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Discussion Starter #1
We have a 15 yr plus old female dog, who is blind, deaf and has dementia. Lately she is also having more accidents. We have to sort of slide her out of the house to do her business. She doesn't want to go and isn't very co operative? She's got to be suffering without hearing or seeing, poor thing, yet she eats and stands on her feet and once we get her outside she still does her business out there unless we don't catch it in time? She gets lost in what seemed to be so familiar to her before, now she can't even find the door? I am reluctant to put her down just yet, husband is ready to do it now, she doesn't seem to have any quality of life left. Yet I kind of want to give her every chance at life that she does have left, yet I worry I am doing the opposite by keeping her around in this condition? How will I ever make this decision? Should I let her die at home? How long can a dog linger in this state?
 

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Am sorry you are faced with this decision and what a wonderful life for your girl to have known so much security and love. Best I can offer having seniors that I have helped passed a few in your exact situation. I make sure you spend time with them everyday. Just sitting and holding them close. "thanking them for all they have given to you and your family. You will find the answer your looking for when you are both ready to let go.... Hugs..
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you, yes I think that one day, it will become clearer knowing what to do? Right now it's sort of in between and decisions vary between one day to the next.
 

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I don't think it ever becomes clear unless the dog is clearly in pain (and in those cases, many people feel they've waited too late). I did not feel ready when I made the decision for my 12.5 year old. My friend did not feel ready when he made the decision for his 18 year old. Regardless, wishing you and your old friend the very best.
 

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I have said this before..
We know they do not live forever. Sometimes the line is not clear.
So I say this. When quality of life is poor and there is no pain involved I would rather a week to soon than an hour too late. I tend to set my feelings aside and do what is best for the animal.

I have had to do this many more times than most people as I was a livestock farmer. Many cats and not a few cows (that did not go to slaughter) and a couple of horses had to be euthanized. Every last one I was there with the vet helping them cross over. None were easy for me but all were for the good of the animal.
 

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I have found the decision easier with every pet I've euthanized - and like most people I've found I make the decision earlier in the process each time.

That said, my last dog that I had put to sleep really clarified things for me. At this point, the moment I find myself HOPING they'd just pass peacefully in their sleep/not wake up again - When I find myself thinking how much of a relief that would be, because I wouldn't have to decide and it would be a good death---

It's time.

All the other things - eating, walking, eliminating reasonably, enjoying playing etc. - that are listed don't help me nearly as much as just my gut telling me that I wish it was over, and I just want to avoid having to decide.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thank you for all who responded and I'm sorry for your losses as well. Regardless, it hurts to lose them. This isn't the first dog I put to sleep, this will be my 3rd, the first one at 16 yrs had kidney disease, it was easy to make the decision, he was already at the point there was no hope for him. He was my favorite. My 2nd was 14 and a 1/2 with Cushings and the Vet helped me make a decision so I put her to sleep but to this day I keep thinking, maybe she had a few more months? Although reasoning kicks in and we knew it was time, we had to carry her outside to do her business. It stressed her so much. This 3rd one is still walking around, and it didn't really get easier for me, each one is different. Maybe if they did die at home, I would feel better. Maybe that is selfish of me to hold on to her. She has no quality of life and I think I will have to make a decision soon.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
More tears and difficulty with my decision. We had a rough weekend, feces soiling in the kitchen even though we give her ample time outside, she won't go out there, she just walks around in circles for 20 minutes. Today was the 3 rd time I woke up again to the walked through mess, but I'm finding that I am making excuses for her, that perhaps she ate something that didn't agree with her, just like yesterday and the day before, when the problem doesn't appear to be that, think she goes cause she can't remember where to go and stands and gives it wherever she gets the urge. While my decision hasn't been made yet, I have made a little step forward. Today I looked on line to find someone who would euthanize her at home to forgo the stress of her having to go to the Vet, Has anyone found this to be more comforting? I have a list on my desktop, still not ready but getting really close to calling. You have no idea how much your support is helping me through this unpleasant journey. I know I am taking a long time to make this decision but I want to be sure, so I don't end up with guilt thinking I put her down before her time. Thanks again
 

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I have only this to add to what's already been said: Be with her when it's time. Nearly 40 years ago, my father took my Irish setter in because I didn't have the courage to do it. That decision haunted me (quite literally) for 17 years. And, because the vet wasn't ready and just had him leave her there, it haunted my father for the rest of his life. I don't even know for sure where she ended up.

The next three times I went through that, we were all there. I won't say it made it easy, but it made it better - for us and, I'm sure, for our dogs.
 

