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My Dog is Dying.  RSS feed

 
William Bronson
Posts: 1264
Location: Cincinnati, Ohio,Price Hill 45205
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That's it. She has a mass that's growing in her chest, pressing on her lungs ,suffocating her.
Imaging and aspiration cost $500 plus.
We did not have that,but we were getting it.
Now they say it probably won't work anyway.
Could have put her on steroids,made her comfortable,might have shrunk the tumor,but the vet said it would affect the tumor and perhaps prevent aspiration...which they now say probably won't work.
No,I don't trust them anymore.

So my family can't afford the surgery that probably will work,it costs an additional $3500.00 or so.
We are impoverished by official government standards.
I am working 2-3 handyman jobs a day,to pay the mortgage,lights,water,etc. Savings? No,not really.
I love my dog. But I love my people more. And they are already doing without.
Even if I had the money to spend,what about the next time she was deathly ill?

This dog is a pet. If she were livestock, I would have asked for the steroids from the beginning,and hoped for the best.
So that's what's up. I am NOT asking for money.
I am asking for suggestions on a painless,nonviolent way for me to personally end her life.
She may pull through this time,but she is not likely to outlive us.
This issue will come up again.

I've carried one dogs corpse home from have paid to have her killed.
I didn't really think I liked that dog.
I dug her an elaborate grave, 4 feet deep,with a raised bed on top.
I cried the whole time.

That dog I was lukewarm about.
My current dog,Nogah, is the best dog there has ever been.
Ever. Anywhere. Objectively,The Best.

Help me be as responsible as I can.
Thanks in advance.



 
Karen Donnachaidh
pollinator
Posts: 572
Location: Palmyra, Virginia
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My heart is right there with you. I've been through this before several times and it doesn't get easier. I wish for you and your dog and family a quick, natural, pain free ending. I don't know what to suggest if the dog seems to suffer. Some would say, do whatever you need to do to end the suffering but I considered that in one situation and could NOT do it. The dog was not in pain, just pitiful. When the H and I had decided to take her to the vet to be put down, neither of us could do it. We couldn't even look at each other without crying hysterically. Thankfully, she passed quickly without ever being in obvious distress.

I suppose if there was obvious pain and distress, I'd have the vet put the dog down. I'm sure any good vet will be willing to work with you on payment for services rendered.

William, I'm so sorry that you have to go through this. For them to be "man's best friend", why don't they have longer life spans? My current dog and I are closer than any I've had before her. It will be the toughest ever when she goes away.

God bless Nogah.
 
Ian Rule
Posts: 85
Location: Nevada County, CA
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No greater horror in my mind than a life ending in a cold, sterile, fluorescent environment at the hands of a stranger. I have neighbors who began giving their dog the same CBD oils the owners took that worked for them (as a reaction to high level human cancer) - instant improvement in the pooch. She was on deaths door, but it (seemingly) gave her another year and better yet, a comfortable year of tumor reduction and appetite. I doubt thats a popular route, but Ive seen CBD oil supplements perform miracles. Also worlds cheaper than conventional cancer "treatment"... not to say necessarily very cheap.

Theres little to say in consolation, it sounds like Nogah had a good run; regardless of how it ends. Stay strong, its never easy to lose a fur-child
 
Karen Donnachaidh
pollinator
Posts: 572
Location: Palmyra, Virginia
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I understand that too, Ian. Some animals are extremely stressed out going to the vet for any reason. Some are not comfortable riding in a vehicle. Some who are aged or ailing are simply not comfortable being moved. I know our vet charges an extra $50 for house visits but  sometimes it's worth the extra money. There are many people who can TCB w/o a vet but I'm not one.
 
Ferne Reid
Posts: 118
Location: SW Tennessee Zone 7a average rainfall 52"
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I'm so very sorry.

I am NOT a vet or a vet tech ... I am a human RN with a fair amount of experience in doing her own vet work on her own animals, and I can calculate drug doses for a dog. Please take this for what it's worth.

Unless you are willing to use a firearm (and you said nonviolent, so I'm guessing you're not), you are unlikely to be able to legally get anything that would end her life without suffering. Some people have thought that the leftover painkillers they had lying about from one procedure or another would do it, but it takes a fairly high oral dose of a narcotic to cause respiratory arrest in a dog, especially if she is a large dog, and what if she throws it up? In order to put her to sleep painlessly, you need an IV injection of a barbituate. Most vets use pentobarbitol, and again, you're not going to be able to get that. Common toxins don't work quickly or painlessly.

My best recommendation would be to call your local humane society or animal shelter. A friend of mine recently faced the same situation, and they put his dog to sleep with an IV injection in his car for $50. The dog didn't have to go inside the building, and it was much more affordable than going to the vet.

