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spacewrangler
Alabama Fan
In my easy chair with my boots on..
Member since Sep 2009
9621 posts

How do you know when it is time to put down your dog?

Our family has a golden retriever, born in 04. He has serious back and spine issues and has a hard time standing, walking, and etc.

He had progressively gotten worse lately and now he is losing control of his bowels. Basically he shits whenever and wherever he is when he wakes up or has to go. I walk him many times throughout the day. I know he is in constant pain, he pants all the time which is a dogs way of dealing with pain.

The hard part of the decision is he seems happy at times but then he goes through periods where is whines and barks, he has a lot of trouble getting up, we've gotten him dog begs to lay on and has pain meds.

My 2 sons are fine and have had other pets die, our daughter barely knows life without him, she was 3 when we got him.

We took him to the vet again tgis morning to get him checked out again and will talk with our vet tgis afternoon. My wife wants to get it over with, doesnt want to drag it out, watch him get worse, delay the inevitable for our sfish reasons. I'm really torn on what to do at this moment.

What does the OT think?


JustGetItRight
Alabama Fan
Member since Jan 2012
15110 posts

Sounds like it is time


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p0845330
USA Fan
Member since Aug 2013
5381 posts

It's a tough decision, but it sounds like he's constantly suffering. Going only by your post, it's probably time.


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Darth Aranda
Baylor Fan
Naboo
Member since Dec 2016
2101 posts

You just know when it's time. I think you know it in your head that it's probably the best thing to do, but it's difficult to silence your heart and let go. Try to think about it from the dog's perspective, he's spent his entire life loving you unconditionally. The most loving thing you can do for him at this stage in his life is to relieve him of his pain.


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Weagle25
Auburn Fan
THE Football State.
Member since Oct 2011
43400 posts

Sounds like you know the answer. You just don't want to know the answer.

I stayed in the room when they did it. It was rough but I felt like it was better to be in there.
This post was edited on 4/18 at 2:24 pm


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The muffintime
Florida Fan
Tampa Bay Metro
Member since Jan 2017
563 posts

I'm so sorry. I'm actually getting choked up just thinking about it. I think you know the answer to your question, spacewrangler. Please keep us updated and I promise I'll raise a glass to your furry little guy.



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Bamagirl15
Alabama Fan
Moody
Member since Nov 2016
389 posts

Give him one whole day of total love, anything he wants give it to him, then let him go. Ice cream, cheeseburgers what ever he likes. We did that with our dog four years ago and he went happy knowing he's loved and it helped my son having good final memories with him.
This post was edited on 4/18 at 3:22 pm


OlGrandad
Auburn Fan
Member since Oct 2009
2915 posts

Went through this two weeks ago with our Weimaraner. It is hard to make the call. When the vet said the old boy would be in constant pain, which would get progressively worse, I knew it was time.

Sorry your family will have to go through this. I do have any words that will ease the pain of your loss.


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BluegrassBelle
Kentucky Fan
RIP Hefty Lefty - 1981-2019
Member since Nov 2010
92049 posts

We had to put down our family dog, Bits, last year. She was my brother's dog who passed in 2009, I helped take care of her after he passed when I moved back home to take care of my Mom, and she remained with my parents until she was 14. She started having seizures that couldn't be controlled by meds. It was awful but we knew it was time.

I think it's simply when you reach a point that the suffering far outweighs the good spells, it's time to have that talk with the vet. And a good vet will tell you what'd they'd do if it was their dog too.


The muffintime
Florida Fan
Tampa Bay Metro
Member since Jan 2017
563 posts

My springer spaniel Eli was let go about seven years ago and I still think about him from time to time. He was my best friend from age eight to twenty two. He had suffered his whole life from horrific allergies, but they were usually somewhat controlled by meds. His last year he took a rapid turn for the worse, and not only was he losing all his fur and his energy, he tore ligaments in both his hind legs. We fixed the first one with surgery, but it took him months to be able to stand up on his own. It was one of the most painful things I've ever had to watch. When the second one tore we knew not to repeat the same mistake. The surgery caused him infinitely more pain than the tear. He eventually got to the point where we just knew we had to end his suffering.

Some people might never understand how I feel but this was one of the most difficult things I've ever gone through, and just typing this out has me literally sitting here at my computer crying like a baby. I can barely get the words out I'm sobbing so hard. I don't give a RIP about anyone who thinks that animals aren't worth this kind of emotional investment. I don't want to know you and I sure as shite don't ever want to think like you.

I have a five year old Basenji mix now, Java, and he is my new best friend. I care for that dog more than I can even express. I will not make the mistakes with him that I made with Eli.
This post was edited on 4/18 at 3:44 pm


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Pitch To Johnny
Houston Astros Fan
Houston
Member since Jun 2015
4156 posts

Condolences, that is a rough decision to make. We had to put our family dog down this year. Thankfully my cousin is a vet, and had been around him his entire life, so we had a little extra assistance.

Unfortunately, it does sound like its time.


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crispyUGA
Georgia Fan
Member since Feb 2011
15635 posts

quote:

Our family has a golden retriever, born in 04. He has serious back and spine issues and has a hard time standing, walking, and etc.

He had progressively gotten worse lately and now he is losing control of his bowels. Basically he shits whenever and wherever he is when he wakes up or has to go. I walk him many times throughout the day. I know he is in constant pain, he pants all the time which is a dogs way of dealing with pain.

