Mar 16, 2012  •  In Comang, Personal

Goodbye, Comang

This is one of the most difficult posts I have ever written… 🙁

After much consideration and thought, we have decided to give away Comang, our beloved shih-tzu.

When I first became pregnant with Claire, I swore to myself that I would never become “one of those people” that give away their dogs after having children. I consider dogs — all pets, actually — part of one’s family and I still consider Comang to be J and my first child. And while it was difficult at times, we managed to successfully take care of both a baby and a dog after Claire was born. We would walk Comang with Claire in a stroller or in a carrier. We would devote our full attention to Comang once Claire was asleep. And while he would seem jealous and even a bit sad at times, we believed that this adjustment period would be temporary, and that Claire and Comang would grow up to be great friends.

Then I unexpectedly got pregnant with Aerin just 3 months after Claire was born. I had an extremely difficult pregnancy with Aerin, so Comang was forced to take the back seat more and more frequently. He began to get moody. He gained weight. And I knew that he was not nearly as happy as he was before.

Comang has been spending the majority of the time at my parents’ house since Aerin was born. And while they are glad to help take care of him, they are away from home 14 hours a day and he — a dog who loves and craves attention and interaction — became even more surly. I wanted to take him back full-time, but I can barely take care of both girls as it is…there was no way that we could add a third “child” into the mix without my going completely bonkers.

We also had to consider the fact that Aerin has extremely sensitive skin — although shih-tzus are generally hypoallergenic, all dogs carry small amounts of allergens or can pick up allergens from outside in their fur, and each specific dog within a breed may cause different allergic responses. We have never gone as far as to actually rub Comang up against Aerin, but I did notice that every time that I held her after having had some contact with him, she seemed more itchy and her eczema would flare up.

So with a heavy heart, I posted an ad on Petfinder, a site I had used in the past and knew for a fact to be adoption-friendly with the animals’ best interest at heart.

This is how I will always remember Comang — lying next to me with his paws in the air.

As I have written many times in the past, Comang is one of the best-behaved dogs I know, and no one can deny that he is adorable. Requests began to pour in, and I was eventually able to find a family I knew would give him a great home.

Comang’s new family has three boys, ages 3, 5, and 7, and the mother is a SAHM so I know that someone will be around to keep Comang company at almost all times. I was a bit worried that the boys would be too rambunctious and/or even violent for our timid little guy, but they were all very well-behaved with great manners, and were absolutely smitten with Comang. The oldest had actually been saving up his chores money so that they could get a dog, and paid for the adoption fee himself! (Petfinder requires an adoption fee in order to help ensure that the pets will be going to good homes.) I spoke at length with the mother and it was apparent that this family would be able to give Comang all the love and attention that he deserves. In fact, they asked sooo many questions about him that it even bordered on being annoying at times!

The family was willing to sign an adoption contract I drew up, which included a stipulation stating that if, for whatever reason, they were no longer able to take care of Comang (whether one month from now or 10 years from now), they would return him to us. They also agreed to periodically send us emails and pictures with updates. And when we met in person, they even invited us to come visit them anytime we want!

The decision to give away Comang was obviously one that we did not not come to easily. But knowing that he is going to such a great home made the process that much easier. I wanted to cry when Comang’s new family came to pick him up yesterday, but seeing how happy the boys were put a big smile on my face instead. I felt even better still when, before we headed to bed, I received a text message with a picture of Comang in his new home with a note thanking us for making them so happy.

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26 Responses to “Goodbye, Comang”

  1. Stacy Marie says:

    I am so sorry for you! What a tough decision to make….and an entirely selfless one. You are making a sacrifice to do what’s best for Comang. It sounds like you found him a wonderful new home. My heart goes out to you!

  2. Kalen says:

    I’m so sorry, and I completely understand. After paying for her leg surgeries, if one of our family member’s won’t take our chihuahua, we’re going to have to find her a home, too. Keeping up with her care & attention needs has just become overwhelming w/ both the babies. It’s awful and very sad, but they deserve a happy life, too.

  3. Jen says:

    Jenny, you have to be strong to make that kind of decision and it sounds like he has a wonderful new family. I’m sure he’ll be very happy!

  4. Amanda says:

    I’m so sorry – I can’t even imagine how difficult that must be. It sounds like his new family is wonderful, though!

