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I need help making a decision...

brokenhearted
February 28th, 2008, 12:36 PM
I have a 12 year old yellow Lab. Today is her birthday.
Up until 4 months ago, she was like a puppy... her activity level was high and she was spunky and full of energy.
In November, we found out that she has Megaesophagus. It is a condition that continually leads to aspiration pneumonia... which she developed and that was how we found out that she had this condition. She was on antibiotics for 6 weeks to clear her lungs.
Because of this condition, she is not allowed to swim - her favourite pastime.

In early January, she tore her left posterior cruciate ligament. She can no longer put weight on her leg. The vet has suggested that I take her swimming to strengthen her leg... but not to have her walk on the sand because she would injure herself and that I would need to carry her in (she weighs 90 pounds). I would need to hold her in the water, too, because if water enters her lungs (due to her condition) it will kill her (she will drown)...

We live in a 4 level split and our yard has 2 levels of stairs to get to the grass (we are on a hill). She cannot be with us unless we are on the main level of the house.

My dilemma is that she is on pain killers daily, has adequine injections twice a week and has very little energy.

My close friends think that I need to ease her pain and put her to sleep. I cannot make this decision without opinions. I thought of finding her a family in a one-level home and I would cover the expenses & take her to doctor's visits. My good friend said that would be worse than anything... because she wouldn't be with her family...

My husband, tearfully, said last night that he thinks that she would be best being put to sleep as her quality of life is no longer.

What are your thoughts? As I listen to her hear raspy breath and watch her leg twitch, I need honesty. What do I do with my baby?

Thank you.

want4rain
February 28th, 2008, 12:43 PM
*hugs* im so sorry. i have no answers for you, just some support. :(

-ashley

Shabby
February 28th, 2008, 12:48 PM
I have a 12 year old yellow Lab. Today is her birthday.
Up until 4 months ago, she was like a puppy... her activity level was high and she was spunky and full of energy.
In November, we found out that she has Megaesophagus. It is a condition that continually leads to aspiration pneumonia... which she developed and that was how we found out that she had this condition. She was on antibiotics for 6 weeks to clear her lungs.
Because of this condition, she is not allowed to swim - her favourite pastime.

In early January, she tore her left posterior cruciate ligament. She can no longer put weight on her leg. The vet has suggested that I take her swimming to strengthen her leg... but not to have her walk on the sand because she would injure herself and that I would need to carry her in (she weighs 90 pounds). I would need to hold her in the water, too, because if water enters her lungs (due to her condition) it will kill her (she will drown)...

We live in a 4 level split and our yard has 2 levels of stairs to get to the grass (we are on a hill). She cannot be with us unless we are on the main level of the house.

My dilemma is that she is on pain killers daily, has adequine injections twice a week and has very little energy.

My close friends think that I need to ease her pain and put her to sleep. I cannot make this decision without opinions. I thought of finding her a family in a one-level home and I would cover the expenses & take her to doctor's visits. My good friend said that would be worse than anything... because she wouldn't be with her family...

My husband, tearfully, said last night that he thinks that she would be best being put to sleep as her quality of life is no longer.

What are your thoughts? As I listen to her hear raspy breath and watch her leg twitch, I need honesty. What do I do with my baby?

Thank you.


I am soo, sooo very sorry to hear about your baby! These decisions are very difficult to make and as hard as they are to make, we have to put ourselves last and our pet first.

No one can make this decision for you because we all have our own thoughts and feelings. Having said that, you need to look at her quality of life and how uncomfortable she is feeling. Do you want her to keep having to visit the vet, take the medications, lie with rasping breath or let her go now before things get worse? I don't envy your position and wish I could be there to hold your hand and help you through this :grouphug: She knows how much YOU are hurting right now too, you can count on that. But, personally and to be HONEST, I think she deserves ever-lasting peace at this time.

Please keep talking to us, we're here for you and to support you in whatever decision you make! :cry::pray:

MBRA518
February 28th, 2008, 02:00 PM
Having recently been through this – I know how you are feeling. I agree only you can make the decision. You need to listen to you dog – she will tell you when it’s time… you just need to listen. But I think you already know the answer or you wouldn’t have posted here today.

