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Old June 8th, 2013, 02:32 PM
Frannie Frannie is offline
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Waiting on Vet Call - Advice Would Be Appreciated!

Hi All,

New here. I have an 18 year old blind/deaf pug named Alfred. He's a sweetie. Obviously with his age come many problems, he has to wear a diaper, he doesn't like to walk far, he has "mystery" allergies (8 vet visits later and still no answer), he has arthritis in his back (on cortisone once each other day)...what else? Dental...very bad teeth. Anyway, this is all manageable so far. His appetite is awesome and he acts like a little puppy.

Lately his anxiety is worsening. He whines so loud that it wakes us up continually at night. I try to soothe him, give him a little chamomile tea (he loves it and it calms him)...I can't have him in the bed due to boyfriend allergic to dog hair...it's getting to the point where it's worsening our quality of life. To non-pet owners this sounds selfish, but anyone who has gone through this knows...we need sleep too.

The vet suggest (gasp) euthanasia. We can't give him sleeping aids because of the cortisone he's taking - it's already likely not good for the kidneys/liver - and I prefer to keep him on that because it keeps his cough/congestion at bay....I've tried every remedy in the book, natural and homeopathic. Can't walk him more than 3 times a day or his legs stiffen...I try to play with him as much as possible but he tires so quickly.

He seems to live mostly "in the dark" due to his blind/deaf condition and also that I need to keep him caged most of the day for his protection from bumping into walls etc...I feel as though I'm helpless to make him comfortable and happy.

Anyway, I guess this is kind of a vent, cry for help, request for compassion and or/ personal advice from those who have been through this or are going through this.

The vet is calling on Monday, I have to ask her what more she can do to help the anxiety and insomnia, I'm stuck at this point. I know he's old and has outlived his expectancy...but euthanasia? I don't think he's ready yet. The bf is of no help...he says he's too emotional to talk about it...thanks dude...don't you think I am???? (little rant there). I don't know who to talk to about this, it's kind of tearing me apart mentally and physically right now, from frustration at not sleeping more than 2 hours at a time at night...

Thanks in advance,
Frannie
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Old June 8th, 2013, 06:51 PM
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sugarcatmom sugarcatmom is offline
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Oh Frannie, I know how you feel! I have a geriatric (20 yr old) cat with a few health issues of his own, and he frequently howls at night for various reasons. I wonder if a D.A.P diffuser might help Alfred? He's likely suffering some degree of dementia and it's possible the calming pheromones will help comfort him.

I wish you the best. It's hard to know what to do sometimes in these circumstances, but I figure as long as my guy is eating well, loves getting his regular cuddle sessions, and overall has more good days than bad, then we'll just keep trucking along. I've learned to live on less sleep than I'd prefer, but if the alternative is not having my old guy around, then I can suck it up for now. We all have to decide what's best for our own situation though.
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Old June 8th, 2013, 09:17 PM
MaxaLisa MaxaLisa is offline
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When you start treating symptoms from meds with other meds, about the only thing you can do is work closely with your vet. I'm sorry that your dog is so sick
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Old June 9th, 2013, 02:52 PM
Frannie Frannie is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sugarcatmom View Post
Oh Frannie, I know how you feel! I have a geriatric (20 yr old) cat with a few health issues of his own, and he frequently howls at night for various reasons. I wonder if a D.A.P diffuser might help Alfred? He's likely suffering some degree of dementia and it's possible the calming pheromones will help comfort him.

I wish you the best. It's hard to know what to do sometimes in these circumstances, but I figure as long as my guy is eating well, loves getting his regular cuddle sessions, and overall has more good days than bad, then we'll just keep trucking along. I've learned to live on less sleep than I'd prefer, but if the alternative is not having my old guy around, then I can suck it up for now. We all have to decide what's best for our own situation though.
Thank you!! Howling...that's a good way to put it. I looked up the diffuser you suggested, not a bad idea. I actually suspect he forgets where he is when he wakes up, like you said, a little dementia, confirmed by the vet a little while back as an onset of canine Alzeimers. I was at the health food store and the naturopath there recommended a homeopathic sleeping pill...it's for humans, but can be given to babies and pets too. I figured why not? $25 for 30 pills. Last night I gave him half the pill and HE SLEPT FOR 10 HOURS....thus so did me and the bf! What a relief. I can only hope it continues. He woke up alert too, no grogginess, he shifted a little during the night because his blankets were off, but I have to say this changes everything. He even walked with a little more enthusiasm today and he didn't pee in his diaper. I hope this continues to help him!! All my fingers and toes are crossed!

