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By most accounts here if a dog is wagging it's tail, enjoying it's food, enjoying it's family...no matter whether it's well or not...that is usually the gauge of quality of life.

I don't know about Penny. She was always so active, so engaged in our lives, so in our faces with excitement that I don't know what her quietness means. She's not eating with gusto, altho that's improved.

Yesterday we came home and she didn't life her head at all...laid on her side in the front hall while we walked around her several times. No greeting, no acknowledgement of our presence.

This morning I asked her if she wanted to come to the barn. Usually when I pick up her collar and she hears the tags jingle, she comes trotting over. This time she was laying in the same room. She looked up. I put her collar on but she didn't move. When Penny's dad got up, she went in the bedroom to lay on the bed.

I want to think she's just tired; she's been thru such an ordeal and it isn't over yet. I want to think that the panting and 5 days of restlessness from the Prednisone has just completely worn her out.

I want to think all of that but it's seems like my Penny isn't in there anymore. Not even a thump of the tail.

You are all so wise and so experienced. How do I know if she's suffering?
 

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Wow, I'm sorry. I would have a serious talk with your vet. I don't know what your relationship is like with him/her, but I have, as some know because I always have wonderful things to say about him, a wonderful vet whose counsel I always seek. Once you know that I just go with my gut feeling and give it some time. If you go a couple weeks and there is no change then, I'm afraid you may have your answer. If it's just the matter of getting some strength back then it won't hurt to wait a little. I actually knew with both my girls. Again, I'm sorry.
 

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Have you gotten her labs back yet from A&M? Also did you do a sonogram to look at the spleen and rule out hemangio or other tumors on it? Dogs that have severe gastric enteritis episodes actually act like you are describing Penny. I know you've been feeding her people food to entice her to eat and in all honesty, with IBD dogs, it only makes it worse to introduce too many new foods too quickly. I would talk to your vet, see if there is a bland prescription diet (such as canned ID) that she can start on, after giving her tummy a chance to rest - meaning fasting for a while. We've gone through this with Toby several times, usually when he supplements his own diet outside with something like a dead squirrel or bird or bread people leave out for birds and it's hard to not feed them, but it really is best to let the tummy rest and then feed something very benign and gentle on the stomach. I would give your vet a call this morning if you haven't done so already and get her in to be seen. Do you think she's nauseous at all? One last thought (disjointed due to my pain meds)- if she's on an antibiotic- those can do a number to their tummies as well.


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I'm sorry. It's the toughest choice we face with our beloved friends. It's a very personal decision, and your vet can help you decide if she's, as my vet says, "in a place worth being in".

But here's a different perspective for you.
I have an autoimmune disease. I am in pain 100% of my life, much of it severe. I am exhausted all the time, and I have a very hard time sleeping at night because of the pain. I take lots of prednisone, and it makes me feel lousy.
I frequently don't want to do things I used to like doing. I would rather sit in a chair and read, although I used to be a "workout junkie" who was into body building stuff. I lack motivation to accomplish much these days.
But I still have a great quality of life. It's just different. I enjoy things in a different way, and I enjoy different things. By no means am I ready to quit and check out the afterlife! I have adjusted to the "new normal", and although I have bad days when I really feel sorry for myself, I don't have too many of them.
Am I suffering? Some would say so. But I am still "in a place worth being in".
<<hugs>>
(oh, and sounds like time for more B12!)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Is the tripe considered bland? I haven't gotten it yet and don't mind donating it to the shelter if its inappropriate for this.

No on the lab work, not yet. Have a call in to the vet. She isn't nauseous. We had 1/2 of a normal stool yesterday. The other half was soup. The first half was the best we've seen in months.

I'm not thinking euth at this point but I want to make sure I don't make the mistake made with our first golden. I let her suffer too long trying to hold out till our son came home on leave to say goodbye...she was his girl. In the end, she died on her own. Alone. I feel very guilty about that.
 

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I'm so sorry for your situation. But glad you can give a human perspective to how this drug makes you feel. What you describe fits Penny completely. Where she used to bounce around and be ready for anything...typical Golden...she know prefers to sit and rest. I don't interfere with that...no forcing walks or barn trips. I ask if she wants to and let her decide what she's up to.

It's quite possible that she's not suffering as much as I am. Crying as I write because I miss my Penny.

I'm sorry. It's the toughest choice we face with our beloved friends. It's a very personal decision, and your vet can help you decide if she's, as my vet says, "in a place worth being in".

But here's a different perspective for you.
I have an autoimmune disease. I am in pain 100% of my life, much of it severe. I am exhausted all the time, and I have a very hard time sleeping at night because of the pain. I take lots of prednisone, and it makes me feel lousy.
I frequently don't want to do things I used to like doing. I would rather sit in a chair and read, although I used to be a "workout junkie" who was into body building stuff. I lack motivation to accomplish much these days.
But I still have a great quality of life. It's just different. I enjoy things in a different way, and I enjoy different things. By no means am I ready to quit and check out the afterlife! I have adjusted to the "new normal", and although I have bad days when I really feel sorry for myself, I don't have too many of them.
Am I suffering? Some would say so. But I am still "in a place worth being in".
<<hugs>>
(oh, and sounds like time for more B12!)
 

