Our series on Getting Older With Your Dog was always going to come to this point, I suppose, but it’s never an easy topic to know how to bring up. Still, loss is an essential part of life and you have to talk about the fact that your dog will eventually cross the rainbow bridge. Unfortunately, it can’t be avoided.
So how do you approach the death of your four-legged loved one?
The fact is that there is no right or wrong answer. There are no easy answers either. We’ll spend some time talking about various approaches and various attitudes toward the loss of a dog, but you should remember that you aren’t necessarily doing anything wrong if you don’t experience your grief one way or another.
Over the weekend, I came across an absolutely stunning and heartbreaking story about a Reddit user named “Nikolaoss” and his dog Lennox. Lennox was struck with severe cancer and arthritis, with a tumor growth so significant that it was visible on his left shoulder. The dog could barely stand and was eventually put down on January 23, 2013.
Of course, before the boxer had to be put down he was given a final slice of heaven on earth. Lennox’s owner gave him a final meal that could only be described as epic. “This post isn’t meant to be sad in any way,” said Nikolaoss. “He lived like an absolute boss all his life! And the meal reflects that!”
The last meal, shown through pictures and a video clip, includes a turkey leg, bacon, sausages, and rice. Lennox took to the feast like a boss, as you might imagine, and the post from Nikolaoss was a hit. He received over 24,000 upvotes on the site and lots of supportive comments.
Lennox, as you can tell from the video linked here, went for the bacon first.
Nikolaoss’ approach to losing Lennox was to honor his companion and best friend in the best way he knew how. The dog’s life was coming to an end, but that didn’t mean that Lennox had to go out in a wave of sadness and pain. Lennox got to do what a lot of us humans certainly hope we’ll get to do when our time is up: he enjoyed himself one last time.
As we dig into the sensitive subject of losing a dog, we need to remember that it’s not an easy road. But there are ways to make that road easier on everyone involved, especially our dogs, and there are ways to ensure that death is a path to memory and compassion rather than a portal to darkness and fear.
Rest in peace, Lennox.