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Elderly dog with heart worms

October 27th, 2006, 10:32 AM
My Mom adopted a neighborhood stray named Sadie. During the first vet visit Sadie's age was determined to be 15 to 17 years old, she was also diagnosed with heartworms and a stage 5 heart murmur. Treatment was not given due to the dogs age for fear she would not survie. On the morning of 10/26/06 Sadie was rushed to the vet with breathing problems. The vet said the murmur was now a stage 6 and that Sadie's temperature was 80 degrees. The dog was given several injections and 5 medications to take home (my mother is on a fixed income). That same afternoon Sadie died at home. I feel that the vet should have given my mom the option to put Sadie to sleep at the office that morning. This was a horrible death that my mom had to watch, not to mention the suffering poor Sadie went through. What's your opinion? Is there a vet that could give an opinion on this as well? Any help would be greatly appreciated. I apologize for leaving out some vital information. My mom did ask the if Sadie was in pain or suffering and if so she would like to put her to sleep, the vet said she didn't think so. Three hours after that vet visit Sadie died. My mom brought Sadie back to the vet for cremaiton and stated to the vet that she felt like Sadie should have been put to sleep that moring due to the suffering that she witnessed at the time of Sadie's death. The vet replied with " it's okay for them to suffer a little". I am sorry....I do not agree with that. There was blood coming out of every part of Sadie's body at the time of her death. Sadie should not have had to suffer like that and my mom should not have had to witness it.

October 27th, 2006, 03:16 PM
I'm so sorry your mom had to go through that.

A compassionate vet would definitely have offered euthanasia as an option. I'm sorry your mom's vet didn't. :(

Angies Man
October 27th, 2006, 04:41 PM
Giving the Vet the benefit of the doubt, he may have thought that Sadie would pull through. All the Vets I've known have erred towards compassion and wouldn't knowingly prolong either the dog's or the owner's suffering. It does your Mom little good in hindsight, but when an elderly dog is having a crisis, it isn't considered a bad thing for the owner to broach the subject.

My opinion is that your Mom is to be commended for giving the old girl a home, our best wishes and thoughts are with her--she's a fine human being in my book.

October 27th, 2006, 06:27 PM
A compassionate vet would definitely have offered euthanasia as an option. (

I totally agree. I'm very sorry your mother had to go thru this :sad:

October 27th, 2006, 08:03 PM
We thank you so much for your replies and sympaties.
I apologize for leaving out some vital information, my mom did ask the vet if Sadie was in pain or suffering and if so she would rather put her to sleep. The vet responded with she didn't think Sadie was suffering. Three hours after that vet visit Sadie died, my mom then brought her back to the vet for cremation. My mom stated to the vet that "I knew she was dying we should have put Sadie to sleep this moring because she was suffering". The vet replied with "it's okay for them to suffer a little". I'm sorry to say I do not agree with that. What my mom witnessed was a very painful death, there was blood coming out of every part of Saide's body. Thanks again.

Angies Man
October 27th, 2006, 08:29 PM
Dogs can suffer a bit if there's a chance she's going to recover. Obviously Sadie wasn't going to. I guess, based on what you've said, that I would classify this Vet as a TURKEY (Jerk, A**hole, etc.) and never go back. (And tell everyone I know.)

October 28th, 2006, 11:53 PM
I am very sorry for you Mom's loss. :grouphug:

I do understand what you are saying, The 3 hours probably did not make a big difference for Sadie, there may have already been internal bleeding while she was at the vet, it may have been harder for you mom than it was for Sadie.

But if you looked at it from Sadies perspective she passed away in the comfort of her own bed in familiar surroundings with only the person who matters most to her , not on a cold table surrounded by strangers poking needles in her in an environment that most dogs view as scary. Being she was a stray my guess is she did not have a lot of trust in people, so maybe for her this was the best way to go My own dogs did cross to the bridge at the vet, the one I had expected to have the easiest time who was normally comfortable at the vets he had lots of health problems so the vet office was not a strange place for him and he loved everyone, but he had a very tough time and was just terrified and there was nothing I could do to calm during the euthanesia for me it was a sickening experience to watch this happy go lucky dog go with such absolute terror. What I am saying is there is no way to know if passing would have been kinder if she had been euthanized at the vets, if she had acted like my Buddy did when he went your mother would have felt just as traumatized and worrying if it would have been better to pass away at home instead.

I have no doubt your mom and Sadie had a special relationship tell your mom to watch for messages from Sadie, it could be a sudden sense the she is behind her , a shimmering sort of like what you would see on a sunny day over hot pavement but occuring inside the house, an unexpected rainbow, she may visit in a dream or suddenly appear in thin air for a few seconds just long enough to show she is happy and well, I had gave up beleiving in an afterlife until I got a visit from one of my special dogs and I know it has happened to others as well, and I really would not be surprised to learn that the same gift is given to your mom, for taking in such a special dog ;)