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> A Confession, This Is Tough
post Jan 14 2008, 04:06 PM
Post #1

Group: Pet Lovers
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Joined: 26-November 07
Member No.: 4,000

I've come across a few posts here that suggest recounting fond memories of the journey through life me and my little girl have shared these past 17 years while I still have her. I do this with much enjoyment, there are so many wonderful moments that bring smiles to my face as I look at her ever-smiling mug.

But, when I do this it is inevitable that I get taken back to the darkest, ugliest moment of my life I also shared with her - that I am responsible for. When she was about 5 months old she had a particularly destructive day chewing things and destroyed some irreplaceable family antiques that had been passed down to me by my Grandmother. I lost it.

Up until that day I had regularly spanked her for soiling or other bad behavior (I know, I know NOW I know better). I had not been the best daddy. I was 24, working 15-18 hour days, had adopted her at 6 weeks which was a couple too early so she had major separation anxiety issues. I did so many things wrong. And on that day when I came home from work and saw some possessions in tatters I became a monster. I spanked her. Hard. I picked her up, shook her, yelled at her and threw her down. Several times. Until one time either I threw her down with such force or she just landed badly, but she tried to move and her poor little front paw was just dangling. I had broken her leg.

I was stunned. I couldn't believe what I had just done. I had harmed a beautiful, defenseless puppy so badly. I crawled out of my home as an unworthy member of the human race, and rushed her to the emergency vet. I told the vet she had jumped off the stairs from too many steps and landed wrong. I don't know if the vet believed me or not, but he mended her, assured me that her injury was a clean break and that since she was a puppy she should heal fine. But I knew I had just been guilty of the worst violation of trust a human being ever could commit.

I never again spanked her or laid my hand on her in anger. I learned other behavior modification techniques. I did a complete 180 in how I interacted with her and elevated her value and meaning in my life to levels that friends and family think of as unhealthy. I never have shared this story with friends or family. I never told my wife. I'm glad I learned about this dark capacity I had and how to control it before I had my child, heaven forbid I ever lost it like that on a baby.

The experience taught me important lessons, but I live with the guilt of what I did to this most precious little girl in my life. In recalling these dark moments I know I will have an even more difficult time making any kind of decision as to when she would be better off somewhere else. After I was the atrocious monster I was when she was a puppy I promised to always love and protect her from any and all harm, and can't betray her again. If nature doesn't intercede when her time comes I don't think I'll be able to provide the assist.

This is a confession. It is extremely tough to type out. I've never shared it with anyone before. I've worked for animal rights organizations since and never been able to share my sin to the leaders of them for fear of being ostracized and forever labeled for the act I committed 17 years ago instead of what I did ever since. These organizations have helped pass laws to criminalize and imprison people for doing exactly what I did, requiring vets to notify law enforcement when suspicious injuries are treated. Had I been carrying around a criminal record for my crime against my puppy these past 17 years my life would have been an empty shell of what it thankfully has become.

I've made sure my puppy has had a wonderful, love filled life and still care so much for her despite her frailties in her geriatric years. I can't imagine my life without her. I want to help prevent people from harming defenseless animals, but know from my personal experience that there is a difference between the evil people who do so for some enjoyment and the ones like me who just made a terrible, terrible mistake and who regret and attempt to atone for it for the rest of their life. I hope laws don't too harshly penalize the latter with a record they never escape from no matter what they do. I'm living proof that a bad act does not make a bad actor.

To wrap up, I love my little girl with all my heart and I know that some of you will read this in disbelief and will think poorly of me for it. I can't change what I did, Lord knows I wish I could. I wouldn't still be beating myself up over it 17 years later if I believed the sin I committed had been completely forgiven. But I love her, and when she looks into my eyes I know she loves me with all she is. I'm her daddy and she's my daddy's little girl. I just hope that when her time does come I find peace in all the good I endeavored to do for her, the sacrifices, the love without reservation I've shared with her, the inseparable bond we've had all these years. And that the disgusting, despicable actions I'm responsible for on that day don't become the memories I dwell on or always cloud the entirety of our lives together.
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LS Support
post Jan 14 2008, 04:21 PM
Post #2

