Rescue Journal

sucking life goes on

Alison  ·  Jan. 23, 2007

and dexter is having trouble breathing at rest. i had him to the vets when he first came in cuz i was concerned that he became so short of breath with exertion and thought maybe the cancer had spread into his lungs. the vet said no, his lungs were clear but labs do have this weird progressive autoimmune disease that causes paralysis first on one side of the larynx and then the other. like i cared, cuz progressive diseases will likely not progress as fast as his cancer anyway. except maybe it is progressing faster. he is going to the vets on friday for sedation and a quick look in there to rule out any funky tumours...but if the vet is right, we have 2 choices, an expensive major surgery with a specialist (and i don't care about the expensive part) or euthanasia. ok, sooo...dexter has a massive malignant tumour on his hip, he certainly does not want anyone goofing around cutting his throat open and making him feel like crap while he heals, he is old and already not healthy.....but, he is not near done playing with his balls or goofing in the freaking pond yet either. grhhhh, geez dex, what am i supposed to do?



well...we will see what the vet finds on friday, if it is a tumour, we have some time yet for ponds, pizza and tennis balls...if it is the other...and if we decide not to treat, we will have to euth fairly quickly because a sudden, without warning, total paralysis means he will not be able to breathe at all and i am not about to watch him go that way, that is too harsh and unkind...dex is such a great, great dog, we'll figure it out for him the best that we can. it just sucks cuz he is still having fun.


I can't add anything more to what Rae and Deb have said.
Whether it is the cancer that takes him from us or this other problem, I want his last days or weeks to be happy ones - filled with the pond and chasing balls as best he can, and being safe and loved in a familiar place.


God Carol, another impossible decision.
Dexter loves his life. He is a dog filled with joy, and passion, and love. Dex doesn't know that his time here is limited, he just knows that everyone loves him and the pond makes him happy. He knows he is safe and respected.
Were the decision mine, I would keep Dexter as comfortable as possible for as long as possible, without surgical intervention. To my way of thinking, dying at the pond, or in the pasture, or in the SAINTS kitchen, surrounded by familiar and cherished friends, is a far better choice than on an operating table.
Letting Chunky go when the time was right hurt like hell, but it is not a decision we regret. We could have interfered with nature taking its course, but in the end, we wanted quality over quantity for her.
You will do whatever you know to be best for Dex. You love him, and that's all that matters.


Hard decsion to make Carol especially since he has some quality of life left. Sounds like Dexter enjoys his days to the fullest. This is the same condition I think that Barney had(Larnegyl Hemoplegia? spelling is not my strong suit).We made the same decsion because of his health and age not to proceed with the operation. The Vet gave him some Prednisone and it seemed to help Barney for awhile. It was really difficult watching Barney near the end gasping for air, it was clear that it was time to say goodbye to him. You helped me with that decsion.
I would think Dexter would totally agree with you, he doesn't want his throat opened up when he has such little time left. If he goes in to be sedated so you can see if there are any tumors does he have to be euthanaised right then if that's the decision you make? Could he come home and just go on as is until the quality is gone from his life,or is to difficult for him to breathe? I've never even met Dex and I don't have even half of your experience with such matters. Perhaps it's even irresponsible to contemplate but maybe sexy Dexter would rather not go to the Vets on Friday instead he would like to play with his new friends at the pond until he can't play anymore.
You're a very wise and caring woman Carol. You'll look at Dexter, sort through the facts and then do just the right thing. That's why you've been surrounded with all of these angels, they come to you because you will do for them that no one else was willing to. You help them, love them and then when it's time you say good bye with dignity and grace. That's all that they ask for.


That's not an easy one.. i suppose it would also depend on weather or not he would do alright under anesthetic. pets to the children.. see you Thursday.