I was wondering if anyone has had a similar experience. I have a husky shepherd who is 9, acted like a puppy up until a month ago since his diagnosis with renal failure. The problem is, the vet does not understand why he won't eat on his own or drink much, and his bun has only been between 50-56 and creatinine around 3.7-4.1. She said normally those values are higher when a dog won't eat. He will not eat any dry or canned food, or cooked diet anymore. So now I am giving him foods he should not really have, but if I don't he won't eat at all. And I hand feed him, and sometimes bring him water and he drinks. He is getting sub q fluids at home daily since he has not been eating and drinking much. The foods he likes, or will allow me to put in his mouth and he chews without spitting out, are french toast, sometimes hot dogs (I know those are bad..sodium, etc), toast with butter, and some raw meat pieces from the vet that I cook a little, as he will not eat them raw. He won't touch rice, veggies, things like that. Sometimes cheese. He has also been tested for leptosporosis, just to rule it out. Next step might be a sonogram, but I am out of $$. It is a struggle just to keep buying his fluids and Azodyl and supplements, and spending a lot grocery shopping to find out what he might eat. He does still perk up for his walk, it must be the husky in him, he'll go and go but comes home wiped out, so I have to keep his walks short. It's really getting hard to know what to do, and it's hard to feed him enough because when I go to work, he stays with my sister and she cannot get him to eat. Samson was a 60 lb dog and now weighs 54 lbs. He always was trim, not skinny, but now I can feel his back bone and ribs. It's too sad to see, I'm not used to him not eating anything put in front of him, and running around playing with the cat. His energy/activity level is much lower too. If anyone has had a similar experience or has any ideas or help, I'd greatly appreciate it.
I can't write alot right now, need to leave, but please read this post of articles. http://www.medhelp.org/posts/Dogs/4th-stage-renal-failure-in-my-dog/show/425814 (just copy and paste to browser bar) It may help, it helped me and my Boomer. Pay particular attention to the second from the last by drew99. It made me feel at ease and peace. I'll write you more later!! I feel for you, an I KNOW how awful a feeling you have in your heart!!! Love be with you and your Pup.
I'll write more for support later. Thanks
Thanks for writing, but I read some of those posts earlier today and even just clicked on the link you sent, and I can't find drew99 to read. Hope you can write more later. You see, my issue at this point is why no appetite with such low values? Normally they see these symptoms in dogs with higher values? Samson does eat, but what he eats is put in his mouth by me, and sometimes he eats it, sometimes not. It's just so frustrating now not knowing what is going on inside him and what to do for him. This is really hard to deal with emotionally and physically, I live alone, it is expensive. Also, he is not throwing up at all at this point, just not wanting to eat.
by dew99, May 26, 2009 02:36PM
My dog has kidney disease also. He is doing well now with subq fluids twice a day and special diet. He seems happy. I will know when it is time. One thing I have learned after having 3 dogs put down because of liver/and or kidney issues, is that I will not let them suffer. I can't believe some people let their dogs go for days vomiting, not eating, etc. What does the animal have to do to let you know the fight is over? When you let a dog suffer like that, you're doing it for selfish reasons. As bad as you don't want to let them go, it's the right thing to do for them. I can't imagine letting my dog vomit himself to death. Unbelievable.
Dew99 made me see things for what they really were...
My dog is Boomer - 11 year old Golden Retriever - The best, like yours.
The Ironic thing is that he was born with hip dysplasia and I always thought that would be his downfall but He did great all his years although I was dreading another harsh winter, last one was really hard on him and could not imagine this years. This was a blessing in disguise
I lost my dog one month ago. He went to heaven very peacefully. I'll tell you my journey so that you will know you are not really alone. I found out July 13, 2009 that Boomer had CRF. I was devestated and cried for days, but did not know what to do or expect. all I could find were articles on what to feed, etc. His levels at that time were... estimated 25% kidney function, BUN 139, Creatinine 5.6, calcium high, red bllod on low end at 5.08. So we put him on the hills for KD, this was fine for a while, but the lower protien lowered his energy too. but he was fine on this and drinking on his own for about a month.
Went in for a recheck of values in month mid-August. BUN 96 (went down more carbs, less protien), creatinine up 6.0, red blood down aniemic 4.07. At this time he seemed to be "clenching" his mouth and did not pant anymore, I assume because he felt sick. But was not Physically sick like yours is not either. I fed him whatever he would eat, because the reality is that there is no cure for this. When kidneys are bad, they are bad. I read all the terrible posts that you did. I could not imagine the throwing up all the time and the accidents. I decided not to give the sub-Q fluids either, this is not fun and NO way for something I loved so much to live. I was responsible to him, I was to look out and make sure he never suffered. My revelation came somewhat from terrible things posted and the post from dew99. I decided at that moment that I was not going to be selfish and "keep him around just so he would still be with me". No matter when Boomer was gone it would not be any less painfull if he was there just a little longer. It hurts the same now or later.