  5. Jan says:

    I am so sorry! This is really sad, but I am glad he is in a good home now. I think this is why I can never get a dog, because I would never ever be able to give him up!

  6. Alice says:

    I completely understand the feeling of loss when giving up your “baby”. At least he went to another loving home, and the family was super sweet of sending you a picture that same night.

  7. Mina says:

    oh i’m so sorry that you had to make that heartbreaking decision. it sounds like you found a wonderful home for him and i’m sure he will be very happy there.

  8. Kate says:

    I just burst into tears reading this. We had to put down our family dog recently and it was heartbreaking. It’s never easy to say goodbye to a family member, even when it’s in their best interest.

  9. Catherine says:

    I’m sorry you had to make this difficult decision. I hope he will be as happy with them as he was with you.

  10. Sunny says:

    aww sorry Jenny, and I hope Comang is happy in his new home.

  11. Danielle says:

    What a difficult decision to make- my heart hurts for you 🙁 I hope that Comang will be well loved and happy.

  12. Tiffany says:

    Oh gosh, I feel for you! That could not have been easy and it makes me so sad to think about. We have 2 cats and I can only imagine if we decided the best thing for our family was to find them a new and loving home after they were our “kids” before we had my daughter. It sounds like you found Comang a wonderful new home!

  13. christina says:

    This made my heart ache for you. But you did the right thing and gave him a new home!

  14. LatteLove says:

    I teared up reading this. Having read you blog long before you had the girls, I know how much Comang has meant to you. I’m so glad you found a good home for him, but I’m sure you’ll miss him a lot. Thinking of you!

  15. Chanel // We Belong in Paris says:

    I can only imagine what such a decision feels like. I fear I’ll have to make a similar decision when we decide to expand our family. 🙁 Glad he is with people you seem to be comfortable with. Have a great day

  16. Carly says:

    Oh, this breaks my heart! I’m so sorry you had to make such a difficult, painful decision. 🙁 I know you love Comang and want to give him the best life possible. He’s a lucky guy! Huge hugs.

  17. Oh Jenny, this is so sad! It sounds like his new home is wonderful! Hugs!

  18. What a difficult decision, Jenny. Your heart is in the right place and that is very evident. Many many hugs.

  19. Elisa says:

    I know how difficult this must have been for you – losing a pet, whether having to give them away or losing them to death, hurts. Just know that although Comang will miss you dearly that his new family will give him a loving environment that you wanted for him. You did a very loving and selfless act to ensure a Comang remains healthy and happy, and you should be very proud of yourself. =) *hug*

  20. Carol says:

    My parents gave away our family cat because my dad developed a chronic cough. They weren’t even sure it was caused by her, they just gave her away without telling us. It was so tough for my sisters and I – my little sister was hysterical. So I completely understand how difficult it was for you. Ultimately, my dad’s cough cleared up and while I hate to admit it, our cat was probably a contributing factor. You did the best thing for little Aerin.

  21. Emma says:

    I’m so sorry you had to give up your puppy =( I had to give up my kitty a few years back. I still miss her, but I know she’s happier. And it sounds like you found a great home for Comang! I think it’s great that you will be able to receive updates and pictures too!

  22. Diana says:

    I am so sorry. I can only imagine how it felt like.

  23. Allison says:

    Oh, I’m so sorry that you had to give Comang away! What a difficult loss. But it sounds like he’s going to a wonderful home and will be well taken care of and loved.

  24. Rachael says:

    I’m so sorry about your puppy. It’s hard to say goodbye, but it sounds like you are doing the right thing.

  25. Jean says:

    Wow, this post broke my heart. My little doggy is sleeping on my lap as I write this, and I worry about the day that my husband and I have a baby and how it will affect our “first child.”

    I hope it warms your heart though to know that Comang is going to a home where he will get all the love and attention he needs. This decision will greatly improve his life and make him happy, even if it breaks your heart. It’s actually an altruistic decision on your part.

  26. Mifocals says:

    Oh man…

    I cried and cried when we gave our dog, Kobe away. Luckily, we had a friend who was happy to take him in (he is a GREAT dog, super smart and mellow)…I can only be happy that he has a large spacious house (and backyard) to roam around. We live in a small townhome, which felt even smaller after we added a tiny little baby to it (along with all of her wonderful baby gear/toys/bottles/etc.).

    Sad for you =(.

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