This Is Sad Stuff. I’m Sorry.

WARNING:  THIS MAY BE DIFFICULT FOR PET LOVERS TO READ

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I was driving home from guitar lessons.   It’s only about 1.75 miles to my house.  I wish I had left one minute earlier.  Or one minute later.

But it happened.

And I can’t make it unhappen.

I hit your dog today.

And I’m sorry.

You have no idea how sorry I am.

You didn’t ask what happened.  The circumstances didn’t really give us a chance.

He came from across the street.  It’s a busy street.  I saw him.  And I slammed on my brakes.  I thought I was going to miss him.  I nearly got sick when I realized I didn’t.  I pulled over and jumped out.   One car went by.   I had to stop as I waited to see what the other cars were doing.   One van stopped and inched up to me.    A young woman asked me if I had a cell phone.  I said yes.  I got to your dog as he took his last breath.  I am not ashamed to admit I was crying.  And I didn’t know what to do.  I think the young woman saw that.  She told me to call 911 and tell them to send animal control.    I didn’t know if it was the right thing to do.  But I dialed as I stood by your pet so no one would get near him.  She told me she would pull over and help.  I looked at the houses hoping someone would come out.  Tell me what to do.

The young woman approached me as I was telling 911 to send animal control.

Then I heard screaming.   Long before you pulled up and stopped.  I heard that child screaming.

You stopped your truck.  Jumped out and said “I’m the owner”.  I told 911 the owner was here.  I think I hung up on 911 or they hung up on me.

You picked him up.  Crossed back to the other side and put your dog in the truck.

I just stood in the middle of the road.  The young woman next to me.

I think we were both saying something.

I was trying to speak to you.

I was confused.  This all happened so fast.  You looked a little confused yourself.

I could still hear the child screaming.

You drove away.

The young woman asked me if I was okay.  I told her I didn’t think so.  But I thanked her.  Neither of us knew what to do.

We stood there in the middle of this busy road.  The cars respectfully going around us.  No one honking or being rude.

We got in our vehicles.

I drove home.  Trying not to cry.

I know bad things happen.  You were obviously out looking for your dog.  Doors get open, pets get out, you go chasing after them.  I know that you felt bad.  I know that child in the truck is traumatized.  I know I am traumatized.

I guess I just want you to know that no one tried to hurt your dog.  No one is sitting here callously shrugging it off.  No one is blaming you.  And I hope you aren’t blaming me.  I can’t stop thinking about it.  I can’t stop seeing it happen.  I can’t stop hoping you are all okay.   And I can’t stop hearing your child scream.  I’m really struggling with this.  And I don’t know what to do.  You left before I could do anything .  But I still struggle….

I am so sorry.

68 thoughts on “This Is Sad Stuff. I’m Sorry.

  1. Colleen, I know how you are feeling. Please, you must realise and console yourself with it being purely an unfortunate and terrible accident. I was driving one night and heard a thud in the front of my car. I pulled over and saw a bit of blood but nothing, my daughter and I cried all the way home, we think it may have been a fox.
    Accidents do happen, pups do run across the road, one near home darted out their front door when I was walking, a four wheel drive missed him as he ran underneath, within centimetres. My heart stopped. Perhaps contacting your local paper and they could put something in there? He would know you didn’t mean to do it, he will, now you have to get it out of your mind, which you will after time. Take care, hugs and thoughts for you lovely. xx

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  2. I’m so so sorry that it happened and that you’re not okay. I’m fighting back tears for what you must be going through as well as the whole situation. You are one of the kindest people I know. I wish I could say something that would make it better, but I know nothing will. So, I’m sending you a virtual hugs and sitting with you.

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  3. Chatter Master…. I am so, so sorry you experienced this and the trauma. You did nothing wrong but instead, did everything right. I also fell sorrow for the little girl as well… I hope your night will pass on to a better morning.

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  4. When I was younger, I was coming home from work and I was driving down a dark street. Before I could even blink a cat ran in front of my car and I slammed on my breaks. I heard a ‘thud’ from under the car. I got out of the car, looked under my car, up and down the street, and under every car on the block but didn’t find the cat anywhere. I felt so bad that I went back the next day in an attempt to find the cat, but still nowhere to be seen. I still have no clue if the cat was still alive, and still felt guilty every time I thought about it.

    Don’t feel alone.

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    • Oh Michael that’s horrible. I totally can relate to that right now. Your very last comment really touched me. I can’t tell you how alone I felt for those few seconds before that young woman stopped and stood with me. It was a huge comfort to not be alone. Thank you so much.

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  5. Oh no 😦 Colleen… I’m so sorry, that is awful terrible. It’s one of those stupid things that happens to us where we don’t get any clue as to ‘the why’ of it all. It’s going to take some time to get past something like this, but you will.

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  6. Oh I feel sick, for all concerned. I’m so sorry this happened. You know there was nothing you could have done, but that doesn’t change the shock or the outcome. So very sorry
    .I remember being in the front with my brother driving and a beautiful collie dog ran out into the road. We hit it and it flew up onto the window. It was awful. It’s owner saw as she was chasing him. We put it in her car and off she went. We don’t know if it died as like you it all happened so quickly.