When my dog had cancer, we put her down with a firearm ... but my son-in-law did it. He wasn't at all attached to her, so for him it was no different than any other livestock. I couldn't do it and I didn't watch. I said goodbye to her, and he took her out back.

I wish I had a better answer for you.

 
William Bronson
Posts: 1264
Location: Cincinnati, Ohio,Price Hill 45205
10
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Just carried her upstairs,even that has her gasping.
Thank you for the empathy and advice.
I will check with the shelters and vets to find the best way forward.
I knew this would be a place where I could share my dilemma with people who understand.
   
 
Linda Secker
Posts: 74
Location: Lancaster, UK
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I feel your pain - so, so sad to lose a fur-baby.... the kindest way is for the vet to give her an injection and for it to happen at home, on your bed or wherever she feels the safest..... find the money to get the vet out to your house. Thinking of you
 
Gail Moore
Posts: 200
Location: south central Appalachia, southwest Virginia, US zone 6/7
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Hello dear William,
The Distant Healing Network is online free service. They help humans and animals.

I have been utilizing this service over the years, to help with illness and transitioning to spirit.

By placing a request, one each for animal and one for humans, they can send you
so much healing energy to help through this. whatever the outcome for your dear
companion, Nogah.

From the Distant Healing Network home page:

DISTANT HEALING from Experienced Practitioners in a Network of a thousand dedicated Volunteers
from All Around the World. The-DHN is an organisation of many hundreds of complementary
therapists, in 60 countries, who communicate by e-mail and volunteer to give their time freely,
accepting requests for help to ease the suffering of all who ask.

If you, or someone you know, wish to receive Distant Healing, please take a few
moments to complete the appropriate form (Links on the left).

We feel that if we can be of any help in alleviating pain or disease,
it should be freely available to all who request it.

This service is free and without obligation.

The-DHN was established on May 8th, 1996,
by Elwin Reed RM.

"Helping to Heal the World - One Person at a Time."
 
Rebecca Norman
garden master
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So sorry, William.
 
Dar Helwig
Posts: 26
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The vet can give her a very easy shot of tranquilizer that will put her into deep deep relaxation (a great relief in times of pain and suffering). Then he will give her a shot that stops her heart and she never knows. It is fast, painless and her last minutes will be in total relaxation. As if dieing in her sleep. Take one of your old coats for her to lay on. If the end is near and there is misery, is there a better way? Don't do this yourself. You could cause untold suffering. Be responsible and loving and let the vet do it peacefully.
 
John Weiland
Posts: 806
Location: RRV of da Nort
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Hi William,

Sorry for what you, your dog, and your family are going through.  Given what you have described and what others have suggested, I too would recommend having a vet stop by to put your dog down.  We had a large, lovable Anatolian a few years back....and only 4 years old....that had contracted aggressive bone cancer and was clearly beginning to struggle even though her spirit was high.  The day the vet arrived, I could swear she seemed glad.....I know that's anthropomorphizing, but it was a strong feeling.  The vets always give them an initial shot to give them sedation.  That is when we always are allowed to cuddle a bit with the dog while the final injection is given.  They are home, in more ways than one, and you are with them as they pass over.  As long as a vet is available, I wouldn't have it any other way when it comes to these types of cases.  Strength and sympathy to you with the decision....
 
Dana Jones
Posts: 121
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My heart hurts for you. I am so sorry. Others have already given you good ideas on what to do, I have nothing to add there. I just wanted you to know, that yes, we do know what pain you are feeling and what a tough decision this is for you. Big hugs.
 
Sally Munoz
Posts: 28
Location: SW Washington
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I am so sorry about your dog, William. My pets are always super special and I cry terribly when they die. If you can possibly scrape up the money, I am all for having the vet put the dog down. I've experienced it twice and the dogs were so relaxed and it was so fast, it was almost hard to tell when they were finally gone. Both times, the vet was kind and respectful and encouraged us to be right there, holding their paws and petting them while they died. Here in WA state having the vet come out is $150 and going in is $50. Several years ago, when I lived in Alaska, we found a country vet that put our dog down for $35, so call several-they all charge differently. Taking an animal to the humane society is free, but you "surrender" the dog. They are taken from you at the back door and that's the last you see of them. Definitely not recommended if you have feelings for your pet, but might be an option.
I just wanted to add that I've had cats pass peacefully at home so at one time, I figured that was the way to go. All natural and permie and such. But then a few years back, I had a sick cat that we were letting die naturally and it ended up being very ugly. He seized and screamed, vomiting blood and gick and it took at least 15 minutes of suffering. My sister had a dog die like that too. That experience is the last time I will go through that if it can be helped.
I don't share that story to be insensitive to your situation, just to share what might happen and I for one, will never do that again if I have the chance to take an animal in and have a peaceful, pain-free death. For me, the "natural way" was so much harder to deal with emotionally. All my best to you! It's never easy.
 
