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Old November 6 2010, 03:34 AM   #16
propita
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Re: Too Many Decisions

You know what you have to do regarding Dallie, no matter how painful it is. It’s not fair to make her live in pain.

NOT a comparison, but a comparison. You’ll understand what I mean. When Dad suddenly went down, we were told all the things that were wrong: infection, couldn’t wean him off the oxygen, cancer was taking over, the meds were maxed out, and his heart wasn’t going to take much more, let alone treatment. The doctors were amazed that we (Mom, me, my 2 siblings) all agreed to take him off the machines--that usually someone says “No, do everything and let them live.” I asked the doctor that if they kept him alive, what would Dad be beyond “cancer-food” at that point. We hated it, all of it, but we knew he wouldn’t want this. And honestly, it was only a matter of time before either the meds wouldn’t be able to keep him alive or that the cancer would spread so much more that it would literally take him over. AMAZINGLY fast-spreading, one month it was something they wanted to monitor over the next year, the next month he was gone. It’s been 3 1/2 years and I was crying for him just this week, because he was in a dream of mine, encouraging me on.

Love is love. If you love your dog, you will treat the end of her life with the love and respect you treated her life.
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Old November 6 2010, 05:28 AM   #17
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Re: Too Many Decisions

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I have until Wednesday at the latest to see if she improves. Even if she does, though, the chances of her living past next week are slim. I want to take every chance I can to save her, but we're so short on money and I don't know how much that kind of surgery costs.
First thing to do is to get all the facts. Find out how much that surgery will cost. You should've asked the vet on the spot. They can give you an ballpark estimate.

From there, you can then start to make decisions. Is this amount feasible at all or is it just plain impossible. Is it feasible but difficult? If it's feasible, what sort of sacrifices would you have to make to be able to afford it? That sort of stuff.

In the end, it's a gamble. Flip a coin and that money is either just gone or you have your dog for awhile longer. Personally, I'd take that gamble even if it meant some sacrifices.

However, if things don't go well and you do need to put her to sleep, you'll know and you'll find the strength. I was in a similar situation with a beloved cat of many years. Once she was in pain and there was no hope, the decision became a non-decision. It was the only possible course of action.

Best of luck to your Mom and Dallie.

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Old November 6 2010, 05:44 AM   #18
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Re: Too Many Decisions

propita wrote: View Post
You know what you have to do regarding Dallie, no matter how painful it is. It’s not fair to make her live in pain.

NOT a comparison, but a comparison. You’ll understand what I mean. When Dad suddenly went down, we were told all the things that were wrong: infection, couldn’t wean him off the oxygen, cancer was taking over, the meds were maxed out, and his heart wasn’t going to take much more, let alone treatment. The doctors were amazed that we (Mom, me, my 2 siblings) all agreed to take him off the machines--that usually someone says “No, do everything and let them live.” I asked the doctor that if they kept him alive, what would Dad be beyond “cancer-food” at that point. We hated it, all of it, but we knew he wouldn’t want this. And honestly, it was only a matter of time before either the meds wouldn’t be able to keep him alive or that the cancer would spread so much more that it would literally take him over. AMAZINGLY fast-spreading, one month it was something they wanted to monitor over the next year, the next month he was gone. It’s been 3 1/2 years and I was crying for him just this week, because he was in a dream of mine, encouraging me on.

Love is love. If you love your dog, you will treat the end of her life with the love and respect you treated her life.
Thank you, propita. I do love my dog. She's been my best friend for more than 15 years, and I need to do right by her. Whatever that may be.

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J. Allen wrote: View Post
I have until Wednesday at the latest to see if she improves. Even if she does, though, the chances of her living past next week are slim. I want to take every chance I can to save her, but we're so short on money and I don't know how much that kind of surgery costs.
First thing to do is to get all the facts. Find out how much that surgery will cost. You should've asked the vet on the spot. They can give you an ballpark estimate.

From there, you can then start to make decisions. Is this amount feasible at all or is it just plain impossible. Is it feasible but difficult? If it's feasible, what sort of sacrifices would you have to make to be able to afford it? That sort of stuff.

In the end, it's a gamble. Flip a coin and that money is either just gone or you have your dog for awhile longer. Personally, I'd take that gamble even if it meant some sacrifices.

However, if things don't go well and you do need to put her to sleep, you'll know and you'll find the strength. I was in a similar situation with a beloved cat of many years. Once she was in pain and there was no hope, the decision became a non-decision. It was the only possible course of action.

Best of luck to your Mom and Dallie.

Mr Awe
Thank you, Mr. Awe. You know, I should have asked what the cost of surgery would be. At the time, though, when he started talking about euthanasia, my ears started ringing and I couldn't concentrate. I will be sure to call them Monday morning and ask for a general ballpark figure, but only if she improves, and only if he thinks it will seriously increase her quality and length of life.

