PDA

View Full Version : terminal illness



donnamt
15-02-2010, 10:26 AM
has anyone ever made the decision to stop treatment?

This morning was really bad with Pearl, by the time i had got drugs in i had to hold her chunk of apple for her or she wouldnt eat it her head was so far up in the air :cry::cry::cry::cry:

i just wondered has anyone ever taken the decision to stop with the medication to avoid the stress of the actual giving it, or do you all fight to the bitter end?

there will be a point when getting the meds in arent helping because the heart is under such a strain from trying to avoid the situation in the first place. i dont think we really are far off that time.

honestly do you think its best to keep up with drugs until they are no longer effective or is it kinder to let nature finish what it has started.

yet again sitting at my desk at work almost in tears trying to figure out wtf im supposed to do for Pearl :?

Hugo's There
15-02-2010, 10:30 AM
I have never stopped any medication to "let naturer take its course" I would be so worried that the bunny would be left suffering.

We have always carried on with meds until they are no longer effective and then pts or if the treatment has become too invasive or stressful and is also affecting the bunnies quality if life we have also opted for pts :(

donnamt
15-02-2010, 10:33 AM
at the moment it probably takes 1/2hour for her to recover from the meds then she seems quite happy again, she is looking poorly and her lips were quite blue yesterday. do you think thats still ok quality? i know you have a lot on your mind at the mo hun so i dont want to upset you with my questions :cry:

Dustyrabbit
15-02-2010, 10:34 AM
Oh dear I feel for you.

I think a time can come when you say enough is enough. I know it did for me and my elderly horse - we could have gone on and tried to treat his latest problem but I felt he'd had enough prodding and poking over the last couple of year with recurrent foot and tendon problems (at one time he could only stand up leaning on the stable wall) and there was just another problem waiting in the wings. I had dreaded that day for many years, always hoping he'd pop of naturally in the field, but in the end I knew when it was the right time and you will too. Take each day as it comes and follow your heart you know her best.

SarahP
15-02-2010, 10:35 AM
I used to think that I might have to do this with my bunnies. ie at some point when they went into stasis for the millionth time, stop fighting with drugs and just call the vet and PTS. In reality I couldn't do this! So I was giving them all their meds till the bitter end, until the point where I could say that their quality of life wasn't good enough to continue (two separate occasions, so two separate decisions).

edit: I've actually done this with my hamster at the moment though. The stress of giving drugs that aren't actually working anyway is really not doing her any good, so I'm now just feeding food and fluids and ready to make the decision when necessary.

I really feel for you. :(

*lily*
15-02-2010, 10:37 AM
I think everyone will have different opinions on this subject so I can only say what I would do myself.

Simba had pneumonia, only had it for 4 days, but in mine and the vets minds, he was suffering so I opted to PTS. I will never know if a miracle may have occured but I made the decision based on what was happening in front of me at the time :(

When Tinkerbell had her headtilt and vacancy, this was only for 2 days and I was already asking myself whether I would continue with treatment with her in such an unrabbit like state. She couldn't do any of the things she had previously enjoyed and I really don't know how long I could have kept her like that. Fate stepped in and she passed away.

So, really I have been of no help whatsoever but just giving my own take on things as I see them for myself.

mini lop1
15-02-2010, 10:40 AM
at the moment, rosie is being treated with meds, if it comes to the time when i think these meds are not having any effect, if she deteriates then i will have to take the kindest option, but as she is showing it helps even if she doesn't like taking the medicine i am happy with her

Hugo's There
15-02-2010, 10:40 AM
If its only taking a short while to recover and the rest of her days are OK then it sounds like her quality of life isn't being badly affected by taking the meds.

If it gets to the point where she doesn't want to take them because she is scared of you all the time for doing it, its causing her great pain which is affecting the rest of her day that is the sort of situation where I would call it day due to the meds as well as the illness.

SarahP
15-02-2010, 10:44 AM
If its only taking a short while to recover and the rest of her days are OK then it sounds like her quality of life isn't being badly affected by taking the meds.

If it gets to the point where she doesn't want to take them because she is scared of you all the time for doing it, its causing her great pain which is affecting the rest of her day that is the sort of situation where I would call it day due to the meds as well as the illness.

