Comments on MUTTerings: Natural vs Euthanasia

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Megan - 274235   Wilmington, DE

1/6/2014 5:47:07 PM

I didn't pick the natural way on my hamster sometimes I regret it while I know I did the right thing by putting her down

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Phee   Bardonia, NY

9/21/2013 7:43:55 PM

I have done this both ways. I prefer having a choice if I can. My "previous" girl spent a weekend in pain and finally died in her bed at my feet. The death itself was peaceful but I wish I'd know about emergency vets. I'd have been there in an instant. Now I'm facing "the decision" again. My girl is not what she once was but still enough herself that the thought is agonizing. Wishing for a better way...

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Eileen - 249708   Port Perry, ON

8/24/2013 4:01:40 AM

This was a very help article especially when a tough decision has to be made.

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skiw9748   Hartford, AL

12/9/2012 9:24:45 AM

I agree, comfort & dignity come first !

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dwiley620   Tigard, OR

8/26/2012 2:19:49 AM

I chose the "natural way" for one my senior cats and had the same miserable experience. My poor little friend did not drift off to sleep and pass away. It was at night so all my cats and I laid in bed so as to comfort Marmalade in his transition, or so I thought. He seemed anxious, afaid, and in pain prior to his final moments. Looking back I know that my keeping him close was for ME; I was not ready for him leave. I have not done that before and i will not do it again! We are lucky to have better options. I will continue to hold my little friends as a vet helps to make the last moments free of anxiety. I will have time to talk with them and hold them, and won't have guilt that I chose me instead of them. This would also be my choice for my own end of life; quality over quantity. Love ya Marm!

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J - 258221   

8/3/2012 11:12:34 AM

I just lost my little boy and wrote the story but it didn't upload and I can't bring myself to rewrite. He passed naturally and I am very happy to have been with him- in bed and comforting him in the last mins. I will never ever forget it as seeing anyone pass is not something that fades. But it was peaceful. It depends on so many things how one handels the end. The dog, the dogs illness, how the dog manages that illness, your relationship with him or her, the level of pain and so on. I don't think there is a firm yes or no answer here.

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Madie~hunter,ruby, and the angels   The best place on Earth, TX

8/2/2012 7:48:53 AM

We had to put our dog Sandy down because she had so many cysts and she smelled like rotting meat. She was so pitiful. She didn't like the new puppy we had gotten either because of course he wanted to play but she could just barely get up. And I remember one time when my mom was laying on the couch and she called sandy over but sandy walked up and down the hall looking for her and she couldn't find her for a goo 5-10 minutes. It was so sad. I remember how much she loved to howl, and she loved getting into trouble too. If you accidently left her in a room with the door closed she'd tear the carpet up trying to get back to you. I miss her so much...

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Janet   Bethlehem, PA

6/4/2012 7:01:39 AM

my pet's comfort & dignity come first!

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Brandy   Athens, GA

5/14/2012 5:12:40 PM

I was fortunate to have my wonderful dog Milla for almost 14 years and thought that there was absolutely no way that I could ever "put her down". I had her last day in my mind and knew that it would be devastating enough to lose her much less to have to make that tough decision. Milla started to have seizures, had a heart murmur, and lost an eye. On a Friday night just this past January, she went into heart failure and could not breath. We took her to the vet and they offered some suggestions for her but as I looked at her and held her, I realized she looked so tired and as hard as it was for me to admit, she had just had enough. My worst fear had come true and i was having to make this decision. I chose to be with her and hold her as she went peacefully to the rainbow bridge, and let her know she had been the best dog/ companion ever. It was difficult, no doubt about it, but I am so thankful that it all happened just as it did.