Good luck in your decision … HUGS :sorry:

06canyon
February 28th, 2008, 02:51 PM
I'm sorry for your decision.

jessi76
February 28th, 2008, 02:55 PM
I thought of finding her a family in a one-level home and I would cover the expenses & take her to doctor's visits. My good friend said that would be worse than anything... because she wouldn't be with her family...

My husband, tearfully, said last night that he thinks that she would be best being put to sleep as her quality of life is no longer.

she gave you 12 wonderful years, do right by her, and give her the dignity of being with HER family when she needs you most. I agree that rehoming her would be the absolute worst outcome. YOU are her family, don't leave her. I agree with your husband, your friends, and I also think you know the answer since you've posted here. Quality of life must always come first. Many of us have had to make this decision, and believe me, it's been just as hard for each of us.

DO keep posting and talking to us, even if just for support, afterall, that's why we're here. I wish you and your dog comfort and closure in whatever decision you make. :pray:

Hogansma
February 28th, 2008, 03:12 PM
I am so sorry to hear about your girl. I do think it would not be in her best interest to find her a new home, at her age. It would be too hard on her. I know it is hard to think of putting her to sleep but it can be a final act of love. Some will say that you'll just know when the right time is. I didn't when my girl was sick. It is and will be hard but whatever you decide, we are here to support you. :grouphug:

angelinazzz
February 28th, 2008, 03:14 PM
i cant speak for you but if i was in your situation, id put her to sleep...poor baby..what a tough decision to make.

ancientgirl
February 28th, 2008, 03:25 PM
I can't and don't even want to imagine how you are feeling. That is such a hard decision to make. I agree with the others, you need to listen to your dog and just know that any decision you make is made out of love.

We're all here to support you.:grouphug:

LavenderRott
February 28th, 2008, 03:36 PM
You have to make this decision on your own, and I think you already have.

No matter what, this is never an easy decision to make. I doubt that there is a single person here who hasn't had to make it at some point. We all understand how you feel.

chico2
February 28th, 2008, 04:36 PM
This wonderful pup has had 12 wonderful years of love and caring,probably longer than most Labs,we all wish they could stay with us forever.
You know your dog,you know when it's time to say good-bye,when living becomes a painful struggle,she will need to find peace and only the person who loves her so very much can give her that.
It will break your heart,but she will have recieved that final gift of love.
As everyone says,whatever your desicion,we are here for you,we know what it means to take that very final step:angel2:

JanM
February 28th, 2008, 04:45 PM
My heart goes out to you having to make such a difficult decision - but you will make the right one - for your loyal, loving friend and for yourself...

Frenchy
February 28th, 2008, 07:44 PM
I'm very sorry :sad: it is a very hard decision to make , number one to think of is her quality of life ..... :grouphug:

loopoo
February 28th, 2008, 07:49 PM
alls been said that i would say.. :grouphug: hugs to you and your sweet lab..

gyrfalcon
February 28th, 2008, 11:39 PM
It's a terrible, awful, horrible decision to have to make, but truly, yours seems fairly clear. It's an act of total love, the ultimate service we can do for our loving friends. We can't do it for our human friends and family, but we can take that terrible responsibility for our animal family members.

My late mother, a supreme animal lover, had a rule of thumb for these situations that I think is pretty wise: Is the animal having any fun? If she isn't, or the good moments are heavily outweighed by the not so good, then it's time. If her future is only to go increasingly downhill from here, it's nothing but a kindness to spare her from increasing pain and disability.

One thing you might think of is finding a vet who will come to your home so your friend can leave cradled in your arms, and not spend her last moments in a medical office but at home. Doing it this way can be very, very hard on us, but I think always a lot better for our animal friends. Most office vets won't make house calls even for this last service, but there are some house call vet practices out there, and maybe there's one in your area.

This Web site will help you locate one: http://www.vetlocator.com/housecallvets.php

Like probably pretty much everybody here, I've been through it and my heart goes out to you. There's no way to make it easy, you just have to bear it an d be strong for your girl's sake. I know you want what's best for her, which isn't always what's best for you.

Have courage and think of your love for her and send her off to whatever awaits on the other side surrounded by that love. You'll be doing the right thing.