I totally agree with this. I like to try to measure quality of life, as far as it's possible, as a sort of % of time spent happy/appearing to enjoy life. If it's low, it's time to go. :( It's an incredibly hard decision though. :cry:

donnamt
15-02-2010, 10:47 AM
If its only taking a short while to recover and the rest of her days are OK then it sounds like her quality of life isn't being badly affected by taking the meds.

If it gets to the point where she doesn't want to take them because she is scared of you all the time for doing it, its causing her great pain which is affecting the rest of her day that is the sort of situation where I would call it day due to the meds as well as the illness.

shes not scared of me yet, just knows when its drug time. :cry:

thankyou all, i dont think im ready to give up on her yet but i feel so guilty every morning. the vetmedin isnt hated as much so its a lot easier than the morning dose of fortekor. i would only consider stopping the vetmedin and fortekor anyhows. it think without the dirurectics id be sentencing her to an awful death of drowning in her own fluid:cry:. suppose that means its drugs till the bitter end anyhows :oops::oops:

i-love-bunnies
15-02-2010, 12:56 PM
what is wrong with pearl ?

donnamt
15-02-2010, 01:00 PM
what is wrong with pearl ?

she has an enlarged heart, she was ill from last July but the vets didnt diagnose it till september so while she wasnt getting treatment she got ill quicker.

shes in the final stage of life now and her heart feels so huge :cry::cry::cry::cry:

giantbunnymummy
15-02-2010, 01:16 PM
It must be an incredibly difficult decision to face :(

My only personal experience of this is years ago when one of my mum's cats was left carrying on and struggling for too long because we didn't want him pts. In hindsight it would have been kinder to let him go sooner :cry:

So, as far as it goes, my only advice is to continue as you are doing - carefully monitoring Pearl's quality of life and how happy and active she is after meds, and when it seems like there's more struggle than happiness, make the kindest decision for her.

Sending beautiful Pearl loads of vibes.

donnamt
15-02-2010, 01:21 PM
It must be an incredibly difficult decision to face :(

My only personal experience of this is years ago when one of my mum's cats was left carrying on and struggling for too long because we didn't want him pts. In hindsight it would have been kinder to let him go sooner :cry:

So, as far as it goes, my only advice is to continue as you are doing - carefully monitoring Pearl's quality of life and how happy and active she is after meds, and when it seems like there's more struggle than happiness, make the kindest decision for her.

Sending beautiful Pearl loads of vibes.

when i asked the vet how long in her experience bunnys in pearls conditiion last on treatment she said its usually about 6 months. we are right on that time now and i think the vet has been right, im gutted we didnt treat the illness sooner that two months could of made a huge difference to when the end came, she wont go for much longer, i feel it deep in my heart. i keep watching the videos ive been making since July and shes going down hill pretty fast now i think..i wont let her suffer (i hope) just one little sign and ill let her go to sleep

Hugo's There
15-02-2010, 01:22 PM
It must be an incredibly difficult decision to face :(

My only personal experience of this is years ago when one of my mum's cats was left carrying on and struggling for too long because we didn't want him pts. In hindsight it would have been kinder to let him go sooner :cry:So, as far as it goes, my only advice is to continue as you are doing - carefully monitoring Pearl's quality of life and how happy and active she is after meds, and when it seems like there's more struggle than happiness, make the kindest decision for her.

Sending beautiful Pearl loads of vibes.

My nice bunny vet said to me a couple of years ago, it is always better to worry that you chose to pts too soon rather than too late. And there is a lot of truth in that :?

I have worried so many times in the past that I made the wrong choice with timing, and looking back you always feel worse when you feel you letf it a little too long

giantbunnymummy
15-02-2010, 01:27 PM
when i asked the vet how long in her experience bunnys in pearls conditiion last on treatment she said its usually about 6 months. we are right on that time now and i think the vet has been right, im gutted we didnt treat the illness sooner that two months could of made a huge difference to when the end came, she wont go for much longer, i feel it deep in my heart. i keep watching the videos ive been making since July and shes going down hill pretty fast now i think..i wont let her suffer (i hope) just one little sign and ill let her go to sleep

Oh Donna it's heartbreaking isn't it :cry:

I know you'll do your best for Pearl. Hugs.

VikkiVet
15-02-2010, 01:31 PM
I would never stop meds if they are either no longer working or too difficult/stressful to give. If you have to stop for either reason then i think you have to go for PTS straight after.

