U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Pets > Dogs
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 1.5 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
Jump to a detailed profile or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Business Search - 14 Million verified businesses
Search for:  near: 
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 03-06-2010, 02:29 PM
 
43,017 posts, read 49,727,727 times
Reputation: 28742

Advertisements

My 14 year old labrador (who on regular intervals seems to be about to die but always bounces back) has been excessively panting today. Google search indicates that it could be congestive heart failure.

He was last seen by the vet a couple of month ago. The vet understands that our goal is simply comfortable last years. We have no intentions of pursuing expensive treatments to prolong life past his comfort tollerance. However, we will provide him with any treatments that will relieve pain or make him more comfortable.

It's very likely he has cancer. He definitely has serious memory loss. His joints are weak. But overall he's hanging in there. He's fairly happy and content without discomfort most of the time. Every couple of months, he has a bad night and I give him benedryl so he can sleep. He's on a high nutrient diet because his body doesn't absorb nutrients easily. We recently started him on something that helps his achy joints.

My question is if congestive heart failure worth treating in the last stages of a dog's life? Has anyone dealt with this? Would I just be prolonging his misery?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 03-06-2010, 03:17 PM
 
Location: Sittin' on the rocks at the bay...
21,278 posts, read 5,195,265 times
Reputation: 33236
I don't know the answer to your question, but if I were you, I'd probably have a chat with my vet about it. My Corgi mix will be 13 in July. He gets forgetful now too. His joints are doing pretty well considering he's overweight and lugging this huge sausage body around on 6" legs. No medicines at all yet.

I think your vet who knows your pupper and his health issues would best be able to advise you on the extent of care to give as he nears the end.

Hugs to you.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-06-2010, 03:32 PM
 
43,017 posts, read 49,727,727 times
Reputation: 28742
Quote:
Originally Posted by CoastalMaine View Post
I don't know the answer to your question, but if I were you, I'd probably have a chat with my vet about it......

.....I think your vet who knows your pupper and his health issues would best be able to advise you on the extent of care to give as he nears the end.
I'll definitely be seeing the vet. I'd just like to hear people's first hand experiences with congestive heart failure in an elderly dog.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CoastalMaine View Post
My Corgi mix will be 13 in July. He gets forgetful now too. His joints are doing pretty well considering he's overweight and lugging this huge sausage body around on 6" legs. No medicines at all yet.
Hugs to you and your Corgi! Glad to hear his joints are holding up with the weight on the short legs. I'm worried for my 4 year old beagle basset getting old because he's built similar to your dog---lots of weight on short legs.

My labrador has the opposite problem. He's tall and lanky. Super skinny with ribs and bony butt. It's everything we can do to keep weight on him. At least we've got him so his backbone isn't showing anymore. The vet says it's a blessing in disguise because his joints wouldn't hold much more weight.

The memory loss is really bad. He stares off in a daze often. He doesn't know where he's at. Once we found him on a neighbor's porch waiting to be let inside--thinking it was his house! (Now we don't let him get out of our sight anymore.) Just yesterday, I was in the yard with him and the beagle basset. The B&B and I were following him. He knew we were behind him. When we got to the landing to the steps of our porch, he was standing on the porch staring at the door---as if he was waiting for me to open it from the inside to let him in. I stood there for a moment, waiting for him to notice us. I said his name and he turned around and looked all shocked and surprised as if we had materialised out of thin air. In just a mere few minutes, he had forgotten that we were outside with him.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-06-2010, 03:58 PM
 
Location: Over the Rainbow...
5,964 posts, read 7,149,001 times
Reputation: 3064
We had a little Peke some years back who had congestive heart failure, he was an elderly little guy. The vet gave us a heart pill that he took daily (sorry I can't remember the name of it). The long and short is that sadly just like in humans with CHF, the heart will give out eventually. After he was diagnosed with the congestive heart failure he lived probably about 6 more months or so, he also had severe arthritis in his lower back.

One day even though he got his pills (he even had pain pills), he cried and cried, it was awful. He was panting heavily. I called the Vet and she said her opinion was that it was time. I bundled my little Bunkie Boy up, held him close as my husband drove us to the vet. She listened to his heart and the beats were very very faint. It was time. We stayed with him as he crossed the Rainbow Bridge.

Best of luck with your furbaby. Keep us posted.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-06-2010, 04:27 PM
 
Location: Sittin' on the rocks at the bay...
21,278 posts, read 5,195,265 times
Reputation: 33236
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hopes View Post
I'll definitely be seeing the vet. I'd just like to hear people's first hand experiences with congestive heart failure in an elderly dog.


Hugs to you and your Corgi! Glad to hear his joints are holding up with the weight on the short legs. I'm worried for my 4 year old beagle basset getting old because he's built similar to your dog---lots of weight on short legs.

My labrador has the opposite problem. He's tall and lanky. Super skinny with ribs and bony butt. It's everything we can do to keep weight on him. At least we've got him so his backbone isn't showing anymore. The vet says it's a blessing in disguise because his joints wouldn't hold much more weight.