Forum Administrator

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i am sure this post will receive mixed reaction from the people here. it is brave for you to write it. i hope everyone will read it without judgement of the person or act, and instead read it for the reason it was posted.

i am sure some of us (note, i said some) have been guilty at one time or another for getting frustrated with our furkids, and reacting in a way that we soon regret. it is interesting to note that much of the time, their negative behavior arises from the 'vibe' they are feeling from us. if we are stressed out, then they are stressed out. and they reveal it in sometimes unpleasant ways such as indiscriminate soiling or destruction of objects. i believe this is a way that our pets get our attention to say 'hey, something is wrong and i need your help to fix it.'

if only they could speak and tell us what is on their mind, i think that is part of the frustration.


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post Jan 14 2008, 04:53 PM
Post #3

Group: Pet Lovers
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Joined: 10-January 08
From: Michigan
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Confession heals the soul when it is genuine and you have expressed honest remorse for your actions. You see you learned from that experience and it made a different and better person of you because of it. Today is what really counts and if we do the best we can today the tomorrows will take care of themselves. Peace and comfort to you my friend

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post Jan 14 2008, 06:42 PM
Post #4

Group: Pet Lovers
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What was done belongs to the past, the remorse has redressed you, you know you would never repeat that and I don't think you ever would, you are one of us, I think that your sweet dog has forgiven you they are so much superior to us humans. Take care.
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Cleo 1
post Jan 14 2008, 10:38 PM
Post #5

Group: Pet Lovers
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Joined: 21-June 06
Member No.: 1,757

We all make mistakes one way or another when we are young and I hope learn from them.
I had a poodle when I was first married and he was the centre of our lives until the babies came along and he slipped down the pecking order. When I look back I feel guilty about that, he wasn't illtreated or anything just maybe not given enough attention as he used to get.
I feel I have become a better parent with each animal I have had over the years.

Cleo 1

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post Jan 15 2008, 04:13 AM
Post #6

Group: Pet Lovers
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Joined: 12-January 08
From: Wisconsin
Member No.: 4,246

I think your post was very brave. I can only imagine the feelings you have keept inside for so long.
Shame and anger, with the fear of somone knowing, and looking at your little girl and knowing. But you have done what you can to atone, the most important thing is you reformed. you learned somthing very important about yourslef, and you fixed it. Animals are incedible beings, who can love in a way most humans never learn to, uncondtionaly, and the biggest part of that is fogiveness. They know us, and see us as we truly are, and she loves you. Her heart is filled with it, and there is no room for a grudge. Im sure she forgives you, and i think that after all this time she would want you to forgive yourself.

When the time comes and decisions may have to be made for her, trust your self. You are her Daddy, and you love her. Try not to let guilt get in the way of giving her the most loving care you can, and know that love can be enough, enough to get you through a hard time, and enough to give you stregnth to make the right choice.
I think somtimes people need to hear that they are forgiven, even if it comes from somone who was not part of the situation. I forgive you. I hope this does not seem presumptious, and i know that i am a stranger, but i know that if I were in your place i would like to hear that.
Thank you for sharing, And I sincerly hope that your honesty has set you free.


[FONT=Optima][SIZE=1][COLOR=orange]Cheddar:September 2 02, my world got brighter, cause I brought you home. July 21, 07, I thought my world dimed because you left it. The light that you brought me lives on, thru me, in my heart you can never dim.
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Moose Mom
post Jan 15 2008, 08:48 AM
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Group: Pet Lovers
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It must have been very hard for you to post this. Also brave. I think we have all done things that we are not proud of. I thnk what really matters is did we learn from them. That we choose not to do it again. It helped set the direction of your life and you have done much good. If this had never happened would she be as precious to you?

Yes what you did was awful, but you learned and changed. Admire what you have become. Focus on all the good in your lives and leave the past behind. Love her while you have her.

It took the death of one precious to me for me to understand that things are just things and can be replaced. A life can never. I had so many stupid rules. Now if my guys want to be on the table or trash the sofa, oh well. As long as they are happy.


