WIAnderson
Hi,
First post here. I'm desperately looking for some insight into what the end will look like for my beloved 16 year old cockapoo named Pooh. He was diagnosed with anal gland adenocarcinoma about 3 years ago. Because of his age, the size and location of the tumor (and threat of incontinence) and a heart murmur we decided to love him to the end. Thinking it would be within a year, he has far surpassed our expectations. He has always had dietary issues since having major pancreatitis attacks throughout his life. At this point he is only eating freshly browned ground beef drained well. Please no criticisms on his diet. I know others go to extra lengths with homemade holistic diets with herbs and vegetables, but we are doing what works. He has been on this diet for about a year and just to see him eat every day is a relief. Other issues...his teeth are horrible. I am so angry at my prior vet. I asked her when he was 10 if his teeth should be cleaned. She said they aren't great but they aren't horrible and told me we didn't need to do anything. Now they are absolutely horrible and obviously putting him under for a cleaning is out of the question. So either his mouth will end his life or his back end will. Again, I'm a horrible dog mom for not forcing the issue, but I trusted her!! She convinced me that the risk of putting him under was too great. If I could put up signs everywhere that say "GET YOUR DOGS TEETH CLEANED" I would. Anyway, to the purpose of this post. Pooh's tumor has gotten so big that it is starting to break the skin. The good news, it has not spread (yet). He is still able to defecate as long as his diet is very strict. It is true, his bowel movement are just narrow ribbons, but as long as something comes out, my husband and I rejoice. Our life has come to talking about his bowel movements. But now, he is battling constant infections because he will rub his butt on the grass and it will bleed. And then he will lick and lick. I am beyond trying to get pills into him. So our next option will only be antibiotic shots. In the meantime, the tumor breaks open and oozes. It is in such a place that we can't bandage it (it won't stay on). The vet keeps saying in the end he just won't be able to go to the bathroom? Really? is that how it ends? He just can't poop? Is it wrong for me to feel better if it would just spread and make the decision easier? Has anyone out there dealt with this? This type of cancer where the tumor grows so big it causes and pain and discomfort but doesn't spread? Where he is fine in almost every other way but can't go #2? Please give me a look at the future! How will I know it is time? I read posts on here where people have regrets and guilt for "killing" their beloved pet. I'm not sure I would go that far, but I can't seem to reconcile this. Where he can run around and smile and yet I have to give him a shot to stop his heart? How can that be? I don't want my last days/weeks/months with him to be a battle. Where I have to fight to get medicine in him, or kennel him up to keep my house from getting destroyed by blood, or obsessed with whether he is licking or not. Has anyone dealt with this? Can anyone give me a blow by blow, knowing my case won't be exactly the same, but hoping I can get pieces of other's experience to help ease my own. Please help. 
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kikis_mom_1118
In my case my girl stopped eating on a Friday and the week before I was having to carry her outside so she could potty. I had to put her down on Monday because she couldn't hold herself up. Just lying down. She was very quiet and peaceful no whining, crying, or upset mood. The vet gave her the injection and she was gone. Very, very painful. I'm relieved and hurt at the same time. She didn't deserve to suffer so I had to let her go.
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WIAnderson
Thank you for sharing. I have noticed he is getting a little weaker in the hips, but thought maybe that was just age. I'll continue to watch for the signs. You obviously made the right decision. Thanks again, I really appreciate it. 
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CK1991
I’m so very sorry you’re going through this. Pooh sounds like such a special boy and you sound like a devoted pet parent who is trying so hard to do the right thing by your baby. 
After my losses I learned a lot that I wished I’d known sooner. Animals will hide their pain. It’s an old instinct from not wanting to become prey. So while Pooh May seem to be okay, I would look at what he has been battling.  When a tumour becomes so large that it actually breaks the skin apart.. Oh, my dear the pain has to be so excruciating.
The other quote that I learned on this wonderful forum is “better a week early than a day too late”. We love our babies too much to want to see them suffer.  I too have read people saying they feel guilty after making that heavy decision to euthanize however guilt is all a part of grief.  It doesn’t meant that it was the wrong decision.
My thought is that Pooh is 16 now.  He’s lived with this for 3 years and I personally believe that his love for you is a big part of the reason why he’s been able to make it this far.  When dogs have been given so much love and such a wonderful home/life they want to do everything they can in return. My heart goes out to you and I feel so sad for you and your precious boy, Pooh. Please post again with an update on how you are doing. I’m not very technical but will try and attach a poem that I found very helpful because I did make the decision not to let my 2 dogs suffer and this poem gave me some peace. Hugs to you!  C41C91F7-DD9E-4389-A0B4-7C8D2CB07BE5.jpeg 
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