The hard part of the decision is he seems happy at times but then he goes through periods where is whines and barks, he has a lot of trouble getting up, we've gotten him dog begs to lay on and has pain meds.

My 2 sons are fine and have had other pets die, our daughter barely knows life without him, she was 3 when we got him.

We took him to the vet again tgis morning to get him checked out again and will talk with our vet tgis afternoon. My wife wants to get it over with, doesnt want to drag it out, watch him get worse, delay the inevitable for our sfish reasons. I'm really torn on what to do at this moment.

What does the OT think?



It's time, unfortunately. It's never an easy thing to do.

And yes, stay in the room with him. It's tough, but he'll be scared and you owe it to him to be there to soothe him.

God, I'm in my office thinking of my past dogs and my current elderly dog, crying my eyes out.
This post was edited on 4/18 at 3:55 pm


FairhopeTider
Alabama Fan
Fairhope, Alabama
Member since May 2012
19249 posts

As others have said, you know when it's time. Dogs have a great ability to power through suffering/pain but when you can tell there is more suffering than joy, then it's time. When the bad days out number the good, it's time.

A year and a half ago, my 13 year old yellow lab got diagnosed with bone cancer in her leg. That dog was basically my child. Vet gave her 3 months. She last 9 months and even though she had a tennis ball size tumor on her leg, she was still running around wagging her tail toward the end. It was almost a miracle but dogs have a habit of playing through pain. Eventually it created a wound that led to a lot of bleeding and we really had no choice. Watching her fade away was one of the toughest things I've ever had to do even though I knew it was the right choice. I'm still not over it.



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The muffintime
Florida Fan
Tampa Bay Metro
Member since Jan 2017
563 posts

This thread has really given my day a turn that I was not expecting. I'm happy, though. Our dogs deserve to be remembered like this from time to time and they are most definitely worth our tears.


DawgsOnTopOfYou
Georgia Fan
Athens
Member since Nov 2013
38 posts

I feel for you man.

A little over a year ago now, my 5 yo lab/weim mix was diagnosed with cancer that had spread all throughout his lymph nodes and he was given 3 months. He really seemed like he was doing well for 2.9 of them. Still got super pumped when I got home, good appetite, went on walks, etc. Only problem was due to the pressure on his bladder is he would pee inside when he never used to. Overall not too bad.

I came back from work one day and he met me at the door really slowly. It became pretty obvious to me something bad had happened while I was gone, maybe some sort of seizure. Could barely walk, no excitement, just really wasn't himself at all. It was the absolute worst because I had no idea how long he had been like that or what had happened. It was late when I got back so it was too late to do anything so I had to do the best I could with him that night and try and make him comfortable. The next day, I had to take him down to my parents house three hours south of Atlanta and we had our family vet put him down.

I know your circumstances different and your dog doesn't have any terminal illness other than a good long life. I got a golden when I was 4 and he lived about 13 years. I say all this because I just remember how terrible I felt and still feel that I let it get to that point. I never did the "big day" for him. I wanted to act like nothing was happening and expected some kind of slow decline. I still don't know when the "right" time is, I think it is still a personal decision, but I know I personally can't let it get to that point again because it devastated me and I felt like a POS. Still feel guilty because he was my best friend.


Bamagirl15
Alabama Fan
Moody
Member since Nov 2016
389 posts

They will always be in our hearts and part of the family. I remember when my son was learning to crawl, he'd kinda scoot and Boe would be next to him scooting with him. Lol so cute.
This post was edited on 4/18 at 4:16 pm


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The muffintime
Florida Fan
Tampa Bay Metro
Member since Jan 2017
563 posts

quote:

I still don't know when the "right" time is, I think it is still a personal decision, but I know I personally can't let it get to that point again because it devastated me and I felt like a POS. Still feel guilty because he was my best friend.
This is exactly how I feel. Never again - I just can't do it to another dog. Or to myself.

I feel like a piece of shite when I think about how selfish I was, even though I told myself I was taking care of him.


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DawgsOnTopOfYou
Georgia Fan
Athens
Member since Nov 2013
38 posts

quote:

And yes, stay in the room with him. It's tough, but he'll be scared and you owe it to him to be there to soothe him.


THIS. We were very lucky in that our vet made house calls. So we at least were able to do it in a private place where my dog was comfortable and he didn't have to get nervous about being at the vet. When the time comes and if you feel like that's a good option, it wouldn't hurt to ask. Not sure if these Atlanta vets will do it but our south GA one would.


FairhopeTider
Alabama Fan
Fairhope, Alabama
Member since May 2012
19249 posts

Yeah, stay in the room with them even if it's tough. You owe it to them for sticking by your side.

We did it at the vet. Carrying her out of the house and riding in the back seat with her as our other dog looked out the window of the house was heartbreaking. Watching the vet make the injection was heartbreaking. Leaving the room knowing I'd never see that face again was heartbreaking. However that heartbreak was still worth it because of the joy she brought me. I'd hate to know that she was with a stranger in her last moments.



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kywildcatfanone
Kentucky Fan
Wildcat Country!
Member since Oct 2012
104147 posts

I rely on my vet mostly. They can tell you if there are meds to try to help or if there aren't.


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