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My 10 year old male golden retriever was diagnosed with acute leukemia last Wednesday July 15. I have had him since he was a puppy.

He stopped eating and drinking on his own three weeks ago. He would eat lightly when hand fed and drink if I brought it to him. His stool was loose. I thought he had contracted a virus /bug. He did not improve so I took him to North Dallas Veterinary Hospital. They have a good staff and I think highly of Dr. Denise Hudson.

Sonogram showed enlarged uniform spleen, no internal bleeding, and no dense mass in his body to indicate a tumor/cancer growth.

Blood work results as follows:

White Blood Count (WBC) was 109.37 K/uL
Red Blood Count (RBC) is 3.53 M/uL
Platelets (PLT) is 16 K/uL

LYM 18.9% and MONO 79.2% are presented as Extremely high with Mono Leukemia as highest probability.

So, per the Vet recommendation, I started him on Prednisone and Tramadol.

His appetite came back 3 days into the regime and he is toughing this out.

Last night it appeared he was walking with his front legs and the back two were just along for the ride. Getting more unsteady by the day.

When is it time? I do not want my friend to suffer. I can bear the pain of heartbreak more readily than he can the pain of Leukemia...of which I have no experience with.

I am amazed at his desire to still get up and go out to the attached park where I live. To get up and bring me a toy. AH the love.

Is anyone else going through this type experience now or have some words of advice on his last stage care.

Thank you for any words...Michael and Dakota
 

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Welcome to the forum.

I'm sorry your boy has leukemia, I don't have any experience with it.

For me, it's always been about the quality of life of one of my guys, I've always known when it's been time to set them free. It's one of the most difficult decisions I've ever had to make. The thought of them not being with me was totally heartbreaking but seeing them in pain or suffering was even worse.

If your boy is still eating, getting around, and doesn't seem to be in pain, in other words having more good days than bad days, it may not be his time yet.

I would work closely with your Vet, maybe even ask your Vet's opinion about when it's time.

My thoughts are with you and your boy.
 

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I'm sorry to hear your dog is not doing so well.
When Pilgrim was failing, we decided on three things that Pilgrim loved above all others (visiting our son, who was his favorite person in the whole world, playing fetch, or going to smell all the tyres in the hospital car park opposite our house.) If he couldn't enjoy them any more, then his quality of life was pretty poor.
The final straw for us was when he didn't even get up to see Bill. Perhaps you'd consider something similar for your boy? What gives him pleasure now? What would he miss most?
And yes, when it was time, we knew. You will too.
 

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I'm so sorry. I only saw this thread for the first time today. My heart goes out to you.
 

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I am so very sorry for your loss, run free sweet boy..no more pain!
 

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I'm so very sorry for the loss of your Dakota. It is never easy. Tell us more about him when you feel up to it. I'm sure he was a wonderful dog.
 
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I am really sorry for your loss.
My boy received a cancer diagnosis the same day as yours and he passed away on july 21st. It is really hard to let them go, but we keep them with us in our hearts.
 
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