How do you know when it's time?
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    suzieQ's Avatar
    suzieQ is offline Member
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    DefaultHow do you know when it's time?

    Looking for some feedback from those of you who've had the unpleasant experience of having to decide to euthanize your senior dog.

    Champ is 12.5 years old and his health has been going downhill for the past 6 months. We didn't have extensive tests done but we're quite certain he has lung cancer. We don't plan to treat it except with painkillers and steroids. He also is deaf and somewhat blind. So it's hard to take him on walks with our two younger labs (1.5 and 8 years old, both very energetic) because he gets winded and then at night hacks. He also has plenty of arthritis.

    He sleeps a lot, but once in awhile gets that frisky lab face and wants to play or fetch a toy and kill it.

    We hope it's obvious when it's time to end his suffering, but it seems it's going to be a gradual continued deterioration. I just hope he's not in more pain than we realize.

    Any thoughts appreciated. Thank you.

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    deidra is offline Senior Member
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    Listen to your dog he will tell you. No he will not wake you up and tell you mom it is time of course. Look in your dogs eyes and it will tell you the answer. I think you should get more tests done and see what comes up. I am sorry you are going through this.
    ~It doesn't matter how smart the dog is,it matters how smart the owner is.

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    It's really a quality of life thing for me. Nobody knows your dog like you do, so the decision you make will be the right one.
    just the fact that your agonizing over it means you will do the right thing. I will keep a good thought for you and dear Champ.

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    You will know. I remember agonizing over this with my sweet, sweet Reggie. He was in a slow deterioration as well. I kept wondering when the time would be, then one morning our eyes met and I knew. Well honestly, first I said, "What is it buddy? What do you need?" As soon as I said it, I knew.

    It is hard, but you will know. Good thoughts for both of you.
    Debi and Bauer
    Some people are like slinkies. Not really good for much, but bring a smile to your face when pushed down the stairs.


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    SharonaZamboni is offline Senior Member
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    You know your dog best. It's all too easy to remember that day last week, when she was so chipper. The fact that you're thinking about it means that you've noticed a decline in the quality of life.

    It took me quite a while to do the right thing, and it was my youngest daughter who made the call to the vet. I had brought it up with the vet several times, so I knew it was coming. I just didn't want to do it. But I wanted to avoid major suffering, rather than end it.

    Wishing you strength and peace.
    Last edited by SharonaZamboni; 06-16-2011 at 02:09 AM.

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    Samson is offline Senior Member
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    You will realise when the decision needs to be made. Sorry that the time is coming for you to make that decision. It's never easy.

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    suzieQ's Avatar
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    DefaultThanks

    Thanks everyone for your very thoughtful and insightful comments. It's so interesting to hear (and no doubt true) that we will see it in his eyes. We will have to trust our instincts. He was my husband's dog before we started dating, and they have a close bond.

    I might add we did have xrays done that showed some masses developing in his lungs, and treated him for pneumonia just in case that was all it was, but the treatment didn't work so it's almost certainly cancer. We unfortunately can't afford to do much more than that, but we will make sure we can pay for his painkillers and for euthanizing when the time comes. We also don't feel like putting him and ourselves through a bunch of veterinary work when we know he's had a good life and his time has just come. Our vet has been really good.

    On a brighter note today he was playing with his pup Jed, and rolled over playfully to expose his belly to him, but Jed still knows who the boss is.

    here's a picture of the two of them from last fall and then a picture of our 3 labs this spring.




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    Gorgeous pics.
    Sorry you have to think of this decision.
    Kass was young with cancer and people said she would let me know.She didn't. She wanted to live as much as I wanted her to. I made the decision the cancer wasn't going away, and wanted her to go with dignity before it ruined her beautiful face. I wondered for 10 months how will I know, am I keeping her for me or her, what is her qaulity of life. It went round and round in my mind when I should have lived each day for what it was and let that take take care of itself when it came. Nothing can prepare you for it.

    You will know.

    Kassa 25/11/01 - 09/02/05 O.S Jaw cancer forever in my heart.
    Ernie 25/11/01 adopted May 05
    Sam 11? adopted Nov 06 - 18/12/07 Lyphoma
    Tessa. Rescued June 2011.
    Bone Cancer Dogs org.http://www.bonecancerdogs.org/
    http://kassabella.tripod.com/kassabella/
    http://collarsbychris.weebly.com/

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