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  • FIRST POST
    • hunnycat
    • By hunnycat 17th Jun 17, 11:35 PM
    • 1,509Posts
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    hunnycat
    When to know it's time to make that final vet journey?
    • #1
    • 17th Jun 17, 11:35 PM
    When to know it's time to make that final vet journey? 17th Jun 17 at 11:35 PM
    About a year ago I asked for advice for my old boy urinating in the house original thread here : http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5459932

    Thank you for all the messages and advice.

    Now his health is failing, we were at the vet today and she has said
    To keep a diary of good and bad days. Then go back in a month to have another assessment. she has given me 2 options.
    Option 1: plan now and set a date and stick to it.
    Option 2: wait until he gets worse and akes ill.

    We have exhausted the incontince treatments and have just accepted that's life and have some specialist cleaning stuff and barred
    Him from our beds as we had to get new mattresses. He is also now allowed in some rooms when we are out. Thankfully we got 2
    Kittens who are now a year old and love him so they sleep beside him at night.


    He still has a bit of a spring in his step but he sleeps all day, is almost completely blind and has only slight hearing. He is struggling a little with the stairs as we have loads in our house.

    What are your experiences of your beloved friend taking their last journey? I want to go with option 2 but feel it's potentially cruel.

    Please don't judge me for thus post, I have had a traumatic 6 months and really feel I am not making good judgements at the moment so looking for advice and experiences. X
    would love to win an ipad!
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Page 1
    • tacpot12
    • By tacpot12 18th Jun 17, 8:17 AM
    • 630 Posts
    • 556 Thanks
    tacpot12
    • #2
    • 18th Jun 17, 8:17 AM
    • #2
    • 18th Jun 17, 8:17 AM
    Option 2 could be cruel if he is in pain at the point he is taken ill, but the alternative is pro-active euthanasia of an animal that may still be happy.

    It's a difficult decision for sure. I think I would be worried about him becoming very ill when I wasn't around, and him suffering as a result. If you are always at home and the vet is very near, option 2 might be ok, but option 1 is the kindest if he is really on his last legs.

    Although it's hard to say goodbye to a friend, it is best that they go without pain and with you there to say goodbye.
    • orlao
    • By orlao 18th Jun 17, 10:18 AM
    • 1,057 Posts
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    orlao
    • #3
    • 18th Jun 17, 10:18 AM
    • #3
    • 18th Jun 17, 10:18 AM
    It's never an easy decision to make but even harder when there's no emergency that leaves no alternative. It does sound like your vet thinks it's nearly time.

    I'm a subscriber to the school of thought that 'better a week too early rather than a hour too late' in circumstances like this. I can't say that I've always got it right with my own animals over the years but I've never felt guilt about the planned PTS but to my shame, there have been pets that ended up being emergency euthanasias with all the stress that entails because I didn't make the decision in time...

    I also have the vets to the house for planned PTS, it's a bit more expensive and you might have to work to their schedule but less stressful for all concerned IME.
    • sheramber
    • By sheramber 18th Jun 17, 1:17 PM
    • 3,578 Posts
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    sheramber
    • #4
    • 18th Jun 17, 1:17 PM
    • #4
    • 18th Jun 17, 1:17 PM
    Is he still enjoying lie or is life tiring or difficult for him?

    How do you want to remember him?

    My 15 year old dog was very weak on her back legs and would spend some days dull eyed and in her bed. Other days she was alert but would stumble and fall going down the step at the back door collapsing in a heap. I was worried she would break a leg one time and her end would be remembered with her screaming in pain. I decided she had struggled on long enough. She would not get any better. How much worse could we let her get?

    The vet agreed with my decision that the time had come.

    It is never a easy decision but it is the last kindness you can do for your pet.

    May I Go Now?

    May I go now?
    Do you think the time is right?
    May I say goodbye to pain filled days
    and endless lonely nights?
    I've lived my life and done my best,
    an example tried to be.
    So can I take that step beyond
    and set my spirit free?

