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DesertRose 
Posted: 26-Jun-2009, 03:51 AM
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Goodness! I can't believe I haven't written in here since 2007! Can you believe that I still have Nikki?! He is now 14! He has a heart condition, thyroid disease, pancreatitis, arthritis and kidney disease. I just spent close to $300 getting blood and urine tests done only to find out his health issues are under control due to medication. His meds are more expensive than mine!

so what is going on now? We all believe he is going through...in layman's term...dog Alzheimer's. Today I had to put him in diapers as he can't remember where he is supposed to pee. Nikki has never ever had any accidents in the house! So I know something is wrong with him. They now have medication for dogs going through Alzheimer's but is very expensive and how much is one to spend on a 14 year old dog when I can hardly pay our own medical bills? He hobbles and paces back and forth out in the yard for 15-20 minutes trying to pee...when he already has. It is really sad and I don't know what to do. I feel I will just try to keep him as comfortable as I can for as long as I can. But how far does one go in spending money on a dog who is experiencing dementia on top of all else?

Opinions are most appreciated!

Thanks all!


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valpal59 
Posted: 26-Jun-2009, 10:14 AM
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Rosemary.
I am so sorry that Nikki is having such a hard time. I did not know that dogs could get dementia. I do not know what to tell you about the money. We spent what we could on all of ours. Several of our dogs, we selfishly kept with us longer than we should have. Hugs to you and Nikki. hug.gif

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DesertRose 
Posted: 30-Jun-2009, 10:51 PM
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Hey Valpal, just you and others listening ear is all that is required as I surely need to vent..and any feedback is so appreciated.

I have come to the conclusion that Nikki doesn't have dementia...perhaps in the early stages, but I believe there is something else going on with his bladder.

Whenever he needs to pee, he will do so wherever, even if it is only a drop or two. He paces outside incessantly trying to pee, sometimes with a good flow, but most the time with only a drop or two..if that. When he is inside the house, he does the same. There is something wrong with his bladder.

Called vet today to tell them what is going on and they want Nikki to come back in for a bladder culture, sonogram, etc., which will all cost me $300 minimum.

My hubby has medical bills coming out of his ears right now due to his pre-cancerous skin condition. Sorry, but I am focusing on my hubby.

I have been doing business with this vet for close to 9-10 years and they tell me they want $300 up front after me saying I have always paid up front but need a break and could they put me on payments...the answer was no!

My hubby's own doctors agreed that I can make payments for his medical bills and were very kind about it. pay what you can, they said!

After all these years of business, I can't believe my dog's vet's would not give me a break. I just want to make sure Nikki is not in pain and suffering and want to know what all is going on so I know what to do for a 14 year old Sheltie! Most Shelties do not live past 14 years. I refuse to put him down unless I know there is something serious to the point that cannot save his life.

I am going to call the doctor who is both owner and head of practice and see what he says tomorrow.

Any advice is more than appreciated from you all! Thanks!

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valpal59 
Posted: 01-Jul-2009, 06:34 AM
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I am so sorry that you are getting hit from all sides at once.

It must be something going on with vets. Our clinic did the same thing several years ago. We have been using them for 30 years, but now you have to pay in full as you go. We took Bailey out yesterday to get her yearly shots and took Angus in yesterday to get neutered. This will be the last time anyone goes to the vet for awhile as we are starting to really see the financial crunch here. What hurts us is that we only have one vet clinic here.

I will keep my fingers crossed that they will change their minds.

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Patch 
Posted: 01-Jul-2009, 08:23 AM
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QUOTE (DesertRose @ 30-Jun-2009, 11:51 PM)
Hey Valpal, just you and others listening ear is all that is required as I surely need to vent..and any feedback is so appreciated.

I have come to the conclusion that Nikki doesn't have dementia...perhaps in the early stages, but I believe there is something else going on with his bladder.

Whenever he needs to pee, he will do so wherever, even if it is only a drop or two. He paces outside incessantly trying to pee, sometimes with a good flow, but most the time with only a drop or two..if that. When he is inside the house, he does the same. There is something wrong with his bladder.

Called vet today to tell them what is going on and they want Nikki to come back in for a bladder culture, sonogram, etc., which will all cost me $300 minimum.

My hubby has medical bills coming out of his ears right now due to his pre-cancerous skin condition. Sorry, but I am focusing on my hubby.

I have been doing business with this vet for close to 9-10 years and they tell me they want $300 up front after me saying I have always paid up front but need a break and could they put me on payments...the answer was no!

My hubby's own doctors agreed that I can make payments for his medical bills and were very kind about it. pay what you can, they said!

After all these years of business, I can't believe my dog's vet's would not give me a break. I just want to make sure Nikki is not in pain and suffering and want to know what all is going on so I know what to do for a 14 year old Sheltie! Most Shelties do not live past 14 years. I refuse to put him down unless I know there is something serious to the point that cannot save his life.

I am going to call the doctor who is both owner and head of practice and see what he says tomorrow.

Any advice is more than appreciated from you all! Thanks!

