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Busderpuddle

When Do You Know ?

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I hate even asking this question. I have never lost an animal, so I know nothing about it, or how in the world you decide. She is my first dog, and we have had her almost 9 years. We are both terrified to make the wrong decision at the wrong time.

Ruby is not doing well. She has arthritis and Dementia. It is bad, and she is not happy. She strains to get up and down, she won't eat a treat unless it is literally put in her mouth. She will eat food if it is canned, which is new to her. She has lost about 6 lbs in the last 6 months. Around dinner time she starts whining, and it goes off and on all night long. We have her sleeping right next to us like always. We are getting pretty grumpy, and trying to nap during the day, as we know the nights will be long.

She is on Gabapentin, Ultram, and a senior tablet from Amazon that was recommended. We have tried several other meds along the way.

Her vet mentioned end of life at her last visit, so I know I need to get this right in my head. She is 11 1/2 now, still loves her pets and scritches, but the sparkle in her eyes is gone. She desperately needs a dental, but I don't think she would make it.

At what point do you do this and not have any guilt ? I have been praying that she passes away in her sleep. I know that sounds awful.

Thank you


Karen

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I'm sorry you're in this situation. Years ago, when our 14 year old Lab who had dementia was in her last days she walked around in a circle in our small kitchen for 2+ hours late at night. That was our sign that it was time for her.

I'm sure others will give more advice.


Tin and Michael, Galgos: Lucas, Baltasar, Picasso, Hero, Oasis, Galina, Neizan, Enzo and Salvo the Galgos.
Remembering Bridge Angel Greyhounds: Tosca, Jamey, Master, Diego, and Ambi; plus Angel Galgos Jules and Marco.

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"the sparkle in her eyes is gone" Every animal is different, and the dementia makes it harder, but I think that phrase tells you a lot. It can be hard to know when it is time, and if you have never had to make the decision, even harder. I have always believed better a day too soon than a day too late, and I have waited too long a few times, so I know it is true. I am sorry :bighug

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I've lost five greyhounds over the years. In my experience, vets don't mention end-of-life too early.


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Kathy and Q (CRT Qadeer from Fuzzy's Cannon and CRT Bonnie) and
Jane (WW's Aunt Jane from Trent Lee and Aunt M); photos to come.

Missing Silver (5.19.2005-10.27.2016), Tigger (4.5.2007-3.18.2016),
darling Sam (5.10.2000-8.8.2013), Jacey-Kasey (5.19.2003-8.22.2011), and Oreo (1997-3.30.2006)

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I guess asking the question meant I was thinking it is time. This sounds so crazy, but making the appt. just seems so final. The corner where she sleeps during the day will be so empty. She has been my buddy for 9 years while my husband works afternoons and nights. She is the best Greyhound ever. I know we all feel like we were the lucky ones to get the ones we have, but she has been such a good girl. Her only issue has been separation anxiety.

My grandson helped choose her years ago. He was 2. He is coming for 3 days on the 1st, so I want him to get to tell her goodbye. He is 11, and he has always loved her. Maybe she will rally a bit with him here. She adores him, and all the grand babies.

Thank you all for your comments. I just hate the thought of taking her too early and then feeling guilty. I know she is tired.


Karen

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"the sparkle in her eyes is gone" Every animal is different, and the dementia makes it harder, but I think that phrase tells you a lot. It can be hard to know when it is time, and if you have never had to make the decision, even harder. I have always believed better a day too soon than a day too late, and I have waited too long a few times, so I know it is true. I am sorry :bighug

 

She has arthritis and Dementia. It is bad, and she is not happy. She strains to get up and down, she won't eat a treat unless it is literally put in her mouth. She will eat food if it is canned, which is new to her. She has lost about 6 lbs in the last 6 months. Around dinner time she starts whining, and it goes off and on all night long.

 

I guess asking the question meant I was thinking it is time. This sounds so crazy, but making the appt. just seems so final. The corner where she sleeps during the day will be so empty. She has been my buddy for 9 years while my husband works afternoons and nights. She is the best Greyhound ever. I know we all feel like we were the lucky ones to get the ones we have, but she has been such a good girl. Her only issue has been separation anxiety.

My grandson helped choose her years ago. He was 2. He is coming for 3 days on the 1st, so I want him to get to tell her goodbye. He is 11, and he has always loved her. Maybe she will rally a bit with him here. She adores him, and all the grand babies.

Thank you all for your comments. I just hate the thought of taking her too early and then feeling guilty. I know she is tired.

