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    • Brad Eden

      TO THOSE REGISTERING FOR MEMBERSHIP ON UJ   01/06/2018

      To the Guests who have decided to register for Membership. PLEASE read Terms of Service, not just checking it off. This is covered there: Add more info than just "hunting" or "Upland hunting" or "birds" or "outdoors" or similar nebulous terms in the required INTERESTS field. Despite this Boards strong spam filtering function, some Spam registrations do sneak through. I need an inkling that you are a human being not a Spam Bot tagging onto key words. Also please do not use a business name as your User Name. Thank you.
MAArcher

Preparing for euthanasia

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ryanr

Yeah, I don't see much point in thinking far ahead about this and dwelling on it. If you gave a good vet it shouldn't be that hard to get an appointment pretty quick for this. I've had to do it for my dog and my dad's. While they were away on vacation, his Labrador suddenly couldn't to support herself with her back legs to urinate. So I helped her and supported her weight. She wasn't eating only drinking a little. She was of old age at the time so while it happened suddenly without much warning it wasn't totally a surprise. I called the vet to make an appointment and then I called my dad to let him know what was going on. The vet confirmed her kidneys and such were shutting down and she wasn't likely to improve. I let my Dad know and he trusted me to make the right call for her. I did and then brought her home and dug the grave and laid her to rest myself near the kennel and marked it with some stones.

 

When colo-rectal cancer came back a second time for my own Labrador the vet said I could monitor it until my boy started showing signs of discomfort. This was late October and since he still had his energy and appetite I continued to hunt him. We had a great season that amazingly stretched thru January. First week of February I noticed him straining to defecate and in some discomfort. It was hard but I didn't hesitate. I called and made the appointment for a few days later. I took off that day and we got up and went on a ladt hunt together. He never lost his appetite or energy and he found 3 roosters that day leftover from our club's last stocking in November! Our vet had a quiet room and whwn intold them i was here they just let me bring him right in. I don't remember a catheter but rather 2 seperate injections. The first I think put him lightly under and made it painless, the second did the deed. It was February in Northeast PA so the obvious choice was cremation which I've come to prefer anyway. I paid extra to have him cremated by himself and got his ashes back in a nice floral tin container. Unbeknownst to me the new young vet at my vet's office had taken a plaster paw print of my dog and she put his name in it too and gave that to me with the ashes. I spread some of his ashes over his mother and sister's grave next to my dad's kennel.  I scattered some more at the farm we hunted together. I also took them with me when I went back up to New Hampshire to visit my college for Homecoming. He first lived with me up there and was very popular on campus and in the summers he loved swimming the Pemigewasset River that ran thru town. I spread some of the ashes on campus as well as in the river. The remainder of his ashes I still have with me.

 

It's a sad day but I don't make a production out of it. I make sure the dog is calm and comfortable and spend the last moments together but I don't draw it out. Instead I embrace the great memories together. 

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greg jacobs

The last 5 or 6 I went in and did the paperwork and left the dogs in my pickup laying on the seat. She has me drive around back and she comes out and does it in the rig. Much better than hauling them inside. Going to sleep one last time in the hunting rig.

This isn't easy to talk about.

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RookieEP

When it was time for Nelly we did in Home euthanasia.  Vet came with an assistant.  They were very prepared and informed everything. Very caring giving us the needed time to say goodbye.  I had our hunting music Johnny Cash playing in the background and when it was over carried her outside on her bed to their SUV.  I don’t recall it being expensive was worth the price and more.  Nelly hated going to the vet.  

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sprocket

I'm on the "New Pup" wagon but the stories of dogs past break me up every time.

 

It's on par - for me - to loosing my parents.  I had 4 years to say goodbye to my Ma, still didn't get it right.  Dad went faster but many years later - still not a fun experience.

 

We're all terminal, it's just a matter of how fast.  That said, I try to revel in the Now - I've seen the past and know what the future holds without the specifics.

 

I heard a really great idea recently so don't think I'm original on this one.  Keep a box of feathers - feathers from every bird the dog retrieves.  When it's time, bury the dogs nose in it and let it relive every memory while giving the shots.

 

No clue if it works or not but it sounds way better than the stinky boots and stainless steel options.  Also, I did a little binge on Dr. Pol on Animal Planet over the new year - some really good stuff there about end of life for animals.

 

I'm glad I don't have kids to deal with when the time comes - I know my Dad was pretty broke up about putting our dog down when I was a kid.  It's  top 3 in my "Do Over" list - girlfriends be damned.

 

Double edged topic for sure but thanks for posting.  I'm suddenly looking forward to next fall - I hope I can train hard enough in between here and there.

