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Thread: what would you do if you cannot afford vet surgery bill?

  1. #31
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    Is very true, as humans we would not like to suffer without quality of life, but feel the need sometimes to expect that of our pets, because either we feel guilty if not doing it all, or sparing ourselves the grief that will come eventually come anyway ...or both.

    When I had to put down my lab, i kept asking myself if I would want this suffering for myself? And would I like to have someone in my life with enough compassion and selflessness to make the tough decision?.
    The greatness of a nation can be judged by the way its animals are treated.
    Mohandas Gandhi

  2. #32
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    Yep in our house the decision is now a quality of life thing.

    If something was wrong, and it would be ridiculously expensive, the question is, will they be better afterwards or is it going to be ongoing suffering/pain/meds etc.

    If they will be better, then we go with it. If not then I guess we dont.

    This is what we looked at with Chev. We could have had surgery and extended her life for 3 months. And on top of that we could have had surgery and chemo and extended her life for a maximum of 6 months. As much as I would have given my own arm to have had her for another 6 months, how much fun would that 6 months have been for her? Probably not much at all...a big op and then chemo....to us, having her around for another 6 months wasnt worth putting her through all that. And those estimates on time were generous from what I researched.

  3. #33
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    I am 2 years in remission with lymphoma.
    Dogs get it too.
    I would not put my dog through chemo for it. It is a blood cancer and it only takes one little cancer cell in one lymphnode, bone marrow, blood stream that chemo did not eradicate and there is relapse in time.

    For my dogs it is quality of life that counts. May last year all 4 were at the vets due to a run in with a RBB snake. Testing them cost $250 each.
    Six months ago Jodi had $1500 worth of surgery for a luxating patella. All money well spent.
    Last edited by Di_dee1; 03-29-2012 at 12:50 AM.

    Any posts made under the name of Di_dee1 one can be used by anyone as I do not give a rats.

  4. #34
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    Really glad to see your fit and well now Di...good for you and stay well.
    The greatness of a nation can be judged by the way its animals are treated.
    Mohandas Gandhi

  5. #35
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    Great thread, and interesting moral/ethical dilemas.
    my thoughts:
    set a limit and stick to it.
    I had a lump come up on one of my dogs, about the size of a tennis ball on the shoulder. Trip to vet, it was a heamatoma from other rottie barging into her. Fee: $85 consultation only. It went by itself. Just rough play consequence in large dogs.

    I have a friend who has 4 working dogs. She says that when they can no longer get onto the deck without any struggle, they are PTS. Initially i thought her a cold hearted person. 7 yrs on, and i now agree. When my dog can no longer work, he will be in pain, miserable as he cant go and work, time to PTS.

    should you own a dog when you cannot afford vet fees. YES! Ive owned 7, never had to fork out for vet fees. It is a risk, but the benefits of pet ownership far outweigh the risk of PTS dog. Its called positive risk taking for YOUR quality of life. I work with very disadvantaged people, they have their dogs, and for some, the dog is ALL they have! I would not say dont get a dog to those people. Being homeless and female, you NEED a dogs protection, or you will be raped most weeks.

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    OMG, i want that gorgeous liver coloured CKC, how cute is he/she?

  6. #36
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    With lumps that I know are not lipomas I take my dog straight to the vet. My dog had a suspicious lump a few months ago and I had it removed and checked -$700. It was clear. If it had been cancer I would have had to consider my options. I personally am not sure that I would spend thousands of dollars to keep a dog alive for another few months and I love my dogs. I also live 500 kms round trip from the nearest specialist. I watched my dad go through endless chemo and I would draw the line for my dogs unless there was a very good chance of a complete recovery.

    However I have shelled out for two successful TPLO cruciate surgeries, and elbow dysplasia surgery, pyometra emergency spay and other conditions that I knew had a high chance of returning good long quality of life. I had to extend my morgage on occassions so it is always very tight.

    I have a friend who made the decision to euthanaise her young dog that had hip dysplasia when he started suffering. Surgery would have helped but as a single mum with a child with a medical problem she knew all her resources had to be allocated to her child so she made the heartbreaking decision to euthanaise her dog.

