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MegP

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Posts: 17
Reply with quote  #1 
I had little time to make the call last night. Either put my little loved one through a second course of treatment in a pet hospital for 2-3 days and have no indication of whether he would be fine or end up back there right after, or make the call and end his amazing 16 years. This was after an emergency procedure Thursday, being discharged and then having to return Saturday. I knew if I did make the decision I’d always wonder what if he had pulled through and gotten more time. And if he died in procedure or ended up back there 2 days later, 2 weeks later, I would have killed myself for letting him suffer through it and go through all the emotional distress. My support people all suggested it was kinder to let him go, to stop fighting. I know we rarely get absolute certainty but I hate myself for betting on taking his pain away now and possibly prevent worse. I feel like I killed my best friend. I don’t know what the right choice wAs and the longer I took to decide, the worse he felt. There was no option to take him home, think abt it, get more info. I either had to put him through back to back anasthesia and procedures or let him go. I’ve never had such a hard choice. He hid pain so well from me. That cat would have walked to the ends of the earth with all the pain in the world if he thought it’s what I wanted, he was some other kind of animals not like any other cat or pet I’ve ever had. To make matters worse, bc he was in such distress I didn’t get to feel connected to him, to feel like we had a real goodbye. I did my best but he wAsnt all there in the moment. I hope it was right bc I can’t live w myself if it wasn’t.
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AWM

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Reply with quote  #2 
MegP

You made the right decision. I had to make the call yesterday for my cat of 18 years. I too questioned if I did the right thing. The more I think about it, the more I understand that your and my decision came from a place of love and kindness. I know both of our cats know this. As hard as it is, try to remember all of the wonderful days you had with your kitty for 16 years instead of the few rough ones at the end. When I do this, it brings tears, but some of them are "happy" tears. I have talked to many friends and family today. All of them knew my cat. I have shared stories with them, they have shared their memories with me, and it has really helped me. I hope you can begin to know that you did the right thing, and it was because you loved your kitty.
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MegP

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Reply with quote  #3 
Thank you so much, I’m trying very hard to hold onto that. It’s very hard, the mind wants to go to the dark places of what ifs. I so hope he understood and I wish I knew he was at peace w going when we did it. We love them so much and want to protect them and it feels terrible when we can’t take away the pain for them or truly convince them it’s all ok. I’m trying so hard not to go back over what I should have done, been calmer while he was in the room to give him more peace, decided quicker to save some suffering. Found a way to have him euthanized at home. So many things. Mostly I miss him like crazy and no amount of time would ever have been enough w him. He was the perfect cat unlike any other pet I’ve ever had, the loss is just so big.

I’m so sorry to hear abt your fur baby. That’s awesome you got 18 years. Did you get some time to make the decision? It sounds like you’re doing well w making meaning and focusing on the positives and the good memories
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pannklaus

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Posts: 359
Reply with quote  #4 
I am so very sorry about your loss and the anxiety and uncertainty you feel about your decision.  I have had to make the same decision several times and it is very difficult to make.  But when your beloved pet is suffering, I think it is a gift of love to end that suffering even though it brings on the grief and questioning which you are going through now.  It is common at the very end of life for the pet to not seem to be fully with you.  Try not to focus on those final hours but on the overall life you had together, although I know that it is very hard to do.

If others around you thought it was time to let your baby go, then it was.  There is a feeling of "playing God" when you have to make the decision.  But animals are very good at hiding their suffering so they may be in much more pain than they show.  

I am glad that you have come to this forum. We understand the grief and anxiety you are going through.  Nothing can make it go away but we are here with you as we all grieve for the loss of our fur babies.

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Patsy
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AWM

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Posts: 12
Reply with quote  #5 
I didn't have a lot of time. My kitty started going downhill on Monday. He stopped eating and drinking. I kept hoping he would start eating and drinking, but he never did. He lost so much weight so fast. Yesterday, I took him to the vet, hoping for a miracle, but knowing that I was going to have to make a tough decision. He was in late stage renal failure. The vet gave me some treatment options. They were not good. I made the call and ended up here.
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Jenniferhiggs1221

