On Friday, I made the decision to have Marrakesh euthanized.
Last Thursday, his vet called me to give me an update on how he was responding to the treatment for his joint infection. It wasn’t a good update- he didn’t appear to be responding to treatment at all. He refused to bear weight on the leg. Clinic staff would help him up to nurse, he would do so, and then he’d immediately lay back down. The vet told me I didn’t need to make any decisions immediately, but he did advise me that the chances of Marrakesh recovering were dwindling.
On Friday, I spoke with the vet about further diagnostics. I told him I wasn’t particularly concerned with cost- I was more concerned with long-term prognosis for soundness. He understood, and said that another set of radiographs would be useful. Radiographs would show if the joint was continuing to degrade or not. I gave the vet the okay for another set of radiographs and held out hope for a minor miracle. A few hours later, his vet called me with the results. The joint was degrading. If he lived through the infection, he would never be sound and would likely live in chronic pain.
After that, the decision to euthanize him wasn’t really a decision at all.
Johnny and I met up at the clinic on Friday night, where the staff met us after-hours and let us spend as much time with him as we wanted. I petted his soft face and fluffy ears and assured him that he was the very best boy who’d done the very best he could. I petted Gina and told her she was a good girl and a good mama. The clinic staff assured me that I was making the right decision; I knew that, but it was comforting to hear veterinary professionals say it.
And so Marrakesh’s brief life came to a peaceful end on Friday evening.
Being right doesn’t make this situation less awful. I’m sad. Johnny’s sad. I imagine many of you who have been invested in the little guy’s life since he was a small black dot on an ultrasound screen are sad. Gina seemed sad over the weekend. I derive some amount of comfort from knowing that since the beginning, I did everything I could to give him a chance at a normal life. The veterinary staff at Pine Ridge Equine Hospital are outstanding, and I know they worked hard on his behalf. But that’s the way it goes sometimes- everyone does their best, and sometimes, it’s just not enough.
I cannot thank all of you enough for your encouraging words, your prayers, your positive thoughts, and your support. Having such a big network of supporters and cheerleaders and friends has helped me stay positive through what’s been a very trying time.