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    • Thank you Tric. Even when I have hit “wild” animals I have felt sick to my stomach. Knowing this was a loved and cared for pet added to that. And hearing that child….

      You’re very right, it is the shock and the outcome I can’t shake.

      Thank you for the comfort It is very much appreciated.

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  7. Colleen, you are such a warm loving caring person, my heart goes out to you, my soul wants to reach for you and give you comfort. You know not to blame yourself but you will, because your heart won’t let you do anything else. We all know if you could have avoided it you would. My heart breaks for you and the family of the pet. I have no wise words, to ease what your going thru, but over time it will be less painful. Please take care, and know I wish i were there for you. Bill

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    • Bill thank you for the comfort. I do know you wish to be here to help. And your words of support and comfort are greatly appreciated. I knew I had to write about this but I didn’t want to publish it. I said something to Husband and he said I should. It is something that others can understand, and help with the dealing of it. He was right. Everyone has been so helpful. Thank you very much.

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  8. Colleen I just cried when I was reading this. I feel like I haven’t been a very good blogging friend to you with everything you and your family have been going through. I have read all of your posts at work on break and can’t comment or even like button them. I really have been working so hard to help my family I can hardly face my computer even though I try. I try to hide sometimes from difficulty and this situation won’t let me. Know that I care and I hope to be better at sitting in front of my computer.

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    • Oh LexiesNana…I know how very busy we all are. Please don’t feel bad. I do appreciate you telling me this….but I know you are still there. 🙂 And I do greatly appreciate your support and sympathy. It really knocked me for a loop. Thank you 🙂

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  9. I can’t even imagine the heartbreak of being in that scene. Sometimes things like this cannot be helped, no matter how hard you hit the breaks or how hard the owners tried to keep the dog inside. We live in a world where many would not have stopped. For that very act alone, I’m sure you have the gratitude of the owners. ❤

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  10. I’m so sorry for you having to go through that. I’ve often worried one of my dogs may pull off leash to chase a squirrel or cat and get hit by a car, and how horrible that would be for a driver. It happens. You did the right thing by stopping.

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    • Thank you M/M. It didn’t even occur to me not to stop. I really appreciate all of the support. I don’t ever remember having had this happen before. I’ve hit wild animals and nearly been sick over it. But to hit someone’s pet…. I really am grateful for all of the kindness.

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  11. I’m sorry to hear this happened. It’s a very sad event when a pet gets out and an accident happens but Colleen that’s all it was, a terrible terrible accident. And, sometimes it’s a powerful lesson on the importance of pets not roaming off leash. That doesn’t lessen the pain. I feel for you. Please know, there’s probably nothing else you could have done. You did what you could, you stopped.

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    • I know Paulette, and thank you so much. This may seem silly….but not really getting a chance to talk to the man… it helps to hear from other pet owners. I keep telling myself it was an accident. And I know it…. Thank you for understanding. And helping.

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  12. Colleen,
    I am so sorry this happened! I know it must have been very difficult for you! Please do not blame yourself, you did everything you could. And you acted like a decent person, stopping and staying with the dog. I am glad you shared your story, it made me get all teary eyed. I would have felt that way, not sure what to do and wanting the dog to be ok, not being able to make things ok.
    I feel for you and for the dog’s family. I am sure they know it was not your fault.
    Bless you my friend:)

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    • Thank you Mary. I do know it wasn’t my ‘fault’. I happen to be the vehicle there at that moment. And you got it right…wanting to make things okay and not being able to. 😦 Thank you for your comfort. And blessing. 🙂

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  13. What a terrible situation to be in – nobody want to kill an animal, but sometimes it is inevitable – my moms dog was killed by a lorry drive – but he had no choice .. he stopped and helped her with get the poor dog of the road .. there was nearly dog left.
    I feel for you – I was in car when we hit a little rabbit, and it effected me for months.
    I feel for every one involved … hope that you feel a bit better about it now.

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  14. You are forgiven. Never feel so bad that you don’t realize that it was an accident! I feel bad for dogs that get off their leashes and chains, running wild and carefree! They are not experienced to know to watch out for cars and trucks! On the other hand, having had dogs all my life, it is also the responsibility of the owners to teach the dogs to “stay” and “be careful!” Hope this doesn’t ruffle too many feathers… Hugs for your guilty feelings! Robin

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  15. I hot a deer a few months ago. It was horrible. I’m in veterinary medicine, and I immediately tended to the animals wounds… But there was nothing to do. Not only was there nothing to do, but I had nothing to do to put her out of her misery– she was a doe, and pregnant. I thought about a section right there, but the fawn wasn’t big enough. I’d just have had a cold dead fawn, and a dying mother in horrible pain.
    I broke her neck. It was easily the most horrible thing to happen to me…. maybe ever. I feel your pain. Worse, people kept on passing and remarking on the state of my car. I didn’t even see my car until the does’ heart stopped.
    There’s nothing to do but get over it. I’m so sorry.

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    • Oh my gosh how horrible for you and the animal(s)!! I’m so sorry you had to go through that. I can’t even imagine having the courage (or ability) to do that for that animal. I hope you can get over that!

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  16. Reminds of my long ago gone small yellow lab. I had to put her to sleep. If there is an afterlife and I could be with just 2 people, it would be that dog and my granddaughter. No pets since then, ever again.

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