My daughter had considerable expense projected for their dog and a grant through one of the animal protective groups paid $500 of the 600 bill. Her vet got her in touch with the group. Check around as not all vets are "money machines." My brother is one and he considers the situation of the pet owners. The only people I have ever known him to get mad at were the big farmers that didn't pay their bills.

Slàinte,    

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Faerydreamer 
Posted: 02-Jul-2009, 09:56 PM
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I understand the pain of having to choose what is right versus the money. I am the one with lots of medical bills in the family. I also have 21 birds.

Two weeks ago, I moved my desk chair and ended up breaking my one cockatiel's leg. Well, the closest vet that sees birds is at least an hour away. I thank goodness for my neighbor who drove me there and back. I had to leave the bird overnight and pay a $75 deposit. Now, I have to go back every 7 - 10 days to have the splint changed. It costs about $70 each time.

The hard part is that she does not like to keep the splint on her leg. I have had to fix it myself. She is a very stubborn bird.

I love my birds. Some people think that I am crazy for doing this. I believe that pets are kids.

I hope that all is well for Nikki. I know how hard it is to make the decision of what is right. My thoughts and prayers are with you all.


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DesertRose 
Posted: 13-Jul-2009, 05:49 PM
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Thanks all for your kind advice. I was preparing to do a photo shoot for a magazine last Tuesday evening and thought I would let all three dogs go outside to potty before I left. Two of them came back in, Nikki did not. When I went outside looking for him he was in midst of a gran mal seizure. Really freaked me out as I thought he was having a stroke. I rushed him to the vet down the street, but could not save him. He must have been in much worst shape than I could have realized. He never whined or complained, so it was hard to tell. He is suffering no more though, although I feel much guilt as to how much pain he must have been in and me not knowing.

My other two Shelties have not yet figured out what is going on with Nikki. They keep looking for him, but they weren't there when Nikki was dying.

It was very heartbreaking, but we all know that as soon as we take a pet into our lives, they will break our hearts one day...just like anything or anyone else in life.

In loving memory of my Nikki:

http://www.pbase.com/desertrose_images/image/114814388

Thanks all!
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Dogshirt 
Posted: 13-Jul-2009, 08:14 PM
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Tobbacco and red cloth in my memorial tree for him. It is always hard to let our friends go, and many of us hold on too long.


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DesertRose 
Posted: 13-Jul-2009, 08:20 PM
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It is so very true that some of us...me...let our furry friends go too long. I always feel like I am killing them, but knowing in my heart that it is also time to go. Spoke to vet today and he told me that it was time for Nikki to go and yet I question my judgement and yet I don't know why I do that. It was best for my dog to go as he had bladder and kidney cancer. Why am I feeling so guilty? sad.gif
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Dogshirt 
Posted: 13-Jul-2009, 10:07 PM
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We feel guilty,
first, because we feel we ccould have done something different ealier on, second because we feel we can STILL do something, and third, because we are still here after they are gone.
In the 35 years I have raised sled dogs, I have sent over 250 to meet the creator.
Most were due to old age, some due to accidents that could not be avoided or corrected, and a few that just weren't up to dealing with life.
EACH one was my friend and brother, and each one hurt as if a part of me went with them, because it did!
Just know that the time had come, and let him go. He feels better now, and someday, you will also!


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Faerydreamer 
Posted: 13-Jul-2009, 10:23 PM
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No matter how much I do, I cannot prevent myself from feeling that there was more I could have done. When the death comes unexpectedly, I feel like I should find out why it happened. It takes time to realize that you did the best that you could.

Nikki will not be suffering anymore. He will be able to run and play like he did when he was young. He will be waiting there for you when you go to meet the creator.

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valpal59 
Posted: 14-Jul-2009, 08:59 AM
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I am so sorry. My thoughts and prayers are with you. Just give yourself some time and the guilt will become less and less. I have also waited too long with some of our "kids" and carry alot of guilt over it.

hug.gif Hugs to you all.

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Rindy 
Posted: 14-Jul-2009, 01:41 PM
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Rosemary I am so sorry to hear this news. I hope you find comfort in knowing you were the best owner Nikki could of ever had. I know how much you love your dogs. Hugs going out to you at this difficult time.

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Irish Stepper 
Posted: 17-Jul-2009, 02:37 AM
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Rosemary, I'm so sad to hear this news. I'm sure he's happy now and he's no longer suffering. I hope your other two Shelties don't get too sad that they've lost their buddy.

I'm in a similar situation with my old dog Katie. She's the first dog that was ever mine and she's 14. Her arthritis is getting bad, she's peeing wherever she wants, and she seems confused some of the time and sad the rest of the time. Every now and then she perks up and acts herself, but those times are rare. My hubby thinks it's time to send her over the rainbow bridge, but I don't know if I have it in me to do that. I've never had to make that decision before. I almost hope she would go quietly in her sleep one day, so that I don't have to decide for her. I guess that makes me a coward... unsure.gif


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valpal59 
Posted: 17-Jul-2009, 10:13 AM
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IrishStepper,
No, that does not make you a coward. It is so hard to make that decision. We have been faced with it so many times. Only one of the dogs that we have had has passed in her sleep. Hubby always knew when it was time. I was always the one to drag my feet. Sending good thoughts and hugs your way. hug.gif

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