Janie is Hurting, Advice?

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by PineappleMama, Nov 6, 2010.

  1. Janie, Janeyre Austen, our sweet little doxie is (I'm pretty sure) suffering from Disk Disease.

    The symptoms for DD are:

    Quiet, lethargic
    Sensative upon touching back area
    Dragging of rear legs
    Paralysis or discomfort
    Unable to move
    Poor appetite due to pain
    Hunched back
    Uncontrollable bladder and bowel movements
    No feeling whatsover in rear end
    (if the last two symptoms are occuring, this is an emergency situation)

    Hasn't gotten the last two, yet, but all the rest are spot on... another list also included legs failing, and back end trying to walk in a different direction from the front... she's got those happening too.

    So here's the problem... we do not have the estimated $4000-5000 for a surgery... and even with surgery it's 40% chance of coming back... but without that surgery she'll just continue as above... hurting like hades... and not being able to be Janie at all.

    I did try, even though I know we can't afford it, to apply for the Vet Credit stuff and we just don't qualify... but I felt I had to try.

    SO... now what? Without surgery she will be in pain constantly... literally, even just sitting still she's hurting I can tell... I can't stand it. There are pain meds I guess, but then she'll still be just laying there waiting for the pain to return... and from MIL's experience meds for doggies are pricey too... if it's an antibiotic that works and that's that it's one thing... but to have to keep her on that sort of thing, dopey and still unable to walk... that's not life... that's what we had to watch Mems go through this past year... pain led to pain meds that were increased and increased and still didn't work... and those in turn destroyed all her organs... it was NOT pleasant and she was MISERABLE... she was a very religious lady and even she got to the point where she was asking why God was doing this to her! It was AWFUL and I can't imagine putting her through that.

    But at the same time the thought of killing her just... good grief I'm choking up again, and I don't want the kids fretting... they know something is wrong but not that it's THIS wrong... sheesh this sucks rocks.

    I don't see any other option... I can't stomach her being trapped, unable to walk, and drugged until she dies of organ failure... but I can't stomach "putting her down" (what a pathetically idiotic phrase) either... but the money for surgery is just not there.

    Crap crap crap

  2. justbugged

    justbugged Head of the Night Crew for WA State

    Jan 27, 2009
    My SiL's Doxie has what think is the same thing, and she didn't have the money for surgery either. She did find a certified animal massage therapist. The MT worked on Tigger for about an hour, and it was like he was a new dog. He went from crying and unwilling to move, to back to his youthful exuberance.
  3. Wonder if those are around here? Human MT's yes, but I donno about animal ones.

    But Janie won't really let anyone but me even touch her... she cries out, even gets snarky if Daddy or kiddos get too close. She's always been a high strung little thing, always tense... very weird... I think she skipped puppy and went straight to menopausal woman or something... but she's never gotten snarky with DH or the kids, ever. She's just not a cranky type, tense yes, cranky no.

    That's what tipped the kids off that something was wrong... they haven't noticed the leg stuff as yet, just the attitude change.

    I'ma google the MT thing... thanks for the suggestion.
  4. Mak

    Mak Songster

    Dec 12, 2009
    Londonderry, NH
    Have you had her checked by a vet? Just because the symptoms are there, doesn't mean it isn't something that might be more easily treated than the expensive surgery.

    But I know how you feel. Summer before last, my sweet, adorable, luvbug cat, Tuxedo, developed what we thought was a bad sinus infection. Turned out to be tumors. Steroids helped for a while, but eventually, it got so bad, his breathing sounded worse than Darth Vader. He would just jump up on the sofa next to me and wheeze horribly trying to breathe. He didn't want to eat or drink. We could have taken him to a specialist for endoscopic surgery, but the cost was going to be out of our range. And we've gone pretty far for treatments and stuff for pets before, but this was just too much. It completely broke my heart to have to make the decision to let him go- I'm tearing up just typing this- but I knew then, and I know now, it was the best decision for him. He had no real quality of life left. I cry when I think about him even now.

    When we decide to bring a pet into our lives, we take on not only the responsibility of food, shelter, basic care, but also that of knowing when it's time to let go. I feel your pain, and I know it's an impossible decision. But it's one only you can make, because you know your dog and you know what's going to be best for her.

