Can anyone hold my hand tonight? Elderly dog

(118 Posts)
sadwidow28 Thu 03-Dec-15 18:02:24

DDog is 16.5yrs old, arthritic.

Most days he is happy and walks. Since last night he won't walk (but is eating well if I put a bowl of food and water under his nose)

I booked a home visit for him yesterday - that can only be done at 8pm tonight and I am getting worried that I will be offered PTS.

I will never allow my dog to suffer, but I think PTS tonight will not be appropriate.

For background

- He had a benign tumour removed from his anus 18 months ago - and a cyst removed from his eye at the same time.

- He had blood tests re-done in August 2015 and heart, kidneys, liver all showing he is in 'excellent' levels for an Oldie. Results described as 'good' for a 9yr old'

- He is a Border Collie (80%) and German Shepherd (20%) mix - and I know that GS have hip problems.

- I now have to lift him each morning to get him to standing position (but his back legs now give way when he least expects it)

Please, please hold my hand.

ggirl Thu 03-Dec-15 18:06:39

aww I'm so sorry your dog is suffering with his mobility..you sound such a caring owner . I know how it feels ..just wishing they were free from the ills of old age.
I do think when they can no longer walk themselves it is time to let them go..thats when I took my 14 yr old beardie ..when she couldn't get up on her own .
Sorry you're going thru this ..am sure the vet will not suggest pts unless thats the kindest thing to do... big hugs

sadwidow28 Thu 03-Dec-15 18:08:25

He has just eaten his Iams Senior. I have had to serve it to him in the kitchen because he still can't stand.

Is eating a good sign?

TheoriginalLEM Thu 03-Dec-15 18:09:57

Oh sweetheart, how very difficult for you.

In terms of his legs? what is causing him not to be able to stand? is it arthritis? or something with his spine? Does he have any pain releif?

Everything else apart from the legs sounds fine but if his legs are not likely to improve then i think the time to be kind to him is approaching, im so sorry.

Its very difficult decision to make and often people just "know" we just have to remember that animals don't think it terms of how long, but more how they are feeling. Dignity is important to them.

What did you request when you requested the visit?

Sorry for all the questions, i am just concerned that with the visit at that late time it might be that they are thinking along PTS lines. If that is not what you want just now, that is fine, but maybe have a visit in the morning then if any treatment is indicated it can be done tomorrow? rather than him being taken to the vet and kept overnight?

TheoriginalLEM Thu 03-Dec-15 18:10:57

cross posts - eating is a good sign yes, but him not being able to stand really isn't.

you are going to have to be brave xxxxx flowers

sadwidow28 Thu 03-Dec-15 18:13:18

Thank you for replying. I am in floods of tears here.

I know I will have to lose him one day - I just don't feel ready for it tonight.

I can hardly breathe! I look at the clock and wonder if I only have 2 hours left with the best companion in the world. I just don't know.

SoundFury Thu 03-Dec-15 18:15:41

I don't think the vet would suggest pts tonight. I expect if they suggested it, they would give you a couple of days (as long as your boy isn't in distress or pain of course)

TheoriginalLEM Thu 03-Dec-15 18:17:26

you poor love sad

Is there anyone there with you? I have to go to work soon but i will be thinking of you.

Be lead by the vet, is it someone you know and trust?

Even if the vet does say that PTS is the kindes thing, you don't have to do it tonight - if you can keep pooch pain free then you can have some more time to get your head round it.

Its so so hard, been here too many times.

sadwidow28 Thu 03-Dec-15 18:23:26

TheoriginalLEM

He is on Loxicom for arthritis (and half a paracetamol if I think his pain is worse)

Now there is a story.... I had to fight the vet to get Loxicom for him as she wanted DDog to be PTS a year ago. Since then, he has been on 3 holidays and felt the sand under his paws. He has walked flat country fields and visited parklands. ]

The vet who is coming out to DDog tonight is the locum at the vet's and lives nearby. He did a home-visit for DDog in August to have his annual boosters and take bloods to check his heart, liver and kidneys could stand Loxicom. He came again end of September to do a monthly check and bring more Loxicom.

The original vet is suggesting that DDog is PTS tonight. Apparently, she thinks, "he has has his innings'.

sadwidow28 Thu 03-Dec-15 18:29:26

Okay - I have a plan.

If the vet who is doing home-visit tonight says it is PTS, then I will ask for that to be done tomorrow. That will give me time to say goodbye and thank my darling dog for all his help and love over the last 10.5 years (I adopted him as a 6yr old Oldie - but he rescued me!)

Will that work?

TheoriginalLEM Thu 03-Dec-15 18:30:47

Loxicom is like metacam i think so is an anti-inflammatory drug. Paracetemol is ok, but wouldn't be my first choice. AGain it really depend if it is pain that is causing him to not be able to stand. If that was the case i would ask for tramadol (its a human drug but it is used in dogs very effectively) which will definately help with the pain.