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When I had to put Susie, my Bernese cross, to sleep. My sister came down with her Van and we went up to the Vet Hospital. We did not have to take her inside, the Vet came out, gave her a tranquilizer, then a few moments later gave her the final shot. She loved going for rides and even though it took me and my sister to hoist her into the Van, she was very relaxed and never got the least bit upset. We then took her and buried her in a special spot.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thank you all for sharing your responses. I am touched to read about all of them. I don't think my dog has a problem, I am the one with a problem not letting go, but our pets become like family members and it's just so hard because they have been a constant in our lives for so many years, and I will miss her when she goes. I dread that Vet trip, and that is why I'm thinking to call someone in, but then, will it be more painful and a constant reminder having the memory that she passed in the house, I don't know, I never dealt with euthanizing at home?
 

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I am grateful to have done an in-home euthanasia. My dog never had a problem with vets. But there is a different 'feeling' about being in a vet clinic and he was certainly more comfortable at home. Selfishly, I was more comfortable not having to drive after that devastating event, and I could bawl my eyes out under my roof rather than have to walk through a waiting room. That said, my friend chose to go to the vets since he waited longer to make the decision. His dog was more like your situation... not necessarily in pain but perhaps had dementia (was 18 years old, no bowel control, seemed confused at times, seizures...). I imagine I might feel more comfortable choosing to go to a clinic in that situation. But my dog had cancer, and he was 100% clear mentally. He even had the clarity of mind to do all the tricks he knew. The pain was what made me schedule an appointment. He wasn't so bad he couldn't enjoy life, but the pain was clearly there, and I didn't want to wait until he couldn't enjoy life.

Again, wishing you and your dog the very best with this difficult decision.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I'm sorry your dog was sick, it's awful to have your dog in pain because of cancer or other diseases, it hurts to watch and also have to lose them, yet comfort can be gotten knowing that you put your dog above your own pain and released him so he wouldn't have to suffer anymore. As for my dog, it's like your friend's dog, seems like she has the same symptoms to almost all of the above. My husband was saying that he is surprised ours made the winter, but at that time she still knew her way from the back door to the place that was shovelled out for her, since then she has had more memory loss, she can't find her way back now even for a for a few steps and it's summer, so it will not only be difficult for her, it will be for us as well if we (I) haven't made the decision by then?
 

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I had to put my 17 year old girl to sleep last year. I still miss her like a phantom limb but as soon as it was done I knew it'd been the right thing to do - she was so at peace as soon as she'd had the sedative, comfortable in a way she hadn't been in months. What made up my mind to do it was the realization that she was never going to have a "better day" - every day from here on out was going to just be as bad or worse. I just couldn't prolong that struggle for her indefinitely.

I'm sorry you're having to make this choice now. I hope you can treasure that you had so many good years and good times with her. She is clearly a deeply loved dog and therefore a lucky one.
 

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Thank you and sorry for your loss. 17 was a lot of years of bonding. I need to come to the same realization that it's not going to get better, but last night and today she actually had a better day. It's days like that, which really set me back in my decision.
 

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Thank you and sorry for your loss. 17 was a lot of years of bonding. I need to come to the same realization that it's not going to get better, but last night and today she actually had a better day. It's days like that, which really set me back in my decision.
Having many Seniors all at one time for raising a large group a year to 2 year apart from each other.. Having good days and lessor days is normal. Healthy dogs as seniors can grow old gracefully not in pain they eat less and eat randomly, sleep more some days and are up enjoying their normal routine and interaction other day.. Death is a slow process of the body systematically slowing and shutting down.. doesn't have to be tragic in old age... can be very peaceful..

Very happy yall had a better day with each other...
 

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Discussion Starter #17
She's still with us, has stretches where she is accident free, then she has spells where she isn't? There's been a couple of days where she even seemed like her old self, but returned back to the confusion? She's become rather stubborn and doesn't want to go outside. We have to tug on her with the leash to get her moving. We are still hanging in there and being patient with her, but the decision still lingers as it can only get worse since winter will be on it's way? Thank you for listening.
 

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Am glad your having days to enjoy as well as knowing your time is near. I like adding pedialyte to their water, and I also like Nutri cal ( vit/min) supplement it's like a sports gel the way they make it like a pick me up once it gets in their system It's meant for a high calorie meal replacement, having ex large dogs I could never afford to feed the recommended amount for a meal replacement . A heaping table spoon always seemed enough to perk them up , and get them to eat a little more of their meals.
 
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