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Is it nearly time for my old girl?(12 Posts)
She's 13 and has doggy dementia caused by liver disease as well as gall bladder issues. Over the past few weeks she's gone almost completely deaf. The dementia has changed her from wanting to be every other dog's best friend, to fearful and aggressive. Walking her is very difficult as we have to completely avoid other dogs.
She is also doubly incontinent (was previously fully house-trained) and even though she still has several short walks a day, she will poo and wee in the house afterwards.
BUT she still eats her food (just with not as much gusto) and trots to the front door when I get her lead out.
I dread getting up in the morning knowing that it will take me ages to clean up the mess she has made overnight and 6 months ago the vet said I might want to think about putting her to sleep.
In my heart I know she's not long for this world, but I can't bring myself to do it yet as she's not at death's door.
Any thoughts on what you would do in this situation might help me clarify things in my own mind.... thank you.
It’s so hard. Our last dog was arthritic following an amputation and could hardly walk but still had some quality and enjoyed her food and cuddles. In the end we decided better a day too early than a day too late and that we would hurt so she didn’t have too. But goodness it was so so hard to make that call. However after we had decided we spoke to vet who was supportive and we havent regretted the timing, however much we miss her.
I would let her go sooner rather than later, I think we sometimes have to ask who we are keeping them alive for. Letting my 14 year old lab go was the hardest decision I ever had to make but, imo if the vet is suggesting it is time to think about it then it is probably time to let go.
It was more the case of the vet saying he wouldn't judge me if I wanted her PTS. I like the idea of me hurting so that she doesn't have to, that does help.
Yes, it probably is time.
Afterwards it can be a comfort to know that she could still walk and eat a little. It might be even more distressing to wait until she can do neither, and worry you waited too long.
I’m so sorry but yes, it’s probably time x
I think so. She is obviously scared and confused, and will probably be distressed at toileting indoors when shes spent her whole life knowing it was wrong.
I'm so sorry, it is the hardest thing to do but she has spent 13 years being your best friend, helping you through hard times, loving you. Now it is your turn to repay her and help her go to sleep.
It’s a really hard decision to make when it’s a gradual decline like that. I would ask yourself if she is enjoying life at the minute, and if she isn’t then is that something that is going to improve. For me personally, if I were to answer no to both those questions then for me that would be ‘time’. It’s not very natural for animals to be in pain or suffering as in the wild they would be the first target for predators, or unable to hunt themselves. I had a spaniel that was quite similar to yours, she was pretty close up being deaf and blind and she did have the dementia, although she (bless her) was still eating fairly enthusiastically even on the morning that I took her to be PTS the day after finding out she had advanced cancer. She was in pain though, and that was the deal breaker for me. She hadn’t been up until that point, but now she was. So that was time.
I would also slightly caution against people who say you have to go with your animal to be PTS as you owe it to them. I would definitely say that somebody they know and trust should be with them, but if you are likely to get very emotional then they will pick up on that and potentially be scared/worried. I gave my dog lots of cuddles and fuss and then my dad took her to the vets while I stayed at home and cried and cried. I would have cried and been very upset if I’d been in the room with her, and I wouldn’t have wanted that to be her last memory.
I am so sorry, I hope you’re ok
Yes, it's the gradual decline that makes it such hard decision. She definitely enjoys some aspects of her life, like food and cuddles and sniffing every blade of grass on her walks! But I also know that her quality of life is declining slowly. She's not in any pain that I'm aware of, so I don't think she's suffering yet, apart from being confused.
Yes I think it is.Our dog was still eating ,drinking and taking short walks but had become doubly incontinent and would sleep till lunchtime .She wasnt enjoying life anymore and the kindest thing to do was put her to sleep
It's a mistake to wait until all quality of life is extinguished, in my opinion. I think most people leave it too long.
We’ve just had to make this very hard decision and we went with a day early is better than a day too late. Ours beautiful girl still enjoyed some things but was definitely beginning to suffer so it was a case of letting her go rather than keeping her going on medication because we couldn’t bear to lose her. I won’t kid you it’ll hurt like a bitch but if you love them you have to do what’s best for them not for you.