When is it time to say goodbye?

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Razum'dar

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As Krienze Krienze mentioned, you will need to actually ask your vet what she would do if these were her cats, and she will very likely tell you. Even if she doesn't, from what you're describing they are both becoming more and more uncomfortable - to the point of growling to be left alone.

:redheartpump:
I actually did that. I emailed her the other day but haven't heard back yet.
 

fionasmom

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I agree with asking your vet what she would do if it were her cat....no guarantee that you will do the same thing but I would ask the question. My cat vet, for example, will not do surgery on very old ailing cats and always says that other vets will if that is the course someone wants.

It sounded to me like your boy was pawing his face as a sign that he was starting to be in pain as the first dose of the pain meds wore off.

My cat with SCC, Matilde, was a semi feral rescue cared for by an old lady who died. A neighborhood child became very upset that she was alone and asked his dad to do something to help; I worked closely with the father which is how I agreed to take her. She lived indoor only, but remained semi feral. There was no chance of inspecting her mouth and she was lucky to get to a vet once a year. When it was discovered it was very widespread. She stopped eating and was huddled in a little ball so I made the decision to let her go.

At the very least, it is fortunate that your vet will come to your house when the time comes.
 

fionasmom

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Sam was my first dog. My parents had him before I was born. Like many Shepherds, he guarded me, jealously. He was MY dog and I was HIS human. I wasn‘t even ten years old when he died. Sam was twelve. That’s old for a Shepherd and common belief says that twelve years is really old for an all-white one. It was Sam’s time and we all knew it
Twelve is very good for a GSD, especially a white one, so you evidently gave him a good life.
 

Talien

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The time we have with our pets is never long enough, but that's only from our perspective. It's easy to fall into the trap of "I just want one more day with them", and then one more, and then one more, and then suddenly they are in pain dying right infront of you and it's too late. Or worse, they die alone at night while everyone is asleep.

Since you asked for opinions I'll give you my honest one, from how you've described them I'd say it's time. If they only have a few minutes a day of active, lucid behavior and the rest is spent either in pain or drugged and asleep it's really no life. You are blessed to have a vet that will make a housecall so take advantage of that while you still can. It really is true that it's better too early than too late.
 
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Razum'dar

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The vet wrote back this morning. She said if it were here cat she'd go ahead and do it now with the orange one for sure , Scooby. As for Ash she said I could continue giving him more meds for a while. I'm conflicted about him because he's old too and has arthritic hips and is in a lot of pain. He has to constantly been given pain meds, so he's always doped up, and even on a higher dose at exactly the time it's time to get more , 8 hrs, he's crying and upset. It's a mess and I'm gutted. I'm starting to have trouble sleeping and feel sad all the time now. This sucks.
 

Furballsmom

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Hon, I'm so very sorry but you're delaying the inevitable and it's not a good thing. Your emotions are very upsetting to them, their situations are extremely upsetting to you and they aren't doing well at all :hugs: Please be strong for them, they need you now more than ever :redheartpump:
 
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Razum'dar

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Yes you're right. I had a hard, ugly cry this evening. I walked in to check on them and it hit me like a truck. Full out sobbed for 30 minutes. Because I knew she was right. I have a good hubby, he hugged me and talked to me and now I feel clearer. They've had a great life, wanted for nothing, and now their life is coming to an end. I'll be ok. Ty all for your kindness, support and advice. It means a lot. I'm glad I found this site and all you helpful people.
 

Jcatbird

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Your love for them is so clear and strong. They have been very fortunate that you have been their human family. None of us could do it any better. I’m so sorry that any of us here reach this point of having to decide. I know it well. The one thing that has helped me is just knowing that they know ,I am always there for them when needed. Good or bad, I will have them always in my heart. They really do know that about you. As needed, we will be here for you.
 

Krienze

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While I know it may not be much, please take comfort in the fact that you are not alone. Most of us if not all have been in your shoes and we know the pain you are going through. We're here for you! So yes, please don't leave! I think I can speak for most of us when I say, when you feel up to it, we'd love to hear stories and see more pictures of your babies <3
 

Caspers Human

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I had a hard, ugly cry this evening.
No. Not "ugly." You had a GOOD cry!

It's called "letting go" and it's something that's got to be done whether you want to or not. You have a choice to do it, either on your terms or let Fate take its course without your say-so. Best to let it out and go away the better person for the experience than to live a life of bottled up regrets.

Of course, you're going to cry! He's your cat and you love him! It's a cold hearted person who doesn't shed at least one tear when their pets pass on! You're human. Don't deny your love for your cat!

You have an opportunity. You know that we all will be visited by the Angel of Death at one time or another. It's inevitable. The same goes for our pets. Right now, you can walk right up to Death, offer him your cat and say, "This is my cat. I love him and I expect you to take care of him until I come back to see him again or else you'll have to reckon with me!"