Edit: I just realized that it looks like I care for my dog more than I do my mom, and I just want to explain that quickly. I love my mom dearly and would do anything for her, but I know she's going to be okay. Her road ahead is bright with hope. With Dallie, it's not so bright, and things are getting darker faster, and so I'm concentrating my attention there, but that isn't to say I'm not doting over my mom (I am) and working to make her feel better. I just didn't want it to seem like I'm not concerned about my mom or that I don't care. I do, and I do very much. I don't know, I guess it's a form of emotional triage. I just wanted to explain that.
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Old November 6 2010, 06:07 AM   #19
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Re: Too Many Decisions

Ahhh, jeeze, my heart hurts for you, dude.

I'd ask about other options. The first that springs to mind is cauterisation. Can the bleeding be cauterised in a way that she has a chance to heal a bit and get her strength back?

When our old bloke got really sick we kept hhim at home on the lounge (covered with a tarp), and he was losing all contriol. Looking back on it, I should have taken him to the vet one last time a week earlier. Would have spared all of us, including him. But we did try whatever we could think of.

And almost straight away, my wife gets another pet. And she's really sweet. And we'll have to go all through this again in 14-15 years. Gaaahh. But that's for a different, angrier thread.

So see what you can find out about her condition. Wikipedia is a good starting point, but spread out from there. Keep in mind, well, she's not young. Good luck.
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Old November 6 2010, 06:17 AM   #20
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Re: Too Many Decisions

Australis wrote: View Post
Ahhh, jeeze, my heart hurts for you, dude.

I'd ask about other options. The first that springs to mind is cauterisation. Can the bleeding be cauterised in a way that she has a chance to heal a bit and get her strength back?

When our old bloke got really sick we kept hhim at home on the lounge (covered with a tarp), and he was losing all contriol. Looking back on it, I should have taken him to the vet one last time a week earlier. Would have spared all of us, including him. But we did try whatever we could think of.

And almost straight away, my wife gets another pet. And she's really sweet. And we'll have to go all through this again in 14-15 years. Gaaahh. But that's for a different, angrier thread.

So see what you can find out about her condition. Wikipedia is a good starting point, but spread out from there. Keep in mind, well, she's not young. Good luck.
Thank you for that, Australis. Cauterization would be extremely difficult if not outright impossible. The size of the growth is a bit larger than a softball (approx. 12 inches or 30.5 cm in circumference), and according to the Veterinarian, is essentially nothing but blood vessels. Every place he pricked started bleeding immediately.

That's why I'm so uncertain about the surgery. How do you remove such a mass of blood vessels without causing serious shock to the body?
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Old November 6 2010, 07:08 AM   #21
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Re: Too Many Decisions

J., I was faced with this decision last year. My elderly cocker spaniel was deaf and blind, but otherwise healthy for a long time...and the vet told me that as long as she had me and my other dog to keep her company and was well looked after, petted, and part of the family,she was good. However, last August she started to get sick and after about 2 days of diarrhea, I took her in to the vet. Bottom line - I let the vet make the decision. I trust my vet, and told him that I believed he knew what was best for the dog...and he said that he thought it 'was time'. I accepted that decision and we put her down that day, with me and my other dog right next to her, up against her so she would know we were with her.

I know how difficult these decisions can be - if it had been up to me, I'd have wanted the dog to live forever.

But if you have a vet that you really trust, like I did, it can really help you do the right thing. I just decided to relinquish the decision to him - he knows better than I do what dogs are really going through, their probable pain levels, etc....and I felt like his educated decision was the best thing for Annabelle.

Not sure if that helps...and I really hope your dog is okay. But in my case, it really helped that I had a vet I really trusted.
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Old November 6 2010, 07:11 AM   #22
J. Allen
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Re: Too Many Decisions

PKTrekGirl wrote: View Post
J., I was faced with this decision last year. My elderly cocker spaniel was deaf and blind, but otherwise healthy for a long time...and the vet told me that as long as she had me and my other dog to keep her company and was well looked after, petted, and part of the family,she was good. However, last August she started to get sick and after about 2 days of diarrhea, I took her in to the vet. Bottom line - I let the vet make the decision. I trust my vet, and told him that I believed he knew what was best for the dog...and he said that he thought it 'was time'. I accepted that decision and we put her down that day, with me and my other dog right next to her, up against her so she would know we were with her.

I know how difficult these decisions can be - if it had been up to me, I'd have wanted the dog to live forever.

But if you have a vet that you really trust, like I did, it can really help you do the right thing. I just decided to relinquish the decision to him - he knows better than I do what dogs are really going through, their probable pain levels, etc....and I felt like his educated decision was the best thing for Annabelle.

