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    1. #1
      House Broken
      black_paws's Avatar
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      We made "the" appointment

      Our oldest fur kid, Ruby, is due to earn her angel wings on Thursday.
      It has been a mixed bag of emotions since we had the discussion Sunday, and called for the appointment on Monday.
      This is the first time DH or I have had to make this decision, and go through this process.
      I know the saying ďA day early vs a day lateĒ, but is there such a thing as too many days early?!
      My heart and my soul just donít want to let her go. Part of me thinks we are greedy, selfish, and have procrastinated long enough. But part of me thinks she still has life. But that life is not what it once was.
      She doesnít complain, and thatís the damn problem with this stoic breed.
      On Thursday she will be 15 yrs 2 months and 20 days old. So yes, we have been more than blessed with her time here on earth. Her body is failing, hind end weakness, some dementia, sight issues, fecal incontinence. We deal with it as best we know how, we pick her up when necessary, clean up the messes with no fuss. Most times she gets too tired to walk, lays around most of the time. She only perks up when there is food. I always thought that would be our indicator, when she stopped eating, but thatís not the case.
      I just keep reminding myself, Quality of Life. But still my heart hurts.


      And please donít judge on the following.
      I think what kills me the most is that this is happening before we leave for our last RV camping vacation of this year. Iím beating myself up over it. The reason we RV camp, is we can take our dogs with us, thatís the only vacationing we do. But on our last trip which was two weeks ago, Ruby just struggled the entire time. And really thatís what precipitated the ďdiscussionĒ to evaluate her future.


      I know I have the option to cancel the appointment. DH doesnít want it to be a situation where we are carrying her in unconscious, in a worse way, suffering, etc. I donít disagree, but sometimes that makes my mind rationalize the situation (as an emergency responder).


      I just wish someone, something could give me a sign that Iím doing the right thing, and the strength to see it through.

    2. #2
      Senior Dog
      smartrock's Avatar
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      Such a hard, hard decision. Your last camping vacation sounds like it highlighted how limited her life has become, both at home and on trips. No one here will fault you for your decision, whether to keep the appointment on Thursday or push past it. We've lost 6 dogs and I can't say any of them "let us know" that their time had come, we had to decide what was the best and most loving for them, and all were much younger than sweet Ruby.

      After Chase died in June I read the book Going Home, Finding Peace When Pets Die by Jon Katz which I found very helpful. One passage from the book particularly struck me and I'll quote it here. It was in the chapter titled, Making a Decision You Can Live With.

      "Animals cannot talk to us, but I imagine if they could, they would say something like this:

      'Speak for me. Help me to make the decisions that I cannot make. Do not ask me to tell you when it's time for me to go for that is beyond my simple province. I love you and trust you and I have depended on you all of my life to make decisions for me. Now, when I need you the most, do not fail me. Whatever you decide, I know it will be your best decision, and I wish you nothing but peace with it.'"

      I wish you peace as well.

    3. The Following 6 Users Say Thank You to smartrock For This Useful Post:

      barry581 (09-28-2017), black_paws (09-26-2017), coopersmom (09-28-2017), Mollysmomma (09-26-2017), ronmcq (09-29-2017), SamsonsMom (09-28-2017)

    4. #3
      Real Retriever
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      I'm so very sorry you are having to face this.....it is the very hardest thing we ever have to do. Impossible, really, and yet we have to do it. My own 13 year old Molly will be breaking my heart any day now, but for now she is doing well--has arthritis, & something is going on with her liver, but she is on meds for both, & seems comfortable & happy for now.

      Timing--now, that is hard, and only you and your husband can decide, based on your girl's demeanor & quality of life. We've had to make that decision more than once, & it never gets any easier. Like you, we love to travel in our motorhome with our dogs. Years ago we had a Pug who was suffering with vestibular disease, and that was a long, slow, downhill slide that was very painful to watch. We wanted to take her on what we figured would be her last trip with us. Her breath was horrible, to the point we weren't sure if we could ride in the car with her if we didn't get her teeth cleaned. The vet did the preliminary blood work, & found that Tawny's liver levels were off the chart. I went ahead & had her teeth cleaned & I didn't understand how little time that meant she had left. We headed out in our motorhome, but 1 day into our trip Tawny started having these odd "snapping at flies" seizures. She got worse & worse & by the next day she wasn't doing anything but waking up on her pillow screaming, then she would just sink back down into a stupor & sleep until she would wake up screaming all over again. I knew then I'd "waited a day too long." I sat up & held her all night wrapped in a blanket. As soon as I figured any vet would be open, I went to a phone booth & started calling around to see if any of them could get her in right away--I couldn't let her suffer anymore.....there was no longer any doubt about it. I was able to find a vet who would get her right in, and thankfully, the staff there was terrific. I was a mess, but they were so gentle with her, and dh & I stayed with her & I remember thinking that was the most peaceful I had seen her for a long time.

