This past weekend found me in an emergency animal clinic with Charlie, my granddog. Charlie's mother was out of town on a business trip and Charlie's constant biting of her left leg had turned into a bloody mess.
Dealing with a 78-pound dog, who doesn't understand the word "heel," and doesn't love her neighbor as herself is tough for anyone, but certainly for a woman of small stature like me.
However, it had to be done, and there we were, in the vet's office at 11 p.m. on a Saturday night.
After a consulation, the doctor took Charlie back while I waited in the lobby, drinking coffee and scanning through magazines. A lady about my age walked in with a gray cat in a blue crate. Once seated, the lady took the cat out and began carressing her and talking softly.
The cat was making strange sounds and had a distorted appearance. Her mouth was open and her paws seemed drawn. With a teary face, the lady looked at me and said, "I think she's dying." After expressing how sorry I was, a tear slid down my face. The cat's name was Chloe, and she was 14 years old.
In a few minutes, the technician came and took Chloe back. Oxygen was given, but in the end, Chloe didn't make it. It was a sad time for all. The lady thanked me for "helping" her in her time of need, and my heart hurt as she took her empty crate and walked out alone.
Before I could get too emotional, however, Charlie was back, loopy from a pain injection with a "lampshade" on her head. I had no idea how I'd get her in the car and back home again, but when duty calls, we do what we have to do.
With a prayer for the lady who lost her cat, I hung on to the leash and embarked on the challenge at hand.