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Posts: 64
Reply with quote  #6 
So very sorry for your loss but your story ds so similar to mine and what im going through right now..i just had to put my precious baby reeses an orange tabby down last wednesday june 5 .my life has been unbearable since..it all happened so quicky because he had just been fine but i came home last friday may 31 to find him under my porch crying and unable to walk..i immidiatly took him to his vet who did xrays and saw his back right ankle was broken but where broken at the bone was kinda ate away so there was no fixing it..they would have to ampuate it the following monday..i kept him home all weekend in a cage like reccomended. And gave him his pain meds eveey six hours to get through til his surgery monday..took him then but the vet called me couple hours later saying he was anemic and would need blood transfusion first and he still wasnt using other leg..they didnt know why.had to take him to emergency vet for transfusiin that night but when i got there they discivered from previous xray his left leg femur bone was also broken!!i was so mad his vet hadnt seen this in the xray before..and this vet was suggesting me puttinh him down because he had alot going on with him..i said absolutly not and took him back home with me..i took off work next day..tuesday to call around different vet hospitals that would do the blood transfusion first..then amputate right leg and surgery on his right leg to put in a plate and fix the break..meanwhile im having to watch my baby suffer im pain shaking all over from the pain and unablw to move.i found one and scheduled to have him checked in wednesday to start on everyhing.when we got there they gave him more pain meds so could take xrays to make sure he was ok everywhere else before they proceeded.vet come back soon after to say he had cancer and a huge mass on his liver..with that being said i shouldnt put hin through more because he still wouldnt b around long after.and also the surgeon wouldnt want to do the surgery because of the diagnosis.the vet pretty much said the best thing for him was to end his suffering.they had finally got him so sedated he wasnt in pain at the time and my only other choice would be to take him back home let pain meda wear off and watch himsuffer more.i cried and cried unconsolably until i said ok because i couldnt watch him b in pain anymore..he had layed there with two broke legs for five days and he had went downhill from that even though he was still eating and drinking even in all the pain he was in.i had promised him day before we went i wouldnt let him suffer anymore..hardest decision i ever made.they brought him to me one last time to tell him goodbye and i held him as long as i could but was crying my eyes out talking to him and he was so sedated i hated seeing him like that and seeing it in his eyes how out of it he was.i handed him back and went to the bathroom to throw myself on the floor crying.my huaband come got me and said lets go..i felt deep remorse for my decision immediatly after and feel i made the wrong choice..i had to make it so quick it just wasnt fair..i hate myself for it and have so much regret with what if he could have got surgery and got better?nobody really knows how things will really turn out..he may have been fine after but he had been in so much pain i couldnt let him suffer anymore..i have what if myself to death since then and i will never be able to let it go.he was my baby and he loved me so much i feel like i let him down..all i wanted was him ti get better but no more pain..i feel horrible..i just went and picked up his remains yesterday.he was cremated.i have cried my eyea out since wednesday and dont know what to do with myself wihout him..he was such a huge part of my life.ill never know if i made the right decision and i want to know hes ok and forgives me..im going through so much right now
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MegP

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Posts: 17
Reply with quote  #7 
Thank you all so much for sharing. I go through cycles abt every hour and I come here when I get desperate and anxious and guilty again. It’s helpful to hear others stories, the nuances that make it hard to make the decision. Where the internal battle is and not knowing. I hate that I didn’t even have a diagnosis, They weren’t sure. In my head, that’s such grounds for he could have been better and had more time and I robbed him of that. But I know I have to play the flip side of that coin. It was like flipping a coin on my most loved ones life. Another realization I came to, is that I would have never stopped to question doing the procedure until my husband made me pause and think abt that flip side of the coin. I would have done in it a heartbeat, my thought was so whatever you can to fix him and then we see what exactly this is and whether it will happen again/continue or whether it was a one time issue that just needed fixing. I hate that there was any chance that it could have been resolved. He was 15/16 years old, had high blood pressure, Hyper thyroid but we had been managing those fairly well. He’d had terrible UTIs earlier this year, but thought they were done. What if he could have had more time. Did I end it too early? I can’t possibly know. But I’m scared that will haunt me forever. Everyone’s telling me it’s kinder to take the safe route and prevent possible pain. It’s just not sitting w me. I keep coming back to it.
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Jenniferhiggs1221