And yes, I think the on an overall scale, my little guy, like yours, has more good days than bad. Thanks for letting me vent!!
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Old June 10th, 2013, 09:43 AM
Longblades Longblades is offline
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I'm sorry this is so hard. Despite having, and having had, very old pets with similar and their own problems it's still not something someone else can really advise you on.

I think I found deafness to be worse for my old Lab girl than her very bad, arthritic back. She couldn't hear our concern and was startled by sudden appearances. We tried to stomp on the floor because she could feel us coming but it didn't always help.

Right now we have a 16 year old cat who is stone deaf and it doesn't seem to bother her at all. The 20 year old cat is nearly as deaf but dementia makes her life, and ours, much more difficult. She does the deaf cat howl. She also has worsening arthritis.

Rescue Remedy does help our 29 year old cat at night, a bit. If you ever want to try it be sure to NOT use the candies because they contain xylitol. It's tempting to use the candies for many dogs as they just gulp them down. Don't.

I am interested in the homeopathic sleeping aid you mentioned. Can you give the name of it?
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Old June 10th, 2013, 10:33 AM
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marko marko is offline
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Hi Frannie,

It's the hardest part of being a pet owner

Quote:
"but I figure as long as my guy is eating well, loves getting his regular cuddle sessions, and overall has more good days than bad, then we'll just keep trucking along."
That's my philosophy as well.

here's an article that may prove to be helpful for deciding when the right time might be.

http://www.pets.ca/dogs/tips/euthana...e-pet-tip-228/
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  #7  
Old June 10th, 2013, 08:29 PM
Frannie Frannie is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Longblades View Post
I'm sorry this is so hard. Despite having, and having had, very old pets with similar and their own problems it's still not something someone else can really advise you on.

I think I found deafness to be worse for my old Lab girl than her very bad, arthritic back. She couldn't hear our concern and was startled by sudden appearances. We tried to stomp on the floor because she could feel us coming but it didn't always help.

Right now we have a 16 year old cat who is stone deaf and it doesn't seem to bother her at all. The 20 year old cat is nearly as deaf but dementia makes her life, and ours, much more difficult. She does the deaf cat howl. She also has worsening arthritis.

Rescue Remedy does help our 29 year old cat at night, a bit. If you ever want to try it be sure to NOT use the candies because they contain xylitol. It's tempting to use the candies for many dogs as they just gulp them down. Don't.

I am interested in the homeopathic sleeping aid you mentioned. Can you give the name of it?
Rescue Remedy helped my other late pug who passed away 2 years ago, he was in the same condition as my Alfred, but much worse. I tried Rescue Remedy with Alfred and it doesn't affect him at all. I even tried the "Rescue Sleep" with added passionflower, works for me, but not for him.

Anyway, the sleep aid is called Neurexam, I wasn't sure I could post names of products but I see others have. I'm going to give him the full pill tonight. Last night I only gave him half, and he did sleep seven hours, but woke up several times with some whimpers.

My vet finally called. She's very good. She said she respects my decision for a "one last try". She said not to feel guilty etc...things I know already since I've been through it...it's still hard though. She recommended a supplement called Zylkene, it's to help with anxiety. She warned it could take up to a week to help him.

So with the Neurexam to help him sleep and the Zylkene to help his anxiety, I SO hope things will be okay.

But the vet reminded me that if he's in a lot of pain, not much will help the anxiety. I wish our pets could speak to us and tell us where it hurts!!!

I'll let you guys know how everything works out!
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  #8  
Old June 10th, 2013, 08:29 PM
Frannie Frannie is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marko View Post
Hi Frannie,

It's the hardest part of being a pet owner

That's my philosophy as well.

here's an article that may prove to be helpful for deciding when the right time might be.

http://www.pets.ca/dogs/tips/euthana...e-pet-tip-228/
Thank you I appreciate the hugs too
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  #9  
Old June 22nd, 2013, 12:58 PM
Frannie Frannie is offline
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It's been 2 weeks since I started Alfred on the anti-anxiety and sleeping aid pills and they are working like a charm. His anxiety is practically non-existent and he sleeps about 7-8 hours each night. No more incessant whining, and he seems so much happier. Phewf, just wanted to give you all an update. Homeopathic remedies helped him, I just had to give it a little time.
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