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Posts: 2

I still struggle with my decision to put down my darling Gigi on Wed 4/4/18 at 8:20pm. It was the most heart wrenching decision I have ever had to make. A couple of weeks prior she had been diagnosed with kidney failure when I took her in because she stopped eating. I had to hospitalize her for 3 days to get IV therapy. She was a rescue - had been a stray on the streets of Baltimore - I had her for 2 amazing years. Anyways, she hated the vet, hated cages, and loved me. When the doctor told me, I knew that the hourglass to the end had started. But I thought let's try the IV. They told me she had started eating and they sent me home with k/d diet. She ate some the first day back but not enough. I then started researching and bought green tripe, home made recipes, and raw food diet etc. She would eat a little of one one day and then stop and not touch it the next. I had to keep changing her food. She was nauseous and drinking a lot of water. I started force feeding her goats milk when she stopped eating steak or chicken. She started walking slower outside - but she still greeted me and was interested in food - she just wouldn't eat it. She was scavenging for food outside like she was hungry. It was torturing me to have her look at me when I ate or try to see what I was feeding my other dog only to turn it down when it was offered to her. After 6 days of her release of the hospital I called the vet and told him she wasn't eating. I asked if it was time - he said it was the humane thing to do. I did not want to believe it because despite the nausea, vomiting, lethargy, and not eating she looked fine. She was losing weight but she could have lasted 2-3wks? But for what, I thought? I cried so much throughout this 2 week process. Finally I said Gigi - let me know what to do. That night she had breathing problems for an extended period of time when she tried to sleep and she threw up on my bed. I called the vet the next morning to make the appointment. They told me noon - and I couldn't say yes. It was too soon. I called again 3-4 times throughout the day. She threw up again. My mom came over and she perked up, played with her red ball and rolled around the carpet for a minute. I could have waited till the next day or the next. But I thought for what? Her to be sick again? To get worse? To experience pain - maybe have more trouble breathing that night? We could have done more fluid therapy, maybe anti-nausea drugs, who knows....I torture myself with that the most. But that evening my mom drove us to the vet - it took almost 2h in traffic. I put her bed and toys on the back seat and cuddled her. She was so calm and peaceful. She loved car drives and attention from me and I gave it to her for that last time. When we got to the vet she was asleep. I didn't want to take her in because she would stress so I called them and asked if they could give her the first shot in the car. The vet said no. I don't know why I didn't ask for a sleeping pill or valium or something. My brain was not right. I brought her and her bed in. She started trembling and hiding her head in chest. I told her I was sorry and I freaked out and said I can't do this. But I knew... It felt like the vet took forever to come in and give her the shot. She told me it would sting...I still can hear her yelp of pain....and she jumped from my arms and tried to get away. The drug quickly brought her down and I cradled her head and told her I was sorry that I had betrayed her trust like that. I still can see her tongue trying to lick her nose and then slowly not being able to do so until it hung limp from her mouth. The pain and fear that she felt are the things that I feel guilty about the most. The vet came back to put the last shot and fumbled it - they had to poke her hind leg and then her front leg. I kept talking to her and telling her I loved her. When she was gone I held her and said goodbye. My last image of her is on the vet table in her bed laying down. I like that image - and I cling to that and some photos I took of her on the way to the vet or a few days prior. I know I could have waited - but I didn't want her to suffer. I was also suffering every day she didn't eat or comforting her when she would get sick. I knew the decision had to be made and it was almost easier to decide - which makes me feel guilty. She was a stinky dog, who had so many issues, but she was also the prettiest Lhasa apso, who demanded that you love her. She wormed her way into my heart with her intelligence, her affection, and her protectiveness. My other dog, who I have had for 16 years, has no idea that she is gone and is enjoying being an only child again. However, last night when we were driving home I put her bed on the passenger seat for her to sleep in. She got in but then got out and slept next to the bed. She used to do this when Gigi was alive because Gigi would always get the bed and they did not like to share. I cried. I cry when I only have to walk or feed one dog. Or when I don't have her keeping me company on the couch. The grief I understand and it will eventually pass. The guilt and the doubt is harder. I have never had to do this before. And if it is this hard with Gigi, I have no idea how I will cope with my other dog. The selfish part of me wishes she had not been able to walk, or was in agonizing pain - but I didn't want that for her. In my head I keep telling myself that I am in pain over this so that she didn't have to. I hope that she understood that and that someday I will actually come to accept that. Thank you all for sharing your stories - and allowing a forum for me to share mine.

Posts: 46
I know how you feel.   The decision to euthanize is one of the worst things we lovers of our pets have to do.  I have waited too long as well, being so desperate to have my furry friend with me as long as possible, and later wish I had had more courage.  But it is sooooo hard to let them go.  I tell myself I will be stronger next time and do the right thing at the right time, and I just hope I can actually do that.   

Posts: 46
And I forgot to say that the vet that fumbled the needle should have his license revoked.

