Aging dogs show symptoms of pain
When dogs age, they often can’t get around as well. But it can be hard to tell if they are suffering and to know what to do for them.
Our pets do not live the extended life that humans do. Consequently, if you are a pet lover like me and can’t think of living without a dog or cat, you adopt a new pet every time your old one passes away.
As your senior pet ages, he will exhibit various symptoms, such as trouble getting up and walking. If he has heart problems, he may cough a lot or have breathing problems. If he has kidney disease, he be nauseous and dehydrated.
Pain in a dog can be hard to detect, but here are a few symptoms that you can look for. First of all, some dogs in pain will not want to eat or move around. But some of labs will eat no matter what so we need to look for other signs.
Another common sign is shaking or shivering. If your dog shakes for no apparent reason while standing or laying down, he may be in pain. Panting is another common sign of pain. Make sure that your dog isn’t panting for other reasons ” older dogs tend to have some lung issues that will cause excessive panting.
Once you have treated these possible problems associated with pain and your dog is still not improving or is still in pain, there is the inevitable question of when is the right time to put a dog to sleep.
Lately, I have been asked when is it time to say good-bye an old dog. Owners after wonder if they’ve done enough to keep their pets alive and happy.
This is not an easy question, but I will try to help in the decision making, though no veterinarian can tell you what to do. You are the owner, who has spent the dog’s life loving him and caring for him.
Your veterinarian can tell you if your pet is suffering, if his problem is treatable and what the outcome of treatment might be. If the owner is still unsure of what to do, then I may even say what I would do if it were my dog in that situation.
The most important things to ask yourself at this point is what is the quality of your pet’s life right and whether your keeping him alive because you can’t say good-bye.
Here are a few points that might help you determine if your pet’s quality of life is deteriorating:
– Your pet can’t get up to go urinate or defecate and starts to do this right where he is laying down.
– He doesn’t get up to go eat his meals.
– He doesn’t seem happy to see you and can’t get up to greet you.
– He is losing weight and strength.
– A treatment fails to help him anymore.
I have had to put many animals to sleep and it is the hardest thing to do, but remember that you are ending the suffering state of a loved one.
How often in life we see our family or friends suffering in the hospital because in our society, we have to do everything to keep them alive.
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