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The Rainbow Bridge - Grieving the Loss of a Pet

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TOPIC:   When is it the right time to let go? 


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ROTTLADY
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1/15/12 3:53 P

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Thanks for the warm response.I never make a decision like this lightly. I doubt my dobie will make another year. I will just continue to be with him until I he gives me that look that he is ready.


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POOH_BEAR_69
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1/14/12 9:42 P

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I have to start by saying... It is VERY different for everyone. Please don't think that whatever you decide is right or wrong. We were told when Tyler was around 3 years old that he wouldn't make it another 6 months. He was diagnosed with cranial cruciate disease and had one hind knee that pretty much didn't work properly at all, and the other was sure to deteriorate rapidly when the first went completely. He made it another 6 years. Some of our furbabies have SO much heart that they just won't give up. Tyler never was ready to say goodbye. He was never in any pain because we had to start him at 3 on the pain meds for the knees and we monitored his organ function regularly... Momma is right, the vet told us we would know... They said he wouldn't seek us out any more and that he would isolate himself... That never happened. His discomfort/immobility was cyclical like someone with arthritis. If it was cold/wet, it was worse. I would spend those days carrying him back and forth to the bathroom. I never regretted doing those things for him. That being said... I agree with what others are saying. In the end, it was spring time. It wasn't the weather that was keeping him less mobile. He couldn't stand up... He was more rocking back and forth until he could "launch" himself up and carry his weight mostly on his front legs and hobble with the back. This had caused him to rub almost all the fur off the backs of his rear legs. Still I was carrying him out and back and up and down the stairs to the bathroom. I knew it was time. His eyes and heart weren't able to tell me and weren't ready to say goodbye, but his physical form couldn't contain that big spirit anymore. We took him to the vet (who I will adore until I leave this life) and asked very honestly what he would do if Tyler were his own. A good vet knows what to look for physically and doesn't rush to judgement. They KNOW your dog. Our vet knew that Tyler had lost most of his rear muscle tone and wasn't going to make it back to us this time. I was at peace with the decision... Heartbroken, but knowing that I was making the right decision at the right time for the right reason... Even if it broke all of our hearts in the process.

Know that whatever you decide, it has to be the decision that you are comfortable with and can be at peace with. We'll all be here for you... emoticon

Edited by: POOH_BEAR_69 at: 1/15/2012 (09:47)

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GOOZLEBEAR
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1/14/12 8:09 P

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I agree with the others, you just know when it's time. Our 14y/o yellow lab developed cancer on top of the arthritis problems she had. I could look in her eyes and tell she had no quality of life anymore and although she was on pain medication, I knew she was in some pain. I just couldn't make her hang on anymore. The day I made that decision, she looked at me and her eyes just said: "I'm ready". She had lived a long and wonderful life and for 14 years she gave me unconditional love.

Sandi
My hubby and I have just celebrated our 51th wedding anniversary, can't believe we've been married that long! We have 2 children and 4 grandchildren and live in Tallahassee, Florida.

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Have a wonderful rescue named Zoey!


 
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MOMMA_BEAR_69
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1/14/12 6:56 P

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I would like to think if I had an animal that had health issues and was suffering, could not get comfortable, whining and crying that I would be able to make the decision to let them go and be at peace. Our furbabies are not able to tell us what is happening with them so this is a judgement call that has to be made. If you are uncomfortable with making the decision, talk with your vet. Their input and expertise can be invaluable in these situations.
My DD's vet once told her something along the lines that when a pet with health issues started hiding from you and no longer showed any interest in food, you or anything else; if the eyes no longer shined or were unhappy, or it was in such extreme pain that pain meds could not help give relief, then it was probably time to let them go. It would be the humane thing to do even if it is hard for you to let go.
I do believe this is an act of kindness and mercy for your pet. It seems to me that it would be cruel to allow a pet who has loved you unconditionally to be allowed to suffer day in and day out. Putting yourself in his position, what would you want done?
Just a thought or two.

Edited by: MOMMA_BEAR_69 at: 1/14/2012 (18:58)
Helen/Southwestern PA Joined SP 9/23/2007
Co-leader of The Rainbow Bridge--Grieving the Loss of a Pet Spark Team

"Without faith, nothing is possible. With it, nothing is impossible."
~Mary McLeod Bethune

"If you planted hope in a heart today in any hopeless heart, If someone's burden was lighter because you did your part, If you caused a laugh that chased a tear away, If tonight your name is mentioned when someone kneels to pray, Then your day was well spent.


 
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LITTLEWIND53
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1/14/12 6:56 P

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My 16 1/2 year old feline crossed the bridge on July 27th 2011. It was a very hard decision to make.

He was having kidney failure and had lost a lot of weight. Had a bladder infection at end of May and the vet gave him some antibiotics and fluid and I had another two months with him.

I knew I would have to make the decision sooner rather than later when he was having problems climbing up onto and down from the sofa. He also was not eating. When we went back to the vet, she said she could put him in the clinic and more fluids and intravenous, but it would only prolong for a few days. So the decision was technically made for me.

If he is eating and drinking ok, still able to get around and do his "business", it may not be the right time. But I hate to see the poor things suffer, so if his life is affected, he won't eat, or can't get outside, has to be carried, etc., then it is definitely the time. You know him best, and I think you will know.

Just my opinion.

Linda

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YOU can do it.
You CAN do it.
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WVDEB717
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1/14/12 4:02 P

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We just (put down) our sweet 15 yr.old cocker spaniel. Your story sounds a lot like ours but it was our 22 yr. old son who wanted to do ANYTHING to SAVE her. I always thought I would have a real hard time with it, but YOU know when it is time. It was still hard but I want to believe that she is no longer in pain, and running in the snow in heaven. Time will make it better, it has been almost 4 months for us.

Nothing changes if nothing changes!


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ROTTLADY
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1/14/12 3:42 P

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We recently put a dog down that we had had for 16 years. My husband and I don't agree as to when it is necessary. I believe in sparing pain and suffering and he feels that it should be doe through nature and God's act. I hate seeing the suffering, knowing there will be no improvement or quality of life for the dog.Add to this that my problem child Tye the doberman has been developing masses all over his body and I think he is suffer but he is still active and eating well he just can't get comfortable and he whine,talks and cries.When do you know it is time?


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