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  #1  
Old 24-04-2012, 10:01 AM
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nelson6 nelson6 is offline
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how do you know when to let them go?

i have one poorly cat....i got him to prevent him being put to sleep as a stray after an RTA where he lost an eye. still having problems from that 8 years on as in nerve endings making him scratch. he has cystitis, kidneys are getting worse, bleeding hocks and front joints where he sleeps so much, very dandruffy/dry skin. he is also losing weight. he doesnt seem to have much quality of life and his only pleasures in life are sunbathing and me.
how do you know when theyve had enough, how do you read the signs they give you?
all advice greatly appreciated.
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Old 24-04-2012, 10:08 AM
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Re: how do you know when to let them go?

Oh gosh that's one of the hardest choices to make and very hard to advise, but you will know when its the right time, for me it would be when they are suffering and have no quality of life and only being kept alive by meds etc..such a hard thing to do but always just think would they be better being kindly put to sleep or kept alive
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Old 24-04-2012, 10:21 AM
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Re: how do you know when to let them go?

You just know, I saw it in the eyes, they just look so sad and tired, quality of life is a must, if they don't have this then it is time. Hardest thing to do for them but the kindest, I too have a poorly cat so I understand how you feel right now and how hard it is to even think about
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Old 24-04-2012, 10:23 AM
Ianthi Ianthi is offline
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Re: how do you know when to let them go?

Firstly, how old is your cat? What stage is the kidney disease and what are the current treatments and medications? What does your current vet think?

My own rule of thumb is when no more can be done medically ( and I'm not necessarily referring to invasive, painful testing ) to treat or alleviate symptoms. It's worth knowing that some conditions that are dismissed as being 'due to old age' for instance, are very treatable. It amazes me sometimes to read on here how easily some vets appear to given up on older animals, while thankfully others ( like mine! ) are far more pro-active. So in other words, it is entirely possible to improve quality of life by selecting good veterinary care.
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Old 24-04-2012, 10:31 AM
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Re: how do you know when to let them go?

we think he is about 10. most of his issues come from the RTA, hes had plenty of operations, but doest recover so well after them now. he is a very stressy cat, so finds everything except my homecoming at the end of the day a trial. he sleeps 22 hrs out of 24, but thats been tricky recently as he has to wear a collar because of the scabs on his hocks - heave him foe a nanno second and hes at them and theres blood everywhere - then he really gets distressed.
he looks like he has a hangover a lot of the time.
hes my baby and id do anything for him to be well, but not at the cost of his own distress. he is more important than that.
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Old 24-04-2012, 10:42 AM
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Re: how do you know when to let them go?

I think deep down you know when it's the right time, I am a great believer in the phrase that better a day too early than a day too late.

Sorry you are having to face this choice, it is one of the hardest things we have to do as a pet owner but ultimately it can be the kindest thing too.
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Old 24-04-2012, 10:44 AM
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Re: how do you know when to let them go?

It's always a heart breaking decision but I've been fortunate to have a wonderful vet that I trust entirely. When he tells me there is little left that can be done, I take his advice. He's always told me in advance so that I have a while to prepare myself to make the decision and come to terms with it.

Unfortunately, with my last dog it was a much quicker deterioration and the decision had to be made asap. it was as though he had just given up and had nothing left at all. His character was completely different and it broke my heart to see him so flat.

You will absolutely know when the time is right. I would have felt guilty if I hadn't made the call when I did and made him continue suffering.
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Old 24-04-2012, 10:45 AM
Ianthi Ianthi is offline
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Re: how do you know when to let them go?

So what operations has he had so far? Sounds to me there's something else going on here as well, as yet undiagnosed-the lethargy and sleeping are a concern. When was the last time he saw the vet? Had a bloodtest? How is his appetite etc?

I do wonder if he's actually older than you believe he is.
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Old 24-04-2012, 10:50 AM
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Re: how do you know when to let them go?

from what you are saying, I would think if they were mine, that time has come, I put off having my kitten put down, as I could not bare to think that he was really suffering and that they would be able to fix him, in the end I put him down before his final results ever came back! it was horrible as his viens has collapsed and they kept trying to get a vien and he was crying, and I know I added to his suffering.

only you can decide as only you can see him, but if you think he is suffering then be kind and book them in
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Old 24-04-2012, 11:01 AM
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Re: how do you know when to let them go?

I know it's naff advice really but you will just know.

With Molly, she had cancer and had been living perfectly happily with it for a while, then the steroids seemed to stop working and she was holding herself very carefully. She was struggling to jump onto the sofa as the tumour had clearly become very uncomfortable. She was irritable and couldn't get comfy. Plus, she was hiding a lot and wasn't sure about whether to go out or come in.

It's quite easy to think for example: 'well, they're purring, so must be okay', but there comes a time when you feel you're being selfish by keeping them alive. Molly purred right up to the moment she finally slipped away, and although it broke my heart (I'm blubbing writing this! ), it made me feel as though she was thanking me for making that decision.

She was unhappy and wasn't going to get better, and I couldn't bear to watch her deteriorate any more. She was my world, and to see her in pain was just awful.

It's one of the hardest decisions to have to make, but trust me. You'll know when the time is right. Sending you lots of love at this terrible time xXx
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