      Make sure that your vet will give a sedative first.......our last dog was put to sleep by a vet who for some reason does not use a sedative first, and I will never do that again. I wish you peace also, & I'm sending along hugs for you and for your precious Ruby. If you keep the date, I pray for a quick, gentle, & peaceful passing for your beautiful girl......

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    6. #4
      House Broken
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      I'm so sorry to hear you are going through this. I never thought i would agree to put any of my pets down. But this week we had to make that choice for my beloved Max. Yes, we questioned ourselves if we were making the right choice. He was always there by ours side. More active than my girls, but his last days he could get up. He was so pridefully held himself for more than 24 hours because he couldn't go outside. We carried him out but he couldnt squat or sit so he didnt go. We wanted to keep him longer, but we couldnt put him through more struggles. We wanted more time, more hugs. But above all we wanted him to keep some of his pride. He never complained. His last morning he yelped and howled a little. We knew it was time. Athough he might have died later that day, we made the choice to stop him from any further pain. We loved him so much! It's super hard. If the vet had given us an ounce of hope for him, we would have clung to it. But his advice was for us to let him go.

      Hugs,
      Mimi
      Hidden Content
      Leeloo Born April 12, 2004
      Happy Adopted December 8, 2013 (at 6/7 years old)
      Max. 4/12/04 - 9/25/17

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      black_paws (09-27-2017)

    8. #5
      Senior Dog
      SunDance's Avatar
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      I'm sorry Ruby has gotten to this point in her life.

      This decision is never easy even when all signs point to the "right choice". For me, the right choice is the one that fits into the quality of life scenario. The "better a day too early etc." thought.

      Sending good thoughts your way....for strength and for Ruby's comfort as tomorrow approaches.
      Hidden Content

      Sunnie: gotcha day 03/08/09; birth unknown but given 07/01/02

      Danny: The Sundance Kid....Sunnie's boy....birth 03/31/09 (in my living room)

      Barb (ID formerly "Baffle")

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      black_paws (09-27-2017)

    10. #6
      Senior Dog
      Tanya's Avatar
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      I am so sorry you are here

      Maybe when it's around that time (give or take a week) we need something to help make the decision. Like you said quality of life. So be it this week or putting off your trip to spend another week with her, it is all the same to her big picture.

      You are making the decision out of love, that's all that matters. it may never feel right or like "the best time" but it is right when done from love.

      Sending you all strenght and prayers.

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      black_paws (09-27-2017)

    12. #7
      Senior Dog
      Bemused
       
      Blackboy98's Avatar
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      I too have been thru the 'is this the right time' to make the decision. I was greedy and did not want to see the signs with my Cracker. The last night was the worst time in my life, I had waited too long. After I had called and made the appointment, time could not move fast enough. After it was over and the vet (she was wonderful and so empathetic) and I were sitting on the floor crying, I felt so much relief that he was no longer hurting ( he had advanced osteosarcoma and had metastasized).

      Sending prayers that God will send an angel to guide you thru this time.
      Hidden Content

      CRACKER-My Heart Dog FOREVER 6/10/2005-7/9/2011

      Mike and Gabe--GOTCHA 7/25/2011

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    14. #8
      Senior Dog
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      POPTOP's Avatar
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      So very sorry this time has come. Since we home seniors the time comes all too soon. I've struggled every time. One thing we've promised each furkid when they joined our family is that I will do everything in my power to make life for them the very best it can be and when the time comes I will not let them suffer. What you do is out of pure love, freedom from illness and pain. I totally support your decision and send hugs. Know we stand with you in this difficult time.
      Hidden Content
      Kissing Bandit

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    16. #9
      Senior Dog
      Bemused
       
      Blackboy98's Avatar
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      Thinking of you and your sweet Ruby today.

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      black_paws (09-29-2017)

    18. #10
      Moderator
      barry581's Avatar
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      These are the hardest decisions we as pet owners have to make. My heart goes out to you, and I'll keep Ruby and your family in my prayers.

    19. The Following User Says Thank You to barry581 For This Useful Post:

      black_paws (09-29-2017)

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