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When to put a dog to sleep?

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Wind In My Hair
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When to put a dog to sleep?

Postby Wind In My Hair » Sun, 12 Aug 2007 5:49 pm

My dog is about 12 years old, blind, deaf, has skin problems, and is incontinent. Still, he eats well and can move around easily apart from knocking into everything especially with his plastic collar on to keep him from biting his own flesh.

I always thought that I'd put him down only when he's in obvious pain, like when his hips give way and he can't stand up easily from a lying position. Still, I'm travelling more now and so he's on his own quite a lot except for someone who walks and feeds him once a day in my absence.

So I'm not sure how happy he is anymore, and whether it will be kinder to put him to sleep even though I can't bear that thought of doing that. Giving him away is not an option because he is blind and will find it hard to adapt to a new home, plus I adopted him so he's already been abandoned once by the previous owner and I won't do that to him again.

So, when do you know it's time?

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Dog to sleep

Postby Elf » Sun, 12 Aug 2007 6:14 pm

I prefer to let nature take its course. My dog was put to sleep by the vet - they said he was too sick, not sure if that was the truth but that was hurting to see him go this way. [-o<

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Postby Plavt » Sun, 12 Aug 2007 6:39 pm

Kinder to end it much as you don't want to part with him, not surprising after twelve years which is old for a dog. A local shop owner has a dog of the same age and really isn't any fun seeing the animal's health deteriorate to the point where he cannot defend himself or even walk properly.
Last edited by Plavt on Sun, 12 Aug 2007 10:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: When to put a dog to sleep?

Postby mayamomi » Sun, 12 Aug 2007 8:47 pm

Wind In My Hair wrote:My dog is about 12 years old, blind, deaf, has skin problems, and is incontinent. Still, he eats well and can move around easily apart from knocking into everything especially with his plastic collar on to keep him from biting his own flesh.

I always thought that I'd put him down only when he's in obvious pain, like when his hips give way and he can't stand up easily from a lying position. Still, I'm travelling more now and so he's on his own quite a lot except for someone who walks and feeds him once a day in my absence.

So I'm not sure how happy he is anymore, and whether it will be kinder to put him to sleep even though I can't bear that thought of doing that. Giving him away is not an option because he is blind and will find it hard to adapt to a new home, plus I adopted him so he's already been abandoned once by the previous owner and I won't do that to him again.

So, when do you know it's time?



can u not tell if he's happy or not?? is he in pain?? besides incontinence, what other medical problems does he have? why does he bite his flesh??

if he's still mobile and there's someone to take care of him, why put him down just bcz we think he's suffering??

is there no cream/ointment/lotion that can be applied for his skin problem? what skin problem does he have ??

sorry for all the questions.. but i feel that euthanasia should be a last resort.. i have a 12 yr-old doggie too...

my fren had a poodle and she was having end-stage renal failure and was peeing blood, when we were at the vet's and he suggested putting her to sleep, she made a whiny sound and walked out of the dr's hands and towards my fren as if she understood... we then said we'd take her home first and think about it... but she passed away that same night... but she did not make it in time to go home for her dog when it died... :(

but if he's really in pain... then i guess its only humane to put them down, much as we can't bear to... we should grit our teeth and let them go with dignity... and keep the memories in our hearts..
To you, he's a dog...
To me, he's everything...

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Re: When to put a dog to sleep?

Postby Wind In My Hair » Sun, 12 Aug 2007 9:29 pm

Thanks for the replies.

mayamomi wrote:can u not tell if he's happy or not?? is he in pain?? besides incontinence, what other medical problems does he have? why does he bite his flesh??

if he's still mobile and there's someone to take care of him, why put him down just bcz we think he's suffering??

is there no cream/ointment/lotion that can be applied for his skin problem? what skin problem does he have ??

Last time I took him to a vet he said it was mange, and he gave some injections which didn't really work. Now I'm using a medicated shampoo which the groomer recommended which works much better.

As for whether he's happy or not, I don't know about your dog but mine is always happy once he's around people. Even when he was recovering from his eye op and in pain, and through his skin-biting phase when the scabs were bleeding, he was happy. Given that a dog (mine at least) seems to be always happy I'm not sure happiness is the right gauge.

mayamomi wrote:my fren had a poodle and she was having end-stage renal failure and was peeing blood, when we were at the vet's and he suggested putting her to sleep, she made a whiny sound and walked out of the dr's hands and towards my fren as if she understood... we then said we'd take her home first and think about it... but she passed away that same night... but she did not make it in time to go home for her dog when it died... :(

That's exactly what I don't want to happen to my dog. By the time they reach that end stage they have already been suffering for some time just that they have no way of telling us, and by disposition they just bear it and are still happy around us. Two of my friends whose dogs died of 'natural' deaths described the screams at the end and said they wished they had put them down before that happened.

The other problem I have is that I haven't met any vet in Singapore whom I trust. There are fewer good vets here than there are good GPs. A few I've met are downright incompetent, and the one vet I respect is so pro-life that his policy is to never put a dog to sleep but put them through dialysis and all sorts of dramatic measures which is fine for young dogs but I think is going too far when a dog is old and should be left to die in peace. So I'm not sure I even want to ask any of these vets for their advice unless someone can recommended a really first-rate vet.

Sigh, I guess by default I'll just wait and see.