  7. #37
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    I know I have already weighed in on this, but I thought I'd add a bit more info into the debate {although I do find it interesting that the OP has noot been back to contribute?}... anyways

    Rosie has a lump. In her bladder. 3 weeks ago I thought I was going to have to walk her over Rainbow Bridge as her appetite was gone and she was crook, really crook. But a trip to the Vet later and she got some quality of life back - her appetite and a lot of her verve and vigor (mind you, being 10, and a Boxer, there's wasn't as much as she one had). I have had the discussion with the vet (several infact) about treatment options, costs, expectancies etc... and so long as any treatment will improve the Quality of her life, not just how long I have her with me, then we'll explore them.

    Rosie is my buddy, we are together pretty much 24/7, except when I'm working (I work at home, so even then, we're "around" each other), and I will be Beyond Gutted when the day finally comes that I can't do anything for her except PTS - to keep her here when there is no benefit for her is to ease My suffering, not hers.

    For goodness' sake, at least ring the Vet and have a discussion about the lump. That costs you nothing but a phone call. Yes, everyone ahs financial constraints - everyone. No-one is taking that away from you. But if you continue to ignore what's going on by sticking your head in the sand, then you Do Not Deserve Your Dog.

    Sorry. Getting cranky now at a person who has asked for feedback then ignores it - and the people who have bothered to support them with opinions and information.

  8. #38
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    I am a nurse too, in a Radiology Department where most of these things in the human world are biopsie'd or diagnosed, it is my other third of working life and was all my work before I started training..i believe in catching lumps and bumps early (get them diagnosed) and often you can treat them and give quality of life after chemo...Dogs do not have the same side effects when they have chemo as we do.......you cannot compare the two. We have had two dogs on chemo, they were perfectly happy for the rest of their life's and we enjoyed their companionship for quite a few years extra'. So yes it cost money, but they are our dogs, we are committed for them to have a good life with us.......I do feel the dogs are lucky, in that we can make a choice to PTS them when the time is right and their quality of life is not good....But it should not just be a convenience a easier way out. I think it is terrible that some vets will not assist owners with a payment plan or cheaper options, but sadly it is true.......
    Pets are forever

  9. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by newfsie View Post
    I am a nurse too, in a Radiology Department where most of these things in the human world are biopsie'd or diagnosed, it is my other third of working life and was all my work before I started training..i believe in catching lumps and bumps early (get them diagnosed) and often you can treat them and give quality of life after chemo...Dogs do not have the same side effects when they have chemo as we do.......you cannot compare the two. We have had two dogs on chemo, they were perfectly happy for the rest of their life's and we enjoyed their companionship for quite a few years extra'. So yes it cost money, but they are our dogs, we are committed for them to have a good life with us.......I do feel the dogs are lucky, in that we can make a choice to PTS them when the time is right and their quality of life is not good....But it should not just be a convenience a easier way out. I think it is terrible that some vets will not assist owners with a payment plan or cheaper options, but sadly it is true.......
    With cancer in dogs I think it depends, I had a friend of mine whose dog had cancer and she decided to fight it because it had a possible good outcome. Her dog was fine with some rounds of treatments and very ill with others. On the whole the dog had a further reasonable quality of life for 2 years but it cost her between$15000 - $20,000 and she was able to afford it but I suspect many wouldnt.

    Another friends older rottie had bone cancer and the dogs front leg was amputated together with treatment, lots of pain and recovery time and pressure and pain on the other front leg, the dog lasted 6 months. I dont think I would have gone down that track personally.

    I personally have 3 of my dogs insured because I know the really big ticket items would be out of my league. I think in the end it comes down to a lot of factors and individual situations. However I think the important things with lumps is to get a prompt early diagnosis so you can the assess and explore your options.

    I dont think putting a dog to sleep is ever easy, I know my friend with her dog with hip dysplasia was distraught and she has never had another dog since, because her child comes first as far as resources go and she never wants to be in that situation again where she cant help her dog.

  10. #40
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    I agree Kala, bone cancer is one I would most likely also PTS, unless caught very early.......Amd I like you have insured my dogs.

    I believe it is important to go to the vet early...little lumps can either be nothing or if little and caught early be removed and sometimes have some added treatment and be OK.....

    Being vigilant is important..........

    On a totally different tack...HD can be very difficult to do anything with. Depending on the degree........I have a friend who has just had her newfie treated for HD with stemcells.....The dog is 8 and it seems to have some amazing effect. it cost $2000 in total and is not covered as yat by insurance, but she is very happy with the result
    Last edited by newfsie; 03-30-2012 at 10:48 AM.
    Pets are forever

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