Tough decisions, final day is next Tuesday.
January 7, 2013 8:45pm CST
My old boy Jazz, I had to figure out what to do with him as of last month. I was finding it harder to handle him, with his weight, and refusals to go places in the house. I discovered cataracts in his eyes last month, and that explained why he hesitated to go down the stairs, especially in the dark. He couldn't see anything then. So, with the days getting more challenging, I was still thinking about putting him down. But then I got to thinking about the option of finding him a home to live out the rest of his days. I posted ads, got some rude responses from several people even though I'd explained my situation to them. I even came to find out that there was hospice care for dogs. But that wasn't to be an option for him. The hospice owner was rude, crass and very disrespectful of my situation. She was downright nosy and stated that I only wanted my dog gone so I didn't have to pay to put him down. She was so wrong. I would have broken my heart horribly to have to put Jazz down. Being the first dog I've owned on my own, it would be devastating. I was contacted by someone who knew of a rescue, but after talking briefly, I never heard back from her. I had received an email from a private home, but after a discussion with her partner, she decided not to take Jazz on. That was ok though. I had been going back and forth with another rescue, and the owner of this rescue seemed to be the only one who really understood the situation. She runs a palliative care home for senior dogs. When I told her about the issues Jazz has, she said that he would learn from the other dogs how to use a ramp, and would do well with other dogs his age. After worrying for a long time about what I would do with Jazz, a final decision has been made. He leaves next Tuesday for the long trip out to the palliative care home, about a 4 hour drive away from here. He will live out the rest of his days there, in a relatively stress free environment, and hopefully will be happy living with other dogs who are like him. He will receive vet care as well, even though it's probably too late to do anything to help him, but they will make him comfortable for whatever time he has left. I'm hoping to get updates from the home about him, not that I really want to know when he passes on, but I'll still need to know this. It's a hard decision to make, but I think this is the best one. He wont have me around when he goes to cross the rainbow bridge, but he'll have others who care about him surrounding him. I will miss him terribly, and will never forget him. It's going to be different not having him in the house.
8 Jan 13
I can't even think how difficult must have been for you to make this decision. I am sure you realize how much he will suffer because he doesn't know the surroundings and now that you know he doesn't see, you imagine how difficult it will be for him do adjust to the new situation. But he will suffer the most because YOU are not there! He's been with you for so much time and now he must learn to live with other dogs and other people. I don't know, you must know better if this is what he deserves. My friend's dog was unable to go downstairs for her last year, so my friend carried her in her arms three times a day all the way up and down the stairs. We live at the second floor in a block of flats and there is no elevator in the building. My friend is no more than 55 kilos and the dog was about 20 kilos. So you can figure it out.
8 Jan 13
My dog is 110lbs, not even the stronger people in my house can lift him let alone carry him. I rescued a dog last year that was about 70lbs, couldn't even carry him to the car on my own. So carrying him is in no way an option, especially with the back problems I have, one fall and I will be paralyzed. When I got him 3 years ago, he was already a senior dog. He adjusted just fine to a new environment. He adapts to different people, I live in a house where people come and go, dogs have come and gone, and nothing phases him at all. It's not like he's going to a private home where he'd be the only dog, he'll be with other dogs his age, he'll be able to act like a dog again. This is the best decision for him, his health, safety and the safety of myself as well.
9 Jan 13
As I said, you are the one who knows his needs better. I understand it was a difficult decision for you, but if you are happy with it, I think it is OK. You are right, you must take care of your safety and health first. Have you thought about getting another dog? Maybe a rescue?
• United States
8 Jan 13
I know you have been wrestling with this for some time now. I just don't know what I would do in a situation like this. But, now that you've made your decision, I wish all the best for both you and Jazz. It will be quite an adjustment for you when he has been moved. God bless.