For some of my Bridge kids.
Butch 1974-1996
Alex 1981-1996
Moose 1996-2006
Mommy loves and misses you guys. She remember's all of you, even though it's too many to name each one. I can't wait to see you again.
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Furkidlets' Mom
post Jan 15 2008, 04:00 PM
Post #8

Group: Pet Lovers
Posts: 1,208
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From: Canada
Member No.: 961

You have been given such a huge gift, it isn't funny, and I'm pretty sure you already realize it. I can't help but think that your girl's soul mission was to come here and teach you exactly what she has (and probably more to come yet!), in all its love and complexity.

I'd like to tell you a story I recently heard from an animal communicator I know. I won't apologize for writing this story here, as these are the kinds of things we all NEED to know, because they do happen and there are huge lessons to be learned from them.

This communicator had a 'case' where a man with severe mental problems had heard voices in his head, and wasn't taking his medication properly, either. He'd been trying to resist these voices, which told him to do terrible things (it was likely schizophrenia), some of which he'd already done. One day he thought his dog was the source of these voices (ie. thought his dog was the devil)......so in an effort to eradicate the source, he buried his dog up to his neck in the ground, then lit his head on fire. The dog survived somehow, and seemingly without ANY emotional problems from the result of this horrendous act. (and yes, the man was convicted of his crime) The communicator was sought out by a shelter worker who was severely puzzled by this dog's apparent emotional wellness, not believing that it was possible in reality, and wishing to help him as much as possible. The man eventually made a real turn-around and became an entirely different person, doing much good within the community.

The communicator was personally also sickened by this terrible tale but courageous enough to trust she might be of help to this dog. To her great surprise (she couldn't have conceived such a thing in her own mind, given her personal feelings beforehand), she learned this in her session with the dog:

He had come here expressly to teach this man about real LOVE.....and was OVERJOYED at the progress the man had made in his life. He held no ill feelings whatsoever towards his (previous) person because his soul had known that this was a necessary step in this person's evolution in this lifetime and that he'd be the one to help him overcome these obstacles. He was PROUD of both his important role, and this man's progress, and also knew that he'd eventually end up in a most loving home (he's been adopted since) and would be just fine. Hence, there was no emotional damage to himself. His feelings of joy in completing this one soul mission alone overrode everything else.

So I'd like to respectfully suggest that perhaps your soul decided you needed to learn what you did, and that you and your girl had a soul agreement together to bring you to the point you reached, and are still working hard on. She taught you, in no uncertain terms, real LOVE, as well as other wonderful virtues and values. I'm quite sure that if you had an animal communicator speak to her now, she'd be telling you much the same thing, directly through your girl. I'd also highly suggest you USE a respected ACer to check in with her ahead of time about HER wishes for the time when she must leave - good for both her AND for your own peace of mind. Gathering as much information as possible before the time is upon you only helps everyone involved. You check medical facts with vets, but you can check emotional and moral concerns through ACers.....whether you presently believe in them or not. (this might be a further personal evolution your girl has a paw in!)

You've come an awfully long way since you harmed her and to me, this is another one of those precious examples of just how utterly sacred our lives with animals are, if we only open up our hearts enough to see it, learn from it, live it. You would do well for the both of you if you started reading up on what some famous communicators have discovered (despite their own human filters, biases and preconceived notions) directly from the animals themselves.

No one, though, can forgive you thoroughly enough except for yourself, not even your girl, although she may play a big part. Ultimately, that has to come from within, and with a fuller, broader understanding. As others have already said, what's truly KEY is that you have already learned, and learned very well, from your mistakes, have not repeated them and are continuing to atone for them in the ways you see fit, eg. loving not only your girl but all those you help through animal rights philosophies/work. (and if you hadn't already done so or at least been more than willing to, I wouldn't have even replied here) As I've been told myself, by my own girl, SELF love is now one of remaining lessons....to learn to love myself as well as and to the same degree as I've loved her. And just by telling you all this, I'm taking one more step towards that and helping to extend her own, great legacy of love. Bless the animals, for they ARE Love.

P.S. She might, however, still benefit greatly from you going yet another extra mile for her and getting her some energetic-type help, such as professional flower essence therapy or other such forms of emotional energy work (or homeopathy, also an energetic treatment)....just in case she still carries some residual effects. To be frank, I think you owe it to her to look into it on her behalf, for her wholeness and total wellbeing.

