When to euthanize?

jjl61886

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My elderly cat recently got diagnosed with lymphoma. She is going through spells of having constipation then after giving meds, she has diarrhea. I then gave to give her meds to stop the diarrhea which just keeps us going in circles. She’s on an appetite stimulant. It helps some but she only eats a few bites then she’s done. I offer her food multiple times a day and sometimes she eats it and sometimes she won’t. Her wbc, rbc came back worse than they were a month ago.
I just feel it’s time but she then starts acting like she feels better but it only lasts a day or two at most.

So when to make that decision? In my heart I think it’s time but I just don’t know for sure.
 

Kris107

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Oof... This is the hardest but also most kind decision we make for our pets. I will refrain from giving you my opinion as you know your kitty the best. I will say, that during this time, try to care for yourself and prepare. Often after we make this decision we second guess it - second guess the timing, second guess other options... Make sure you have a support system - there are even online ones if you don't have people who understand. Also, have you thought out your plan for it? Where you'll take her or at home, etc. Sometimes having a plan can help ease the anxiety of it. I think our cats tell us when they're really done or you know that they are suffering too much. Cats hide pain and discomfort well, so when you see real suffering, it is likely exactly that. If you already are thinking it is time, then I doubt any time you do it will be wrong. Lavish her with love, prepare, and you both will know. You will be held in the thoughts and minds of all who read this and have been there. It is so tough.
 
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jjl61886

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Oof... This is the hardest but also most kind decision we make for our pets. I will refrain from giving you my opinion as you know your kitty the best. I will say, that during this time, try to care for yourself and prepare. Often after we make this decision we second guess it - second guess the timing, second guess other options... Make sure you have a support system - there are even online ones if you don't have people who understand. Also, have you thought out your plan for it? Where you'll take her or at home, etc. Sometimes having a plan can help ease the anxiety of it. I think our cats tell us when they're really done or you know that they are suffering too much. Cats hide pain and discomfort well, so when you see real suffering, it is likely exactly that. If you already are thinking it is time, then I doubt any time you do it will be wrong. Lavish her with love, prepare, and you both will know. You will be held in the thoughts and minds of all who read this and have been there. It is so tough.
Thank you. I’ve contacted a couple at home euthanasia places. They are quite expensive however. But also less trauma than going to the vet I suppose. I have a follow up at the vet on the 6th if she makes it that long.
 

FeebysOwner

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Hi. I am so sorry you and your cat are going through this. I have an elderly cat with lymphoma and several other diseases, and she has good days and bad ones. I m still on the fnece about how to decide it is her time. So, I can't be of much help in giving you any guidance. But, I do want to say that while I agree with most everything that was said above, I don't think we always 'know' when it is time. So, don't count on that to be your sign.
 

FeebysOwner

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I also want to add another thought. When it comes to euthanizing at home or at the vet, factor in how you will feel about the location in your home after she is gone. Some folks can't fathom how they will handle being in that location afterward. Now, i am torn - do I take her to the vet which I really didn't want to do, or do I find a way to deal with being in one of her two favorite places - our living room couch or our bed - once she is no longer with me - knowing that died there?
 

rubysmama

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So sorry you're going through this. I just recently had to say goodbye to my darling Ruby, who had been diagnosed with hyperthyroidism and kidney disease. She wasn't eating well and had lost a terrible amount of weight, but was still using the litter box, and sleeping on my lap, so I felt she was still feeling ok. Then she took bad turn quite suddenly, (couldn't stand on her own) so I knew it was time, and thankfully there was a 24 hour ER vet nearby.

Now that a bit of time has passed, I realize despite the suddenness, it was easier than having to make an appointment at her regular vet to let her go. It can't always be that way, of course. But I think listening to your heart, but also your vet, is probably the best you can do. But do ensure you know where you could take her in an emergency, because as I quickly learned, things can change from stable to urgent very quickly.
 
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jjl61886

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I called the vet and told them what was going on. They were able to fit me in this afternoon. After they assessed her, they felt it was that time to euthanize. She couldn’t really feel poop in there but more the mass and her condition had gotten worse than even a week ago when I took her in. She said we could try stool softeners to see if that what was going on but I basically said we are beating around the bush here. I work weekends and I didn’t want an emergency situation to arise and I didn’t want her feeling so poorly any longer.
She will be cremated and I should have her back next week 💕
 

catloverfromwayback

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I'm so sorry you and your darling girl had to go through this. For what it's worth, it sounds like you absolutely made the right decision. I was going to say "better too early than too late," having experienced the latter, but your update makes it clear it wasn't too early at all. You did the last, best thing for her.
 

di and bob

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I have said it many times, let your vet decide that final decision, they have seen this senario so many times, and do not have a heart and mind ruled by love. If there is no cure, only more pain and suffering in the future, that is the time.......
Now your suffering begins. Guilt, second guessing and all those should haves, could haves, rear their ugly heads. No matter how prepared we think we are, we are still crushed by the reality. Try not to dwell on her end, I know how impossible that is, but it is such a fleeting moment in her lifetime of giving you love and happiness.Do not let it rule your life, she would never want that. Go forward into the future and live it as you would want for her to go on if you were the first to go, she wants no less. Eventually, that grief will turn into gratitude for having her share your life. But it takes a long time.
Her bond of love will connect your souls forever. Nothing can ever break that bond, it is spiritual, so eternal. She is at peace, no more suffering, because of that love she carries in her heart. She will continue to send her love for as long as you live.
My heart goes out to you. Even after going through this so many times, each time is as hurtful as the first. Life is a precious gift and when it ends it tears us apart. Please know I will keep you both in my thoughts and prayers.......RIP precious girl. You will never be forgotten, you will always have a secure place in a loving heart. May the good Lord bless and keep you, until you meet again!
 

Mamanyt1953

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Your precious girl lived, breathed, and had her being wrapped in your love, and she left this adventure for her Next Great Adventure knowing that. The hardest thing we ever do as guardians to our pets is putting their wellbeing ahead of our own heartbreak. I do hope you will post a memorial to her, when you are up to it.
 
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jjl61886

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I thank you all for the replies. Of course it’s natural to second guess and think about things I should have done differently and I’ve been doing that.

She only got diagnosed with lymphoma about a month ago. For about two months prior, I noticed she wouldn’t always eat her cat food but she wanted treats instead. I thought she’s just being picky and she’ll eat when she’s hungry. I didn’t notice the weight loss. I didn’t think it would be anything like cancer so I didn’t get her to the vet until it became far too late. Would it have made a difference? I don’t know but I know I can’t help but beat myself up for letting her down. She was only 11.

Also looking back, for the last year or so she would vomit her food periodically. It didn’t happen enough for me to think anything bad.
 

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