had to say good-bye to our beloved Murphy. The pain will lessen and your memories of Casey will last forever.



  12. Dear Ryan and BB’s,

    Your experiences have touched me very deeply and it’s been awhile since this has happened to me, but it brings back all my past pet family members right to the front of my life’s memories and very happy times. I’m thankful for them and for all of you.

    Ryan – thinking of you and sending you and your family many {{{{ HUGS }}}

    I’m thinking of my Dad now who has 2 sister cats over 15 yrs old at the end of their lives (one has lost a legs to cancer and she still loves to go outside and enjoy the sunshine every day …lessons we can learn from them to appreciate the simple things in life like sunshine, a hello, a tail wagging, a paw on the shoulder, a cat rubbing your leg.

    I do have pictures of my beloved as babies and adults and they always make me smile,
    Beach Bonnie


  13. Dearest Ryan- so sorry to hear about your beloved pup. I wish I had stayed with my kitty when I had to have her put to sleep. I still think of her and wish I had done that one last thing for her. You were brave to do that and I commend you for putting your doggy first.


  14. Dearest Ryan and Linda- I admire you both for your strength. May the memories of your beloved companions wrap you with light and love as they help comfort you through your grief.


  15. Dear Ryan,

    Tears were streaming down my face as I read this entry. Losing a loved one is never easy, animal or human it’s always hard. I admire you and your family for making a difficult choice and I admire the fact that you stood by your friend until the end. Thank you for sharing this very personal experience with us.



  16. Ryan… I am so sorry to hear of the loss of Casey, it’s so hard to say goodbye…I held my Oliver in my arms as he cried from the pain of cancer that was taking over his body as the vet enjected the poisen to take away his pain. I did not want to let him go. It took me so long to forget that he wasn’t at my feet.

    Ryan, time has a way of healing the pain.

    Sending hugs your way.

    Linda, sending hugs your way too. Brighter days ahead.


  17. I’m so sorry for you & your family Ryan. Know the feeling all too well, most recently in May of this year. Hugs to you.


  18. I sit here in tears for your loss and also because you take the time to share with all of us. Blessings to you and yours xoxo:)J


  19. Ryan, I am a bit late reading about Casey. I just wanted to tell you that you took great care of her by letting her go when you did. They do have a way of telling us when it’s time to say goodbye. I have lit a candle this morning to honor Casey, as well as Sheeny, Linda’s cat. By now they have met at the Rainbow Bridge.

    Gentle hugs.


  20. I couldn’t have said it better myself, bro. Every time I see her little face in a frozen moment in time, my eyes well up. She was such a loyal friend, and our world is much more drab and empty without her.

    RIP, Casey. You will forever be in our hearts.


  21. Ryan and Linda,
    My heart just broke once again reading about you both having to let go of the precious dog and cat you so loved. A few years ago I lost 4 cats in 18 months and it was rough. I still cry sometimes when I think about them, especially Eddy Spaghetti. Just remember…those we held in our arms for a little while, we hold in our hearts forever. Rest well Casey and Sheeny.



  22. awwww Ryan!

    you think of the happy times~
    i miss my bird a suncoure so much that died in my hand a few years ago
    really a heavy heart still for the love he gave me
    and he flew 2 me when i was in the tub 2 die in my hand
    when he doesn’t like water
    He loved our whole family for 1o years!

    we will think of the love and smiles they gave us and smile for them
    We have the memories!




  23. Ryan,
    I appreciate how hard it is to part with a pet. The thought of losing that pure and unconditional love can be unbearable. I did everything I could, sought every option I could find to hold on to my basset Ellie before accepting I had to do what was best for her.

    After I got back from the vet’s office, I was standing out on the patio wiping away the tears. A monarch butterfly flew around the corner of the house, circled around me and then flew off. I usually scoff at the suggestion that something is “a sign” but in this case I dropped the skepticism. It was her spirit that brought the butterfly to show me she was free.

    Maybe Casey will meet up with Ellie and play a little.



  24. Ryan, I am so sorry about your Casey. Only those who have lost a pet they loved would understand. I send you heart felt love and sympathy.
    You writing is so beautiful! Your pictures are magnificent.
    Thank you for touching my heart!


  25. Hi Ryan,

    Just got through reading your blog, it brought tears to my eyes, I was thinking of my dog Becca, she looked just like Casey, her coloring and everything about her. She lived to be almost 16 years old, but we had to put her to rest, she was in pain with tumors and had just broke her back leg going downstairs on the outdoor deck stairs.

    I could not bring myself to take her to vet office, and called out local vet office, and a vet and tech came to the house, so my lab Becca was able to go to rest in familar surrounding around her.

    So Ryan take heart, Casey will always be there with you, as you remember her



  26. Hi Ryan,
    I don’t know what to say except that I am sorry and I do know what you are going through as so many of us do.
    My heart broke for you when I was reading about what happened to Casey.
    She was lucky that she had you for her time here.
    Joan K.


  27. Ryan,

    I had a little boy, a yorkie named Sammy. He was 13 1/2 years old. He became very ill and I 2 had 2 make the same decision. I am so sorry for your loss. As I read your entry, I cried.
    Sammy has been gone for close to 5 years and I still have a difficlut time. I loved him with all my heart. He was my best friend.
    I have a maltese now, Bailey. I adore him and he simply makes my life much better… not matter what!

    I feel for you and your mother.
    My best to you both.




  28. My heart is heavy after reading about you & your special Casey (which happens to be one of my favorite names…actually had a hand in naming my nephew Jordan Casey).
    Hubby & I both know too well what you & mom have gone through. Stirs up so many emotions while reading you story…
    Sending heartfelt hugs & prayers to your mom…remember the Rainbow Bridge.
    ♥ Trina


  29. I hadn’t checked out your blog in awhile but when I did this morning I was sorry to hear about you losing Casey. Making a decision like you had to do is never easy but one usually knows when the time has come. Thanks for sharing the experience with us and for staying with Casey so she wasn’t alone at the end. Love your writing…..and your work with Ross!


  30. I just saw this Ryan, I am so sorry to hear about Casey. Losing a pet is like losing a family member. I had to put one of my cats to rest and I cried ALL day long at work. It was the worse thing to have to choose to do but I knew it was for the best. I loved that little boy and will never forget him.

    Wishing you & yours the best as well ♥



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