Not sure if that helps...and I really hope your dog is okay. But in my case, it really helped that I had a vet I really trusted.
Thanks, PKTrekGirl. Yeah, I really trust this vet. He's been her vet since the day we brought her in for her first immunizations. That was 15 years ago. Dallie recognizes him and always greets him like an old friend, so yes, I do trust my vet. If he says it's best for her, I know he means it.
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Old November 6 2010, 09:49 AM   #23
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Re: Too Many Decisions

J, you always have comforting words for others here on the bbs. I just want you to know that I am thinking of you at this time and I know that you have got other good advice here to make the right decision.
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Old November 6 2010, 11:36 AM   #24
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Re: Too Many Decisions

I am glad your mother came through, I hope she will be feeling better soon and that she'll be back on her feet in no time. Give her my best and my heartfelt wishes.

As for your Dallie, I am sorry but you know what you have to do.
Just a couple of years ago our beloved cat was suffering because of a tumor himself, and we all agreed that as soon as we could see signs of distress in his everyday life we would ease his pain and let him go. And we did. It's always hard, painful and traumatic to lose a friend, but deep inside you know it would be just egotistical to keep her around in a weak and miserable state because of pain and disease.
Again, I am very sorry, it's not the first time you talk about Dallie and I do have an idea of how much you love her. Be strong.
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Old November 6 2010, 03:58 PM   #25
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Re: Too Many Decisions

WillsBabe wrote: View Post
J, you always have comforting words for others here on the bbs. I just want you to know that I am thinking of you at this time and I know that you have got other good advice here to make the right decision.
Thank you, WillsBabe. It is greatly appreciated.

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I am glad your mother came through, I hope she will be feeling better soon and that she'll be back on her feet in no time. Give her my best and my heartfelt wishes.
You bet I will.

As for your Dallie, I am sorry but you know what you have to do.
Just a couple of years ago our beloved cat was suffering because of a tumor himself, and we all agreed that as soon as we could see signs of distress in his everyday life we would ease his pain and let him go. And we did. It's always hard, painful and traumatic to lose a friend, but deep inside you know it would be just egotistical to keep her around in a weak and miserable state because of pain and disease.
Again, I am very sorry, it's not the first time you talk about Dallie and I do have an idea of how much you love her. Be strong.
Today was a small victory. I gave her some water, she ate a little bit of food, I skritched her behind the ears, and held out the leash and asked her if she wanted to go potty, just to see if she would try to stand up. She did! She stood up, wobbly at first, and slowly stepped out of her bed and walked toward the leash. I hooked it to her collar, slowly and carefully walked her outside, she did her business, and walked inside, right back to her bed. I was ecstatic! The cortisone and anti-biotic is definitely working.

So, yes, I know what I have to do, and you're right. I know that this is no way for her to live, but it does encourage me that when I have to face that decision, and it will be soon, that she will go with quiet dignity instead of being too far gone to be aware, and I will take solace in that.

Oh, and to everyone here who has lost a pet, regardless of how it had to be done, you have my most sincere condolences. It really is heartbreaking, and it takes a great deal of courage.
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Old November 6 2010, 06:30 PM   #26
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Re: Too Many Decisions

If she still has the chance to pull threw and live some more time without pain, try chicken soup. I got my dog threw an illness, that nearly killed her, where she also did not want to eat anymore with chicken soup.
The only thing...after this illness, she always wants chicken soup now and we freshly have to cook it for her about 3-4 times a month and freeze portions, so she can have chicken soup every day. But oh well... I´d cook it every day, if she needed me too. *g*

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Old November 6 2010, 10:16 PM   #27
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Re: Too Many Decisions

I'm going to try that. Thank you. Let's see if she'll eat a little chicken soup.
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Old November 6 2010, 10:29 PM   #28
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Re: Too Many Decisions

But dont put as much salt in the soup as you would for a human, just a little. Also I usually do the soup over some oatmeal, though it has still to be quite liquit. The carrots and so on inside their I mash up and the soup should really contain lots of chicken. May not sound tasty with the oatmeal, but my dog loves it.
Hope she eats some.

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Old November 7 2010, 02:50 AM   #29
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Re: Too Many Decisions

^ Thanks for the suggestion. Unfortunately, she didn't eat any of it, but I did get her to eat a teaspoon of peanut butter, so that's something. But if I can get her appetite up, I'll try again later.
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Old November 7 2010, 07:51 AM   #30
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Re: Too Many Decisions

J. Allen wrote: View Post

Oh, and to everyone here who has lost a pet, regardless of how it had to be done, you have my most sincere condolences. It really is heartbreaking, and it takes a great deal of courage.
It may not be the hardest thing you'll ever have to do, but it sure is going to feel like it when it happens. As others have said, you have to ask yourself what's best for her and not for yourself. When the time comes trust me, you will know. It will break your heart, but take solace in that it will break your heart to watch her suffer. It sounds like you are getting close to that point (even if not right now) and I don't envy you the decision that you have to make.

As for your Mom, don't worry about being more concerned about the dog than you are about her. We know you love your Mom and are doing what you can to help her heal faster. The dog is in far more grave a condition and it's right that you are asking yourself where you are going to find the strength to make the decision when the time comes.

BTW - I agree with you. 2010 needs to end and quickly. This year SUCKS!
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