"I dropped a tear in the ocean. The day you find it is the day I will stop missing you."


<div align="center">"Not flesh of my flesh, Nor bone of my bone,
But still miraculously my own.
Never forget for a single minute,
You didn't grow under my heart - but in it"[/center]

~Fleur Conkling Heylinger~

>^..^< >^..^< >^..^< >^..^< >^..^<

"For one species to mourn the death of another is a noble thing"

~Aldo Leopold~

<span style='font-size:9pt;line-height:100%'>Life is life - whether in a cat, or dog or man. There is no difference there between a cat or a man. The idea of difference is a human conception for man's own advantage. ~Sri Aurobindo

Spay now or pay later, the interest is killing us.

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post Jan 15 2008, 11:19 PM
Post #9

Group: Pet Lovers
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From: Pennsylvania
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As mentioned so many times before, not one of us can say that we have no regrets for the way we've treated others in our lives, whether they be furry or otherwise. It takes a lot of courage to come to terms with what hurts us the most, and to take responsibility for it. You were finally able to summon the words you did not want to speak for so long, and that in itself is much more significant than anything any of us here can say to you. I hope you are on the road to healing. Enjoy your time with your sweet girl, she loves you.
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post Feb 4 2008, 12:53 PM
Post #10

Group: Pet Lovers
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Joined: 26-March 07
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It's been a while since I've come to this site to read posts, and I just wanted to tell you that it took a great deal of courage to write this confession, especially to all the animal lovers here. All I can think is that we all understand your regret, or remorse, because all of us have done things we regret. I looked after my sister's cat once, and he got into everything and I finally got so frustrated with him, I spanked him hard. I mean, really hard. I still think about that sometimes with regret, he was really a sweet cat, and they don't always understand what we expect of them.

Your sweet dog has forgiven you. Bask in her love, and let her help you forgive yourself. You've learned from your mistake, that's very clear, and that's the most important thing!

With much admiration for your honesty,

Michelle K.
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post Feb 4 2008, 01:02 PM
Post #11

Group: Pet Lovers
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Wow, after writing that post, I'm feeling kind of bad about my sister's cat again.

I'm sorry, Rembrandt. You were a wonderful cat, so beautiful with your long white fur and big blue eyes, you even made a cat-lover out of our mom - and that's saying something!

Thanks, Rembrandt, for making my sister happy while you were here!

-- Michelle K.
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post Feb 4 2008, 09:41 PM
Post #12

Group: Pet Lovers
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Joined: 19-June 06
From: Western Washington
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I agree completely with Furkidlet's post -- well said. I believe souls choose what it is they want to experience or need to work on when they decide to slip on meat-suits and spend a life on earth. A story I heard this past summer:

Two souls are swirling around each other, in the Light. They've been traveling together for eons, loving the other's energy.
One says to the other, "what do you want to work on this time?"
"I think I want to exemplify Forgiveness. Yes, it would be wonderful to embody the very essence of forgiveness in this next life."
"Oh, that's a wonderful choice! Tell you what, I will help you. BUT-- right before I do whatever it is that I need to do so that you can embody forgiveness, I need you to remember exactly who we are to each other right now."

Sounds like your girl remembered, now it's your turn.

As for whether to help her die when the time comes, I think asking her ahead of time is a lovely idea. As it is, they shed their skin suits with very little drama. Happy to be here, eager to delay your heartbreak; and then happy to be there, released and frisky again. If you don't want to hire a communicator, just ask her yourself. Get relaxed, talk to her out loud, tell her your highest priority is her well-being, and that you're willing to help her shift out of her body if she wants your help. And ask her point-blank whether she likes that idea or would rather manage it herself. Watch her eyes and her body posture while you talk with her, and invite her to agree or disagree with different options. If you just decide to suspend disbelief and imagine that you did know what she was saying, what does she say? That littlest, deepest, tiniest voice in your gut will know what got heard. ~Kimberly

...You precious children, of four feet, whiskers, and mischief...
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