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  1. #1
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    Question Indecision - Put down dog?

    Our family dog is a Welsh Corgi and he'll be four next month. Probably six months ago he began having seizures; the vet prescribed phenobarbital. It helped but didn't completely stop the seizures. Vet increased the dose and eventually added a second medication, zinc bromide to the mix. The seizures ceased for awhile, but have now returned (albeit infrequent). Concurrent with the seizures has been a marked change in his nose, which has gone from standard black with normal texture to an angry pink with scaly texture. Vet gave us a salve to apply daily.

    We took the kids to Disney for Spring Break in early March, and but for the seizure / nose thing he was a normal active dog. Over the course of the past six weeks, he's failed markedly. It started with him incessantly chewing his paws. The vet prescribed an anti-biotic and two allergy medications! The dog now takes five pills with each meal. He moves with the speed of an 80 y/o man and has trouble "getting up". He "threw up" on Tuesday night and hasn't eaten a thing since Tuesday morning, entirely skipping four meals.

    The vet is now suggesting he might have a brain tumor, which would explain why the medications haven't stopped the seizures. He's suggesting we run various blood panels to check for renal and / or kidney failure, but if those are inconclusive we should take him to Ames for a catscan.

    My indecision is as follows: I know he's a "young" dog, but he's failing and obviously in misery. Are we wrong if we decide to "put him down" without putting him thru the battery of tests first?


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    Re: Indecision - Put down dog?

    Cut your losses IMO



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    Re: Indecision - Put down dog?

    My opinion is that if an animal is suffering, there is no reason why you should feel bad about euthanasia. If it is in distress, no veterinarian I know would ever try to talk you out of that.

    I've had to make this decision a few times and none of them were easy.

    Show it as much affection as you can in the meanwhile. It helps the family and, I think, helps the pet too.



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    Re: Indecision - Put down dog?

    The dog is clearly in a lot of pain and very unhappy. It was a hard decision for us not long ago with our young cat - but we did what was best for her. :(

    Good luck to you.



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    Re: Indecision - Put down dog?

    Its a tough call. I would hate to see him suffer. The dogs quality of life is not very good so it may be time to give him peace. I hate that decision.



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    Re: Indecision - Put down dog?

    If his quality of life is so bad, then don't keep him alive for your sake. Ask your vet, if you trust him, what's in the dog's best interest. Basically, ask your vet what he would do in your shoes.



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    Re: Indecision - Put down dog?

    A second opinion wouldn't hurt. I've had good luck with Dr. Shannon (Iowa State grad.) at the North Liberty Pet Clinic.

    I think the big thing is to decide on how much money you want to invest and how far you want to go.

    I had to put down my dog last winter and but I knew it was time. I think in your situation it might be time too.



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    Re: Indecision - Put down dog?

    Iccyfan,

    My symapthy goes out to you and your family. We put down our 8 y/o yellow lab about a year ago. She had had seizures since a puppy and was also on Phenobarb. Our vet said the seizures have the same effect on a dog and running a marathon would have on you and I. We continued with the Phenobarb but she had kidney issues during the last year of her life. The final straw was we noticed her back legs would give out at random. I attributed it to her being over-excited (she was a lab afterall) and 'twisting' her knee while playing. The vet said all of the cartlidge was done in one back leg and nearly all gone in the other. She was showing signs of being more aggressive too. Snaping at neighbors, whom she had been around; and growling when someone would rub her back legs. With a 6 year old and a new baby on the way, we made the decision.

    I agree with the previous posters, if her quality of life is going down and she's suffering (and as her owner, you can tell ), putting her down is the humane thing to do. Be with her in those final moments and show her the love you have for her...and always will.



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    Re: Indecision - Put down dog?

    Make the respectful decision and let the vet put the dog out of it's misery. When I was a kid, my parents let our German Shepherd "die on the vine". I'll never forget that poor decision.



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    Re: Indecision - Put down dog?

    Quote Originally Posted by SlyCy View Post
    I think the big thing is to decide on how much money you want to invest and how far you want to go.
    Therein lies the rub. I think it's pretty clear that we've invested time and effort in attempting to get Jack well, but despite our efforts (and those of the vet - Dr. Davis in Solon) he's grown markedly worse. I guess I'm feeling guilt because I don't want to spend the money and time it would take for a proper diagnosis / possible treatment in Ames. After watching his down-spiral, in my heart I don't truly believe he can be saved, but it's tormenting me that he could and $ is keeping me from it! How do you put a $ value on a family dog?


    Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please. - Mark Twain

  11. #11
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    Re: Indecision - Put down dog?

    Quote Originally Posted by mkcrawford View Post
    The final straw was we noticed her back legs would give out at random.
    Thanks for your thoughts. Jack is having troubles with his hind-quarters as well. When passing over a pair of six-inch "thresholds" between the back yard and house, he's dragging his right rear leg rather than stepping. I wonder if it's a side effect of the phenobarb?

    Thanks to all. You've helped put my mind at ease that putting him down humanely is the proper decision...


    Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please. - Mark Twain

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    Re: Indecision - Put down dog?

    We too felt the guilt when leaning toward putting our cat to sleep instead of running a ton of more tests and going through chemo, if that was even an option.

    Her condition looked so grim and she either had FIP (deadly cat disease) or cancer. We finally decided that putting her down was best, after talking with or vet, friends and some helpful CF members. The final straw so to speak was one morning as I came out of the bedroom to the living room, she was resting in the sun room. She spotted me, got up, took a few steps then sat down and cried at me to come get her. Typically, she runs over to me in the morning. It broke my heart to see her like that and I'd never shed a tear over a cat until then.

    In the end, her blood tests finally came back that she did in fact have FIP. There is no cure for that. If it would've been cancer, she would've only had a few months anyways, based on her poor condition.

    It was a little more comforting to know we chose a route that was imminent regardless. It seems that is what is happening with your dog, sadly enough.


    Last edited by ISUFan22; 04-26-2007 at 12:12 PM.

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