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Palliative care for dog

(11 Posts)
Allfurcoatandnoknickers Thu 29-Aug-19 16:20:26

Very sad as my crazy border terrier cross age appropriate 12 yo (rescue so not sure) saw a cardiologist on Tuesday with suspected heart failure.
He's been coughing since the end of June/early July and has been on two lots of antibiotics which didn't clear up the 'crackles' in his lungs. The cardiologist did numerous scans and has said he has cancer and it's spread to his lungs.
She gave him some prednisone and we are due to see our usual vet next week.
The steroids have perked him up and he's eating like a horse and drinking (and peeing) more.
We are still going for two walks a day and he potters around whilst I try like mad to wear out our other dog!!
I just wonder if anyone has any similar experiences - we are not sure how long he's going to go on for but want to make his end of life pain free and loving.

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Allfurcoatandnoknickers Thu 29-Aug-19 18:36:35


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weaselwords Thu 29-Aug-19 18:45:05

No experience, but a lot of sympathy flowers

Allfurcoatandnoknickers Thu 29-Aug-19 18:56:49

Thanks x

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Alamindah Thu 29-Aug-19 21:23:06

No advice either but we have a 13 year old (rescue) border terrier who has just been diagnosed with chronic kidney disease, so I feel your pain and concern!

Honeyroar Thu 29-Aug-19 21:41:30

Nothing useful to add, but we may be facing similar with our 10yr old lab. He's been coughing for 5 weeks now, just on his third course of treatment. They've said if this doesn't work they'll start investigating for heart issues. I've been trying to get my head round what we'd do if it was something sinister. He's not a good invalid, and not enjoying being elderly (hates that the other dogs can out run him, he's always been the alpha, and he doesn't do pottering, he just tries to run and wears himself out). So even though he's my fave ever dog and it would break my heart, my head is saying PTS sooner rather than later if it's something that's only going to get worse.

Sorry if that's upsetting for you, just my thoughts that have been going round my head today. I very much sympathise with you.x

MoaningMinniee Thu 29-Aug-19 21:50:25

As a professional dog walker for the past sixteen years we've been here several times. It's horrible. The best thing to do is to carry on as normally as possible with walks etc. We normally go for circular walks with good short cuts back to the van so that if someone is struggling we can loop back and get them settled. Then one of us (we work in teams of two) stays with the poorly dog while the other supervises the rest of them for the rest of the walk. We have done this plan for older dogs with terminal diagnoses four times in the past year. I think it worked, all of them were happy dogs right up until Rainbow Bridge Day was obviously coming.

Allfurcoatandnoknickers Thu 29-Aug-19 21:53:02

It’s so horrible isn’t it? The steroids have perked him up but he’s been a bit snappy with our other younger dog. Could be a side effect of the steroids. They used to get on very well and play together and she’s been picking on him as she’s senses his weakness.
He’s been a very difficult dog from the start- a real terrier- it makes it even harder to see him deteriorate so fast as he’s always been a sparky little thing.

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Honeyroar Thu 29-Aug-19 22:52:51

Interesting, my younger lab is being quite cocky towards him too. Stealing toys from him and doing things he knows he'd not get away with normally. It makes me sad for the old man.

Feliciaxxx Thu 29-Aug-19 22:59:16

'A day too soon rather than a minute too late'. You'll know when he's had enough. If you can, get the vet to come to your house and put him to sleep so that your other dog realises that he hasn't just disappeared into thin air. Or if you have him pts at the surgery, bring him home so that she can see the body. It does seem to help them grieve. I am shortly going to have to make the decision about my old Rottie who's 12, very arthritic and has a tumour in his mouth. He still has shiny eyes though and enjoys his food do we're just taking it day by day. It's awful x

Allfurcoatandnoknickers Fri 30-Aug-19 06:32:28

Our younger dog has been like it a while- pushing past him, pinching his bed etc. All subtle at first- it’s the natural order of things but heartbreaking.
I agree with taking things one day at a time. I remember our 17yo cat losing the life in her eyes- you do know.
I discussed putting him to sleep at home with our kids (16 & 22). They’ve grown up with him so will be very upset. They didn’t like the idea of it being at home but they can say goodbye then go out. I think they’re worried as they don’t know what to expect.
So hard....

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