They say the short walks help keep the blood flow to the kindneys. Boomer was 85 pounds, so like yours, we can't just pick him up and take him out side. at the beging of September a month after values rechecked he was really only going out three times a day. AM, after work, before bed, and really needed rousting. it was difficult and heartbreaking to see this big strong dog, so very weak. He ate sometimes on his own and sometimes hand fed, but verry little food. some nights he had only bisquits for dinner he still wanted those. I found he liked the toast, also I would mix plain elbow maccaroni, and low salt chicken broth with a little ground meat, he liked this for a week or two. Then came the realitty hat no matter what he ate... after a few times he was smart enough to figure out that it made them "feel sick" so you see no matter what he likes, he will only like for a spell, beacuse everything will make them feel sick. They are smart that way!! During his last two weeks with me, I felt awful and even guily for trying to make him eat when I knew too that it would make him feel worse. This was a bad feeling, I wondered if he thought mommy I dont want to eat, makes me feel worse.
I too was on my own with this one. I made the heatwrenching decision that I would not let him lay around vomiting, because I loved him too much for that. He was too strong and too proud for that. I was not going to let him get to that point. How fun is living like that. Feeling sick all the time. No way, not my angel not my boy. He and I decided that he would go out on top, like he lived. So, It was a monday night at 3 AM, I awoke and he vomited (he had eaten a good dinner that night :) Just food nothing gross. At this moment I cried so hard, I told him "this is the begining of the end and we are going to skip the whole middle" Oh my God, this was hard. He could still walk out to potty, but he was slow weak and very stumbly. It was hearwrenching. I took some days off that week and spent all the time I could with him, took alot of pictures and we just Hung Out- Together - That helped, because it was just all about him those last few days, all day every hour it was a very special time we enjoyed together. We were okay. Our Vet was 50 min away I never changed when I moved and could not imagine making that long drive. So, I found a Vet close to my home, so we changed Vets for his last appointment. If you have or can find one that makes house calls - DO IT - It was the best day for my angel. She came to the house that Saturday September 19, 2009. It was the most horrible, most wonderful day. He went to heaven that day peacefully, laying on his favorite blanket looking out his favorite front window, in my arms, he was at peace and would be sick no more. I was his protector and did the right thing. What was best for him, not me. This was a great feeling if that is possible.
Your angel is too old for dialisys, transplant, he is not a puppy and has lived a great life with you his mommy. I imagine, like mine he probably wonders why mommy is so sad. Thats the great thing about our dogs they are always most concerned about us. I know no matter what you are going to miss your boy tremendously and your heart will ache, but to give him the gift of your compassion, it the greatest most wonderful thing you can do for him. Do not be selfish becuase that is not what is best for him. You'll be okay, and he will be great again!
I'm really sorry for you too, that you had to go thru that. I am taking what you said to heart, really I am. It's just so difficult, as you know. A month ago, he was fine, just fine. Monday he took a walk at a park on our long trail and from the look on his face he enjoyed himself. Two days ago he had that "happy" satisfied look as he went on his walks. Today he is so tired and can't walk well, I am wondering if it is from not eating much food. He did throw up today and has not thrown up before. I can't understand why, with such values on the "low" side of the high end. And I too, no matter how my dog perked up on occasion, could never let my dog puke to death, until it hurt. We love our animals no less, even if we won't let them go on that long to that degree of suffering.
The vet took bloodwork and I'll get the results back Tuesday. I hope then I know more. But I guess my problems with having to let him go are more complicated. I have a strong unshakable faith myself, for especially humans for a certainty and know when we lose a person we WILL see them again, but try as I might, I am not certain about whether we will see our beloved pets. No matter what anyone says to me I cannot reconcile that belief. And too, Samson was my son's, who I lost at 12 yrs 5 yrs ago. Then I was divorced a year after that, so Samson was my constant and the only thing I have left who loves me for me. He is beautiful (no exaggeration, I cannot go anywhere without ppl commenting on how beautiful a dog he is, and sweet), the most kind, easy going, adaptable, puts up with any changes, kind of dog I've ever owned. He loves everyone, people, other dogs, loves me unconditionally, when I'm in an unlovable mood. He has been my buddy. Recently I'd had some medical problems, probably only due to stress and had high blood pressure. Well, with Samson loving his walks being part husky, and always giving me that "look", as if to say, let's go for a walk now, I began walking him more, even after work in the summer at night when hot and too tired. Normally I would not have pushed myself for just myself, even for my health, but for his enjoyment, it was extra added motivation. So beginning mid July till September, because of him I feel, I had lost over 12 lbs and was able to get off of blood pressure medication, except for a diuretic. So for me, in so very many ways, he has helped me in life emotionally and physically. I cannot stand the idea of losing him, but that is what I am faced with. I am crying uncontrollably as I write this. And I do hate for him to see me sad. Dogs pick up on every kind of energy and all I want to show him and for him to feel from me is strength and happiness and positivity, bc he deserves it, he deserves to feel peaceful and happy and content. I guess I'll muddle thru the next couple of days and see what happens. He threw up food today that I fed him last night at 6:00 PM. Not sure how fast dogs digest things. I still have to wonder is something else is going on along with this CRF.
