Rescue Journal

i am going to throw up.

Carol  ·  May 28, 2008

my hands are shaking, and i have a giant lump in my throat and i am trying not to cry (just in case a cleaner comes in.) i am still at work so this sucks. at least i am done seeing my clients and the office is empty. oh 9 pm, please come soon, i just want to go home.

i have decided tomorrow to end clyde's life. he had another rage episode today. it is not his fault, it is just another part of his misfiring, seizuring brain but i just cannot safely manage his sometimes violent illness anymore.

i love this dog, he sleeps in my arms most nights, he lays on me as we watch tv, he trusts me as much as he can trust anyone, which is not entirely, but almost. i wonder if i am the very first person that really loved him, and if i might be the first person he loved back again?....he is such a little frankenstein... but i hope he loved someone else before he got sick and his brain went ballistic... and i really hope that they loved him back too. maybe then i won't feel so bad, if for a time, he had a normal life with a real family who adored him and he felt it too.

there is a bond here that i am breaking, consciously, to keep the others safe. i am sick inside not only at the thought of losing him but ultimately, because i don't want to betray him this way.

i had hoped if this was how it was going to end, with his disease winning the war, that he would be seizuring and we would lose while still fighting, not with my surrendering because i am afraid.

i don't want to do this. and i am going to be sick. but i am going to do it because i just can't see any other way. there is no way to pretend that there is anything noble or good in this. it is just something horrible that has to be done because i am afraid of what will happen next time.... his life for their safety.

i am so sorry clyde.



Carol, this must be so heartbreaking for you. Your strength amazes me. Following Clyde's story since he arrived at Saints has been so fascinating for me as I have never known a rescuer like you who takes on this unpredictable, strange, sometimes dangerous, but wonderful creature, knowing he may be a ticking timebomb.
The gift you have given him of your patience, love and understanding is incalculable...not only to Clyde but to those of us who follow the story and begin to understand that the lifelines we throw out in animal rescue will not always float back to us with a serene, grateful and gentle recipient at the other end. Sometimes those we reel in from the depths will come thrashing, flailing, biting and kicking. And those are the ones who truly need our help. As well-meaning as so many of us are we might look down at the sopping mess heaving beneath us and quickly decide to cut the line for myriad reasons.
But you didn' gave Clyde what he needed...a chance to be right...a chance to know somebody who finally "got" him and accepted him just the way he was, realizing all the time that you might have to take another bullet hole to the heart if the time came.
Sorry this is so long but I feel so strongly that everything you do for these animals is truly remarkable and your stories of Clyde have been incredibly eye-opening for me. When it gets really hard, you don't run away. And, with this awful decision you have to make, you continue to stand beside Clyde and all your other animals every step of the way. Clyde was betrayed by his past and perhaps by his genes but never by you, Carol...never by you.


:-( i'm sad for you, carol, and for clyde. you are thinking sensibly, and thinking in the full picture.

Chris T

To say this is a very difficult decision for you is an understatement. Please take care of yourself and know that this is a necessary decision to keep everyone else safe.


Clyde is so lucky that he found you and Saints and was able to give & receive LOVE.
I'm glad I got to see the sweet inner sole of Clyde just the other night sitting with him on the kitchen floor. DAMN his disease. Go in peace little man.


There are no comforting words or easy ways to say you are doing the right thing, Carol. You are doing the only thing you can to protect many animals in your care. It sucks, it's so God damned hard and unfair, but it must be done.

Clyde, be free. Find peace and a way of being that makes sense to you. You were loved.

Eva Stock

I am just down the street Carol.Eva

I will be there this am to do Frodo, Simon and Colton as usual and Tammy will be there to do the rest of the bunnies. I will do the Americats if needed and the mp room. Always thinking of Saints. Eva


My thoughts are with you Carol as you do what you know you have to do. Take care of yourself....


You have done so much for Clyde and have known that this journey with him was not going to be easy. You are not betraying him. You are releasing him as he cannot be happy the way he not beat yourself up for having to choose safety for the others. He spent a good time knowing he was loved. I am so sorry this is so upsetting for you...


Clyde has known happiness with you and even though it's sad to say good-bye he will go peacefully with someone he loves right beside him. I totally understand and realize the importance of keeping all Saints safe, human and animal alike. I am just so happy that for the last part of his journey he was loved. I'm so sorry Carol.


Carol, this poem seems to capture this moment with strength and beauty. I hope the words help. Not sure how to acknowledge this correctly but I found the poem by Jane Hirshfield on this website


If the gods bring to you
a strange and frightening creature,
accept the gift
as if it were one you had chosen.

Say the accustomed prayers,
oil the hooves well,
caress the small ears with praise.

Have the new halter of woven silver
embedded with jewels.
Spare no expense, pay what is asked,
when a gift arrives from the sea.

Treat it as you yourself
would be treated, brought speechless and naked
into the court of a king.

And when the request finally comes,
do not hesitate even an instant –

stroke the white throat,
the heavy, trembling dewlaps
you’d come to believe were yours,
and plunge in the knife.

Not once
did you enter the pasture
without pause,
without yourself trembling,
that you came to love it,that was the gift.

Let the envious gods take back what they can.
- Jane Hirshfield

Eva Stock

Clyde is such a lucky little boy dog and yet such an unluky little boy dog. He has found a real home in the fact that he knows love at Saints but at the same time he is so disjointed due to a terrible illness that has effected his mind that he can't just enjoy his life like Trevor for example, with one leg gone. He is so happy and so loving. Our poor Clyde cannot be that as his handicap effects his mind therefore his behavior, both to other animals and to humans. I love him too, he is gorgeous and so sweet when he is not troubled. God bless you Clyde. Has to be peace for you little one. Eva