When To Say Goodbye to Your Dog
The reality is that unlike your children or anyone else you’ve helped raise and take care of your dog will probably not outlive you. Even more sobering, you may end up facing a difficult decision about when to end the life of a precious friend or family member.
Some dogs pass peacefully on their own, but in many cases the will to survive keeps a dog going on past the point of experiencing a good quality of life. Recent advances in veterinarian medicine are nothing short of amazing, remember that just because you can prolong his life doesn’t mean it’s in your dog’s best interest to do so.
Most of the factors around aging and death are beyond our control, but the one thing you’re able to do for your dog is alleviate undue pain & suffering, arguably no other decision you make about your dog will be as difficult as the one is to euthanize, but in so many cases it is the only humane option.
So ask yourself the following questions. Does your dog have a terminal illness? Is your dog in the kind of pain that cannot be significantly alleviated by medication? Can treatment improve his quality of life or simply maintain a poor quality of life? Can you afford treatment? End-of-life care can run in the thousands of dollars, and most people end up paying credit card debt well after the pet is gone.
Is your dog to old, has he lost most of his bodily functions? If he can no longer stand up or get downstairs, defecate, and urinate on his own, the quality of life is pretty poor.
Does he still want to eat?? Once a dog loses his appetite he is signaling he’s close to the end.
Are his gums pink? When gums go white, your pet is not getting enough oxygen.
Is it in his best interest to extend his life, or are you extending his life for yourself? This last point is the most difficult one for most of us to sort out, but it well may be the most relevant
I lost both of my pets this year and being with them at the end was the best decision I ever made because I know they are at peace and crossed over the rainbow bridge.