View Full Version : Help - we have to put our dog to sleep
03-19-2008, 11:26 AM
I just went to the vet yesterday with our 12 year old laborador. She has terrible arthritis and hip dysplasia. The vet told me that there is nothing else we could do for her and that we need to consider euthenasia.
We have a 3 1/2 year old at home who absolutely LOVES her dog. How do we talk to her about this? When I told her that Elly is very old and sick and that her legs hurt her, my daughter's response was "give her some medicine to make her feel better."
This is not a conversation I wanted to have!
03-19-2008, 03:54 PM
I am really sorry to hear about your dog. I hade to make that decision for my dog a couple of years ago and that was extremely hard for ME and I didn't even have children. It sounds like you are in a very difficult situation because I am sure you want what's best for your dog, yet you don't want to break your daughter's heart. Tough one! If I were you, I would just try and explain it to her as if she will be in a better and happier place & with other puppies. I am not sure how much she will understand but you sure have your work cut out for you. I wish you the best. If this is something you are going to do, I would take a bunch of pictures with your daughter and her dog that way she will always have something to remember her by, like a little photo album. Just a suggestion.
03-19-2008, 03:58 PM
Oh my heavens! I thought I was the only one. Now granted my daughter is 10 years old and my Rotty is almost 11. My "baby girl" has the same thing your dog has and we are faced with the fact that it is getting close to the end for her. We thought around Christmas was it when she couldn't get herself outside to potty. My dog is 135 and I am pregnant with my 2nd due on April 20th. She would get herself outside in the snow and then her hips would lock up and we would have to gurney (adult gurney found online) inside. Very difficult between pregnant me and my hubby. I wanted to try the "wheelchair" thing for her back legs but before I could get it online - she fell forward off the step of the porch injuring her front shoulder. The vet said no possibility of her using it now - her front legs have beared the weight for so long - they are not reliable to use for wheelchair. She was given 2 years to "live" when she was only 6. At the age of 8 when they took x-rays they were shocked to know she still walked and got around. She has absolutely no fluids left in the hip but she still moves. The vets still at almost 11 cannot believe she is still mobile even if it takes her time. I cry everytime I think about loosing her. I had her first and she was only 6 months old when my daughter was born. My daughters father and I argued constantly over the dog and when my daughter was 6 months old and the dog was 1 - we moved out and in with my grandmother. To my 6 month old she was scared and frightened to her new surrounding but the dog was familiar and made her smile. The dog slept right next to her for naps or nighttime. They are best buddies! I don't know how to raise a toddler without this dog. She was my daughters main source of entertainment. My daughter still at the age of 10 cannot play outside in the snow without her. It crushes me to see the dog so wanting to go outside with my daughter. Her mind is still there and it makes me feel like I am loosing a child. Many don't understand and the vet thinks I need to go to therapy (which I thought was silly). To my surprise I am not alone and there are therapist who helps people and children get over the loss of pets. My daughter is much older than yours but my daughter was 5.5 when she knew her "sister" (the dog) wouldn't live much longer because of her bad legs. From then on my daughter really "grew" up and stopped pushing the dog to do things she could no longer do. My rotty loves children to death - she is the most gentle thing in the world and so many friends and family are also devestated to know that I will loose her soon. It is hard to get them to realize that when the time comes - I don't want to talk about it. Thankfully my dog's health perked up after the holidays but it is only a matter of time. I allowed my daughter to get another puppy so that when we lost the "big" girl my daughter would still have her new playmate and I figured it may soften the blow. My heart not only breaks for my loss but my daughters too. I also figured that the old dog could teach the new puppy the ropes! But so far the only thing my ailing dog has taught the puppy was how to beg and devour food/treats. My daughter was upset at the thought of who would take care of her in Heaven but sadly yet thankfully I was able to tell her that my pop-pop (her great g-pop) would look out for her. She seems ok with it for now but the time has not come yet. A weird side note but I started to creamate my cats a few years ago instead of burrying them and it makes me feel better. I have their ashes in the pretty wooden boxes that our local place gives and it makes me feel like I still have them. My daughter agreed that even though my childhood cat Boots had to be put to sleep - I can still hold him when I want too. They make necklaces to put ashes in (mostly for humans but I am sure it works for all). I thought I was lucky to have my daughter old enough to understand the impending loss of our dog however sometimes I think she may have been better off being little. Little ones bounce back much better - they cry and mourn for a bit but then when they see another pet - there attention turns right around. Especially if you consider a new pet in the future - that will make the loss much better - well maybe not for you but at least for your daughter. Hope this helps and sorry it is so long.
03-24-2008, 11:56 PM
I am going through the same problem now too. We have a 7 1/2 yr old rotty. Last month I found out he has lymphoma and its pretty much all over his body. after finding out we decided to put him down and it was killing us. I have a 16 yr old son and 2 1/2 yr old daughter. This dog is the sweetest and friendliest animal I ever owned and i have had a couple. My son was crushed along with the rest of us but my husband and I gave this dog to him for his 9th birthday but of course the dog clinged to me and always follows me everywhere. Well, we couldnt put him down. The vet assured us he is in no pain so we opted for chemo and steroids which I give him everyday. Now 6 weeks later we are stuck with the same decision. We knew it wasnt going to cure him but other then some extra panting he didnt look sick at all so it was hard to do it then. But now he is starting to break down, a couple of days ago he started limping and his breathing is becoming labored so unforunately I feel we are at the end and I know my dog is scared I see it in his eyes. My son has been preparing himself for this as my husband and I have but my daughter doesnt really understand but she knows he has a boo boo and we keep getting his medicane from the vet. when we take him my daughter gets scared for him so I try if I can not to take her so she dont relate the doctor in a bad way. But to me when I finally have to do it I guess the best way to tell her would be that he had to go live with his mommy and daddy where he can run and play all day in the park with other dogs and animals. My daughter loves him very much and whenever we are out and she sees dogs she says she wants Rocky. I know shes going to miss him. As far as for my son I wish I could take away his pain cause I know its really hurting him but unfortunately it is a part of life and at 16 you have to hope he understands everything we have done just to make him comfortable and to get a little more time with him. within the last couple of weeks I think Rocky was catered to more and he was always hugged and kissed but with me I would hug him just a little tighter and tell him I love him more cause I know he understands it. Well I feel your pain and its not easy. Good luck
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