Feeding him later than requested,
Making it half the usual amount,
Putting him to bed without his treat,
Taking him for a reluctant walk,
Knowing there’s no food at the end of it,
Admitting your vaccinations aren’t up to date,
Your trembling and trying to hide amongst my feet,
Asking how much, then feeling guilty for mentioning money,
Handing your lead over and walking out the room,
Looking back and seeing you desperately trying to follow me.

Straight back, eyes forward, I march through reception,
Surprised at how upset I feel, tears are seeping out,
The staff deliberately catch my attention to say goodbye,
I see compassion and understanding on the faces and in their voices,
Not sure what to do when I get back to the car,
Should I go and buy some comfort food,
Not really hungry though,
Decide on shopping for tonights meal,
At times I feel like a zombie wandering around the aisles,
Not sure what I am doing here,
Buy a treat too.

I miss him when I return home,
My shadow isn’t there,
No-one to pick up my crumbs,
He doesn’t make a noise normally,
But somehow the place feels quieter,
No glimses out of the corner of my eye,
I sit down for a bit,
Not sure what to do,
I am late for my next appointment.

Playing music takes my mind off your predicament,
Though I keep checking my phone,
But no updates appear,
Are you okay? The text message says,
I’m fine but no news yet, I write back,
I’m fine because I’m functioning,
Despite the anxiety.

Back home, I miss your enthusiasm when I walk through the door,
I miss having to put things down to greet you,
I miss the interruptions.
It is lunchtime and I’ve been told to ring the vets,
To see when I can pick him up,
Not sure I can do that at the moment,
Have something to eat instead.

I work out something to say,
And call.
After hunting high and low for the person looking after him,
All of which I hear through the mobile,
The receptionist finally tracks down Sarah.
Turns out they haven’t even started.
My daughter points out that he’s been left alone in a strange place all morning,
I agree and say it’s like being in hospital,
She says she doesn’t like hospital,
So I say perhaps you know how he feels,
I think it is an accusation,
Why did I put him through unnecessary misery?
What can I say?
I am trying to do my best for him,
I’m not enjoying it either.