 

The reality is that very few dogs pass on their own, leaving us to make the decision for them. How I have wished to avoid that decision but in the past seven years I have had to make it 15 times. Today is seven years ago that Segugio left me. He is the only one with whom I waited too long, and still beat myself up about it.

 

The eyes are the window to the soul. When the light in their eyes has dimmed, you know. I'm so sorry about Ruby. The appt is final, but she is and always will be in your heart. :grouphug

Edited by FiveRoooooers

Old Dogs are the Best Dogs. :heartThank you, campers. Current enrollees: Aiden. Bea. Punkin. Annie. Miss M. Cletus, knot like the others.

Angels: Pal :heart. Segugio. Sorella (TPGIT). LadyBug. Zeke-aroni. MiMi Sizzle Pants. Gracie. Seamie :heart:brokenheart. (Foster)Sweet. Andy. PaddyALVIN!Mayhem. Bosco. Bruno.Dottie B. Trevor Double-Heart.

 

:paw Upon reflection, our lives are often referenced in parts defined by the all-too-short lives of our dogs.

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:(

It is always a hard decision, but 'better a day too early than a minute too late' is my belief and it sounds as if your Ruby is ready to leave you.

Can you arrange for your Vet to come to your home?


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Nancy...Mom to Nigel (Nigel) , Sid (Peteles Tiger) and Kibo (112 Carlota Galgos)Missing Casey, Gomer, Mona, Penelope, BillieJean, Bandit, Nixon (Starz Sammie) and especially Ruby (Watch Me Dash) waiting at the Bridge.

 

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I'm sorry for what you are going through. Might I suggest that you stop the Ultramand (you have to ease down or you will have withdrawal symptoms) and try another drug - some of the side effects of this drug could be causing the symptoms you noted. You might also want to go get a round of antibiotics for the mouth as an infection could also fit some of the symptoms you are describing.

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I think letting your grandson have a chance to say good bye is a good idea, since he is coming soon and has such a connection with her. They also often rally a bit at the end. This isn't a sign that it is too soon to let them go, I believe they know, and it is relief on their part that their pain will soon be over.

 

Of course you will miss her terribly, but (again, just my belief) they never really leave us.

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Letting her go is the most loving thing you can do for Ruby. Personally, I would rather deal with guilt if I felt I let one of our pups go too soon rather than the guilt if I let them suffer.

 

Ruby wont feel its too soon because she lives in the moment. Good luck with your decision. First greyhound or last greyhound, it never gets easier. Greytalk has a lot of wonderful compassionate people who understand.

Edited by greytpups

Jan with precious pups Katie Crazykatiebug, Emmy (Stormin J Flag) and Simon (Nitro Si) Missing my angels: Bailey Buffetbobleclair 11/11/98-17/12/09; Ben Task Rapid Wave 5/5/02-2/11/15; and Brooke Glo's Destroyer 7/09/06-21/06/16. My blog about grief The reality is that you will grieve forever. You will not get over the loss of a loved one; you will learn to live with it. You will heal and you will rebuild yourself around the loss you have suffered. You will be whole again but you will never be the same. Nor should you be the same, nor would you want to. Elisabeth Kübler-Ross

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It is the worst time of year to be thinking this, and I'm sorry that you are. :(

 

I believe it's all about quality and not quantity. I am also in the camp of one day sooner is better than too late, which is often very hard to find that day! This is a very hard decision to make, and the majority of us have to make this selfless decision.

 

If you can already tell she's tired, is truly not happy, has lost her zest, and if she isn't her same self then I think that is a beginning indicator. It's hard to think about but another way to look at it is: are keeping her around for her, or keeping her around for you? It would be really nice for your grandson to see her tomorrow; they love their people. Revisit this again in a few days, it's not an easy decision to make....take your time.

 

:bighug


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Having had to say goodbye to 20 dogs...it never gets any easier. My only regret was letting my husband talk me into letting our very first dog, Rose le mutt, stay too long. Never ever again.

 

If you are asking permission of me, of us, I say yes to letting her go. She may rally a bit when your grandson visits, but you'll be leaving her with one last feel-good moment with her family.

 

It's obvious how deeply you love her. :grouphug


 

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Thank you all so very much. I can't imagine making this decision more than once in a lifetime, some of you have been thru it so many times !

Gabriel comes tomorrow, so I will talk to him and let him snuggle her up, then will make the appt.

For the person who suggested the Ultram might be making things worse, she was worse before, and we did taper it down and then back up. She has been on so many things.