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Posts: 64
Reply with quote  #8 
I feel exactly the same way..the regret is killing me..i wanted reeses here with me as long as possible which is why i wanted him to have the surgeries..and why i took him to another vet when the other reccommended putting him down..but the pain he was going through was killing me..i remember looking in his eyes the night before and asking him..what do u want me to do reeses?and he looked at me and sterted crying in pain agian.thats when i promised him i wouldnt let him go through anothet night in pain because i felt it was selfish for me to keep making him wait for me to get him the help ne needed.i was hopeful taking him in the next day that they would do the transfusion and the ampuationa and the surgery on his other leg.the whole time he was shaking so bad from the pain i just wanted to take his place..but after the vet did xrays on his upper body and told me of the tumor..masses and cancer i was scared to make him go through everythinv and then pass shortly after.but what if he didnt? What if he would have been around longer than they thought?thats the guilt im dealing with now and will never go away.he was my baby..always had been like my child and i feel like i let him down. I just wanted him to get better so bad and im in and out of stages of grief..going back and forth with sadnesa and anger..im so mad at everybody right now and cant help it..especially mad at the vet for making me make the decision that took my baby away from me..and mad at the previous vet who didnt see his other leg was broken on the first day and still didnt realize it til o took him to the second vet who pointed it out.u can believe i have called and told them what i think!!! Im just mad about the whole situation and its not fair he had to suffer the way he did.i was hia mom and tried my best to always give him the best life i could so why did it have to end this way with him??for some reason the mornings are hardest for me as soon as i wake up i feel tremendous sadness not having him here and about my decision
I felt so alone about my feelings until i read yours and other storiea..i just loved him so much
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MegP

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Posts: 17
Reply with quote  #9 
I can relate, I literally shot up from bed this morning in a state of panic, started crying, started texting everyone I could to talk bc it was soo hard. Im better now, probably bc I’m exhausted but I’ve been talking it out over and over and that helps me process. My husband is the opposite, talking abt it makes it worse for him. Is it weird that I wish we had euthanasia for people, only bc then this would be normal, we would have a protocol for how to make these decisions, there would be an algorithm for deciding. 50 years from now they will look at this like the Stone Age - “you just let owners arbitrarily decide?”. I wish medicine would hurry up and advance. I don’t like being the decision maker over someone’s life, esp when I’m not qualified. I wish the docs had to decide and there was a panel of 3, maybe then I could weigh in. Someone said to me and I believe this, would there ever be a time I would feel right abt euthanasia for my pet? I’m scared to say I would always hope for a chance. My little guy was amazing at charading his pain, his only sign was gently pulling away from touch but my vet said he had labored breathing from the stress of how much pain he was in. Ugh, I don’t think there is any way this doesn’t suck or that we ever feel right. I guess the whole idea of preventing pain means you’re never getting certainty bc otherwise they’d be in pain and then you failed anyway.
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Jenniferhiggs1221

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Posts: 64
Reply with quote  #10 
Your right and i dont think we should have to make decisions about literally putting our pets lives in our hands.its not fair when theyre the ones looking to us to take care of them and the vets are just so ok about throwing the option to you or making you feel like your making the wrong decision if not..that hurts bad because the what ifs are steadily comming in..and its a harf thing to live with.i literally stayed sick to my stomach the whole time i was going through this with reeses and didnt eat for five whole days becauae it didnt feel right to eat when reeses was going through everything and especialy after putting him to sleep because i felt i took my babys life and mad it ended up that way..i am still emailing the vet letting them know how i dont feel the decision was right but at the same time i think i should stop and let it go because what good is it going to do now?i think being faced with having to make decision is harder on losing a pet than the pet passing away on its own.i also made the decision i dont want anothet pet because i dont ever want to go through this again..and no pet could ever compare to my rebear.he was one of a kind and i used to tell him he was the only cat for me and i meant it
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MegP

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Posts: 17
Reply with quote  #11 
I like vets feedback, they are objective and have most the facts. Emotions certainly cloud is, I wish it was more collaborative. I did a lot of reading on the internet today abt euthanasia. I came across an article w quotes from vets and techs abt their experience w euthanasia, some were helpful, others were not. I tried to find it for you but couldn’t. The one thing that stood out to me is they sometimes have a better perspective on when to let go for the sake of the animal, who is truly their patient - not ya and when they can tell that the owners are blocked by grief and anxiety and probably not making smart choices. I wish for honesty, I’d rather they tell me. I hate that my experience was so up in the air, flipping a coin would have been abt as useful. Which infuriated me abt making a decision on a life I hold precious. Anyways, I can’t eat and I’m a chronic emotional eater, but this has taken things to a whole new level. I’ve had a donut and crackers today. I went outside to be in the place my little guy loved (sometimes I need to be there and sometimes I can’t be there) and the sun was bright, blue sky, perfect day and I was pissed. Why should today be such a beautiful day if he can’t be here to experience it, I don’t want to experience it without him, screw this day. He deserves it, not me.
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Jenniferhiggs1221

