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Unread 02-18-2013, 07:23 PM   #1
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Default Times are tough

Hi everyone,
I just want to say that it has been very comforting to read about other dog owners struggling with senior issues. Our Bichon is 15 and times are very hard for her. She is mostly blind and deaf, withdrawn, sleeps all day, up all night crying, barely eating, pooping in her sleep, etc. Her health tho is pretty good, blood work is perfect. She just seems so sad and confused. Caring for her is difficult, I am up all night with her. The doctor wants to give her some Xanax to help her sleep. I am afraid to give her meds, she is my baby and I don't her to have a bad reaction. I fear that on meds she could die in her sleep. She truly is a fraction of the dog she once was, it is so sad to see her decline like this. I have tried giving her supplements, but she will not take any thing...not even a treat.
She only eats every few days at this point. My question is, how do you know what their quality of life is? She doesnt even want us to comfort her anymore. I have read that senior citizens sleep a lot to escape mental exhaustion, avoid pain, and because they are depressed. Could it be the same for dogs?
Sorry this is so long, it definitely helps to talk about it!

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Unread 02-18-2013, 07:58 PM   #2
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Sorry to hear about your dog. Yes, I do believe dogs can become withdrawn and sleep a lot for reasons including depression, avoiding pain etc.

I understand your concerns about trying the meds, but it does sound as if she is in some distress at night currently. At 15, if your worst fear materialised and she did die in her sleep, it would be some comfort to know that she died without pain or distress. Chat to your vet about your fears for the meds, I am assuming he / she believes there is a good chance they could provide relief and only a slim chance of a severe reaction.

It is always very difficult to decide when is the right time to allow a pet to leave us, and there is no right or wrong answer. However, I think you as the person who knows your dog best, are in the best position to assess quality of life. If there appears to be no pleasure in the things she used to enjoy such as eating, interacting with you etc then it may be an indication that you need to consider making a very hard call. This just never gets any easier

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Unread 02-18-2013, 08:01 PM   #3
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Susan11, first off welcome to the Forum! Many of us have been in your shoes with senior dogs. It's never easy. You will know when it's time to make that difficult decision. If your girl is just old, then that's a diffrent story. It's ok to get old. We will all be there some day. If your girl is in pain, then maybe it's time to talk to your vet. My Husband and I had to make the hard decision in November to put down our old man Casey. It broke our hearts, but we did what was right for him. No one can ever tell you when it's time. It's a decision you and your family need to make. Sorry this is the first time you have posted. Please understand that this Forum will always be there for you, whatever your decision might be. If your vet has suggested Xanax, then maybe you should try that. For my Husband and I, it didn't matter that our old guy was just old. It was ok for him to just sleep most of the day away, and only go out a few times to do his business. When his health started to decline, well that was a different story. We could not stand to see our boy in pain, and it was just his time. I know this post probably won't help you, but please understand that may of us have been in your shoes.
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Unread 02-18-2013, 08:04 PM   #4
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Susan11, I see I cross posted with Kaos.... excellent post Kaos...

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Unread 02-18-2013, 10:55 PM   #5
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Thank you for your kind words, it does help to know that others have gone through similar experiences. No matter how you cut it, it is hard to see them get old!

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Unread 02-19-2013, 07:37 AM   #6
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I'm really sorry to hear you are going through this with your senior dog. It's very sad and very hard to deal with.

You are the one that knows your dog and how it is coping. I recently lost Arny, god bless his soul, who was 15.

Dee ad Kaos have give you great advice already, I can only echo what they have said.

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Unread 02-19-2013, 11:49 AM   #7
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I ditto what everyone else has said. It's VERY hard when our furbabies reach that point. We had to PTS Lucy in October. I held her head at the end....
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Unread 04-14-2013, 09:19 PM   #8
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Make her comfortable as possible. Try feeding her chicken and rice as a main diet. Put newspapers underneath a blanket when she pees in her sleep. She is old you know and she probably had an amazing life with you. Good luck to you and your dog. Hope this helps.

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Unread 04-15-2013, 02:21 AM   #9
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Even though my Sadie is still pretty young, I already worry about what her end life will be and hoping I can do what is best for her. I only know that if I have to put her down, that I will be holding her in my arms and hoping that she feels how much I love her.
Do what you can to make her as comfortable as possible .
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Unread 04-15-2013, 05:06 AM   #10
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If your dog has impaired vision, don’t Change the location of furnishings or Don't add any new obstacles. Use tiny gates as protecting barriers at step thresholds. Never leave him outdoors unattended.

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