When is it time?

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adorolecavie

Post   » Mon Jul 09, 2018 5:12 am


I hate writing this post, but I feel like I could use your expertise and experiences.

My 6.5 year old girl Dory is definitely showing signs of her "old" age. I know that cavies can live a lot longer, but she was never really healthy to start with, came from the third or fourth litter of brothers and sisters who were not separated in time, and out of all her "family" she's the only one still around, all the others died before 4-5 years old.

A year and half ago Dory had a stroke, and though she recovered then and there, she has very slowly gone downhill since then, and has been left with progressively "worse" neurological symptoms, mostly a head tilt which is slowly but steadily getting worse (not related to inner ear/vitamin deficiency), and wobbly/difficult movement. She still eats heartily, and wheeks in the morning, but she spends a lot of her time sleeping when she's not eating. Her weight is low (she is quite thin), but holding and not dropping, her eyes are bright and alert.

My question to you all is this - I know that they are prey animals and thus are reluctant to show signs of pain or discomfort. So how can I tell if she is suffering and when/if it is time to let her go peacefully? Is just the fact that she happily eats a good sign? Otherwise she sleeps, which I can't tell if that is from old age or discomfort.

I do not believe in keeping animals alive just to keep them alive. If she is suffering, I think it is more humane to release her from her pain. But how do I know when?

I'm sure I'm not the first to ask myself this question, so I'm asking you those of you who have been here before - how did you know it was time?

Thanks in advance -

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Mon Jul 09, 2018 6:39 am


I am sorry this is something you have to think about. It sounds like right now (from your description) this is not an imminent decision.

If this was a question you were answering for someone else, what signs do you think you would look for?

Further weight loss, pain, obvious illness that you could not treat seem to me indicators.

bpatters
And got the T-shirt

Post   » Mon Jul 09, 2018 11:23 am


Ditto Lynx.

adorolecavie

Post   » Mon Jul 09, 2018 11:36 am


Yes I think you are right. I just don't know how to really tell if she's in pain or not, as I've read they're good at masking it. I would hate for her to be in constant pain and I not know.

But I suppose when the day comes I'll know.

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Mon Jul 09, 2018 1:10 pm


Read over www.guinealynx.info/pain.html for what to look for.

adorolecavie

Post   » Wed Jul 18, 2018 3:50 am


Just wanted to update - a few days after writing this post, I found Dory unable to move her back legs (or rather, unable to keep them underneath her). She was only able to drag herself around (poorly as her neuro problems left her very uncoordinated to start with) and lay on one side. Still eating, still wheeking, but the vet agreed that it was not fair to leave her like that and that there was not any chance for improvement, so we had her put to sleep last Friday. :(

Thanks for the support and advice, as always.

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Wed Jul 18, 2018 8:22 am


I am sorry for your loss.

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GrannyJu1
Supporter in 2018

Post   » Wed Jul 18, 2018 10:09 am


I'm so very sorry for your loss. It's a rough decision to make no matter what the reason is. We always feel bad and wonder "What if ...?. Take care, warm thoughts and hugs headed to you.

Rest in peace, little Dory. You are loved and missed.

bpatters
And got the T-shirt

Post   » Wed Jul 18, 2018 10:46 am


I'm very sorry.

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