    I didn't want to go at first,
    I fought with all my might.
    But something seems to draw me now
    to a warm and loving light.
    I want to go
    I really do.
    It's difficult to stay.

    But I will try as best I can
    to live just one more day.
    To give you time to care for me
    and share your love and fears.
    I know you're sad and afraid,
    because I see your tears.

    I'll not be far,
    I promise that, and hope you'll always know
    that my spirit will be close to you
    wherever you may go.
    Thank you so for loving me.
    You know I love you too,
    that's why it's hard to say goodbye
    and end this life with you.

    So hold me now just one more time
    and let me hear you say,
    because you care so much for me,
    you'll let me go today.

    - Written for a beloved pet & friend, by Susan A. Jackson
    • Ilona
    • By Ilona 18th Jun 17, 1:44 PM
    • 1,875 Posts
    • 6,439 Thanks
    Ilona
    • #5
    • 18th Jun 17, 1:44 PM
    • #5
    • 18th Jun 17, 1:44 PM
    The hardest decision to have to make. My old boy woke me at 4.30 am crying, he was telling me that it was time. Twas a bank holiday Sunday. I rang the vet, they gave me a time, and came to the house. There was no way I was going to take him to a place that he didn't like very much. Cost a lot of money, £270, but he was comfortable in his own bed and drifted off to sleep.

    Only you can decide what's best for your pet. I had psyched myself up that the inevitable was going to happen, he told me when he'd had enough. Best wishes,
    Ilona
    I love skip diving
    • Jojo the Tightfisted
    • By Jojo the Tightfisted 18th Jun 17, 2:48 PM
    • 22,972 Posts
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    Jojo the Tightfisted
    • #6
    • 18th Jun 17, 2:48 PM
    • #6
    • 18th Jun 17, 2:48 PM
    It might be a very hard thing to suggest, but sometimes an impartial eye can see what the heart can't.

    Would you consider putting up a photo of him as he is right now? If he looks like my cats have, or how friends' cats have, I'll be honest with you.
    I could dream to wide extremes, I could do or die: I could yawn and be withdrawn and watch the world go by.

    Yup you are officially Rock n Roll
    Originally posted by colinw
    • Mrs Z
    • By Mrs Z 18th Jun 17, 8:57 PM
    • 864 Posts
    • 849 Thanks
    Mrs Z
    • #7
    • 18th Jun 17, 8:57 PM
    • #7
    • 18th Jun 17, 8:57 PM
    It's always difficult but there comes a point when the quality of life is no longer there. When we faced this with our elderly cat and had run out of options with the vet, for me it was easier to set 'the date' in advance. We had vet come to our home and would recommend this option if available. That way, you do not need to distress poorly animal any further with car journeys, etc. I chose Friday so that I'd had the weekend to get over the worst and in some way it was good to know the date in advance as it kind of gives you a bit of time to prepare mentally. I had to say, our vet was great, the receptionist phoned us when the vet was on her way, even though it's only 5 min away and we were expecting her.
    It was all very dignified and I'm now firmly in the camp that better a week early than a day late.
    It's not easy, but you know when it is the right thing to do and the time has come.
    • newatc
    • By newatc 18th Jun 17, 9:26 PM
    • 81 Posts
    • 68 Thanks
    newatc
    • #8
    • 18th Jun 17, 9:26 PM
    • #8
    • 18th Jun 17, 9:26 PM
    Our last dog had a form of seizure and our vet convinced us, to be fair we didn't take much convincing, that she could still have a good life. A year later we took the decision it was time to put her out of misery.
    That final year for desperate for her and us and I now realise we should have been braver much earlier.
    • UKTigerlily
    • By UKTigerlily 18th Jun 17, 9:29 PM
    • 4,303 Posts
    • 5,355 Thanks
    UKTigerlily
    • #9
    • 18th Jun 17, 9:29 PM
    • #9
    • 18th Jun 17, 9:29 PM
    It's never an easy decision to make but even harder when there's no emergency that leaves no alternative. It does sound like your vet thinks it's nearly time.