You will have met Death on your own terms, standing on your own two feet. You will have looked Death in the eye and said, "I do not fear you!"

This is something that will make you a stronger person, later on, throughout your life. It's hard to explain to people who haven't had the experience but it gives you a certain clarity that you might not have otherwise achieved.

I have met Death. We see eye to eye and we understand each other. I am in no hurry to see him again but neither is he in a hurry to see me.

I don't think that I would be in the place, emotionally or spiritually, that I am, today, if I hadn't had the experiences that I told you about.

Go ahead and have a GOOD cry!

You're SUPPOSED TO cry!

Then stand up on your own too feet and do what's got to be done.

You'll be all right.

This, I know.
 
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Razum'dar

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Ty so much everyone. Now that I know it has to be done, I'm trying to come to terms with the guilt I'm feeling. I know sadness is natural and I am sad and will be for a while. But I feel guilty because I'm ending their life. I will miss them and the house will feel empty. I know I'll adjust and I'll be ok, but I have to go through it first. This is one of the hardest things I've ever had to do. I'm sentencing them to death. But my gray boy is in so much pain and my orange boy is so sick and getting worse. Caspers Human Caspers Human that is a great way to think of it. I personally don't believe in any kind of afterlife so I think that makes it sadder. I picked out where they'll be buried, in our yard under a beautiful big tree by my beloved rabbit who died suddenly 2 years ago. I feel angry , it feels unfair, but I have to realize this is part of life. I'm trying to keep my interactions with them calm and loving, so they feel good vibes, and spend as much time as I can with them. I'm not ready to say goodbye but then I never will be. It's hard to let go. It's hard to come to terms with this. Sometimes I just think, this is really happening, and it feels surreal. 3 months ago all seemed fine. How did this happen..I never had childen so they were my surrogates. How do you say goodbye? How do you deal with the pain that comes with having to do this? And yes Krienze Krienze it does matter, that's why I came here in the first place. Because I knew there were others who have stood where I've stood and felt what I'm feeling and are now on the other side of it.
 

Krienze

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Ty so much everyone. Now that I know it has to be done, I'm trying to come to terms with the guilt I'm feeling. I know sadness is natural and I am sad and will be for a while. But I feel guilty because I'm ending their life. I will miss them and the house will feel empty. I know I'll adjust and I'll be ok, but I have to go through it first. This is one of the hardest things I've ever had to do. I'm sentencing them to death. But my gray boy is in so much pain and my orange boy is so sick and getting worse. Caspers Human Caspers Human that is a great way to think of it. I personally don't believe in any kind of afterlife so I think that makes it sadder. I picked out where they'll be buried, in our yard under a beautiful big tree by my beloved rabbit who died suddenly 2 years ago. I feel angry , it feels unfair, but I have to realize this is part of life. I'm trying to keep my interactions with them calm and loving, so they feel good vibes, and spend as much time as I can with them. I'm not ready to say goodbye but then I never will be. It's hard to let go. It's hard to come to terms with this. Sometimes I just think, this is really happening, and it feels surreal. 3 months ago all seemed fine. How did this happen..I never had childen so they were my surrogates. How do you say goodbye? How do you deal with the pain that comes with having to do this? And yes Krienze Krienze it does matter, that's why I came here in the first place. Because I knew there were others who have stood where I've stood and felt what I'm feeling and are now on the other side of it.
Don't think of it as sentencing them to death. Think of it as letting them go with their dignity, and releasing them from pain. I know it's hard to think of it it any positive light though =( I went through similar feelings with Jack and honestly making and dealing with this is always one of the hardest things I think we all do at some point.

Just hold them, spoil them with love and what treats they will eat. Be there. That's all you need to do to guidethem, I think. With Jack I held him the whole time, hugged him around the neck. He went in my arms with my mom petting his face and head. I know he knew he was loved.
 

Caspers Human

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There aren't really any bad emotions. Emotions only seem bad when there is denial and fear. When you understand your feelings, accept them and work your way through them, you develop the capacity to cope and grow from your experiences.

There is a quote from the great, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.:

“If I had a formula for bypassing trouble, I wouldn't pass it around. Wouldn't be doing anybody a favor. Trouble creates a capacity to handle it. I don't say embrace trouble. That's as bad as treating it as an enemy. But I do say, meet it as a friend, for you'll see a lot of it and had better be on speaking terms with it.”

You can not stop your cats from dying. Nobody can cheat death. Nobody ever will.

As Holmes said, you had better be on speaking terms with it.

I am not a great religious person, either. I'm a strong agnostic. By that, I mean the dictionary definition of the word:

Agnostic - noun:

a person who believes that nothing is known or can be known of the existence or nature of God or of anything beyond material phenomena; a person who claims neither faith nor disbelief in God.