The memory loss is really bad. He stares off in a daze often. He doesn't know where he's at. Once we found him on a neighbor's porch waiting to be let inside--thinking it was his house! (Now we don't let him get out of our sight anymore.) Just yesterday, I was in the yard with him and the beagle basset. The B&B and I were following him. He knew we were behind him. When we got to the landing to the steps of our porch, he was standing on the porch staring at the door---as if he was waiting for me to open it from the inside to let him in. I stood there for a moment, waiting for him to notice us. I said his name and he turned around and looked all shocked and surprised as if we had materialised out of thin air. In just a mere few minutes, he had forgotten that we were outside with him.
I know what you're going through with the memory loss. Sandy yelps to go outside to do his business, then he goes out and sits down, forgetting completely why he's out there!!! Sometimes he'll just wander aimlessly around the yard, putting his nose up and smelling the air. I watch him being totally relaxed, not in a rush to do anything anymore, and that's a good thing, but for me, I know it's signaling the beginning of a new life phase.

I've also noticed he's going deaf. If I'm behind him and I call out to him or just talk to him, he doesn't hear a thing. Just like you, I have to yell, and then he sort of jumps, with an 'Oh Mod cut I didn't know you were there!' expression on his face. Cracks me up and breaks my heart all at the same time.

He has grown to be so wonderful with the new little puppies in just one month. He finally gets to be the big, ALPHA dog that he's always wanted to be. Of course, he's a softie about it. LOL Puppies got to go for their first BIG ride with no kennel in the truck the other day, just their leashes. We were riding about 2-3 miles to the vet. Frenchy, the girl, was brave as could be with her front paws up on the window sill of the passenger window, her back paws on the seat. Then came Sandy, sandwiched up to her, with his nose resting on the window sill. Next came Snickers, the boy puppy, who was TOO scared to be on his hind paws looking out the window. No, No. What he did, was sit right next to Sandy and press himself up against Sandy's side as hard as he could!!! The three of them looked like dominoes! Sandy was wagging his tail!! He was loving it!!! I feel like this addition of puppies will add time to his life because he's got puppers to take care of.

Do let us know what your vet says!!! Prayers for you and your baby!

Last edited by Viralmd; 03-07-2010 at 06:55 AM.. Reason: Inappropriate language
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-06-2010, 04:43 PM
 
Location: Over the Rainbow...
5,964 posts, read 7,149,001 times
Reputation: 3064
It is so sad when our pets grow old and get ailments. Bad enough for humans, but we can understand what is going on and they can't.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-06-2010, 05:57 PM
 
1,688 posts, read 3,858,575 times
Reputation: 1784
My only personal experience with it has been feline, not canine and as much as I had hoped she might be able to die peacefully from it (ie, heart just stops), hers was not going to go down that route. Interestingly, she was put on canine heart meds because no feline ones exist. I too am sitting here trying to remember the name of it, it escapes me.

But I think as with anything that's terminal, you just have to judge as you go. Only you are going to be the accurate judge of when enough is enough.

If treatment is but a pill or something else relatively innocuous (ie, little/no downside), then I'm always of a mind to say, "well, let's try it" - no so as to prolong life necessarily, but to make life more comfortable in the meantime. But I'm also just as quick to discontinue should I discover there are side-effects that hadn't been foreseen.

As tempting as it is to say "poor old chap"... he's had a great, long life being a beloved pet. Nothing "poor" about it.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-06-2010, 06:32 PM
 
Location: Over the Rainbow...
5,964 posts, read 7,149,001 times
Reputation: 3064
Quote:
Originally Posted by FiveHorses View Post
My only personal experience with it has been feline, not canine and as much as I had hoped she might be able to die peacefully from it (ie, heart just stops), hers was not going to go down that route. Interestingly, she was put on canine heart meds because no feline ones exist. I too am sitting here trying to remember the name of it, it escapes me.

But I think as with anything that's terminal, you just have to judge as you go. Only you are going to be the accurate judge of when enough is enough.

If treatment is but a pill or something else relatively innocuous (ie, little/no downside), then I'm always of a mind to say, "well, let's try it" - no so as to prolong life necessarily, but to make life more comfortable in the meantime. But I'm also just as quick to discontinue should I discover there are side-effects that hadn't been foreseen.

As tempting as it is to say "poor old chap"... he's had a great, long life being a beloved pet. Nothing "poor" about it.


So true.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-06-2010, 11:13 PM
 
10,540 posts, read 8,808,746 times
Reputation: 11663
if congestive heart failure worth treating in the last stages of a dog's life?

I'm so sorry, Hopes. Congestive heart failure is a common problem with dobermans and there's never a one-answer-fits-all response to your question. I've seen dogs who were obviously in great discomfort/pain and whose owners should have let them go but couldnt/wouldnt. I've also seen dogs who were treated and were happy and in relative comfort until the very end. (One of my dogs was that way.)

Let your dear lab answer the question. You'll be able to tell when life is more of a struggle than a joy to him. And, when that time comes, please know that others have been down that sad road and are here to comfort you.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-06-2010, 11:50 PM
 
5,031 posts, read 7,968,033 times
Reputation: 2305
My 12-year old Lab pants a lot as well. I took her to the vet and he couldn't hear anything that would suggest congestive heart failure although I do know that Labs are prone to it. My vet also told me HE has never seen a Lab live past 12 and Hopes, I'm so glad to hear your Lab is 14. My Lady is such a joy, the sweetest little creature on Earth. Lately too, she has been gagging but when it's time for our walk, she runs like the wind and is just so happy. Every now and then she waits out a lap or two while I and my other dog, Katy (Lady's daughter) continue on. After a little rest, she continues on with us. I dread the horrid heat in the summer, which will be here before I know it, and I only hope she can stand it.

Please do keep us posted. I hope all goes well.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Over $84,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Pets > Dogs

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2014, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25 - Top