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when you don't agree on life or limb?
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22 May 2018 - 12:20 pm
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so besides my other post about starting this journey, 

have there been families that didn't agree on which way to go? 

my mom is saying that we need to end Charlie's pain. my husband really wants to do surgery if it is an option, I am just crying the most

My mom is also one of Charlie's primary care takers, he goes there 4 days a week. 

I tell my mom that if surgery is possible, it will help his pain but she says is it really worth the cost to extend his life 6-12 months? and then he will be in pain from the surgery for awhile. 

I know its ultimately my husbands and my choice but still..

What have you done if people didn't agree? Ask a Psychic? Flip a coin? (my poor attempt at humor to cheer up)

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22 May 2018 - 2:40 pm
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Hey there sweetie 🌺

Well, me and my partner were on opposite sides! 

He was adamant to keep the leg and I was adamant in getting rid of the painful leg and going for chemo (even if the thought of it broke my heart then, big time) 

This was discussed and discussed again and the day we saw the surgeon to schedule surgery he said “are you both in agreement?”

So, my partner said no and the surgeon refused to proceed unless we were totally in tune.

The reason was, he said, after the leg is gone we cannot place it back.

But I KNEW what had to be done and frankly if that would mean only one month of deliriously happy pain free time with my baby  it would be worth it. 

I think your Mom should place herself in your baby’s shoes.

If she could have 6-12 months (and in reality Charlie can have a much, much longer life) would she take it or would she prefer to get her silver wings (ahead of time)? 

The way to end Charlie’s pain IS amputation and there are no two ways about it.

And let me just add each single happy day in a dog’s life is magical!

Each day counts !

Sure, recovery can be difficult and at times it is challenging for us and our babies but it does not last forever.

Normally, stitch removal is the turning point in recovery where we can see big progress every day. 

Fear not, sweet friend, Charlie can do this and so can you (and your Mom, even if she does not see it now).

I wish you strength to take the right decision for Charlie, we are all here for you anytime!

Sending you a big hug and cuddles to your cutie 😘🐮💫✨🌟🌹

Eurydice 77kg/170lb Great Dane limping end of April 2016, amputation (right front leg/osteosarcoma) 4 May 2016 6 courses of carboplatin followed by metronomic therapy, lung mets found 30 Nov 2016. 3 courses of doxorubicin, PET scan 26 Jan 2017 showed more mets so stopped chemo. Holistic route April 2017. Lung X-ray 5 May 2017 showed several tennis ball size mets, started cortisone and diuretics. Miss Cow earned her XXL silver wings 12 June 2017, 13 months and 1 week after amputation and 6 1/2 months after lung mets, she was the goofiest dawg ever and is now happily flying from cloud to cloud woof woofing away :-) 

Virginia
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22 May 2018 - 2:47 pm
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Charlie is clearly a very loved boy and everyone is coming from a well intentioned and loving place.

Now, that said, obviously you are going to hear from everyone here why we feel that amputation  is the best option for a QUALITY, PAIN FREE life  for however long oir pups and cats stay with us in their earth clothes.   It's  not a decision  any of us made lightly and, like you, shed many tears getting to that point.  

I'll share my thought process. ..and this was BEFORE I found this wonderful and knowledgeable   community.   I had to make the decision  without their help and didn't  find them until almost a week after her surgery.

At first mention of the word "amputation ", I said "No, absolutely  not!"    My kind regular Vet suggested I just go ahead  and speak with a Surgeon.

Like you, I did my research.  For the first several weeks of my research, I didn't  think her pain was too bad.  She was just limping and taking some low dose pain meds.  Of course, now I know she was hurting!!  Anyway, very quickly  she started holding her leg up. I knew I had to think of letting her go at that point, or GIVE HER A CHANCE FOR EXTENDED  QUAILITY TIME!!  My Happy Hannah wanted that chance!!  She wanted to be pain free and get some extended  time for more loving and spoiling and treats and tummy rubs and ice cream!   I would second guess myself forever if I didn't  give her that chance.

Charlie does NOT have a timeframe stamped on his butt!  Charlie does NOT count days on a calender and he sure doesn't  give a rip about statistics!

Nitro did not listen to statistics  and got extended time of almost four years! Cemil is still hopping along after five years.  Murphy ignored statistics, Jerry ignored statistics, Stubvorn Pug Maggie ignored statistics  for four years after her human was told she only had about 6-9 months!!

And yes, their are many who got less time.  But almoat every single person will tell you it was worth it and they would do it again for that glorious extended time together.   Everyone here learns very quickly  to live in the moment...in the now....in the present...and not to let that piece of crap disease  interfere with your time together.  The NOW is all any of us have!!.

A couple of things to point out to your Mom.   Six months for a dog equals 3 1/2 years in human years!  A year for a dog equals seven in human years!!!!   Two years equals fourteen!!

It is surgery.  Just like with humans , EVERY surgery has a risk.   But it's  a risk all of us were willing to take because WE HAD TO GIVE THEM A CHANCE.   Every dog is different when it comes to recovery.  Some whine for a few days , they are restless and don't  sleep much and need a day or two before tjey get mobile.    Some dogs hop out of the hospital and are hard to make them slow down.  Probably  the "norm", if there is such a thing, is a rough couple of l days and night, just wanting to stay in bed.  The Vet will give uou good pain meds and that makes them kind of loopy for a bit .