    I'm a subscriber to the school of thought that 'better a week too early rather than a hour too late' in circumstances like this. I can't say that I've always got it right with my own animals over the years but I've never felt guilt about the planned PTS but to my shame, there have been pets that ended up being emergency euthanasias with all the stress that entails because I didn't make the decision in time...

    I also have the vets to the house for planned PTS, it's a bit more expensive and you might have to work to their schedule but less stressful for all concerned IME.
    Originally posted by orlao

    Me too . . last June I had to let my dog go & 5.5 weeks later my cat. I made the decision to let them go early as I had to do it for them, not me. I actually take comfort that my dog walked in all happy & wagging her tail, enjoying everything but feeling nothing, as i'd hate to take her when ill & to have let her suffer at all

    Asking shows just how much you care, but i'd probably be taking him/her in now as it sounds like it's only going one way, either way i'm so sorry x
    2015 weight loss: 86/100Ibs
    • elsien
    • By elsien 18th Jun 17, 9:37 PM
    • 15,072 Posts
    • 37,740 Thanks
    elsien
    I'm not sure I could do the make a date and stick to it option. Because if the day came and he was having a good day I'm not sure I'd be able to stick with it.
    My last had a sudden emergency that needed PTS straight away, the one before was taken ill in kennels while I was on holiday so the decision was made without me. I did have a conversation with the vet though, and he said that the day mutt stopped putting up a fight would be the day to let her go. If you're not sure, be guided by the vet. A good vet will tell you if they think you're trying to hang on for too long.
    All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well.

    Pedant alert - it's could have, not could of.
    • no1catman
    • By no1catman 18th Jun 17, 9:48 PM
    • 2,541 Posts
    • 1,948 Thanks
    no1catman
    I worry, when you say the cat has a problem with the stairs. I say that, as I remember well what my vet said in relation to my previous cat's CRF, when I asked how will I know it's time to say good-bye?
    He said that when she loses too much muscle in he legs - problems with mobility.

    In February her blood tests were three times above high, a 'pain' at night with her howling, got that under control, got her to eat - white fish. Moving house helped - away from the stress of local cats. Enjoyed the summer in the much larger garden, but come November didn't like the stairs.

    So, out of love we said good-bye, at twenty she had a good life - still miss her, many years later.
    I used to work for Tesco - now retired - speciality Clubcard
    • hunnycat
    • By hunnycat 19th Jun 17, 3:38 PM
    • 1,509 Posts
    • 3,243 Thanks
    hunnycat
    Thank you for all the replies , haven't read them yet have had trouble getting logged in! Will read when I get home. X
    would love to win an ipad!
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    • GBNI
    • By GBNI 19th Jun 17, 4:20 PM
    • 499 Posts
    • 715 Thanks
    GBNI
    I had one of my dogs PTS a couple of months ago. Up until the Thursday she was in brilliant form. Full of life (she was 15 at this point, she would have been 16 in May) and trotting around the house, eating drinking etc Friday she took very ill, couldn't stand up, made a mess while lying down etc. Rushed her to the vet who thought it was her heart. She was kept in, put on a drip and strong heart meds given to her. We collected her that evening and she walked (somewhat unsteadily out the door) Saturday morning, it was back to how she had been on the Friday. I looked at her, she looked at me and I just knew. Phoned the vet and after spending a couple of hours with her and letting the rest of the family say goodbye, I took her to the vet one last time. I stayed with her the entire time and was able to hold it together until she went to sleep. Handing her over was the most difficult thing I've ever had to do.
    • hunnycat
    • By hunnycat 19th Jun 17, 10:58 PM
    • 1,509 Posts
    • 3,243 Thanks
    hunnycat
    It might be a very hard thing to suggest, but sometimes an impartial eye can see what the heart can't.

    Would you consider putting up a photo of him as he is right now? If he looks like my cats have, or how friends' cats have, I'll be honest with you.
    Originally posted by Jojo the Tightfisted
    The top two are photos from the last couple of weeks, the bottom one is about 6 months ago. X

    would love to win an ipad!
    A-Z Challenge - ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ
    • Jojo the Tightfisted
    • By Jojo the Tightfisted 19th Jun 17, 11:09 PM
    • 22,972 Posts
    • 88,594 Thanks
    Jojo the Tightfisted
    I'm so sorry, hunnycat, I think he looks tired.