Thank you for telling me your story about Boomer. Any more advice....I'd be glad to hear it.
I know what you mean about the levels. Maybe they are different just like people. Maybe his are lower but bad for his make up. Could have other issues too, who knows but that does not change the fact that the kidneys arent working right, they are broken. I can't help but wonder that too, Boomer had so many little bumps that his lumps had lumps. I would bring him his water because he really just didnt bother to get up. but he did drink when brought to him. You just make him as comfortable as you possibly can. Enjoy him and love him. I was working today on some things, and I had taken some videos they were short but watching them and seeing him breathing and just looking at me was very sweet to see today. If you have a camera that takes them - do that you will have something nice to see. even your phone? I also took alot of pictures his last week and they are my favorites.
Yes, the most difficult thing in the whole world. Love is so strong that you cant' imagine being without Samson. He will definitley be watching over you from Heaven and waiting for the day when you see him again. I am certain we will see our beloved pets, all of them. God would never have it anyother way. I think of Noah and his ark - why would he have even bothered to have him build it to save the animals. To flood out the bad, but to make the stipulation of two of each animal are safe, God made sure the animals would be safe and that is because he loves them like he loves us. He made the animals and knows that they love the way Samson loves you, that is why he is your angel. He was with you through what I cant even imagine...your son. I am sorry. Boomer was my "divorce" dog too! (He had a brother named Samson he went with dad) Boomer was there through all the tears and pain. Loved for love sake only.
I hope the next days are mild for you and that you feel okay and not alone. God will be at your side watching out for you and Samson. I think when he is ready he will tell you with his sweet brown eyes, and he will know that you are sad only because you will love and miss him, and that will make him glad, to be cared for and loved so very much.
I am just home brifly from the hospital...he went in bc he had a fever and got to where he couldn't walk at all. Vet suspects infection in blood and spine. But he has already begun to respond to antibiotics and is getting fluids now. I'm hoping this is what is causing him to not want to eat. But we caught it late...dogs are so stoic and you don't know how serious things are until they get to a bad point. He went from sleeping a lot, always thru the night, then began waking me up at 3 am looking at me, following me, being agitated, so by then I take him to the vet but he is on a downslide and soon could not walk. Poor thing. I guess we'll see what his condition is tomorrow when I pick him up. But for now I am glad they let me come to visit and stay in a room with him this time so he is not too stressed out. It's exhausting tho..the floor is hard...Well I'm off to go check on him.
It is so refreshing to read your post, although extremely sad at the same time. The words you used, that "Boomer would go out on top" is exactly how I feel for my Brownie. I do think it is so cruel that some people allow their dogs to starve to death and vomit for weeks just to have "more time" with them. It is very brave yet very scary to take this leap, but I feel it will be a matter of days to two/three weeks, and I'll be saying good bye to my Brownie.
Thank you so much for making the effort and taking the time to post your experience with Boomer. Brownie is 14. On May 6th, I learned about Brownie's kidney disease through a senior canine dog panel. His creatinine was a 2, and BUN level at 71. Despite my best effort to manage this disease, his levels are a 4 and a 98. Brownie is now on subQ fluids, yet still has persistent diarrhea. The vomiting stopped for 5 days, but just this morning I found vomit...so here we go again. Brownie is still able to walk and jump up onto the sofa and bed. However, his walks are shorter and take longer. We have many brisk walks throughout the day, as I am fortunate enough to be off from work all summer.
It's always a struggle to give Brownie his meds. And, I am hand feeding him. When an animal appears to be hungry, but doesn't seek out food he must be nauseated. Like you, I do not want my dog to linger on and on. I know it has been 4 years since your post, but I hope you still get notifications from this thread.
Your words were very comforting, so again, I thank you.
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