Its a horrible situation and decision, but there is no real benefit for her to be without meds for any length of time. If its only half an hour per day to recover, then thats reasonable i think. but if medicating her gets her so stressed that she can't really breathe then either you need a new technique or an oxygen atmosphere or to consider that strain vs the benefit. If each dosing causes so much stress that it advances the progression of the disease, then dosing her isnt having any benefit.

my heart goes out to you because i know how much you love her and want the best for her, and she seems to have to much character. But like Liz says, its always better to PTS too soon than too late. They dont think like us, they dont know its coming, and it will be less stressful for you all if she goes reasonably quietly and not in an end-stage crisis.

giantbunnymummy
15-02-2010, 01:32 PM
My nice bunny vet said to me a couple of years ago, it is always better to worry that you chose to pts too soon rather than too late. And there is a lot of truth in that :?

I have worried so many times in the past that I made the wrong choice with timing, and looking back you always feel worse when you feel you letf it a little too long

I absolutely agree. If I could go back and change what we did for Timothy cat I would :cry:

Just had to face a similar thing recently with another of my mum's cats who took ill while she was away on holiday and was being looked after by a neighbour. We decided between us, with the support of the vet, that pts was kinder for Cleo than to have her admitted and hanging on for a week until my mum got home. She had terminal kidney disease and a host of ther problems which meds had kept in check until that week.

donnamt
15-02-2010, 05:05 PM
one more thing... how will i know if im giving up because IM tired of the drugs time or if it really is best for Pearl :?

its 5pm and already im stressing out over going home and doing Pearls drugs, whats the betting she hasnt thought about it once and will only get upset when i pick up the dreaded towel :?

theres no point me talking to Ste because he will just say its up to me i know her best :?

gah, im so fed up with my brain :cry::cry::cry:

Lynn's Bunny
15-02-2010, 05:09 PM
I feel for you so much as I am also in this situation with my cat. It is so hard! She was diagnoised more than 2 years ago and the Vets think it is a miracle that she is still alive. She has cardiomyopathy and is also in the final stages. I have taken her to the Vets countless times for oxygen and lasix injections and they keep telling me I have to make a decision about when to pts.

I have had my cat for 16 and a half years and she is basically our child. She is already maxed out on the lasix meds. Its such a dilemma because on one hand you don't want them to suffer but also don't want to shorten their lives. I'm having a really difficult time with this too. My cats' heart is also enlarged as your rabbits and the Vets are shocked by how large it is and the fact she's still alive.

We are going to have to make a decision too as she was just in for oxygen and lasix injection a week and a half ago and she is having such a hard time breathing today that I'm probably going to have to take her in for oxygen again. But I keep thinking is this fair? I am worried she is suffering and uncomfortable.

Yet she is still eating and using her litter box and purring. She even went outside supervised of course, for about 5 minutes yesterday.

Does Pearl breathe heavy as well?

Anytime you want to talk you can always PM me. I"m so sorry you and Pearl are going thru this. Its a rollarcoaster ride.

(((hugs)))
Lynn

donnamt
15-02-2010, 05:19 PM
I feel for you so much as I am also in this situation with my cat. It is so hard! She was diagnoised more than 2 years ago and the Vets think it is a miracle that she is still alive. She has cardiomyopathy and is also in the final stages. I have taken her to the Vets countless times for oxygen and lasix injections and they keep telling me I have to make a decision about when to pts.

I have had my cat for 16 and a half years and she is basically our child. She is already maxed out on the lasix meds. Its such a dilemma because on one hand you don't want them to suffer but also don't want to shorten their lives. I'm having a really difficult time with this too. My cats' heart is also enlarged as your rabbits and the Vets are shocked by how large it is and the fact she's still alive.

We are going to have to make a decision too as she was just in for oxygen and lasix injection a week and a half ago and she is having such a hard time breathing today that I'm probably going to have to take her in for oxygen again. But I keep thinking is this fair? I am worried she is suffering and uncomfortable.

Yet she is still eating and using her litter box and purring. She even went outside supervised of course, for about 5 minutes yesterday.

Does Pearl breathe heavy as well?

Anytime you want to talk you can always PM me. I"m so sorry you and Pearl are going thru this. Its a rollarcoaster ride.