Cody DeBaun
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Location: Denton, TX United States Zone 8a
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William,

I'm so very, very sorry. There is no pain quite like this pain. My thoughts are with you and your family, and with the best dog in the wide world.

These words helped me to feel through the experience, when I've lost a friend. Even people who don't like poetry seem to find something in this one.

 
William Bronson
Posts: 1264
Location: Cincinnati, Ohio,Price Hill 45205
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Thank you everyone.
The Hail Mary surgery is scheduled for tomorrow.
I still don't know if we will go through with it.
Putting her comfort over our tenuous hope for a full recovery,we have begun to give her steroids.
They are working,for now.
Energy and interest are up, panting down, she is getting better everyday. For now.
Today my wife took her to petsmart just to smell the smells. She loved it!
Her appetite isvstill very poor. I will be chewing up chicken for her tonight😏
Crazy,I know but it seems to work. Something about the smell of cooked chicken,the texture,the fact that I am eating it.
 
Lorinne Anderson
Posts: 37
Location: Vancouver Island, BC, Canada
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I personally feel when we take an animal into our lives we form a pact.  I will do right by the animal, it will do right by me.  If the animal needs medical attention, that is my responsibility, but, just because a medication or procedure can be provided (ie: money is no object) does NOT mean that is necessarily the "right" thing to do. 

WHEN TO TREAT:  Each situation is different, but for me, I have to separate myself and honestly ask if I am doing this for the animal or for myself, is the treatment worth the pain, fear, or stress; is it worth the long term costs both physical and financial; will it solve the problem or will it simply mask it and buy a bit of time?  Is surgery or medication really worthwhile in treating this condition and is it right, mentally, physically, spiritually and financially?  Unfortunately there is no one size fits all answer here, each animal, each condition and each treatment is unique and individual to the situation.

We recently dealt with losing our 16 yr old Pin who spent the last few years with gradually worsening arthritis and congestive heart failure.  Fortunately money was not an issue, and her five meds, some given twice daily kept her active, healthy, happy and loving life, for years, in spite of failing sight and little to no hearing.  We knew we were only buying time, but we also bought her over two years of comfortable, high quality life.  Eventually the adjusting, adding to or changing her meds just wasn't cutting it, her reason for being (food) became a non-event, and she would wander outside and not come back in.

WHEN TO EUTHANIZE:  This is generally referred to as "quality of life", but for many this is to vague.  For me this final question is reached by answering one simple question. Does the animal have joy?  By this I mean does the animal spend the majority of its day engaged, doing what it loves, eating with gusto and loving life.  Once that balance starts to tip, it becomes a month by month, then week by week, then day by day, true and honest assessment of the amount of joy your companion has every day, this is your measure of "quality of life".  Once that balance tips to the dark side, and joy is only evident in the odd glimpse or moment here and there, then the right thing to do is to release the animal from its suffering, and allow it the peace of death.  

HOW TO EUTHANIZE:  For our 16 yr old Pin girl it was home euthanasia and the private cremation (please remember that the chemical used to euthanize animals is toxic after death, animal must be cremated or buried very, very deep) to the tune of over $450 last November.  We have, over the years, had other animals that have been put down (chemically euthanized) by their personal friend and Vet, but they were taken in for treatment of what quickly became a non-treatable situation, and ending their suffering was the best option.  All of those we have euthed at the Vet were mass cremated (more environmentally friendly, as multiple animals are cremated at the same time, but you do not get your companions ashes back), and usually costs $150-$250 for a small companion animal (not horse....) here in British Columbia.  Different places will have different options of assistance through their SPCA or Humane Societies, but for the most part it will mean abandoning your animal in their care, and in many cases you will still be looking at a surrender fee.
 
Conversely, several years ago, I had a Staffie boxer cross foster who lived here for seven years.  She became weak in the hind end, within 24 hours she could only move her head and twirl her tail and became incontinent.  Financially, at that time, home euthanasia was out of the question.  Loading her in the vehicle to be driven to the vets, carried into a strange, cold, clinical place where no one knew her was also not an option (both her vets were away).  I dug her grave, then I carried her outside, laid her in the warm sun on her favorite blanket, and waited with her for my friend to arrive with the .22.  It was extremely quick, without any stress, discomfort or knowledge on her part.  She was soaking up the rays one second and gone the next, she literally never knew what hit her. 

I can personally say, even with hindsight, that I find none of my choices for death was better, easier or kinder.  Each death met the criteria of doing the best I could to release my companions when their life was no longer able to be enjoyed. All were at home, or in familiar surroundings, being held by their loving humans, and knowing they were loved and cared for to the very last second, and beyond.  Their bodies were also dealt with differently, but each was dealt with respect, properly and safely.  I can honestly say I am at complete peace with both chemical and firearm euthanasia, and have no regrets with either method. 