In other words, we CAN NOT know the nature of God or the existence of an afterlife. There is no known philosophy or technology that can give us understanding and there is nothing that ever will. It is up to every individual to thoughtfully consider the nature of God and to come to his or her own understanding according to his or her own faith.

This does not mean that we can not draw inspiration from concepts of The Creator, Salvation or religious belief.

We all know that there is no such thing as Santa Claus but we still talk about him at Christmas. Santa is our symbol for the spirit and meaning of Christmas. So, why is it wrong to speak of God and The Afterlife in the same spirit? Some people will talk to virtual strangers about their sex lives but will act "hush-hush" when it comes to talking about God. Isn't that weird? Common sense would tell us that it should be the other way around. Yes?

So your cats are dying. Maybe they will go to Heaven. Maybe there is no such thing. We'll never know but it doesn't really matter. It's the spirit that counts.

Some say that it is the time and circumstances of one's death that determines whether there will be Salvation, an afterlife or, at least, the perception of it.

With that in mind, don't you think that, if you really love your cats, you would want to give them the best circumstances for their inevitable deaths? If you were in their places... even if there was ironclad proof that there is no such thing as an afterlife... If you were in their places, wouldn't you want to pass on with feelings of love and care instead of loneliness, hopelessness and pain?

My stepparents had a cat named "Misty." Even though she wasn't "my cat," she was a good cat. Nice and sweet as can be.
Well, Misty got old and it was getting close to her time. She started to get a little bit sick. I asked whether they should take Misty to the vet, just to see what could be done for her to help her feel better in her old age. The answer was, "Oh, no! Misty's just getting old. She'll be all right."

Well... Not long after, Misty went blind. Almost completely. She would walk around the house, meowing because she couldn't tell where she was. She would only walk around the very perimeter of the room, feeling her way along the baseboards with her whiskers and bumping into furniture as she fumbled along. One day, she got stuck behind the refrigerator and couldn't see her way to escape. I came home to find her crying for help. I have no idea how long she was trapped, there. I had to physically move the fridge to get her out.

Again, I asked for Misty to be taken to the vet and I got the same pat answer... "She's just old."

A while later, Misty lost control of her bladder and started peeing herself. I don't just mean that she would "puddle" on the floor. I mean that she was covered in her own urine.

A third time, I asked for Misty to go to the vet, this time to put her to sleep. Nope! They just stuck her in a cardboard box and locked her in the basement.

There for three nights, Misty laid in the basement.

All night long, I could hear poor Misty crying. I couldn't sleep because the emotion kept me up at night. I was upset!

On the second morning, I was pissed off! I told them that, if they didn't take Misty to the vet and have her put to sleep, I was going to do it myself. I gave them one more night and, if they didn't do it by the next morning, I was going to take Misty for a "walk in the woods."

Misty died that night.

How do you want your cats to die?

Do you want them to die like Sam, with dignity and love, under a shady tree on a warm summer day, with their human by their side, guiding them to the afterlife?

Do you want them to die like Misty, stuffed into a cardboard box, locked in a cold, dark basement, alone and soaked in their own piss?

The choice is yours.

What's your Final Answer?

The clock is ticking...
 
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Krienze

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Do you have a bathroom scale? You can weigh yourself, then weigh yourself while holding him and subtract the two for his weight. This method is close enough that you can tell how he's doing 😉
Do you want them to die like Sam, with dignity and love, under a shady tree on a warm summer day, with their human by their side, guiding them to the afterlife?

Do you want them to die like Misty, stuffed in to a cardboard box, locked in a cold, dark basement, alone and soaked in their own piss?

The choice is yours.

What's your Final Answer?

The clock is ticking...
While I believe this could have been said a little gentler, I do agree. You don't really have all the time in the world to make a choice. You have to just summon up your strength and make the call before it's too late to make the call.

I can tell you, doing that with Jack wasn't easy. But like I said in one of my other posts, I tried to weigh my options. What was better? Him passing away alone at night, suffering with no one to hold him because we were all asleep? Him falling and hurting himself when we weren't home because he couldn't walk right? Or letting him go, because it was the right thing to do by him, where I could hold him the whole time and ensure that he wasn't alone?

I know right now you're thinking of it as a death sentence, but they already have death looming over them. Right now you're not sentencing them to die, that's already happening. What you are doing is choosing a better way for them to go, the kinder way, the way where they will be with you the whole time it happens, being loved and knowing it.

I did see what you wrote about the afterlife after Casper's post though, so I'll weigh in on that. I'm, personally, a Christian. I understand you're not and I 100% respect it. From my view though, I totally believe in Rainbow Bridge. I really do believe, even if I'm wrong in my faith, that our energy goes somewhere.
 
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