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Posts: 64
Reply with quote  #12 
I completly understand how you feel.i hadnt ate hardly anything since he got hurt but then monday when he went to other vet and they found out other leg was also broken i couldnt eat anymore.id get sick if i tried..since then i couldnt eat anything. Just drink coffee in morning and that was it..once he had passed away wednesday i wouldnt even think about eating because i felt i took his life away and if he wasnt eating i wasnt gonna eat either because he loved eating..so i refused to eat at all..my husband was very mad i wasnt eating but i didnt care.finally it caught up with me yesterday and when i went to work i almost passed out so i had to give in..and i drfinatly feel the same about the weather.its been raining here off and on since but when it clears up and the sun is out i get sad because i know he would be laying in his little spots cleaning himself like he always did enjoying his day and i dont want to be outside enjoying it because i know he wont ever be able to so ive pretty much stayed inside in my bedroom
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Lrogers424

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Posts: 172
Reply with quote  #13 
Your story resonates so much with many of us here.  It is so hard to make that final decision for your beloved companion but you did do the right thing for him.  They do hide the pain so well.  We lost our sweet 12 year old pup last summer to urinal cancer.  She only showed signs of illness 2 weeks before her diagnosis which was terminal.  She must have been suffering so much, but was just happy and upbeat as always...ready for any adventure or just a snuggle.  Our decision too, was heartbreaking as outwardly she was the picture of health.  Yet she could no longer pass urine and the only surgical option was over $10,000 and would only have given her 2-3 months longer; just as long as it would have taken to recover from the surgery.  I loved her too much to see her suffer and would rather bear the pain to spare her any more.

There are no "good" options in cases like yours and so many others, but we make a promise to protect and care for them.  Unfortunately, letting them go is part of that care and compassion.  The grieving process is different for everyone, but it is a struggle and sometimes your heart feels like it will never heal.  I have learned to accept Daisy's death and be so grateful for her life.  I was so lucky to have her in my life and with such great joy, comes such devastation when they depart from this world.  I will tell you that there is still life, hope and love out there.  I have since opened our home and more importantly my heart, to another dog.  She has helped tremendously and is such a love.

I hope you find peaceful moments as you work through your loss.  We are all here to help and support you.


__________________
Lori, Daisy's Mom and now Luna's Mom
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MegP

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Posts: 17
Reply with quote  #14 
That helps. It’s been eye opening to me just how well they hide their pain. I will err on the side of more caution next time. I thought I was already super intuitive but they do masquerade it so well. I think I’m coming to peace w making the decision. But now I’m stuck on how unfair his ending was. We live in a rural place and of course it was after normal vet hours. So it was an hour ride in the car when he was in terrible pain and of course he’s scared of the car. Then we were in the cat hospital for 3 hours getting info, deliberating. Four hours that he was scared and in pain. And I hate that I couldn’t take it away or make sure he knew that I would make sure he was ok - bc I couldn’t. I hate suffering and I hate thinking that he did suffer. I wish I knew that we needed to do it and could have made it more peaceful and quicker for him. I feel like i failed him. But I also know that nothing would ever be enough, he was too loving and sweet. No death would ever feel fair enough. No amount of time would ever be enough. I wish they could all die peacefully in their sleep or on their own time in their own place. I guess I’m struggling w feeling helpless and feeling like his last moments weren’t good enough. I feel like I failed him even though I know that my options at that point were limited. It just really sucks
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Memoza

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Posts: 6
Reply with quote  #15 
I understand the pain the anxiety the guilty part. All those feelings that we feel after our love one passed away. I had to leave my lex alone because I need to work. I feel so guilty because of that. He passed away when I was at work I used to go home during lunch time to checked on him. That day he was already dead. Another horrible situation that I had to face in live. My baby 17 years wasn't with me anymore. I lost my partner I lost my dog. All that nice life that I had I don't have it anymore. My dog was my
support. He was there for me in the most difficult moments of my life. I love my baby with all my heart and I miss him everyday.
I completely understand how you feel we all are the same boat. We lost our babies.
God bless all of you. I love you!
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