On Nov. 29, the veterinarian came to our house to assess the lump under our 21-year-old cat’s jaw. It was an inoperable tumour.
We had already prepared ourselves for this possibility and said our tearful goodbyes and let him go. It was quick and gentle and painless. Later, I picked up The NEWS and read the lead article about the right to assisted suicide and the ensuing arguments.
All I can say is that 31 years ago my mother also had “inoperable” tumours in her abdomen and some other hopeful (and well-meaning, I’m sure) surgeon talked her into surgery. When they opened her up it was worse than the original diagnosis.
Long story short, it never healed over and left her lingering in pain and misery in hospitals until she died months later on New Year’s Day.
As we approach that festive season yet again, I cannot help but reflect on that time and wonder why it is that we can afford our pets and other animals the love and consideration not to prolong their lives into a miserable ending. Why on earth can’t we do that for those near and dear to us, especially those who express the wish to be relieved of their pain and suffering when there is no hope of reversal?