How do we know when to let our dogs go?

I have posted the following before…but I receive thew question more than others.  If you have further questions check out my book, 14000 Dogs Later. 

How do we know when it is time to let our dogs go?

Obviously, your veterinarian is the person to turn too.  None of us wants our dogs to live in pain, and yet, we don’t want to be the decision-maker regarding life and death.  I had a friend who carried that guilt for many years because he felt he had made the wrong decision…even though his dog could hardly stand.

“Who am I,” he said to me, “to take the life of my friend?” his guilt evident by the streaming tears.

That’s not a question any of us can answer, nor is it a question we should try to answer.  “It’s the right thing to do.  Your pet is better off.  You’ll get over it soon.  At least you don’t have to watch him suffer anymore.”  All of those may be the right answer, but it’s the wrong time to voice them. 

“You helped your dog because you were his friend,” is the answer I used for my friend’s question.  But I did not voice that thought until after he had dealt with the grieving.

Through the years numerous pet owners with terminally sick pets have asked, “What would you do, John, if he were your dog?”

I have always answered their question with other questions.

  • Is he incontinent?
  • Is he in severe pain?
  • Can he still walk?
  • Can the pain be controlled?
  • Has he stopped eating and drinking?

The answers to these questions assist my friends in making up their own mind as to what is best for their dog.

 Please remember this:  If your dog must be put down, it is not a decision you are making.  Your dog is making the decision; you are only carrying that decision out for him.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: