Registered: 1515314069 Posts: 1
Hi, I’ve been reading over a few posts around regret/guilt over euthanasia and it breaks my heart how much hurt we feel because we love our animals soo much.
A lot of stories on here involve much older dogs/cats than my baby Harry, he was only 6.5 (toy poodle cross).
I am currently suffering an enormous amount of grief and heartache after making the decision to lay him to rest over 4 weeks ago.
I never thought I would see the day I would have to make this decision like I did, playing god, especially at such a young age.
He suddenly became very ill over two months beforehand, one day waking up not being able to hold himself up, kept falling over and wasn’t himself at all (he looked sooo confused and scared).
I was away so my partner took him to our local vets before being referred straight onto a specialist emergency vet as they didn’t have the necessary diagnostic testing equipment. With a baby on the way and buying a house at the time we simply didn’t have the money to throw at the expensive tests they suggested (MRI, CT scan etc). Without the tests the vets suspected Meningitis and sent him back home with steroids and antibiotics.
He improved somewhat from the steroids over the weeks (what I’ve learnt now is steroids can make them look like they improve but it may just mask the underlying symtoms), they allowed him to gain function back again but was always unsteady on his feet, particularly back legs.
We tried after a couple of weeks to wean him off the steroids slowly but his front leg started to collapse underneath him (he didn’t even realize he was doing it and would just fall over).
We popped his meds back up and his front leg improved. However he was extremely fragile and just taking him out he would shake and didn’t have energy for much, although could still trot around the back yard and chew bones etc.
We was always excited to see me and always wagged his tail when I got home and would try to follow me around the house (in his new unusual drunken gait).
I still pleaded with my partner to get the tests done but he never budged, we simply just couldn’t afford it. Then one morning I woke up and found he was dribbling everywhere, only to find his poor little tongue was curled back toward his throat. He was soo hungry from the steroids he wanted to eat everything in sight but was now struggling to get food down. He would also pace around all night as he wasn’t comfortable and his poor tummy was soo tight and would let out a little moan every time you picked him up.
That morning he also fell down a whole flight of stairs at home and didn’t even yelp or cry, it was like he didn’t even feel it or acknowledge it.
Something deep within my gut/soul told me to make the decision to lay him to rest as I knew things were only going to get worse and he would continue to be in more pain. Throughout the two months of him being sick i has this weird gut feeling/stress in my body as I knew he wasn’t improving as much as he should be.
But now I can’t move past the guilt and regret. It’s like I’ve completely forgotten that feeling I had on that morning to make that decision and have convinced myself he probably would have got better, I did it too soon, what if I tried harder to care for him, I did it on a day he seemed happy, how could i do that to him etc.
I feel I have failed him. I feel like I gave up too soon.
As you know the love and bond we have for our dogs is like no other. I feel Harry gave soo much love and loyalty to me over the years and I just gave up on him.
The vet, my partner, my sister never stopped me that day, they are at peace with the decision and keep telling me I did the right thing but I just can’t get past my own head around it all.
I have since spoken to the vet and she told me her suspicion was he had some form of spinal cord/brain lesion.
I also went to a clairvoyant and they communicated with him and said he was grateful, I may have done it a little soon but he wasn’t ever going to get better.
Even with all this it still eats me inside because I will never know what was wrong with him.
It’s like i wanted him to be in more pain and suffering so I felt better about my decision, but my decision in the first place was to do it while he still had quality of life. I did it for him and not me.
I just can’t seem to get past this regret and guilt...
Registered: 1300242657 Posts: 43
My husband made the decision to have our dog, Tilly, put down several years ago and I still have mixed feelings about that. I know it was the right thing to do, but, I still miss her so much. She had congestive heart failure and her kidneys had failed.
Your dog was having so many medical issues. Even though Harry was so young, he just kept getting worse. You did what you could to help him and to make him better. You made the right decision. Had you waited, how much worse might he have gotten? It would not have been right or fair for him to suffer. Know that you made the right decision.