Mumsnet does not check the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you're worried about your pet's health, please speak to a vet or qualified professional.
This is a Premium feature
To use this feature subscribe to Mumsnet Premium - get first access to new features see fewer ads, and support Mumsnet.Start using Mumsnet Premium
Dog being PTS and it’s torture(69 Posts)
I’ll try and keep this brief.
My dog is being put to sleep next weekend and it’s literally the worse torture I’ve ever experienced knowing that it’s going to happen.
He is nearly 10 and has been struggling for some time with faecial incontinence. We’ve persevered with this for around a year since original vet diagnosed a genetic condition in pugs which means, in short, his spinal column is weak and the back end of his body is starting to shut down.
Recently he’s been getting worse incontinence wise, every day he poos in the house and he’s most recently been just doing it in his sleep and laying in it.
I got a second opinion on Friday from another vet and his prognosis was the same. He said that his condition will deteriorate rapidly, as the increased incontinence has shown. He said we need to PTS within the next few weeks at most if we don’t want him to become completely paralysed and he’s confident that he’s already in some pain which again will only increase.
I am an entire wreck. I can’t stop crying and I actually feel depressed for the first time in my life.
The guilt I feel about having him PTS is killing me inside.
I think it’s getting to me that he can actually be quite spritely. When we get his harness and lead out he’s straight there, practically running. But then within a short time he’s stopped or slowed down in a way that makes me think he physically can’t make it.
He staggers when he walks and the vet said he’s lost nearly all muscle capacity in his back legs.
I don’t know exactly what my question is, I just need some reassurance that I’m not being a murderer because that’s how I feel.
I guess I should have added that I have 3 children, the youngest is only 2 months. He’s been the most amazing dog with all of them, the older two truly adore him.
He’s been with me since I was single, saw me through some seriously crap times when I got divorced, I fully credit him for being the only reason I managed to get myself out of bed some days, because he was so enthusiastic to go walking etc.
There vet pointed out that faeces are a risk for several reasons to the baby once she starts crawling. In my head this has become people will think I just ditched my dog because I have a baby.
With that prognosis I would want to spoil him and PTS 'before' he has nothing left. I would be doing the same as you rather than leaving it until it was crisis point.
Of course that doesn't stop the what ifs and guilt but I think you are doing the right thing
He has been having lots of cheese because the poor boy has always been on a diet. We are taking him for a final walk in his favourite place today as a family.
Oh my lovely you are going to do the very best thing you can ever do for your dog to save him pain and further discomfort. Unfortunately this responsibility comes with owning a dog.
I always say better a week too soon than a day too late.
I just wish I would wake up one morning and he’d gone naturally. But I know that’s entirely selfish of me.
It is a gift that we can give our beloved pets, to be able to let them retain dignity and go, with love and compassion, knowing that we gave them a brilliant life, but not letting them suffer unnecessarily with no hope of improvement.
Not exactly the same situation, as our dog was more elderly, but my partner let her carry on far too long because he couldnt cope with the decision and it was awful to watch her deteriorate. Really awful.
You have to be strong here. I know its awful though.
How sad for you and your little dog.
You are completely doing the right thing. Dogs are very good at masking pain, so believe the vet when they tell you that your dog is having discomfort.
Spoil him for the next few days and enjoy the moments he's still skipping about.
It's the final kindness we can do although it feels unfair with a younger animal.
I’m so sorry you are going through this, but please be reassured you are absolutely making the right decision for your dog
He sounds like a wonderful dog and you have been lucky to have him, as he has you. As heartbreaking as it is, he needs you to make this last choice for him. Better a day too early than a minute too late.
My old dog was similar but older. He was distressed by being incontinent but managed to go for walks. One day he fell over when we were walking & didn’t try to stand up again. I took him to the vet the next day and had him PTS, he was too tired to continue. Afterwards I thought maybe I’d let him struggle on too long. He passed away very quickly, less than 15 seconds. Thinking of you all, must be extra hard with all the pregnancy hormones changing.
Your not putting him to sleep because of the baby your doing it do he wont suffer
It is much worse seeing them deteriorate and then dying naturally. It really isnt a pretty sight.
A wonderful life, and then a dignified end is not to be sniffed at
You are absolutely doing the right thing , my only question would be why are you waiting until next weekend that’s just dragging it out and making you feel bad , the dog won’t know the difference , get it done on Monday or Tuesday .
You are doing the right thing
Be there at the start and be there for them when they most need you to make a good decision
Once you have made up your mind the sooner the better for all concerned but primarily the dog
Do you really have to wait until next weekend? In your shoes (which I was in a few months ago) I would want it done as soon as humanly possible because I couldn't bear that period of purgatory between the decision and the deed. I know lots of people say to spend time with them and spoil them, but they must be made of sterner stuff than me.
I really feel for you
I guess selfishly next weekend my eldest children are away with their dad so it makes sense to do it then when it can just be me, DH and dog saying a last goodbye
That's perfectly fine. It allows you to focus on the dog and yourselves, not have to worry about and comfort children.
Do make sure they know the dog won't be there when they get back though and give them a chance to say goodbye too.
That's a very good point. We lost a family dog when I was 7. What had happened was never really made clear to me and I used to wonder for ages afterwards when she might be coming home.
There is no right or wrong way of doing this - only what's best for you and your family. But there is no need to prolong the agony if you don't want to.
When I was in your position in November, I had lots of people telling me to bring her home and make a fuss of her etc. But honestly that wouldn't have been right for me and it certainly wouldn't have been right for a very poorly and distressed dog. As it was, when I got the call from the vet hospital I asked for the deed to be done quickly. But then had to ring back and request a delay as 23 year old ds wanted to say goodbye. There's no rule book for this awful time.
Thank you for all your replies x
We’ve taken him for a last walk on the beach. He had a huge mr whippy and yes the flake too because let’s be honest a flake isn’t going to harm him now.
I had to carry him back, his mind is willing but his back legs aren’t. My DH said he is absolutely sure it’s the right thing to do. I think I just need to know I’m not murdering him.
Selfishly I think of all the things we do with him as a family, beach walks, walks around the vineyard where we live, he really has been like my original baby. All now all that will end.
Grief is a fucking shitter.
You're not murdering him OP. You're releasing him.
It is. Completely shit. But this way you will be the one suffering. He won’t. You love him so much that you won’t allow him to suffer. You will allow him dignity and peace.
That is about as far from murdering as you can get.
I had to make the decision for my old cat. It was so sad and I felt so guilty and awful and heartbroken. She felt cuddled and loved and peaceful.
Well if you're murdering your dog op then I murdered mine in November. She was almost 13, a much adored family pet - our first as a family. My dcs had grown up with her. She'd hardly ever been left on her own or apart from us. 3 months on I'm still heartbroken and cry most days.
But her death was inevitable. She could have had another 6 months perhaps with the right medication, perhaps an op and perhaps chemotherapy. But she would have had little quality of life. I know I did the right thing by her and I'm proud of myself that I was able to make that awful decision and not prolong her distress. I'm also grateful to ds for instigating a final farewell so we were able to be with her when she drew her last breath.
Be kind to yourself.