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marysburg

We have had two of our dogs euthanized at home because they especially hated going to the vet.  It was so low key and restful compared to hauling an elderly and infirm dog to town, then into the building.  One of our dogs was euthanized in the truck, and it was very calm and easy on the dog and on us.  We bury all of ours at home, and because we thought the demise of our yellow lab was coming up soon, we dug her hole in Oct 2016 before freeze-up, and gladly didn't need it until April of 2017.  I always keep in mind that it's the last kind thing we can do for them, and I make sure that if I need to fall apart, it happens later.  For the dog , I try to make it a good day, and only a bad day for us.  Tears all around of course from vet staff and family, but no drama.  This topic is so tough, blurry screen, I must have something in my eye.

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Mark Stella/WV

Hang tough MA. 

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Uplander

Four months ago I lost my sweetie Piper on a holiday weekend, unexpectedly.  We did the best we could, in a foreign place with unfamiliar vets that did the best they could to comfort her, and us.  Nothing we could have planned for, and I’ll be haunted by the circumstances for the rest of my life.

 

The price we pay sometimes....

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JCJ

I look at as the last gift I can give my dogs. It’s never easy but it’s the best I can do for them in a time of need. 

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SLR

We recently euthanized one of our dogs that was over 15 yo and failing. We knew this was coming and we had the vet do it at our home by appointment. As OP mentioned, we also knew winter was coming on and I had a grave dug in advance, before the ground froze. She is buried up on the hill with three of her relatives. The procedure costs $200, which included $75 for doing a house call. So at the office it would have been $125.  Our vet gave the dog an IM injection of a sedative. Then after she was asleep, he put in the IV and gave her the lethal dose of medication. It was a very peaceful and stress free death for her, not for us though. 

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charlo slim

I once hiked in to a large and very "birdy" looking draw on public land in north-central Montana, where I encountered dozens of grave markers of hunting dogs  from 50 and more years ago.

My sense of sadness from how that all must have played out was nearly overwhelming, and I've never been back there.   No judgement involved, just very intense melancholy.  Times do change regarding things like this.

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Wet Dog

The part I wasn't prepared for was when the time came we had to make an appointment and had to wait a few days. It felt like we put someone we loved on death row, and until the time came, we were waiting for a call from the governor. It was very hard on the kids.  If I had to do it over I guess I should have insisted on an earlier appointment. I still regret it.

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MAArcher
17 hours ago, greg jacobs said:

The last 5 or 6 I went in and did the paperwork and left the dogs in my pickup laying on the seat. She has me drive around back and she comes out and does it in the rig. Much better than hauling them inside. Going to sleep one last time in the hunting rig.

This isn't easy to talk about.

That sounds like a great option and the though actually crossed my mind to ask.  I had Annie wrapped up in a blanket and in her bed in the passenger seat, it would have been much better to leave her there.

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MAArcher
15 hours ago, sprocket said:

Keep a box of feathers - feathers from every bird the dog retrieves.  When it's time, bury the dogs nose in it and let it relive every memory while giving the shots.

 

 

I know my Dad was pretty broke up about putting our dog down when I was a kid.  

 

Double edged topic for sure but thanks for posting.  I'm suddenly looking forward to next fall - I hope I can train hard enough in between here and there.

 

I really like the save the feathers idea.  My intentions are too keep a journal of my adventures with the next dog, I think I'll incorporate saving feathers and fur into that.  

 

The first time I saw my father cry was when I was a teenager, probably around 15, and we put our 14 year old Shetland Sheepdog down.  I grew up with that amazing dog, but even still I was taken back to see the hardass tear up.

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MAArcher
2 hours ago, Wet Dog said:

The part I wasn't prepared for was when the time came we had to make an appointment and had to wait a few days. It felt like we put someone we loved on death row, and until the time came, we were waiting for a call from the governor. It was very hard on the kids.  If I had to do it over I guess I should have insisted on an earlier appointment. I still regret it.

 

That's the purpose of my thread, not to dwell on unpleasantness, but to save the next guy from what you experienced.  Maybe if you had seen a post like this you'd have been tipped off to look for a 24 hour vet that could have taken you almost immediately if that's what you needed.  

 

If we're aware of our options we're more likely to better navigate a difficult time without regrets.

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The King

For the last two dogs, I've had the vet come to the house.  It's MUCH easier.  I recently had my setter put down, in late Oct.  I knew it was coming, and cold weather was too so I dug her grave in early Oct.  I spent time just waiting for her to tell me she was ready, and then called my vet.  It's always tough no matter what you do to prepare. 

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