- John Pointer, from Michigan, wrote a touching tribute to his dog from the pooch’s point of view
- His dog, Benny, was his best friend for nine years and Pointer said he penned the tribute to deal with the grief of losing him
- Benny was put to rest in January when his kidneys finally failed him after he spent months battling cancer
A pet owner who had to decide whether to let his loyal companion live in pain or die wrote a heartbreaking post of the pooch’s final moments to help him deal with the grief.
John Pointer, who first met Benny when he was five days old, tells the story of the final moments he spent with his nine-year-old dog and best friend before the pooch died.
The tribute, which was read by 20million people in two weeks, begins: ‘Yesterday was weird. I couldn’t get myself out of bed. The guy I live with lifted me up. I tried to get my legs under me, but they wouldn’t cooperate. He said, “Don’t worry, I gotcha buddy,” carried me downstairs, and out the front door.
‘That was so nice of him. I needed to pee so badly, I just had to go right there where he put me down. Normally I wouldn’t, but we both decided to make an exception to the rule.’
‘Yesterday was weird’: John Pointer had to let go of his nine-year-old dog and best friend, Benny (pictured). He did this by capturing his experiences with Benny perfectly in a heartbreaking tribute told in Benny’s point of view that illustrated the moments leading up to his death
Best pals forever: On his website, Pointer said that he met Benny when he was five-days-old and then he brought him home when he was eight-weeks-old. Benny and Pointer are pictured (left) and (right) during a photo shoot
‘I love you so much’: On January 28th, 2016, Benny’s kidneys finally failed him and ‘I had to give him the ultimate help, to deliver him from his bodily struggles. It crushed me. I wrote this story to process my grief’
Pointer, whose Facebook page says he is from Michigan but it appears Benny was being treated at a vet in Texas, continues to write about how hard it was in those moments for Benny to function normally. Benny was slowly losing control of his bowels and his normal walks left him out of breath and dizzy.
Distances that Benny was used to walking seemed ‘impossible’. As his body continued to shut down, Benny became cold and Pointer did everything he could to make him as comfortable as possible.
He constantly petted Benny and put a blanket over him to keep him warm and got some of his friends who Benny loved to visit.
The tribute explained the visits from Benny’s viewpoint saying: ‘A few minutes later, another person arrived. He’s one of my favorites, and his name is Jay. I relaxed, and they both petted me, but they both started to choke back tears.
‘I never want them to cry, it breaks my heart. It’s my job to make them feel better, and I was just a little tired, and cold.’
Through thick and thin: Pointer said he and Benny ‘went through everything together – relationships came and went, we nearly lost the house to foreclosure, my father passed away, and he never lost his basic, boundless happiness’
Buddies: In the tribute, on his bad days, Benny would depend on his ‘person’ to help him walk, carry him down the stairs or in this case, swim. Benny and Pointer are pictured at Portage Lake, Pinckney
Benny also recalls when he was diagnosed a few months ago after he blacked out while playing fetch.
‘He said, “Benny, are you in there?” I couldn’t respond. He looked at me, and said, “Don’t worry buddy, I gotcha. I gotcha covered.” I started to spin into darkness, but then my lungs took in a deep breath, and I could see again.’
Vets told Pointer that Benny had cancer and he would eventually experience kidney failure. Benny was put on medication and sometimes he had good days and others weren’t so great.
In the tribute Benny says he heard her say: ‘It’s your decision, but he’s definitely in that window. I don’t want to push you, but looking at his lack of color, I am honestly shocked he’s even standing up.’
After having a private discussion with his friend Jay, Pointer agreed that Benny should be put to sleep instead of experiencing any more pain.
He was given a sedative as Pointer and Jay petted him and he started to drift off.
His last night is recalled in the tribute: ‘Instead of sleeping in my bed, he called me up to sleep on *his* bed. Let me repeat: *I got to sleep in the bed with my person!* We normally have our own beds, but last night we snuggled, and it felt so good to be that close to him. I thought, ‘This is where I belong. I will never leave his side.
‘They were all so loving. I licked their tears away when they would get close enough to my face. They whispered sweet things in my ear, and told me I was a good boy.’
The tribute describes how Benny drifted in and out sleep in his final hours until the vet put a needle in his leg to put him down.
At the end of the tribute Benny was out of his body and looking down at himself, his owner and friends petting his body.
‘I saw my person, and Jay, and the lady who lives at our house, Shelly. They seemed to be huddling over something. I walked over to look. It seemed like … I don’t know.
‘It kind of looked like me, but the way I looked when I was feeling really sick, or exhausted. The face was blurred out, so I couldn’t really tell, but that poor guy looked like he had been suffering.
‘I could tell my person was both relieved and very, very sad. I love him so much. I looked at that me-shaped shell, and I looked at him … I think he was sad about that shell.
‘I jumped around the room, like a clown, but it seemed like they wanted to be somber, and focus on whatever that thing was they were petting and kissing.
‘But my person was definitely sad. I leaned on him, like I’ve done a million times before, but it wasn’t quite the same. It felt like his body was a cloud and I passed right through him. So I walked up next to him, sat like a good boy, and my heart whispered to his, “Don’t worry, buddy. I gotcha covered.”
‘I will never leave his side.
‘He knows that.’
Hanging in there: Benny had to wear a 24-hour heart monitor. He’s pictured at Heart Of Texas Veterinary Specialty Center & 24 Hour Emergency Center
Such a good boy: Distances that Benny was used to walking seemed ‘impossible’. As his body continued to shut down, Benny became cold and Pointer did everything he could to make him as comfortable as possible
Good days and bad days: Doctors told Pointer that Benny had cancer and he would eventually experience kidney failure. Benny was put on medication and sometimes he had good days, while others weren’t so great
On his website Pointer says: ‘We went through everything together – relationships came and went, we nearly lost the house to foreclosure, my father passed away, and he never lost his basic, boundless happiness.
‘On January 28, 2016, when his kidneys finally failed him, I had to give him the ultimate help, to deliver him from his bodily struggles. It crushed me. I wrote this story to process my grief.’
‘And in that way, as long as his story keeps touching people, he will never truly die. I am so thankful for that, grateful for the time we had here together, and I really appreciate your visit, too.
‘Benny, I love you so much. And I miss you equally.’
Speaking about the feedback he has had from the post he added: ‘I am so glad that it resonates, and I hope it helps people cope with their own grief. That was Benny’s true purpose, to share his love, and make people feel connected, and worthy of enthusiastic support, even if they didn’t believe it themselves. ‘
In the final hours: Benny’s last night was spent sleeping in the bed with his owner, something he rarely did as he had his own bed
‘Don’t worry, buddy. I gotcha covered’: At the end of the tribute, Benny was out of his body and looking down at himself, his owner and friends petting his body. ‘I will never leave his side. He knows that’