Avoiding the unavoidable: when is it time to put my dog down?

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by James W. Johnson, Sep 19, 2004.

  1. James W. Johnson

    James W. Johnson Screenwriter

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    I hate to have to ask this question but I have to at some point and now is probably a good time.

    My oldest Pit Bull is about 11.5 years old, he has really began to show signs of growning old and just today I realized that its probably close to the time where I am going to have to put him down.
    But at the same time I dont want to just the gun...honestly I have no clue where I am at so I have to ask.


    He craps in the house at least once a week now, he is obviously losing control of his bowels..today I was playing with him and he bit me with all he had, this was a clear sign that he is really losing it.
    I have to help him into the car when we go somewhere by lifting his back end up, when he hops on the sofa he is clearly struggling to do so.

    There are alot more small signs but I dont want to try and remeber everything right now...all I know is he is clearly not nearly what he used to be.

    He still has a strong appetite but is that enough? Help me out here guys, when is it time to put my dog down...obviosly Id like him to stay as long as possible but there is no point in making him live if he is suffering.



    How do I know for sure its time?
     
  2. Mike Slade

    Mike Slade Second Unit

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    I understand how you feel. My dog is 14 and he going downhill fast. He was still doing good earlier this year but lately he's really getting bad. I sure don't want to have to put him down but it's starting to look like that will be best. This will definitely be a tough decision to make. I think we will most likely take him to the vet and get advice there.
     
  3. James W. Johnson

    James W. Johnson Screenwriter

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    Well I have asked my vet and he has never given me any solid answers...maybe this is just one of those things.


    Dogs are so tough! , but I just know my dog is in a certain amount of pain..I wish I knew how much.
     
  4. Chris

    Chris Lead Actor

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    We have a family member who is a vet (retired now; practiced for 57 years in the rural of the US [​IMG]

    And his advice has always guided me:

    When you feel as though your dog or cat spends a sizeable portion of it's day suffering or disabilitated then you should consider it.

    The reasoning was that far too often people went to serious lengths to keep an animal alive, when in reality it was probably suffering behind those choices.

    Determining the timing is all up to you. At about 12 years old, you dog has had a good, long life. And he may have years left - some dogs live very long lifespans. But you somewhat have to judge for yourself.

    Letting go of a pet is a very difficult thing.
     
  5. JustinCleveland

    JustinCleveland Cinematographer

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    I'm thinking to myself... what does military service have to do with putting down a dog... I think it might be time someone put me down. Yeesh.

    Anyway, the dog biting you would be a big red flag for me. The dog isn't recognizing the difference between you and a stranger, and that's not good, expecially when you've got a dog that (generally) has some power behind it.
     
  6. Chris

    Chris Lead Actor

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    *laugh* yep, you're right, I should have said Vetrinarian.
     
  7. Julian Reville

    Julian Reville Screenwriter

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    Don't feel too bad, some veterinarians can't spell it, either.
     
  8. JustinCleveland

    JustinCleveland Cinematographer

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    To be fair, contextually, I never should have thought Veteran in a thread about a dog, but it just struck me as so funny that I misread something so heavily that I had to share.
     
  9. Karl_Luph

    Karl_Luph Supporting Actor

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    A friend of mine has a pit that's about 12 yrs. old and he's showing some of the same signs of crapping sometimes in the house,looking like he's in pain moving around sometimes and more than anything, having some coughing spells where he coughs hard enough to spit something up and immediately swallows it. Just wondering if this is common with pits this old. He's never been one to want to fight other dogs and has never bit or snapped at anyone. I think my friend's about in the same boat as you James.
     
  10. Malcolm R

    Malcolm R Executive Producer

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    Perhaps it's not that he doesn't recognize the person, but that he's experiencing pain. He probably doesn't know whether your touching him is the cause, but probably lashes out anyway.

    I know with our cats, we try and be aware of whether they seem to be experiencing pain, or if they can still take care of themselves (bathroom habits, grooming, eating, etc.). Once these criteria start to slip, it's time to consider humane alternatives.
     
  11. Brian Elwood

    Brian Elwood Stunt Coordinator

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    James W. Johnson - I'm sorry for your upcoming loss!

    I've had a mother-in-law and 3 cats die in the past year (not related) and know losing a pet is tough.
     
  12. Joe Szott

    Joe Szott Screenwriter

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    I know opinions vary on this point, but if I have a dog that does this at 12 yrs or any other age then it's time to seriously consider it. If you have children around then doubly risky. don't know how much bite he's got left though, maybe his worst is pretty tame. Obviously, your the only one who can asses that danger.

    Usually as folks have said, when there is more guaranteed pain to look forward to than happiness, then it could be time. It's hard though, good luck.
     
  13. Richard Travale

    Richard Travale Producer

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    I hate to say it but the fact that you are asking the question probably means that it's time. It can be a very very very hard decision to make but in the long run you have to know that making the decision is better for your friend.

    Sorry James.
     
  14. Bob Graz

    Bob Graz Supporting Actor

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    My friend just put down his 12 1/2 yr old German Shepard Sam last week. I spoke with him before and afterwards. It's a very sad situation. Sam could no longer climb stairs, he couldn't control his bodily functions. It was sad but it was time.

    Your Vet most likely isn't going to make your decision for you to put your dog down. It's a personal one that only can be made by the owner.

    It's a sad part of having a pet. Best wishes.
     
  15. Raasean Asaad

    Raasean Asaad Supporting Actor

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    A friend of mine just had to have his 13 year old retriever put down because the dog couldn't get used to the new toddler in the house among other things...it was pretty sad.
     

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