Is Owning a Dog Worth the Pain?

by | May 12, 2013

Owning a dog is really just a countdown to heartbreak.

We’re going to explore whether owning a dog is worth the pain

It may be bad business for a breeder to write a post reminding readers of the heartbreak that accompanies dog ownership. However, in trying to be ethical breeders of German Shepherd Puppies, we try to be pretty real with you. There are very, very few things that make grown men cry as easily as saying goodbye to their dog. It’s the worst. This is where your inability to actually have a conversation with your dog hurts the worst. Is owning a dog even worth it? I can say that for me, saying goodbye to dogs are certainly some of the most painful memories I have in my life.

We spent a lot of time this weekend at the Pet Hospital with Charcoal. This morning, when we were headed in, there was a man and a woman with the doors to their truck open, petting what was clearly a very old, not so healthy anymore, but well-loved Golden Retriever. The woman asked us how old Char Char was as we were headed in. I felt terrible telling her that he was only 9 months. We’re just getting to know him and she is saying goodbye.

Saying goodbye to this dog, Beamer, was one of the hardest things I've ever done in my life.

Saying goodbye to this dog, Beamer, was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done in my life.

When we were in the lobby, they brought their dog in. I don’t know about the places you seek treatment for your dog, but our hospital handles this well. You pay up front, head to the room, take as long as you need and then get to just leave. It was an absolutely heartbreaking scene. The guy had to carry this large Golden Retriever in upright on his shoulder as if it was a toddler. Only it wasn’t a toddler, it was the love and joy of their life on his way to the Rainbow Bridge.

I’ve never met the dog. I don’t know those people. But I still cried a bit in the lobby. It’s horrible.

Our experience with Charcoal has been emotionally difficult, to say the least. He is just a baby and is in so much pain. When Theresa and I were leaving him there for surgery and walking out, I told her that we were absolutely never having children. I can’t even imagine that.

Is it worth it though? Yes. It is.

It is worth it because every now and then, Blue breaks out of his kennel at 3am and jumps on our bed and starts licking our faces.

It is worth it because sometimes Olive acts like she doesn’t know me in the yard and starts barking at me in an effort to get me to play with her.

It is worth it because of Emerald’s big smile. She loves people and is thrilled to be alive.

It is worth it because of my bond with Hazel. Hazel would die for me and tells me that every time she looks me in the eye.

It is worth it because I get to look at Lava. Lava’s grace and beauty moving across the yard is one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen in my life.

It is worth it because of Charcoal. It is worth it because Charcoal’s illness has been a great reminder for us of how much we deeply love these dogs and have personal relationships to them.

Theresa and I get to live our dream, living with these kids. I hope that you are living your dream with your pups.

I’d like to invite you to comment in the space below on why the end pain of owning a dog is worth it to you.

Just start your sentence with “It is worth it because.” Then go on Facebook and post why it is worth it to you and share this page so your friends can come write here as well. Just click the share button to the right.

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