On Sunday, October 18th I put by beautiful boy, Reggie down. It was one of the worst days of my life. When he died, he was only a year and a half old so I was far from ready to let him go. He had very suddenly become sick, and over the course of two weeks, I got “the worse case scenario” diagnosis. It was heartbreaking to know that there was nothing that I could do for Reggie; he was dying.
One of the emergency vets recommended that I reach out to Dr. Orvin at Lowcountry Pet Hospice to get some information on the types of services she offered. Looking back, I am so grateful that I made the call.
I was sobbing on the phone during my first conversation with Dr. Orvin. It was difficult to accept the fact that Reggie was dying. Dr. Orvin could sense that I was struggling with this reality and sent me some information on signs that a pet may be in pain along with information to help me determine if he was living an acceptable quality of life. In this one conversation, Dr. Orvin made a huge impression on me. She felt genuine and sincere and offered me many compassionate and reassuring words.
Picking “The Day” was one of the hardest things for me, but with Dr. Orvin’s help I felt confident in my decision and believed I was doing what was best for Reggie. I was so grateful for the option of at home euthanasia, I had never heard of it before. Reggie had grown so fearful of vets so I was thankful to avoid one last traumatizing trip to the doctor by euthanizing him at home. Dr. Orvin and I kept in touch over the course of the days leading up to “The Day”. This was comforting because she was there to support me and checked to see how Reggie’s day went each evening.
The night before “The Day” he was in a lot of pain, and was having a lot of vomiting and diarrhea. Several times during the night, I reached out to Dr. Orvin, who made recommendations on what meds to give Reggie to make him more comfortable. Reggie’s night never got better and by 7am I called Dr. Orvin to ask her to come as quickly as she could. And she did.
My family and I sat around petting and loving on Reggie, who was curled up in blankets when Dr. Orvin arrived at the house. She sat on the ground with us and introduced herself to Reggie by petting and loving on him too. She calmly walked my family through the process again before we began. It was a beautiful and peaceful ending to Reggie’s life. She gave him a “cocktail” that was a combination of sedatives and pain medication. She sat with us while we loved on Reggie and waited for the “cocktail” to work. About 10 minutes later, he looked like he was in a deep sleep and Dr. Orvin gave him IV medication; he took a few last breaths and then he was gone. He was with his family under his favorite tree in the front yard where he grew up, half in the grass, half laying in my lap, soaking up the Charleston sunshine. In my opinion, Dr. Orvin allowed me to give Reggie the most precious gift by allowing him to die comfortably and peacefully at home, with his adoring family. My experience with Dr. Orvin was a gift to me, to my family, and most importantly, to my dog, Reggie. I cannot express in words my gratitude to her for what she did for Reggie, and for us. Her services are truly a blessing.
Dear Lauren, Thank you so much for the sweet condolence card. I hope you realize how much we appreciate what you did for Sienna and for us on Thanksgiving eve. We are so grateful for your kindness, patience, and expertise in dealing with such a difficult decision, in addition to the long drive you made on a holiday evening. We can never thank you enough.
— Sincerely, Lynn and Bob Bush
We wanted to send you a note, to thank you so much for helping us make a painful experience comforting, peaceful and beautiful. As adults, we had never had to do anything like this before, so when faced with this decision, we envisioned a best-case scenario and are so incredibly grateful that you could help us make it a reality. Your decision to practice “in-home” care has impacted us so positively and we have shared this experience with all of our friends and family- many of which didn’t know of the possibility. In saying goodbye to one beautiful soul, we had the immense pleasure of meeting another through you. Your thoughtful card meant so much to us as well.
— With hearts full of gratitude, Nina Chaikin
I just wanted to take a moment to thank you for everything you were able to do for my wife and I, and for Niki. You made the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do a little easier and I cannot tell you how grateful I am. Please know what you do and the way you do it is invaluable and amazing.
— Thank you from the bottom of my heart, Bryan Chaikin
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