Posts Tagged ‘Last stage of life’
Well our girl, Moki, is still truckin’. She had a few bad days this week and then she had a day where she wanted to trot around the entire block. For a few days her belly was popping with indigestion and she had the “runs”…. but still a trooper. We thought we might have to “assist” her sooner than later. I felt like Dr. Kevorkian talking about assisting one of his patience to pass. I am at the point where I am ready to do that for her when she sends me the message.
Every time I see her, I look into her eyes and tell her I am here for her and will assist her in her transition. I am also aware that she is still enjoying her time with us. I do not want her to suffer. I do not want to wait until she is fighting so hard that she has lost all strength. I want her to die with dignity. This reminds me of the emotional roller coaster that we went through when my father was 90 and had a bad year of health before he died.
It’s mixed…you are so happy they are still with you but you know something traumatic can happen any moment. I think I kept my 1st dog, Tiamo, alive past a particular point in his life. I wasn’t quite ready and I wasn’t keen on the signs of suffering. Dogs and cats get slow and quiet, almost removing themselves. Most people think they would cry or groan in pain. I kept feeling like I would be playing God if I chose his death. When we decided to have the vet come to the house to euthanize him, afterwards, I knew we (mostly) did the best for him. I say “mostly” because it is never a black and white decision. When I viewed the video that we took of him the day before we put him down, I saw the suffering in his eyes. I vowed right then that I would never keep an animal past their time, so I am hyper sensitive to “listening” to Moki.
This week, I emailed a few friends that I have in my life to talk about my feelings during this process with Moki. It has helped me get through to the next stage. They are “animal people” too and really “get” the depth of it all, most people do, animal people or not. I got some great advice (that had slipped my memory) to give Moki canned pumpkin and white rice to help with her diarrhea. Sure enough it worked right away and her tummy stopped popping with indigestion and her “poops” were firmer. I think I was giving her too much steak and/or red meat. I poached some chicken breasts and carrots. I fed her the chicken with rice and canned pumpkin. She was into eating that for about 1 day. Her tastes keep shifting, but I could tell that was going to be easier for her digest.
Some days I grow inpatient with that, but I breathe and remember it’s only “frustration” and let it go and be with her in the present time. Poor baby, I don’t want her to pick up or smell any negative energy or grief from me. She is just doing what is natural. I hope some one is as patient with me when I need them to this degree. I need to stand strong in my courage to be there for her.
Moki is having a better day today…..go figure. She ate her late breakfast and early lunch. I have noticed that she is not as hungry inthe morning. For years she would gallop into the kitchen to get her breakfast as soon as we got up in the morning.
Now she is hungry later in the morning and evening. I feed her about 3-4 meals a day. Today I decided to skip the 10 mg Prednisone tablet. I want to give her nervous system a rest and I will resume the medication in the morning tomorrow. However, I did give her a Pepcid AC this morning, hoping it would calm her stomach lining and digestive system.
Her lymph glands grow a tad larger every day. Still happy Spirits, eating, walking and pooping. Loving her hamburger and rice. Today I in threw in some spinach and beef broth. I boiled some bones with marrow still inside and it made a tasty broth.
She is tired and when she goes to lay down she can’t quite relax. She is pacing. Breaks my heart. I know it is a day to day thing. She is riding that “end of life roller coaster”. One good day, next one NOT so good.
I laid by her side and laid my hands on her. She seemed to like the body contact and the touch. Still on 10 mg of Steroids and 10 mg of Pepcid AC. Still eating, pooping and peeing. Has some strength. Loving her steak, rice, eggs, etc.
Today is Wednesday. Moki was a bit agitated last night but slept well. Her nervous system and breathing system is taxed but so much better than last week when she had too many toxins in her system from the Prednisone. I still wish I would have listened to my intuition on giving her 1/2 of the dosage the Vet prescribed. I know better. When one is emotional about their sweet pet, you want to trust the “doctor”. Another lesson on listening to my gut!