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I've not been around much, so I don't know what is going on with Penny's health, but I just wanted to say that I feel for you. My Jasmine is 12 1/2 now and I can see how much she's slowed down in the last year or so. Her body is betraying her because her heart is still in it. It's really sad to see. Hugs to you and Penny!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Penny has been going thru irritable bowel syndrome/disease...not sure which.

There's a thread in Seniors...PenPen's trials and tribulations.

It is sad to see...and I feel I'm being selfish; I wanted her to stay young forever.
 

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You know my Tiny is ancient. I miss my Tiny, too. I miss her a lot. So I totally understand what you're saying. She was the hyper one of the crowd, always in motion. She ran/fetched/played non-stop. Sassy pants, always.
Now she just relaxes on the floor between meals. She goes outside and sniffs the air, but doesn't run any more.
But once in a while a glimmer of the old Tiny will shine through. She will try to get Tito to play. She will bark at us in her sassy way. She went swimming yesterday! I love when I see those moments, bittersweet as they are since I know she isn't the girl she used to be in so many ways.
And I try to enjoy the way things are now. I enjoy her lying quietly on her side letting me pet and/or brush her, which she never used to do. I enjoy just sitting next to her outside and watching the grass grow.
It's different. But it's still okay. I'm glad she's still here.
 

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Penny

By most accounts here if a dog is wagging it's tail, enjoying it's food, enjoying it's family...no matter whether it's well or not...that is usually the gauge of quality of life.

I don't know about Penny. She was always so active, so engaged in our lives, so in our faces with excitement that I don't know what her quietness means. She's not eating with gusto, altho that's improved.

Yesterday we came home and she didn't life her head at all...laid on her side in the front hall while we walked around her several times. No greeting, no acknowledgement of our presence.

This morning I asked her if she wanted to come to the barn. Usually when I pick up her collar and she hears the tags jingle, she comes trotting over. This time she was laying in the same room. She looked up. I put her collar on but she didn't move. When Penny's dad got up, she went in the bedroom to lay on the bed.

I want to think she's just tired; she's been thru such an ordeal and it isn't over yet. I want to think that the panting and 5 days of restlessness from the Prednisone has just completely worn her out.

I want to think all of that but it's seems like my Penny isn't in there anymore. Not even a thump of the tail.

You are all so wise and so experienced. How do I know if she's suffering?
Are you home all day with Penny? Ken and I were always afraid our dogs would suffer, or pass while we were at work. We've always gone with the day too early philosophy, - it was too awful to think they might suffer. I am so sorry for what Penny and you are going through.

PLEASE give Penny big hugs and kisses-she is such a sweet girl-just love her!!
 

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Oh yes, Tiny and Penny are so much alike...except for the fetching part. She's not a 'retriever'. lol Sounds like Tiny is the girl you need now...so sweet.

As hard as this is, I'm also happy that they are both with us. We're leaving Saturday for our annual trip camping at Lake Michigan and the sand dunes. I'm hoping she will regain some of her interest in life. But sitting around the campfire is good too. ;-)

Karen, yes! we are home all day. And these days we make sure she is never alone; just in case she needs to go out or has any other kind of problem. I can imagine how you guys felt. I wonder every morning what I'll wake up to. Or come home to. :-(
 

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What you are describing is very familiar to me. When Tesia got sick, she went from being a super energetic, park-loving girl to one who mostly liked to be on my bed. In the morning, she would no longer get up right away. I let her get up when she wanted. I fed her when she came looking for food. Walks were very slow, and very short. She slept a LOT. But was she suffering? I don't think so. She was just tired. There was a lot going on in her little body and she was on a few meds that made her feel nauseous (she would smack her lips). But she still loved being with me and I loved being with her. Our life changed for sure - we spent a lot more time just sitting and lying together. But as Barb termed it, she was still in a place worth being in.

I wish you weren't going through this with Penny. Can your vet give you a vet diet that is very bland and easy on the system? The food Shala is on is very easy to digest, very bland, to help calm down her system. But she loves it - it clearly doesn't taste bad. Would metronidazole help Penny's poop?
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Sweet girl quote:

we spent a lot more time just sitting and lying together. But as Barb termed it, she was still in a place worth being in.

I think this is us. She gets on the couch and let's me pet her chest. She licks my arm. And looks at me. Instead of starting a bitey game.

She went outside with me and wanted to get in the car. I opened the hatch and helped her up. Helping her up is not a new thing...quarters are too close in the garage for a good jump. She has always love lounging in the car; she's still out there.

Found a poo from this morning, I think. Not as runny as before. Maybe improving???

Metro hasn't made a significant difference. It might now that her insides seem to be calming a bit.
 

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Penny

Oh yes, Tiny and Penny are so much alike...except for the fetching part. She's not a 'retriever'. lol Sounds like Tiny is the girl you need now...so sweet.

As hard as this is, I'm also happy that they are both with us. We're leaving Saturday for our annual trip camping at Lake Michigan and the sand dunes. I'm hoping she will regain some of her interest in life. But sitting around the campfire is good too. ;-)

Karen, yes! we are home all day. And these days we make sure she is never alone; just in case she needs to go out or has any other kind of problem. I can imagine how you guys felt. I wonder every morning what I'll wake up to. Or come home to. :-(
So glad you are always home with Penny. That is such a blessing.
 
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