    My heart is with you as you go through this. [​IMG] [​IMG]

  5. Haven't gone to the vet yet... I'm OCD about being prepared, especially for bad news and there's no way I'd try doing that without DH with me... I don't think it'd be all that safe for me to drive with how I keep choking up. But especially not with the kids on hand and a hurting doggie to manage on top of the emotional stuff.

    Janie is a jumper, she doesn't like being on the floor, ever. While we could keep her off during waking hours there isn't a lot we could do to stop her hopping up on the chair once we're in bed. And jumping is VERY bad for doxies, long spines... we knew that, but we can't stop her from all jumping. Her symptoms point to a back injury, and the breed is notorious for them even when they aren't jumping... happens to a lot of them eventually anyways though it's degenerative rather than a one time trauma. I'm not a vet, never worked for one, anything like that... but I'm fairly sure this is a lumbar injury... might be sacrum (the very end/tail) but I'm thinking lumbar... but either of those would require a lot of treatment which may or may not work, with a pretty high chance of it coming back... if we had the money I'd jump on it, but since we don't... and after seeing what Mems went through...

    Hers was a bone disease, took eight years to slowly and painfully kill her and in the end it wasn't the bone part that killed her.. made her unable to move (like Janie now) but it wasn't killing her, it was the meds she was given for the pain that shut her down ... kidneys were first... started dialysis ... once a month... then to once a week... then it was twice a week. And the only place they had it was down in the cancer ward... imagine a woman petrified of hospitals being forced to sit in there for four+ hours over and over... and having to watch as these innocent little KIDS who knew they were dying were brought in and out... it really it was AWFUL for her and for us too. I just can't imagine my Janie being put through that. And that's what keeps popping in my head. Cannot do the surgery, no way. So the only possible option would be drugging her, to lessen the pain... and waiting like we did with Mems for her to fail. I can't stand the thought of giving her up... of killing her... but the suffering she'd go through just so I could keep her... makes me ill.
  6. Judy

    Judy Crowing Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    It's never easy to put one's pet down, and much harder if they seem to have some time left, painful or not. You have to look at quality of life, and then very often, do what you don't want to do. I've been through it with several pets. The only regret I've ever had is waiting too long.

    Massage or acupuncture, I would think, are possibilities. Pain meds will most likely be limited in their effect.
  7. mhwc56

    mhwc56 Songster

    Aug 5, 2010
    my house in maryland
    just my opinion but i would NOT have the surgery done ...try the massage or whatever to see if that helps but...

    a neighbor whose dogs i cared for during the day while she was at work had disc surgery on her beagle done. It took nearly a year for Daisy to recover enough to not be in extreme pain . It was HEARTBREAKING..how do you explain to a dog that she will maybe feel better in a few months? Daisy didn't understand and she HURT for months. She laid in her crate and howled and would suddenly start yiking in pain b/c she moved the wrong way and it was just horrid.We could hear her at our house 1/2 a block away if our windows were open. Her owner said she would never do that to another pet, it was so sad . Daisy passed away less than 2 years after the surgery.

  8. Katy

    Katy Flock Mistress

    My sis's miniature dachsund has been living with a "bad back" for many years. They too can't afford the surgery for her. One vet recommended to them to put her down, but another treated her with steriods and she had a lot of improvement. She is a jumper too and my sis gave up a long time ago trying to keep her from jumping up on chairs and beds....they have 5 kids and Daisy follows them everywhere. As long as she keeps going like she is they just plan on letting her live as active of life as she can.
  9. Janie's like that too... follows the family. Even if I'm going back and forth cleaning or something, running to answer the phone, etc she'll follow. Or at least she did. She tried last night but it was just so hurtful to see... she'd find a spot and settle down and then I'd get up to go do something and she just couldn't do it... I went over to pick her up and she looked so dang grateful it just killed me. I know, putting human emotions on the dog, but that's what the look said to me... grateful I was coming to rescue her.

    She's never had a problem before, NOTHING... then all the sudden blammo full blown problem so I don't think it's the degenerative... I think she jumped/landed wrong and hurt something.

    Crap I hear her coming down the hall...
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2010

  10. Katy

    Katy Flock Mistress

    Daisy's happened out of the blue too.....went from "normal" to barely able to walk overnight. Like I said before she still has episodes of barely getting around, but for the most part gets around and doesn't act like she's in pain or hurting.

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