This is what my mornings have consisted of lately….wake up and make sure Moki is still breathing in life. I get a YES and move onto the kitchen. Feed Kona her Life’s Abundance dog kibble and figure out if Moki is hungry. The last few mornings she has come into the kitchen in the morning acting hungry. So I fed her rice, lamb (wet dog food) with gravy and scrambled an egg into it. I added her nutrient powder and stirred it all together. She gobbled 99% of it. Then she got her 10mg of Prednisone and 10 mg of Pepcid AC. She is now laying in the living room on the carpet.
Then I go to the backyard and search for dog poop, assess it, collect it and toss it into the poop bucket. This morning there were five to six VERY SOFT piles. Her poor tummy, but she seems “ok”. I added a lot of rice to her food this morning, to help with the soft poop and upset tummy. I will give more rice this evening with hamburger and an egg; half rice to half protein.
Writing about my dog, Moki, and her last stage of life.
She has Lymphoma, diagnosed June 1st 2011.
Our Vet said to give her 20 mg of Prednisone 2x a day. This steroid acts like a chemotherapy for the dog. It was far too high of a dosage for my Moki and her already compromised body. I had an intuition about this and when I spoke with her vet, she talked me into accepting it. I wanted to start out with half the dosage. I find that vets usually OVER prescribe.
In my past with my pets, I have always cut the dosage in half and build up to the prescribed dosage (if I need to). This has worked for me and my Pets.
By the night of day 2, Moki had too many toxins in her system. I think the steroid was too much for her compromised body. She was anxious, throwing up and out of it. For 4 days I gave her 20mgs, 2 xs a day. Then I tapered off to 1-20mg the next morning and only a half tablet (10mg) this morning. It is dangerous to abruptly stop a steroid for animals (and humans). It can tax the adrenals and there is a possibility of “shut down”. This smaller dose was better for Moki and her condition. She is able to eat again. Moki was able to relax and sleep the best in two days! I envision her to make a peaceful transition.
No pain – No suffering. Moki and I have a strong connection, we always have. Moki will tell me when she needs to go and I will listen to her request. Animals let you know when they need help, it’s our responsibility to listen with our heart and pick up the non-verbal communication. The role of a good responsible parent and loving guardian. I will miss her but I have told her she can “go” when it’s right for her, not just right for me. Julie, Kona and I will be okay.
She and I have shared a great life together. She is the best dog ever! The true and loyal buddy that anyone could wish for. I am so happy I “listened” when I was lead to her Spirit calling me. She was over 900 miles away in Moab, Utah and I was in the San Francisco Bay area when we “met” up and adopted one another. Moki was 6 or 7 or 8 when we met. I will have had her in my life for 9 years this November (2011). The best gift my heart has ever had!
Here we sit, 7:05 pm on a Sunday night, June 5th, 2011. The air blowing into our house. I am blogging, Kona is sleeping on the carpet in front of me. Moki is peacefully laying down near the open French doors, feeling the breeze come in on her muzzle. A little more peace and quiet tonight in our house and she rests after her can of wet food. Yep! She ate and drank water tonight…first time in days. Bless her heart.
You can see Video blogs of Moki at http://www.youtube.com/user/barbaratapella?feature=mhee
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Moki had a seizure on Saturday May 29th, 2011. Julie and I took her to the vet. She seemed to recovery quickly and was able to stand and eat treats while we were there.
I asked the veterinarian to check her lymph nodes in her throat as they felt enlarged.
He agreed that they were enlarged and aspirated them. We found out today that Moki has Lymphoma. The dreaded news.
She seems to be doing ok. Slower and more quiet. She is still eating with desire, loving, wants to have short walks, etc.
Over the past year she has formed cataracts and has lost most of her hearing. Aging.
We have had the gift of Moki’s life since 2002. When I adopted in November 2002, she was 6, 7 or 8 years old. We have had her 8.5 years. That would put her at (approx) 16 years old or so.
Yes, My heart is breaking…But I am grateful for her and I meeting up in this world.
She has been a special GIFT! We have made some great memories.