(((hugs)))
Lynn

Pearl always breathes deep and slow now, its really weird because my dads enlarged heart raced so fast they couldnt find a pulse but pearls heart beats like an overfilled sponge, slow and deep. theres no going back to the vets with Pearl now :cry::cry::cry: shes on the max dose of all her drugs even the diruertic is 3x a day at 5mg, which i beleive is the max dose for a rabbit 2x daily :?

when shes calm she breathes slow. but when shes moved and she doesnt hop she runs :roll: she pants and her head is vertically up in the air, dunno if youve seen a rabbit when they are mouth breathing. awful to watch... some times from simple movement shes back to normal(ish) after about 10mins but in the morning after fortekor & diruectics its a good half hour before she puts her head back down and she stops panting. what i cant bear the most is when she pulls her lips back like she cant get the air in :cry:

im so sorry you are going through this with your cat, 2 years is such a long time you must be an emotional wreck :cry::cry:

bunny mad lisa
15-02-2010, 05:23 PM
my hearts breaks for you having been there myself. It is mentally draining and you can't concentrate on anyting or function properly!
i nursed my bunny with an incurable abscess and had to flush it out and give her injections twice aday which would take about an hour,and everyday would question if i was doing the right thing by doing this. She was happy in herself for the rest of the day and ate well.
i was always told that you would know when the time was right and thats just how it happend. i looked at her oneday and her spark from her eyes had gone and she fought me cleaning her up when she'd usually sit quietly. I could see she'd had enough and she was tired.
i hope this happens for you and although it's easy to say try to focus on your time together and your heart will tell you when it's time.

Lspacehopper
15-02-2010, 06:13 PM
I can't offer any advice Donna, I just feel for you and what your beautiful girl is going through.

My Angel Moon had resp problems all her life and during the summer she developed bloat through mouth breathing and trying to gulp in air. Her lips turned blue and seeing her like that just broke my heart.

Only you can really say when enough is enough ((hugs)) xxx

donnamt
15-02-2010, 07:51 PM
well its not today :D she took her drugs great this evening and gobbled the veg i gave her as a sorry :love::love::love:

ive said to ste that i will ask the vets how much notice i have to give on a callout on thurday when we are there for ralphs booster.. he reakons i should ask how much itll cost, but well no price will put me off having her pts at home with her alvin being annoying. im scared to ask too, i bet its fortunes to get a vet out :shock:

Becki xX
15-02-2010, 08:53 PM
Its a horrible situation, especially when they're up & down. Venny has heart failure so he's on fortekor too. Is there no way you can crush the tablets up with some wet food? Its easy for us to say let her go before she's suffering, but some days I think Vens time is up, to set him free before he is hurting - but otherwise, when his tails wagging & hes enjoying the sunshine or some tuna, I couldn't even dream of it. So hard, Thinking of you :cry: XX

donnamt
15-02-2010, 09:10 PM
Its a horrible situation, especially when they're up & down. Venny has heart failure so he's on fortekor too. Is there no way you can crush the tablets up with some wet food? Its easy for us to say let her go before she's suffering, but some days I think Vens time is up, to set him free before he is hurting - but otherwise, when his tails wagging & hes enjoying the sunshine or some tuna, I couldn't even dream of it. So hard, Thinking of you :cry: XX

poor venny :cry::cry::cry: vet reakons now that pearl is so anti the drug no amount of hiding it in food will get it into her, it stinks and she said that is the smell of the tablet not the liquid it gets mixed with :(

have you tried vetmedin for venny too? i swear within a week of that stuff pearl was like a diffo rabbit for a while :love:

Lynn's Bunny
16-02-2010, 05:11 PM
Hi Donnamt,

I wanted to let you know my cat passed away this morning. I can't believe she is gone. I woke up and her breathing was so terrible and her mouth was open, she couldn't concentrate on anything but breathing. I could tell she was suffering. We took her to the emerg Vets and they gave her oxygen but there wasn't anything more they could do. So we made the decision to have her put to sleep. I never thought I could make that decision. But when you know you know. And I think that is what will happen with your bunny, too. You will just know when enough is enough.

Its so difficult. I feel lost without my cat. I had her since a kitten and she was 16 and a half years old. I walk thru my house like I am looking for her. But I know she isn't here, she is now on her journey. She is not suffering anymore.

Take care and I"m sending positive vibes to your little bun.

