How to Tell My Son It's Time to Put Our Dog to Sleep?
My dog has numerous symptoms of multiple brain tumors. He paces from room to room until you shut him in and he eventually realises he can't get through the door. He falls over, walks through things rather than around them, walks into walls, gets stuck in corners and walks in circles trying to lie down. He is ravenous and will try to eat anyting he finds in front of his nose including your feet! He often tries to chew the edge of the wooden table and he rakes in the paper bins. He staggers and sometimes falls over, struggles to stand on 3 legs to urinate and I have had to lift his food and water bowls as he falls into them when he tries to eat.
He has always been a docile well behaved dog but now he is aggressive if you try to get him to go somewhere he doesn't want to go. He has snapped at me on numerous occasions and has stood barking and growling at me when I have tried to settle him in the night. He ran away recently and went down onto the railway line which terrified my teenage son. When he was taking him home, he bit my son on the arm as he did not want to go in, (he only left a tiny red mark but he still bit him). He no longer responds to commands, he urinates and defecates in the house multiple times per day even after he has just been out.
He has been having Grand Mal seizures since January 09 but these have become less frequent, he was on Phenobarbitone tablets to treat this but they didn't seem to change the frequency of fits, they just made him groggy and distant. He can't see very well and his hearing is not too good either. He sometimes cries and whines while he is at rest and he prefers to lie on hard surfaces. His hind legs have been shaking when he stands still and at first I thought it was weakness but now he often shakes all over while he is lying down and I realise it is tremors.
I worked as a vet nurse for years and have spoken to many people about the 'right' time to put your ill dog to sleep but my problem is my 14 year old son does not agree that the time has come as he still wags his tail sometimes and can outrun you if he doesn't want to come in!! He thinks I only want to put him to sleep because he is ruining the house. He has now decided that even with all the above evidence that he might not have a tumor and he might get better.
Can anyone give me advice on how to convince him that the time is now? Or does anyone have experience that they can share with him to help him to agree with the decision? I feel timing is cruical due to his age, I don't want to close down the lines of communication at such an important stage of his life :(
Visitors to this page may also be interested in our page on Canine Euthanasia.