If i am really honest with you, if he has collapsed and absolutely cannot stand then it does sound like time. I am so so sorry xx

sadwidow28 Thu 03-Dec-15 18:32:13

He has just stood up on his own!

His back legs look very weak - they sort of look like he is ice-skating. He's gone out on the decking and is standing as long as he doesn't move (I am watching him through the door)

TheoriginalLEM Thu 03-Dec-15 18:37:41

your plan sounds fine - talk to them about pain killers, it might buy you some time with him, but remember it has to be about his quality of life, first and foremost. xxx

sadwidow28 Thu 03-Dec-15 18:39:12

TheoriginalLEM

The half a Paracetamol was suggested by the locum vet - I never self-medicate my DDog.

He's just barked to come back through the door - his left leg did that 'skating thing'. But he is now standing by the coffee table... now he is fighting his bed .... still on his legs.

Is it me with hope?

TheoriginalLEM Thu 03-Dec-15 18:45:33

oh, i wasn't suggesting you were self medicating. Just that there are better painkillers.

fighting his bed is a pretty good sign, he has eaten and he is happy to see you?

then it sounds like he is intending on staying around a bit longer smile

sadwidow28 Thu 03-Dec-15 18:47:28

I am going to go for no PTS tonight - thank you to everyone who has helped me make that decision. I know that DDog is time-poor on life expectation. I cuddled him 3 nights ago and told him that if he has to go, I will understand.

When he couldn't manage stairs - I moved us to our holiday home last March so he could still sleep at the bottom of my bed . And he still could come into the bathroom ........ separation anxiety! But today, when he couldn't stand, he just whinged when I left the room.

I'll update after the locum vet has been out tonight (8pm is when he says he will come)

HemanOrSheRa Thu 03-Dec-15 18:47:54

What to say sad? Your plan sounds good to me and is exactly what I would (and will) do when the time comes. Big hugs to you and your boy flowers

Scottandcharlene Thu 03-Dec-15 18:53:35

I've just been through a very similar situation with our much loved old dog, on Friday she could still stand if we helped her, and the vet gave her anti-inflammatories. We spent a lovely relaxing weekend with her, she stayed in her bed by the log burner and had lots of love and attention. She wasn't in pain unless she stood up and fortunately due to her cast iron bladder she hardly needed to go to the toilet. By Monday we knew it was time and the vet came to our house on Tuesday morning and so gently gave her the drug whilst she was still in her bed. She just went to sleep. It was so peaceful and I am really glad we had those few days with her. I hope it goes as well for you if that's what is needed X

sadwidow28 Thu 03-Dec-15 18:59:47

Truly, I am so glad of your support and suggestions. When I mentioned that I didn't self-medicate DDog, it was to assure you that throughout of his 10.5 yrs with me I take guidance from experts. The Locum vet said, "I can prescribe a veterinary tablet now, but it is the same as Paracetamol. Just give DDog half a Paracetamol on his bad days and it will do the same thing."

DDog has been on one Piriton per day since I adopted him as he has an allergy to mixed grasses. He burst out with blisters on his tummy - then he nibbled his back to the point of bleeding.

I have written my notes and I will ask vet about Tramadol. There is something that DDog can be given 'alongside' his Loxicom. I phoned a friend last night (the one who told me to ask for Loxicom) - she runs an animal sanctuary that is a home-for-life and she couldn't think about anything that could be given 'alongside' and would be interested to know.

sadwidow28 Thu 03-Dec-15 19:01:07

Locum vet has just phoned - he is 15 minutes away!

I will leave DDog where he has flopped so that the vet gets a good idea of my concerns.

I'll post with an update later.

battlebacktonewlife Thu 03-Dec-15 19:16:06

My dog went through a really bad time with his legs not long ago and we thought it was a bad sign. But with some Paracetamol, oily fish and a couple of days he improved vastly.

Could he just have over stretched in some way that's caused him additional pain?

I figured that was what happened in our case (I did take to vet, but she said it was just old age). He's still a little hard on his legs some days, but from where he was to where he is now, it's vastly better.

HemanOrSheRa Thu 03-Dec-15 19:38:42

I don't think anyone here took your posts to mean you were self medicating your boy OP. Really flowers

Chrisalice Thu 03-Dec-15 20:11:20

Thinking of you and dear old dog. I hope the vet has been able to provide some clarity at least.

chelsbells Thu 03-Dec-15 20:16:44

Hoping the locum vet has been able to help in some way, even if it's just to keep DDog pain free for another night of cuddles with you thanks

sadwidow28 Thu 03-Dec-15 20:47:30

Vet has been - he says he can feel a lump on his spleen.

He has taken blood to check for cancer. If it is cancer of spleen, we are talking days/maybe a couple of weeks. I will get the results on Saturday - but in the mean-time he has left Loxicom, Pardale and Dasuquin.

I had the discussion about PTS at home and pet undertaker coming here when necessary. (So tough! I am still crying). I think I am on top of things now - let's see what the weekend brings.

Thank you to everyone who help my hand tonight.

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