DO NOT EVEN CONSIDER ANY OF THE FOLLOWING CRUEL AND INHUMANE METHODS:  freezing, suffocating, drowning, carbon monoxide/dioxide poisoning (car exhaust), drug/alcohol overdose etc.  You morally owe your animal friend better than that, and in most places it would be considered criminal, literally, and leave you open to charges of animal cruelty.  Death, be it human or animal should be calm, peaceful and instant, and without any mental or physical pain or suffering.

In a perfect world, your animal is elderly, but healthy one moment and literally drops dead the next, or passes in their sleep.  The next best option may be having the vet come to your home and your loving companion is first tranquilized and while drifting in the haze of drugs is gently euthanized.  Or it may be lying in the sun in their favorite spot, with their favorite person while in a split second a bullet enters the brain and ends it all instantly.  We are all different, as are our animals, and whether we like it or not,  finances are a reality, and must be taken into account.  However you do it, just remember, this animal has likely given you countless hours of love, affection and comfort, do not be selfish, do not prolong their life because you cannot imagine yours without them.   I believe if you treated your last animal with love and caring that it is a sign of respect and honor to fill that "vacancy" and provide, as soon as possible, for one who is in desperate need of a home.  Your old pal would be horrified if such a good home was going to waste.

Now, everyone else, go give your furkids a hug, kiss, snuggle or whatever you do and let them know how important they are to us and how much we appreciate all they do for us.
 
richard valley
Posts: 247
Location: Sierra Nevada mountain valley CA, & Nevada high desert
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Well, I think I'd make the pup as comfortable as possible and let say "I love you often" but not put the pooch down. It might be more work, cause you'll have to lift and lay, but the animal will know you care.
 
William Bronson
Posts: 1264
Location: Cincinnati, Ohio,Price Hill 45205
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She's gone.
She couldn't breath,spent last night gasping for air.
Took her to the vet for an injection,we held her still.
She went from distress to peace in seconds.
Beforehand we got my daughter from school.
She's 8, turns 9 soon.
She fed Nogah chocolate ice-cream in the back seat as we drove,as much as she wanted.
She is on the couch now.
Athena and I will dig her grave.

Thank you all for caring enough to read and weigh in,it means a lot to me.

Nogah was a better dog to her people than we could possibly deserve.
I want to be deserving. I want to be like Nogah.
 
John Weiland
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Location: RRV of da Nort
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William Bronson wrote:

Nogah was a better dog to her people than we could possibly deserve...... I want to be like Nogah.


Sorry for your loss and I commend you for involving your daughter in this passage.....not everyone does.  As for wanting to be like Nogah, that is a worthy goal.  I've always liked the notion that when we became human we lost the better qualities of the other animals.  Hard to replace a companion like that and my condolences to your family.
 
Karen Donnachaidh
pollinator
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Location: Palmyra, Virginia
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William (and family),

I'm so sorry. I'm sure you gave her a wonderful life on Earth and she was happy and loved. Losing a pet is a hard thing. I know!

We have a place on the edge of the field that now has 4 dogs and a cat. A cat, who was the meanest I've ever seen, but we cried our eyes out when he left us. And I miss him.

My MIL told me when we lost our dog 3 years ago, "Don't wait very long until you get another one. It won't be a replacement but a love to fill the void." She was right. "Pickles" has made the past 3 years a joy. She did make the loss more bearable. And she's an awesome turkey dog.
 
Sally Munoz
Posts: 28
Location: SW Washington
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Sorry for your loss, William! Dogs (and other pets too) certainly make our lives much richer. 
My 20 yo son often laments on the simple life our dog leads. "He doesn't have a care in the world, mom; he just enjoys life and doesn't second guess anything".
A well loved dogs life sure is sweet and we could learn a lot from them. 
Much sympathy to your family from ours. 
 
Walt Chase
Posts: 63
Location: ALASKA
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Sorry for your loss.  Seems that dog's grab a bigger part of my heart than anything else.  I currently have a 14YO English Setter that I have had since the day she was born.  I know her time is coming sooner, rather than later.  I dread it terribly.
 
Steve Sherman
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Sorry for your loss William, but it sounds like your dog has a peaceful end.

I think you made the right choice. When our 15yr old golden was failing we debated ending his life earlier or letting him go naturally. Our vet was great and was happy to go either way, he assured us that Rocky was feeling no pain. So we (mostly I) sat with him, when he could no longer move or eat or control his bodily functions. In hindsight, I think the vet was right, that Rocky did not have much pain through this process. But I could tell that he was quite scared. I could comfort him some but not as much as I would have liked. If I had the decision to do over again, I would choose to end his life before he went through all that fear. But I suppose every dog (and person) is different in this regard.
 
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