Thursday night I rushed Sebastian, my yellow lab, to the ER after he refused to move and eat... obvious something was not right. I was told he was bleeding to his abdomen, likely a ruptured tumor. I needed to decide right away if I wanted to send him to surgery. He vet informed me it was likely hemangiosarcoma and even if he survived the surgery would only have 3 to 4 months. Chest x-rays were done and did not show any masses, but lymph nodes were slightly enlarged which may indicate the disease had already spread - but no guarantees since nothing could be confirmed without surgery.
I decided not to do the surgery. Sebastian would have been 12 in May. I didn't want to put him through any more just to have him suffer from cancer and likely bleed out again. But I'd be lying if the cost of surgery also did not weigh on my mind. He passed away in my arms that night.
I miss him. He was the sweetest, kindest dog and deserved much better. I did notice he was slowing and did not want to walk as far anymore, I blamed it on his age. Yet the day before he ran and played in the snow like he was a pup. I just don't understand how we went from throwing snowballs to the ER in just over 24 hours.
I cannot find peace with my decision. I've read everything I can, and yes - all points to HSA. But there is still that guilt that it might have been benign and if I would have done the surgery he would be at home now.
Trying to focus and all out memories together, but I feel like I gave up on him.
Curious if anyone else has even been in this position and how you were able to move forward.
Last edited by Sebastian531; 03-11-2013 at 01:20 PM.
I am so sorry for the loss of Sebastian.
First of all I am so sorry for your loss. I have never been in your exact position but I know what it is to lose a beloved dog so suddenly. I think it is normal to question every "what if". As hard as it seems right now, try to focus on all the wonderful times and years you had together. It does get better with time, that pain that absolutely takes your breath away lessens with every day. My heart just aches for you.
Run free Sebastin, RIP sweet boy.
Maxx & Emma Jean
Ozzy - 10/16/02 - 06/28/11 - Always in my heart.
Sometimes the hardest part isn't letting go - but learning to start over.
I for one commend you on this heart wrenching decision. As custodians of our dogs, our pets, things we are responsible for, it is always up to us to make those fast, instant, horrible decisions if we are presented with them. You were given information by your vet, you have loved this animal for almost 12 years. Your heart would not bear the thought of allowing him to live in pain, putting him through a very difficult surgery only to have a few more months of what might be more pain and suffering. In my book, you made the decision any loving and responsible pet owner would make. You set him free before anything else went wrong. Recently I had a pet owner that had to make a very difficult decision too. When we spoke of how she would find peace with it, I said the following to her, I will say it to you and then I will tell you a story about me. In the end... when you turn your computer off and you stop reading what everyone has to say what is going to give you more peace? Which is going to allow you to continue to live? 1) knowing you gave your dog peace at the end before he ever experienced any further pain, discomfort, a horrific surgery to go through? 2) perhaps making a different decision, one that ends up with his suffering even a little because you thought you would "try" for just a bit more time?. Which of the 2, in the end, can YOU live with???? For me, I can ONLY live with one, but that's me.
2006 I made a horrible decision to let a year old puppy go.. she went in for OFA work and never came home. I was depressed, angry, in denial. A decision I never thought I would have to make and pray to God I don't ever have to do that again. She taught me a lesson, a lesson of Life and Love (as I call it)and I wrote her story. (UGH tears writing this even to this day)... at the end I wrote this... I have dedicated it to so many, people who truly can find some peace in the words she (Diva) gave me to put on paper.. I give them to you.
"It is the love that sometimes forces us to do the unbearable
It is also the love that slowly heals our broken hearts"
RIP, fly free, pain free and know you were so loved, and gave back even more love.
Last edited by Susan_MLL; 03-11-2013 at 12:32 PM.
Danika & Eva
I still say what if about Samson who was PTS 6 years ago after both of his back legs gave up on him completely.
I think that at that age, I would have made the same decision.
So sorry for your loss !
Find your peace in the knowledge that you gave Sebastian his...the greatest gift possible
Would you like to buy a vowel ?
I'm very sorry for your loss. Sebastian knew how much you loved him. Accept your decision for him;it was made in love.
So sorry for your loss. Please, as others have said, don't torture yourself wondering if you did the right thing. You made your decision based on your love of your boy. Sometimes letting them go is the best thing we can do for them. It's hard, I know. I was in your same position last year, when the vet discovered the tumor in Deacon's throat. Surgery was a possibility, but it would have been so hard on him at his age (12), and may not have helped. So, I opted not to. Two months later, I had to let him go, but it was the best thing for him. Remember the good times, and know that he loved you as much as you loved him.
My Lab is smarter than your honor student.
Deacon 12/1/1999-4/2/2012 RIP, bestest boy.
Diesel 3/29/2010 My little hard charger.
Oh man. Your story sounds do familiar. Our black lab kain would have been 12 in may too. We put him to sleep in November after learning unexpectedly that he was in kidney failure.
I'm so very sorry for your loss.
Forever missing Kain 5/30/01-11/11/12