Lynn

donnamt
16-02-2010, 05:15 PM
Hi Donnamt,

I wanted to let you know my cat passed away this morning. I can't believe she is gone. I woke up and her breathing was so terrible and her mouth was open, she couldn't concentrate on anything but breathing. I could tell she was suffering. We took her to the emerg Vets and they gave her oxygen but there wasn't anything more they could do. So we made the decision to have her put to sleep. I never thought I could make that decision. But when you know you know. And I think that is what will happen with your bunny, too. You will just know when enough is enough.

Its so difficult. I feel lost without my cat. I had her since a kitten and she was 16 and a half years old. I walk thru my house like I am looking for her. But I know she isn't here, she is now on her journey. She is not suffering anymore.

Take care and I"m sending positive vibes to your little bun.

Lynn

oh i am so very sorry, sounds like she really really loved her life to fight the illness for so long, i hope you do have some peace from the fact shes definately not suffering now. im heartbroke for you :cry::cry::cry::cry:

mini lop1
16-02-2010, 05:27 PM
Hi Donnamt,

I wanted to let you know my cat passed away this morning. I can't believe she is gone. I woke up and her breathing was so terrible and her mouth was open, she couldn't concentrate on anything but breathing. I could tell she was suffering. We took her to the emerg Vets and they gave her oxygen but there wasn't anything more they could do. So we made the decision to have her put to sleep. I never thought I could make that decision. But when you know you know. And I think that is what will happen with your bunny, too. You will just know when enough is enough.

Its so difficult. I feel lost without my cat. I had her since a kitten and she was 16 and a half years old. I walk thru my house like I am looking for her. But I know she isn't here, she is now on her journey. She is not suffering anymore.

Take care and I"m sending positive vibes to your little bun.

Lynn

aww i am soo sorry to hear about your cat, but you made the right decision at the right time, as owners we just know when that time does come, to help them on their way, as i did with old mowgli
your cat lived to a grand age, and im sure you have lots of fond memories to look back on, and when you feel better those memories will bring you a smile

Lynn's Bunny
16-02-2010, 06:03 PM
Thank you both for your emails. Sorry I feel I hijacked your thread. I will post separately. TAke care.

donnamt
16-02-2010, 07:44 PM
Thank you both for your emails. Sorry I feel I hijacked your thread. I will post separately. TAke care.

no dont be silly, im really glad you came back and even through your greif gave me words to help. im really grateful :love:

i would love to see pictures of your brave kitty :love:

CRBevis
16-02-2010, 08:37 PM
Big hugs Donna from me and the Polster!

I think Pearl will let you know when she tired and you will feel/see it in your heart and head.

Polo sends a kiss to her and you and a paw punch for his bro Alvin:)

(Polo says cheers to Alvin for the riot lessons and to tell him he has taken up peeing on mums bed)


Kisses for Pearl xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Hugo's There
16-02-2010, 10:50 PM
well its not today :D she took her drugs great this evening and gobbled the veg i gave her as a sorry :love::love::love:

ive said to ste that i will ask the vets how much notice i have to give on a callout on thurday when we are there for ralphs booster.. he reakons i should ask how much itll cost, but well no price will put me off having her pts at home with her alvin being annoying. im scared to ask too, i bet its fortunes to get a vet out :shock:

We have had the vet out as an emergency and it usually costs the same as an out of hours fee. Where as if it is booked in advance our vets call out fee is about 30 before treatment.

On the occassions I have had a bunny pts at home it was definately worth doing as it is so much calmer and more relaxed than a trip to the surgery.

thumps_
17-02-2010, 12:08 AM
I had my cat pts at home although we're only 100 yards from the GPvet.
He had a pituitary tumour which made him very severely diabetic, eventually needing 3x the replacement dose of insulin for an 11stone man. I felt he was getting headaches from the cancer. I continued the insulin, but threw his diet out of the window for 24hours, giving him all his favourite treats. He was pts at home because he was scared out of his mind at the vets, & was a psychological wreck from abuse when I took him in. He became my "dog cat".

It was a very peaceful passing, even purring as I stroked him on my lap.
I have never felt guilty, because I gave him the best life I could, & the best death I could. Yes, I still miss him.

I agree with another poster. Personally I would never just stop meds & "let nature take it's course", even in this case. It's pts when we can do no more and general quality of life is low.