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JUDY   DUBUQUE, IA

4/13/2012 8:07:51 PM

I faced the same situation two years ago. Sadie was 13 1/2 and had suffered from diabetes for the two previous years. The last few months, her weight began to drop, she slept all the time and then would become very restless. I promised her, when the time came, she would not suffer. One night she cried most of the night. The next day it was like she didn't know where she was. I knew it was time. I call her doctor. She could come to the house in half an hour. I layed on the livingroom floor with Sadie and my daughter took our picture. Then I wanted to be alone with her. I got an eight ounce hershey bar and fed it to her as she lay on the floor, all the time thanking her for all the happiness she gave me and telling her how much I loved her. The vet came but Sadie didn't realize she was there. I held her in my arms as her breath slipped away. And then an almost miraculous thing happened. When she died, I felt a giant surge of energy enter my chest...an experience I had never had before or after that. I truly feel it was Sadie's spirit. I have absolutely no regrets on how her death was handled. I only miss her terribly.

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Patty Ann Korob   Minneola, FL

3/8/2012 7:37:54 PM

Patty
Korob



I know your pain oh so very well! In 2006 I had to make the decision to love my precious boy BO enough to let him go after 17 wonderful loving, caring, unconditional time with him in my life!! To this day and every day I remember Bo and I at the moment of "time" felt horrible I was "putting my boy down, ending his precious life", but I knew I loved him enough to let him go and I am thankful I did. Yes, I still miss him and will always miss him, but he is in my heart and there are no regrets! You will heal, you will never forget, and you will never "replace" Pepper, but you will love your precious angels that you have now, and you will love more! Forgive yourself.....I am sure Pepper is looking upon you from Angel Heaven and admiring you and sending you lots of his "special kisses and hugs".

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Patty   Clermont, FL

3/8/2012 7:23:27 PM

Greart article - ready my reply on my facebook page.

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Kiley Rae   Omaha, NE

3/3/2012 7:34:15 AM

(cont'd)After that conversation, I left the house for the only time after he fell ill, merely for 2 hours to attend my best (human) friend's graduation party. When we returned, my beloved Old Boy was peacefully lying in his favorite spot on the floor... his big Rottweiler chest no longer rising and falling, no more gasps for air, no falling asleep only to wake himself back up. He was finally at peace. He chose to go when I wasn't there. And I understood. I had a feeling I'd likely return to find my Old Boy no longer physically alive. I gently stroked his coat & held his paws. Being able to say goodbye and allow him to leave when he was ready is something I'm happy I
did.

Obviously every decision is extremely personal. My dog's death without euthanasia was the last gift I gave him, but it was because I knew it's how he wanted to go out - at home, in his comfortable/happy place, with those who love him most, and not forced to go out in the cold, busy, distracting vet's office.


I'd like to add a sidenote that my mom's GSD was recently put to sleep & I completely agree with and understood her decision for this particular dog. I've also held my 2 beloved cats (about 1½ years apart) as they were put to sleep. It was the humane thing to do in these cases.


I just wanted to say that I don't see one or the other as necessarily being better for EVERY situation. It depends on you, your pet, your emotional state (you're the one left with the guilt - your pet is fine afterward wishing you weren't so sad!), your dog's realistic health outlook, etc. Either way, losing a pet is hard, no matter which method it goes down. This was not meant to be in opposition to the article, but rather a look at the other side.

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Kiley Rae   Omaha, NE

3/3/2012 7:33:22 AM

Sorry to hear about your tough situation. Our stories parallel in some similar ways. My beloved Rottweiler (Angel Buster Dog the Great; please feel free to look him up) reached 14½ also. He'd had seizures from heartworm meds & a botched surgery at 12 that should have taken him. But he was a TOUGH dog. He just took it. He definitely slowed down in his last years. His hips weren't great, but he could still get up to eat, potty outside, etc., just not really go on epic walks.


That was OK; he was always happiest around his people anyway. Then one summer day, I came in from letting our other (now deceased) dog inside, & found him in a really awkward, strange position, in the living room corner he never ventured due to the furniture. It was completely baffling. He was basically stuck. We took him to the vet on his homemade "dog stretcher" & he had no broken bones or anything. But when we brought him home, he really took a turn for the worst.


I don't know the specific reason he got so sick, so fast, but we propose beginning organ failure & his lungs probably filled up with fluid. They don't know why. But we did know he was going to
die.

