I feel for you guys about the digging. Luckily, Ava doesn't dig… except in my sheets. She's a very aggressive digger of bed linens. I made the mistake of buying a detergent with Febreeze and she became rabid about digging to release the scent. Bad idea. I quickly bought unscented, and now she digs harder, trying to find the scent.
That's the worst sometimes. I have to start locking Kananga out of the bedroom when I go to shower. Every time I shut the bathroom door, I hear him starting to dig into the bedsheets, of course I know to wait and listen for him to do it and catch him in the act. He doesn't care, has a big smile on his face with the expression "Yea? What are you going to do about it?". So now it's off-limits for him when he's not being supervised.
I 100% believe I made the right decision, despite the fact that it feels like my heart has been gouged out with a dull spoon.
Very sorry to hear about what had happened with him. However, it sounds like this was the best thing to do, and it always helps to have certainty behind your own decision made.
I can see both viewpoints on this decision. At the end of the day, you're the one responsible for AJ, and you know him best. Given what you described as the severity of the bite, I can only imagine the worry going forward if you were to roll the dice and simply hope for the best.
I'm sure he's grateful for the life you gave him. It doesn't matter if it's 2 years or 12 years, quality > quantity. He got an adventure with the travels and now he can be at peace.
Perhaps time will heal and you will change your mind on getting another dog. For now, just remember the good times, I'm sure there were plenty. :)