Posts: 1
I don't know exactly how you feel but I had to put my cat down yesterday and I feel horrible that I had to take her to the vet's office, a place she feared.  Your idea of getting a valium or something in advance is a good one and something that I'll remember in the future or find a vet that will make house calls.   Hang in there.


Posts: 158
Nath36.. the only thing I can say is, your post made me cry and I'm truly sorry for your loss!

Posts: 35
Your post made me cry. It brought me back to that day with my baby.
She was in kidney failure too and you're right. They don't seem so sick. They don't look so sick. Maybe something could have been done...
It took me all day with lots of reassuring phone calls and texts with my vet for me to realise it was the right thing to do.
She had constant diarrhoea, even though she hadn't eaten for 48 hours and had vomited up her dinner the morning prior.
The constant water intake had caused havoc and her body couldn't handle it.
She couldn't eat, couldn't drink towards the end.
With 15 minutes before the vet was due to arrive at my house, I called my mother-in-law begging her to come as I couldn't do it alone.
When she arrived, my girl acted so happy and did her usual jump around and said hi, but within 5 minutes she looked exhausted and out of it.
The vet arrived and set up and I still remember the yelp of the first needle.
He said it would take up to 10 to 15 minutes to work, but she was that exhausted she collapsed kb my arms within seconds.
I kept needing reassurance as I just wanted to stop and not do it anymore.
When it came to the second needle, he couldn't find a vein. She was that dehydrated that most of her veins had collapsed. (Even though she had been on a drip the night before.)
She really was a sick little girl.

I recently read about the diagnosis the vets originally gave me that lead to her kidney failure. She had Sharpeis Amyloidosis. It's a genetic disease. I read the whole thing and every symptom she had at one point within the last 6 months of her life. They were just minor, came here and then and went away so I never thought anything of it. She had an ear infection that I was going to the vet for, so I thought the infection was the cause...

Try not to beat yourself up about it (as hard as it is), even though I have been doing it for the past 6 weeks.. Both vets I dealt with said that it's not an easy thing to treat and there is no cure. They can be healthy one day and then sick the next.

Thinking of you in this difficult time.

Coco's mum

Posts: 1
I am so sorry to hear about your Gigi. We had a very hard time too and not sure if it was right still.We both are sturggling with the whole situation and how the scenario played out.  We loved our little one so much. It has hurt to see him not love the things he could not resist before throughout his life.  We were both so upset that we had to come to this decision and had to put him to sleep so he would not suffer. I am to have troubles with our other dog left behind. She went with us to have him put down because the vet said that was a good idea so they are no confused and searching the house for him. She has been very sad and did not eat at first and does now. But, she is still sad, mooping around and she just wants to go on walks and long walks and I have a hard time having her come home. It is so sad. She is not used to being alone. I originally got her for him to keep him company. We never thought about her being left behind. It is very hard to grieve because when I cry and I am sad it makes her very depressed too. So lost and confused.....

We had to put down our beloved 14 yr old Pepe a daschound mix. He was a precious sweet loyal loving fur baby. We had been struggling with a number of issues. He started out with cognitive problems at 12 1/2 yrs and eventually the vet said he had dog dementia and/ or old dog syndrome. We did not know dogs could get such a thing. He also had been struggling with arthritis and bone spur pain in front leg. So, he was put on carprofen July 2017. He would get up in the early a.m wanting to eat  at 4am, then 3am, and over time earlier and earlier. He was at the point of not really sleeping during the whole day or at night and always hungry. We also had tested him for Cushings but always came back negative. We went to vet because he was not relaxing, relestless not sleeping and wondering in the middle of the night. We went back to vet in November 2017 to do a full senior blood panel again to monitor his carprofen intake and to see why the behavior was progesivley getting worse.  Everything in the blood work looked good. The vet then prescribed us Trazedone to help calm, relax and have him sleep at night, and also Tramadol for pain and lameness. We were getting better but then he started getting picky with all foods. It was hard to find anything he would eat. Then you would find something he would eat and the next day he did not like it. He started to really change in Jan 2018. The vet and ourselves thought it was just old dog syndrome. He then started with closdrium infection, then colitios, then got closdrium infection again. The vet prescribed antibiotics. He slowly stopped eating and then vomiting. We took him to vet and she said he just had closrium again. She gave us a bunch of meds and over the weekend he just got worse and ate less and less, got weaker could not walk or barely stand was very constipated. We took him in on Monday and insisted on another blood panel and iv for him. We got back the results and he had renal failure with only 15 % kidney function. Our poor baby was so weak and refused to eat anything for over a week and did not take meds he keep spitting them out. We were shocked. I still do not know what happened. My husband and I have so much guilt and questioning what we had done. We had no choice to put him to sleep because he was so frail and weak it was hearbreaking. This fur baby meant the world to me. I still question everything like did we do enough. Did we have a chance to fight this or was my poor baby boy going to suffer more. I question over and over everything. Did we do this by giving him the new meds and they caused kidney failure. We both are having nightmares, gulit, regret and having panic attacks. I am so lost, empty and depressed. I just do not know what to do.
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