I'd like to make that part clear, because it was clear (it sounds like you couldn't have predicted how bad your situation got). My family let me make the decision on how to proceed, because he had always been (& always will be) MY dog. I cried so much, but made the choice to let him go out on his own terms, unless something more drastic happened that necessitated the need to put him out. He never reached that state. In all honesty, he was probably 1 day away from it.


In terms of my dog, he wanted to go out like a tough dog, & on his own terms. When a dog is your best friend for that long, you just know. It happened so fast, he was scared, & he needed some time to make sense of it all. He also needed me to let him go, or he would have kept fighting until his body gave out.


Friends and family visited the Old Boy to say their goodbyes. I was often over by my Old Boy comforting him, coaxing him to sleep. The death process took about 3-4 days. It WAS a process (including the part where his body "got rid of everything"). I DID get to spend some quality time with him & say everything I ever wanted him to know, etc.


Basically, I got to say goodbye to him. And he understood it. I finally, tearfully, told him that if it's his time, he should go. "I'll be fine. You are the greatest dog I ever could have dreamed of. You never let me down, and you always exceeded my expectations (etc.). I know you'll always look out for me. I don't want you to go, but it's OK. You don't have to suffer. If it's time for you to go, I want you to go. If you can fight, do it. But if not, it's OK."

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alicia   hollister, CA

3/1/2012 9:11:54 PM

So sorry 4 your loss and I am still undecided on the issue

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christine   los angeles, CA

3/1/2012 8:15:19 PM

When I was advised to euthanize my beloved companion, I told him how much I loved one him and how I never imagined he would put my words, "I'll do anything for you" to the test. Since then I've also had 1 cat who died naturally. The one commonality is that they died in my arms with my telling them how much I loved them and thanked them for being a part of my life.

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Liza   Grand Bay-Westfield, NB

3/1/2012 5:16:49 PM

I am sorry for your loss. Thank you for being brave enough to share such a personal experience. I too have experienced losing my fur babies both naturally and through euthanasia. Either way, it's never easy to say goodbye, but I think in the end you really have to consider what is the best choice for your best friend.

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Rita   Millersburg, OH

3/1/2012 6:09:09 AM

It certainly depends upon the situation. I've been through both, although my Lab, who died "naturally" died relatively quickly. He had an enlarged heart and was having a rough day (it was summer and it was hot). I took him to the vet, who gave him oxygen and worked with him for probably an hour. There really wasn't more that he could do, so I took by beloved friend home. I got him out of the car and placed him in the shade of a tree. Before I could even go get him water, he took a deep breath and he was gone. It was like he had waited to die until he was home. I have to believe it was meant to be. I had lost dogs at age 9, age 10, and age 11 .... I thought for sure my Lab would make it to 12. He died the night before his 12th birthday -- God telling me that He is in control, and it's O.K.

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Galadriel   Lothlorien, ME

2/29/2012 11:22:02 PM

So sad, but I don't think one can say euthanasia or natural death is better. It depends on the dog and it depends on the person. It depends on the person a LOT! My dog went naturally and I wouldn't have had it any other way. She had a seizure that paralysed her and she died 2 days later, peacefully in bed. Even though she couldn't move she was comforted by my presence. I think it was alright for her but heart wrenching for me. It's not easy seeing the last moments of our loved ones, especially when they're in pain. I firmly believe it's easier for the pet than for the owner and sometimes it's just better to avoid the heart wrench of prolonging suffering on both sides. It just depends on what type of person you are and how much heart ache you can bear.

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Gayla Miller   Hannibal, MO

2/29/2012 10:13:07 PM

This article comes at a perfect time. I am struggling with how and when to let go of my Max. He is 15yrs old and even tho he still rules the house, he cant get up without help. He has lost 40lbs an arthritis is very bad. Still he eats well, and is taking meds for diarria. I have asked my Vet to tell me when it is time. But my health is failing too. Max and I have been thru a lot. And there are times when he seems so ok. I wonder why I even think of the end. I have had to put down cats before, but Max is my first dog. I lost a baby and he came into my life. Makes it even harder to let go. I also would like to spend a day with just him and me. Maybe take a ride. lay him out for a combing. whisper in his ears.

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