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Postby mayamomi » Sun, 12 Aug 2007 9:43 pm

my dog is always happy as long as he's with me.. and touch wood thks God, he's still healthy except for mild cataract and some heart murmur along with tooth decay (left with 8 teeth and soon to extract 4 more... )

about ur dog or any others (even human beings alike) ... i feel that as long as they're happy even if in pain, shouldn't that be viewed as a love for life or will power to live at least?? who are we then to decide when they should end it?? would we not be doing them a disfavour bcz of that?? maybe they don want to die yet??

i suppose if someone was suffering and doesn't wish to live anymore or in so much pain, he/she/it would be sitting in a corner or would show to be using alot of effort instead of up and about with others showing that they're happy...

so i guess ur wait and see is appropriate here...

i will pray for ur dog ...
To you, he's a dog...

To me, he's everything...

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Postby Wind In My Hair » Sun, 12 Aug 2007 9:53 pm

He's not exactly in pain as far as I can tell though like I said with dogs you never know. I just feel sorry for him when I walk him and he runs straight into a tree or falls into a drain when I'm not fast enough to predict it and tug his leash to pull him away. It's so undignified even for a dog. I also feel sorry for the people who may accidentally step in his puddle along the corridor before I get back and flush it away with soapy water.

mayamomi wrote:i will pray for ur dog ...

Gosh you are a sweetheart. Thanks, though I think there are other things you could pray for right now, like the Korean hostages.

Maybe I'm the one who should hit the prayer beads instead. Guess I need to accept his state now instead of feeling sad whenever I look at him.

Thanks again everyone.

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Postby micknlea » Sun, 12 Aug 2007 10:01 pm

WIMH, you have to do it when you know it is time, perhaps because you are asking you really feel that the time is pretty near.

No one can tell you when to do this, you know your dog best and you know what he is going through. You will know when life is just getting too hard for him to keep on going.

It is a terribly hard thing to do but you must make the decision for him, not for you.

My thoughts are with you, wow, what a tough year you are having.
"My husband said it was him or the cat...I miss him sometimes." - Unknown

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Postby Wind In My Hair » Sun, 12 Aug 2007 10:27 pm

Hey micknlea, long time no see. Thanks for checking in, and yes I guess this is the year I make my peace with death. I was hoping to hear what animal lovers like yourself had to say on the issue.

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Postby Asian_Geekette » Sun, 12 Aug 2007 10:53 pm

WIMH,

Just spend as much time as you can with him and observe him closely. A few months ago, when I haven't relocated to SG yet, I've been traveling for weeks and I got news that our half-St. Bernard dog wasn't feeling too well. And before we knew it, it was so quick and she died before I got home. I can't blame my sister because the vet advised her to just observe the dog and make sure the dog had plenty of water to drink. The point is, we can only do so much. Suddenly they're taken away too fast. You're just being humane in thinking about putting your dog to sleep but as long as he can walk around and you know he's still alright, then you have some more time with him.

About the mange, I don't know if there are fresh guava leaves available here in SG. Back home, we boil the leaves in water, let the boiled herbal-smelling water cool down and use it for bathing dogs who suffer from mange. It does work and it lessens the pinkish color on the skin. (There may be guava trees here since I've seen cut guava fruits being sold in some fruit stalls. But correct me if I'm wrong.)

I hope that you get to just spend more time with your pet. And I'll include your dog in my prayers.
My business is not to remake myself, but make the absolute best out of what God made. -Robert Browning

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Postby ianlaird » Mon, 13 Aug 2007 4:27 pm

Ok, Send him to doggy Heaven, where he will be back to full health and jumping around like a pup again.

Will be sad but hey the show must go on!

I move to singapore on sat 18th oh i cant wait! Going to Miss hong kong so much though.

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Postby Marlowe » Mon, 13 Aug 2007 7:54 pm

i'm sorry to hear that your doggie is going through this.

the best answer i can give you is that "you will know" when it's time. you know your doggie best, and you know when things have come to the point where what made him/her special and amazing, isn't there anymore. there's a spark that goes, and you will just know it. you might be reluctant to do something about it because it's so painful to face up to, but you need to put that aside.

it doesn't sound to me that "it's time" just from what you say, but you're the only one who really knows that.

best of luck to you.

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Postby Wind In My Hair » Mon, 13 Aug 2007 10:44 pm

Asian Geekette, Lanlaird and Marlowe, thanks for your replies.

The spark is gone. If you have been around an old blind dog you'll know what I mean. But he's not in pain, just perhaps a poor quality of life. It's hard for me to make any decision right now because to me he's eating fine and moving around. It's just that one or two friends after seeing him asked if I was thinking of putting him down, a thought that never occurred to me before but now I wonder if I'm being unfair by keeping him.

Anyway I've thought about what all of you posted and I think that since I'm in doubt, I'll just let nature takes its course for now, and trust what you all said that I'll know when it's time.

Thanks everyone.

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Postby ksl » Thu, 16 Aug 2007 9:00 am

Wind In My Hair wrote:Asian Geekette, Lanlaird and Marlowe, thanks for your replies.

The spark is gone. If you have been around an old blind dog you'll know what I mean. But he's not in pain, just perhaps a poor quality of life. It's hard for me to make any decision right now because to me he's eating fine and moving around. It's just that one or two friends after seeing him asked if I was thinking of putting him down, a thought that never occurred to me before but now I wonder if I'm being unfair by keeping him.

Anyway I've thought about what all of you posted and I think that since I'm in doubt, I'll just let nature takes its course for now, and trust what you all said that I'll know when it's time.

Thanks everyone.
You will know, when the time is right! My mates dog was 14 years, when he decided to put him to sleep, and that was when he couldn't stand up any longer, without falling over. When your dog shows signs of not being happy, responding to a human call, then i would call it a day! Otherwise let him be the happy dog he is.

Even humans know when its time to go, they just give up and your dog will too, with a smile on his face!


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