When we came back from the Richmond’s on Wednesday, he had slipped and been stuck all day in a funny position, barking like crazy, and we had a warning from animal services stuck to our front door!
I took him to the vet emergency room and they said nothing was broken, and they questioned the wisdom of doing much more for a 17 year old dog. So we took him back home, upped his meds some, and tried to keep him comfortable.
The next day, he pretty much slept the whole day, and didn’t seem in too much pain. Friday, he was able to sort of limp around some, so we were a little hopeful that maybe he could get back to the “normal” routine he’d been in for months of very short walks and limping around the mats we had around the floor.
The whole weekend he was sort of a little better, but still whimpered a lot when lying down, and sometimes even when standing, even though we were giving him a lot of pain medications. Tweeny decided to call the vet to talk about euthanasia options. They recommended we just come in on Tuesday (today) because it was time for his annual check-up anyway.
We went yesterday and the vet pretty much just told us the options, and said that within the next two weeks would probably be the most we could expect out of him at this point. So we should just try and keep him comfortable until we decided to do it. She also pointed out that one day too soon is much better than one day too late, because he can pass peacably in his sleep rather than in the midst of a lot of pain.
We took Salt home and were thinking about when to do it.. Tweeny made Salt a good meal with sausage and egg and he ate most of it. I was a little reluctant to put him down REALLY soon just because he’d kind of gotten back to how he was before Wednesday, although he did seem to be in more pain on average, and also I guess after Wren’s passing I think I just wanted to hold on a little longer. When we got back we went to visit Wren’s grave and brought Salt, though we didn’t actually take him over to the site because there’s no dogs allowed and there were a lot of groundskeepers around.
When we got back home, Salt was lying around and all of the sudden it looked like he was just trying really hard to get up but we realized he was having some sort of strange seizure. All his legs were flailing around and shaking and his mouth was seized up and his heart and lungs were going like crazy. It had never happened before. It was scary and sad, but it stopped after about a minute and he calmed down and laid there and wasn’t whining. Tweeny called the vet but she was in surgery, and so we waited around and thought about maybe putting him to sleep sooner rather than later. I decided to give him an ice cream sandwich and he ate the whole thing while lying there on his side.
A couple hours later at around 6:40pm Salt went into another fit, and this time it didn’t stop. We got ahold of the vet and she had us come in right away.. he kept shaking the whole time and was foaming at the mouth. His head was limp when I carried him. We got to the vet around 7pm and they gave him a bunch of valium but he kept convulsing. They finally gave him another sedative which knocked him out and stopped the shaking. We then pet him for a little bit and then let them give him the shot to stop his heart.
He was a good dog, and he lived for a long time, and especially after what we went through with Wren I figured it wouldn’t be that bad, but it was still pretty bad. Maybe it was just bringing back memories of two weeks ago, but it was really hard to see him go. We hung out with him about 40 minutes after he passed, and then we went home.
I guess we really get a fresh start now…