Bless you all.....You have no idea how all of you have helped me with Ruby over the years.


Karen

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our Larry is nearly 12 and wouldn't be here still if it weren't for Meloxicam for his LS (he is now struggling more and more getting up that is more recent). He gets 1/2 a tablet (3.75mg) each morning (along with Gabapentin and Tramadol). I don't know if that would give you some more time with her -- or make her feel better overall. Just a suggestion. If the dementia is bad (and I can see that starting in Larry :() then that won't change :(

 

sending hugs. It is SO hard.

Edited by RaineysMom

Kim, Bruce, Larry (PTL LaRoach) and Zeke (Hey Who Whiz It) - missing my sweet Angels Rainey (LG's Rainey 10/4/2000 - 3/8/2011) and Anubis (RJ's Saint Nick 12/25/2001 - 9/12/12) and Chester (8/31/1990 - 5/3/2005), Captain (10/12/1992 - 6/13/2005) and Remy (?/?/1998 - 1/6/2005) at the bridge
"Always do sober what you said you'd do drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut." -- Ernest Hemmingway

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it's the dementia that's so difficult to deal with. it sounds like you are at peace with the realization that the time has come. it's never easy, just prepare yourself. if you are cremating the vet is usually hooked up with services. i use a not so local humane society who is quite reasonable, the prices in our area for a good size dog are $150- $400. i also have buried most of my dogs in the yard. it's nice to have a cup of joe w/ them in the morning.

 

hugs- we all see the decision in the horizon and it's always nice to have the support of others when we are dealing with it.

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No, I am not at peace that we are doing the right thing. I wish I knew 100% that she has had enough.

I did just call and make the appt. for the 7th. They call it a QOL appt., quality of Life. Been crying ever since and just a wreck. It seems so wrong to end a life. I just can't wrap my head around it. It would make more sense if she had cancer or couldn't walk at all. Last night she started whining around 7 PM. Nothing seemed to help her, even laying beside her on the floor. It isn't a pain whine I don't think. I don't know. I took her out 3 times last night, she never pottied, just stared.

Tonight is going to be so hard on her. She HATES fireworks. I hadn't even thought about them until a few minutes ago. More suffering for her.

I will ask if there is anything else we can try, but we have tried so many things. Always a hope......

This kind of makes me not want any more pets. Does that seem normal ? I have a 18 month old Poodle mix, so hopefully we have a long time left. I always thought that once Ruby went, we would foster elderly dogs........but now I know I can't. Ashamed to say that, but I can't take it. My husband is worse.

again, thank you all.


OH GEEZ.....I just re read a couple of the last posts. Do you normally have them cremated ? We will be moving from the house we are in in 3 years, so I dont want to bury her.

Maybe take her to Hawaii on our next trip and let her stay forever in what we call Heaven on Earth ? I just don't know.


Karen

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No, I am not at peace that we are doing the right thing. I wish I knew 100% that she has had enough.

I did just call and make the appt. for the 7th. They call it a QOL appt., quality of Life. Been crying ever since and just a wreck. It seems so wrong to end a life. I just can't wrap my head around it. It would make more sense if she had cancer or couldn't walk at all. Last night she started whining around 7 PM. Nothing seemed to help her, even laying beside her on the floor. It isn't a pain whine I don't think. I don't know. I took her out 3 times last night, she never pottied, just stared.

Tonight is going to be so hard on her. She HATES fireworks. I hadn't even thought about them until a few minutes ago. More suffering for her.

I will ask if there is anything else we can try, but we have tried so many things. Always a hope......

This kind of makes me not want any more pets. Does that seem normal ? I have a 18 month old Poodle mix, so hopefully we have a long time left. I always thought that once Ruby went, we would foster elderly dogs........but now I know I can't. Ashamed to say that, but I can't take it. My husband is worse.

again, thank you all.

Our Rainey had a brain issue (tumor?? don't know for sure) that caused seizures, dementia and severe behavioral changes. The seizures sucked but I could deal with them. The dementia was by far worse. I truly feel for you. Could she have gone on? Yes, physically. :( but what she had turned into made her NOT Rainey anymore and letting her go was the kindest thing we could have done. For her, and for us too.

