|Diana with St Francis|
Today we made the difficult decision that Diana's quality of life had deteriorated to the point where it was time to let her go. She was still eating but not enough to keep her weight. Her usual weight varied between 30 and 34 pounds, and she was down to 22 pounds. She had only one eye, but her eyesight in the eye was very poor. She was deaf, with severe arthritis, and failing kidney function. She'd take her medications for arthritis and kidney function only concealed in a piece of hot dog, and she was refusing the hot dog, so she was no longer getting relief from arthritis pain from the anti-inflammatory.
Our kind veterinarian, Dr Scott, at Ridgefield Animal Hospital agreed we were not making the wrong decision, that Diana had only a short while to live, and it was unlikely that she would have good days, along with bad days, as had been the case a few weeks ago.
Diana was with us for 17½ years, a good long run for a dog friend, and we are thankful for all the years together. She was my companion on my walks until a couple of months ago, and I will very much miss our walkies together, but I have been missing her already.
Last Friday, I expressed my grief publicly on Facebook. For me, Diana's life with us was pretty much over then. Here's the picture I posted and what I said:
|Tom and Diana in her better days|
We are watching our dog Diana, who is 17 years old, deteriorate slowly. It's painful and depressing to see our once lively companion in such a sad way. She sleeps most of the time, but she still eats, drinks, and potties outside. She's losing weight because she eats much less than when she was healthier. Diana is deaf, has only one eye, and is nearly blind in the one. She has severe arthritis, but we give her anti-inflammatory medication every day, and she doesn't seem to be in pain. She's also on medication for failing kidney function.Tom and I are both at peace with the decision, though we know there will be sad times ahead. We will spread her ashes in our yard and garden, which has become a virtual pet cemetery for our dog, Rusty, and the several cats who have shared our lives over the years, but, this time, Tom wanted to be spared the burial.
Our benchmarks are if she stops eating, or can't get up, or can't walk, then it's time. Also, the weight loss is a concern. Most likely, we will pay a visit next week to one of our wonderful and compassionate veterinarians for an opinion about her weight.
Diana is in love with Tom at the moment. On the days when he works at the boat museum, she is obviously depressed, doesn't eat, and sleeps most of the day until he comes home in the late afternoon. On the days he's home, she eats better and follows him around wherever he goes until she decides it's time for a nap.
|St Francis, Diana, and azealeas|