My dog with cancer is alert and functioning, should I still euthanize her?
She is now 11 and has had cancer for two years, undergone radiation and surgeries. At this point she still functions (eats, drinks, walks - slowly but walks, is affectionate) though is tired a lot, but her tumor is on her rear end and after last surgery skin never grew back so it is large and wide open and bloody. I had to euthanize my last two dogs at the age of 15 and 16 and there was no doubt it was time, this is so different - she is totally aware and strong as an ox.
I have a lab that just turned 13. He can barely walk and he gets stuck in the snow and my husband has to go get him. But he is happy. He has his happy dog face on, loves going outside with the other dogs and loves affection, eats well and seems very content.
I know the time is coming but I cannot put him down as long as he is enjoying life. I would say if your dog is NOT in pain, wait and see, but check with your vet to be sure the dog is not suffering. If I thought my lab was suffering there would be no question what I would have to do. I am not looking forward to that day--this dog has been my buddy his entire life.
I agree with that. You need to check with a professional to see if the dog is suffering. Sometimes you can't tell just by looking but a vet can tell you the truth. Tell the vet everything and see what they say.
Dogs don't really feel pain the same way we do. You wouldn't want to keep her around just because you can't say goodbye. On the other side if she's really not suffering then you don't want to put her down too early.
I vote on the side of quality of life. If the dog is in pain and miserable, let go. If not, enjoy what you have.
Now the deeper question: Would you let a loved person go under the same circumstances?
If you love her you must do what is best for her. You must find a way to get that bloody mass closed or she will not be able to survive. In almost 70 years I have had just two dogs and six cats. I only had to put one to sleep. He was a twenty year old orange cat who used to walk with me and my dog Samantha. The three of us hiked a few miles every day for over a decade. 'Ozzie' was unable to eat at the end and rather than have my friend die of starvation, I elected to have him have a painless end to his suffering. He could steal your heart even at his advanced age and deteriorated health. I have never forgotten him and think of him frequently. If I get offered a mansion in the afterlife, I'll trade it for a one room shack if I can have my pal back.
Hi and thank you to everyone who took the time to comment.
As an update, Bella, the dog I spoke up - well - we couldn't do anything about the mass. It was surgically just impossible to operate another time. Though she was just as alert and smart as ever and tried her best to do everything -she was spending almost all of her time in bed. She would drag herself out for the bathroom and to come be pet, but I was even feeding her in bed. She never lost her appetite or her need to be close and part of the family.
She had the most amazing will to live and strength like I have never seen in such a sick dog.
We ended up having her euthanized at home at the end of March. Needless to say, it was awful to do with a dog who hadn't lost one ounce of her fight to live. But she was having no kind of life and was on the brink of something horrible.
I am glad we did it at home where she was not afraid or stressed like she would have been at the vet. Though there is a sense that I betrayed her and I am still struggling with this.
I agree with Billrrrr - I think almost every night still that I would give everything to hug her one more time. I have even adopted another shelter dog -who I am learning to love and she is as sweet as can be. But I still say goodnight to Bella first. I will get there someday.
I really just want to thank you for the comments - it is very touching when people reach out and share - because on these pages and with these concerns - people are sharing from the heart and I can't tell you how much that is appreciated.
My heart goes out to all of you as well - because you have all loved your animals deeply and have suffered the same worry and grief.
If there is anything I can do for any of you - any questions or just someone to write your thoughts to, please feel free.
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