 

sending more hugs. :grouphug


Kim, Bruce, Larry (PTL LaRoach) and Zeke (Hey Who Whiz It) - missing my sweet Angels Rainey (LG's Rainey 10/4/2000 - 3/8/2011) and Anubis (RJ's Saint Nick 12/25/2001 - 9/12/12) and Chester (8/31/1990 - 5/3/2005), Captain (10/12/1992 - 6/13/2005) and Remy (?/?/1998 - 1/6/2005) at the bridge
"Always do sober what you said you'd do drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut." -- Ernest Hemmingway

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I'm so sorry for your situation. I lost my very best friend and sidekick, a 14 year old Dalmatian named Pongo, on December 6th. I had to make the decision but my vet made it easier by telling me he thought it was time. He had a heart murmur, and like you, I hoped he would pass in his sleep and keep me from the pain of making the choice. His heart was big and he was a love bug so I knew he wouldn't want me to be alone after he left. I applied (and am waiting to bring her home) for my first greyhound. I see him in all his special places here but I know that he isn't in pain and I did the right thing. But I miss him so much. You will too. But give her relief from her pain. He was cremated and sits by my front door, where I tell him to guard the house just like I always did when I go out. It's comforting to have him with me.

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I am sorry for what you are going through. I, too. am a member of the "a day early" camp. My sister Let her Steviie suffer terribly waiting for him to die on his own. I think one of the best gifts we can give our four legged family members is release from pain, frustration and unhappiness. You have to be brave for them.

Definitely cremate. Here it runs $110 plus $1 a pound.I have 6 boxes of cremins on a table in the living room. I buried my last Yorkie in Lubbock. When I sold the house Is showed the woman that bought it the bush that he was buried under, but I felt terrible for leaving him.. Since then everyone has been cremated and their ashes (or .at least most of each dog - I had some BIG boys) will be mixed with mine and the urn buried in the family plot.

 

: :grouphug :grouphug

Edited by Hubcitypam

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The name of the appointment, “quality of life”, says it all. Ruby’s quality of life is not what it was, it is not what you want for her. One of my cats died in her sleep, it is not a peaceful passing. Well, I guess it can be, but it can also be pretty horrible. You want Ruby’s passing to be peaceful. I am sorry it is so hard :bighug

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:grouphug I am so sorry you are having to go through this. It is always such a hard road to travel, even though it is also the last kind and responsible thing one can do for a beloved companion.

 

I just wanted to let you know, if she is cremated her ashes will only be returned to you if you want them to be. With Doc, I declined this option, not wanting to remember him that way - instead I created a memory box containing his collar, his paw-print in clay, a favourite toy, etc.


Clare with Tiger (Snapper Gar, b. 18/05/2015), and remembering Ken (Boomtown Ken, 01/05/2011-21/02/2020) and Doc (Barefoot Doctor, 20/08/2001-15/04/2015).

"It is also to be noted of every species, that the handsomest of each move best ... and beasts of the most elegant form, always excel in speed; of this, the horse and greyhound are beautiful examples."----Wiliam Hogarth, The Analysis of Beauty, 1753.

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When my laye welsh terrier had dementia he was a mess. He peed all over his bedding, paced, could not be contained, days and nights were mixed up, crying non-stop and so on. My friend who is a vet explained that he was frighyened, living a night mare and that nothing could be done to ease the horror. Physically in good shape for a 15 year old but he was exhausted from the ordeal. Hugs...The first dog, I think you mentioned she is your first, is the most difficult. It does not get easier, but one learns from experience.

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:grouphug I am so sorry you are having to go through this. It is always such a hard road to travel, even though it is also the last kind and responsible thing one can do for a beloved companion.

 

I just wanted to let you know, if she is cremated her ashes will only be returned to you if you want them to be. With Doc, I declined this option, not wanting to remember him that way - instead I created a memory box containing his collar, his paw-print in clay, a favourite toy, etc.

this is a great idea. I will make a memory box....thank you

 

When my laye welsh terrier had dementia he was a mess. He peed all over his bedding, paced, could not be contained, days and nights were mixed up, crying non-stop and so on. My friend who is a vet explained that he was frighyened, living a night mare and that nothing could be done to ease the horror. Physically in good shape for a 15 year old but he was exhausted from the ordeal. Hugs...The first dog, I think you mentioned she is your first, is the most difficult. It does not get easier, but one learns from experience.

Yes, so similar to when my Grandma had Alzheimers. She was confused as to time of day, thought it was bed time when she woke up in the mornings.....so difficult for her and for us. I hate the thought of my poor girl feeling so frightened. She has not lost control of her bodily functions though, which is great. She does forget what she goes out to do, so we send her out frequently.


Karen

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