When is it time to say goodbye

by brad
(California)

Our JRT is almost 17 years old now. He's been an amazing dog but time has certainly taken its toll on him. He can barely hear now and his eye sight is failing as well. He cannot go out in the sun because the brightness bothers his eyes now. He is healthy according to a recent vet visit although the Vet mentioned that he may have some pain 2ndary to arthritis. He doesn't come to us anymore but will follow us around the house at times. He basically isn't social anymore but will still bark and chase his favorite ball. He is pooping and peeing in the house and vomits water after drinking too much. He barks for no reason at walls and chairs at times. He's really becoming difficult to care for because of his senility. When is it time to put your best friend down---when we see him play with the ball and do a quick step back into the house after a walk it really makes you think that there is still a spark but he wanders aimlessly at times around the house and doesn't like us to pet him much. He walks away from us?

It would be so much easier to let mother nature take its course but is that the answer in this case? The vet thinks he could possibly live another year?

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Jun 26, 2011
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Saying goodbye
by: Anonymous

Brad,
Sounds like your JRT has had a good life. Almost 17 years worth! Deciding what to do with your beloved family member is a very difficult and personal decision. The rule of thumb in my family has been quality of life. Are they still wanting to eat? Do they wag their tale? Do they have control of their bowels? Are they enjoying life? How do I want his to spend his last days? These are questions only you and your family can answer.
I haven't had to deal with this issue with my JRT's but growing up we had 2 boxers and a mutt that we took to the Vet when we thought the time was right. One of the Boxers at age 12 had slowly become paralyzed and lost all zest for anything she had previously enjoyed. I am welling up thinking about it even though this was many years ago.
Our thoughts are with you, this is not an easy decision any way you look at it.

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