Shhhhh........Im going to give you a pretty poweful question for you to ask your Mom.   Shhhh.... our secret though, okay?  It's  a powerful one!   Ask your Mom if she would want to be "put down" if she had to lose a limb and experience  some surgery recovery discomfort for a few days, even though it would give her a chance at a pain free life to enjoy her family, and, although rare, a chance at being cured!!  Would she "put you down" without giving  you that chance ?   

You and your husband know Charlie better  than anyone. You know what he would want.

No matter what decision nyoy make...no matter the outcome....you are making a decision  out of love and that is ALWAYS THE RIGHT  DECISION!💖

Love and hugs

Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too 

PS  Check out the Tripawds YouTube channel to see dogs rocking on three legs

Chexk out  member Megastar to see a tripawd living...and swimming.....life to the fullest on three!

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

The Rainbow Bridge

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22 May 2018 - 3:18 pm
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You've gotten some great feedback already, and I just want to share this post we wrote last year, covering this very topic (not at all uncommon, as you can see):

When Friends and Families Disagree About Amputation Surgery

I hope it helps.

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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22 May 2018 - 3:27 pm
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Thank you for your kind words. Its just so so difficult when we are forced to make this journey. 

"Shhhhh........Im going to give you a pretty poweful question for you to ask your Mom.   Shhhh.... our secret though, okay?  It's  a powerful one!   Ask your Mom if she would want to be "put down" if she had to lose a limb and experience  some surgery recovery discomfort for a few days, even though it would give her a chance at a pain free life to enjoy her family, and, although rare, a chance at being cured!! "

I don't know how to do proper quotes yet but my mom always says " just shoot me " if I get like this or that when she gets old. She also has had many surgeries in the last few years, recently getting TWO knee replacements within 3ish months of each other. So I suppose from her side he knows how hard surgery recovery can be. 

I figured there would be a link somewhere thanks jerry

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22 May 2018 - 3:47 pm
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I'm single, so the amputation decision was purely mine. But my mom made it clear she didn't agree. "You can't do that to him!" 

A few months later, we were at my parents' house and Rocky was hopping around having a good time. My mom looked at me and said: "You made the right decision. No doubt, you made the right decision. He's so much happier now. That leg must really have been hurting him." 

Nobody wants to have to make a decision like this. It's perfectly understandable to disagree with it. Before Rocky was diagnosed, I googled looking for answers to his limping. One of them was cancer and it of course mentioned amputation. And *I* thought "how could anybody do that to their dog? I could never do that to Rocky." 

But you're really not doing it *to* them, you're doing it *for* them. And that, understandably, can be hard to grasp. Especially since it's not an easy time to begin with. 

As far as the cost, I used to say to people: "I'll make more money; I can't make another Rocky." I was fortunate to be in a situation where I could afford it, but I have zero regrets about the money I spent on him. 

David and Rocky (and Baxter now too!)

Rocky had his right front leg amputated on Valentine's Day 2017 after being diagnosed with osteosarcoma.

He joined the September Saints on September 3, 2017.

He is the toughest, bravest, sweetest and best friend I'll ever know. 

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22 May 2018 - 8:55 pm
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We already had a dog in hospice when Casey was diagnosed.  We made the decision to amputate after doing some research . . . Casey was given 2 weeks to 2 months otherwise, and two weeks were up.  At 5 AM, Ann woke me up to say "I think we should just put both dogs down."  That would have been half our pack, and more than I could bear.  I said "Good morning.  Let's get up and discuss this while we're getting ready."  There was really very little discussion.  Once moving, we both knew what we were going to do.

A week later, Ann asked "What have we done?"  The answer was easy . . . "We saved his life."

The phenomenal stress shedding that had started in the week before surgery stopped within 48 hours.  After the first week, Casey still experienced a little pain, but his personality started coming back.  It took two weeks to wean him of the pain meds, and then we saw the Casey we'd been missing for the last six months, not knowing why he seemed to get so old so fast.  Now we knew, and we also knew we'd fixed it.  For today, and for tomorrow, and I expect to say that again tomorrow.

Oh!  And Casey's brother, Jake, is still in hospice and will be 15 next week.  He just came back from "sprinting" across the yard in full protection mode, threat unknown. 

Michigan
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22 May 2018 - 9:42 pm
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When Murphy was diagnosed, he was 7 years old and perfectly healthy except that he'd been limping for a couple of months (he was initially misdiagnosed).  The orthopedic surgeon that we were meeting with told me that we were very lucky that the bone had not already broken since the tumor was eating away at it; he explained that bone cancer is very painful and that it would just be a matter of time before we would have a decision to make - either amputation or putting him to sleep.  My husband and I both agreed that it seemed too weird to put him to sleep when he was not sick or old, that the only thing wrong was his leg.  So if we take the leg away, he'd be free of pain, and just maybe get some more time with us.  We had to take that gamble.  We also happened to have gotten a good tax refund that year, so that helped - let's face it, money always plays into things.

We were one of the lucky ones … we got over 4 more years with Murphy. heart

Donna

Donna, Glenn & Murphy  http://murphyh......pawds.com/

Murphy had his right front leg amputated due to histiocytic sarcoma at 7 years old.  He survived 4 years, 2 months & 1 week, only to be taken by hemangiosarcoma at 11 1/2 years 6/12/17  

Donna.png

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