    I'd be inclined to spoil him rotten, but think very seriously about booking a home visit.
    I could dream to wide extremes, I could do or die: I could yawn and be withdrawn and watch the world go by.

    Yup you are officially Rock n Roll
    Originally posted by colinw
    • hunnycat
    • By hunnycat 19th Jun 17, 11:47 PM
    • 1,509 Posts
    • 3,243 Thanks
    hunnycat
    I'm so sorry, hunnycat, I think he looks tired.

    I'd be inclined to spoil him rotten, but think very seriously about booking a home visit.
    Originally posted by Jojo the Tightfisted
    Thank you for your honesty. Most of
    My other pets have suddenly taken a turn without warning so the decision was made for me easily. I didn't ask about a home visit but it's something I would More than prepared to pay for, we had had a sudden family loss in march and I think this is why I am
    Clinging to him as my Children are still struggling with the loss
    Of their Granda.
    X
    would love to win an ipad!
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    • GillM
    • By GillM 20th Jun 17, 12:51 AM
    • 178 Posts
    • 195 Thanks
    GillM
    Don't do what I did. My old girl (15 and with a collapsed trachea) stopped eating just after Christmas - totally unheard of for her, so I knew she was near the end. I could have taken her to my own vet, but I chickened out. Then she collapsed late on Saturday night and had to be rushed to the emergency vet where they didn't know her, actually I don't think she really knew, she was out of it by then, but it really upset me, I felt guilty that it all ended up so rushed and undignified.
    • melbury
    • By melbury 20th Jun 17, 10:30 AM
    • 9,682 Posts
    • 14,522 Thanks
    melbury
    It's never an easy decision to make but even harder when there's no emergency that leaves no alternative. It does sound like your vet thinks it's nearly time.

    I'm a subscriber to the school of thought that 'better a week too early rather than a hour too late' in circumstances like this. I can't say that I've always got it right with my own animals over the years but I've never felt guilt about the planned PTS but to my shame, there have been pets that ended up being emergency euthanasias with all the stress that entails because I didn't make the decision in time...

    I also have the vets to the house for planned PTS, it's a bit more expensive and you might have to work to their schedule but less stressful for all concerned IME.
    Originally posted by orlao
    Totally agree with all of this as we went through it a few months ago. If anything I think we waited perhaps a bit too long, as it was so hard to let him go

    I wasn't sure about the vet coming to the house, but I am so glad we did it that way. It was far less stressful for our boy being in his own home.

    It is such a painful thing to go through, but we wouldn't be without them would we.
    Stopped smoking 27/12/2007, but could start again at any time

    • Malthusian
    • By Malthusian 20th Jun 17, 10:51 AM
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    • 4,127 Thanks
    Malthusian
    If you wait for the moment that he is visibly in pain then the chances are he will already have been suffering for quite a while. Like humans, cats and dogs are perfectly capable of putting on a brave face. A cat may purr not because they are happy but because they are in pain as it releases endorphins, I think the same may be true of dogs wagging their tail (though it's not my area).

    This is not to encourage you one way or the other - I don't know your dog and am sure you will make the right decision. I'm only saying that you shouldn't feel guilty or think you've acted too early if you put him to sleep when he looks outwardly happy.
    • Cupcake Returns
    • By Cupcake Returns 20th Jun 17, 11:00 AM
    • 81 Posts
    • 258 Thanks
    Cupcake Returns
    I struggled on for 18 months with my old boy who was blind, deaf and had dementia. We coped with all of that, but when his walks only lasted to the end of the drive, I had to book a date and stick to it

    So not easy and even on the morning I was still torn in two. I booked the first appointment of the day and was taken into a private room where I could stay with him till I was ready to leave him. He went to sleep peacefully on my lap

    I wish you the strength you need xxxx
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