We had to put Max to sleep this weekend. He had a heart condition and developed a blood clot in his back leg. We took him to the animal hospital, where they said they could try to treat it, but then would have to draw a lot of blood and he would have to see a couple of specialists and have to be poked and prodded a lot, and have to take medicine every day, and even after all of that, he would most likely get another blood clot that could cause him more pain and be worse for him.
We had always said that we would put their needs and happiness before ours, so, as much as we love him, we decided it would be better to let him go before he got even worse.
We took Ian along for moral support and it really helped both of them. Max went very peacefully and calmly, and I think it was good for Ian too. He seemed to understand, and is coping very well. Luckily he bonded so well with Kiara and loves to play with the kittens, so he's not all alone here without his brother.
Its a little strange not having him around, he was always right at my side, wherever I was in the house, and always greeted us at the door. But he had a good, happy life, and we have a lot of great memories of him.