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Questions on euthanasia

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ranedrops

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Hi guys. Zoey is our 6 year old dwarf. About 6 weeks ago we noticed her tummy was swollen and hard so we took her to the vet. She was put on Metoclopramide to keep her intestines moving and Buprenorphine for pain. Thought she was either backed up or possible mass. Weight 4.1 pounds.

2 weeks later recheck. Passing stool and eating well Weight 4.15 pounds.

Now 4 weeks later her stomach has increased in size and feels mushy. Back to vet where he feels a mass that he beleives to be on her liver and that her organs have moved. spleen, etc. Feels alot of fluid in her abdomen. Weight is 5.9 pounds. Weight gain must be fluid retention. Vet recommends euthanasia. Zoey seems uncomfortable. Took her home for a few days with pain killers. They help and she is eating only her greens but wants no other treats. Hours after painkillers she seems to sulk in corner. She does have good hours though. I know animals hide their pain so if she is on pain killers and does still sulk and not want full food/treats then do you thaink she is in alot of pain?

Anyway, is this the right time to let her go? I don't want to wait until she is suffering terribly but of course I have that selfish love that wants to hold onto the last good moment with her. Is it too soon?

Vet says he uses mask on exotics to euthanise. Is this the preferable method on rabbits?

Any help would be appreciated.
thank you
 
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MiniLopHop

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Oh I am so very sorry you have to face this situation. Does the vet think she is suffering? It sounds like pain may be a real issue here. Only you will know when the time is right because you know Zoey. Cherish every moment you have left with her. :pray:
 

ranedrops

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The vet thinks she is uncomfortable and that once the organs are pushed over by the fluid the next thing that happens is the diaphram is pushed up making her breathing uncomfortable. She has gone from 4.1 to 5.9 pounds so there has to be alot of fluid. Her stomach is huge.

She definitely isn't her normal happy self. Like I said the pain meds help but even on them she still doesn't want all her treats she loves. She is sticking with greens and won't eat them some times as well. She isn't drinking much water either. Poops are small and hard.

I asked if he thought she had a few weeks and he didn't think so. I asked about taking her home on the painkillers for a few days and he thought a few days would be okay but there was no guarantee. He thinks we should let her go peacefully.

I am just afraid it is too soon though I know rabbits hide the pain well. So if she is showing discomfort and not herself even while on pain meds is it time to let her go?
 

MiniLopHop

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I don't think anyone can tell you what to do. :hug: However, honestly if my rabbit had thoes types of symptoms I think I would let them go. She isn't going to get better from this and the suffering is going to increase. It is so hard to say goodbye, we never have enough time to love our little ones.
 

ranedrops

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I think we may call today and make an apointment for the end of the week.

Is the mask what they generally use to euthanise rabbits? I have only had my dogs and cats euthanised before with an injection.
 

MiniLopHop

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My vet uses the injection, but they don't use an IV kit the way they do with dogs and cats, just an injection. Either way should be peaceful, it makes them relax and fall asleep. If Zoey has a bond-mate be sure they are there at the end. It makes a huge differnce in helping a bun get over the loss of their mate if they know what happened. :pray:
 

ranedrops

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no she doesn't. she is attached to my daughter so this is going to be rough.
thank you for your help.
 

Watermelons

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The mask is what they typically use in difficult small animals so they put the animal to sleep then can inject the drug directly in the heart.
There is abolutley no reason why the vet cant put a catheter in your bunnys front leg then add an extension set onto that and allow you to hold your bun while he injects the drug through that.
Rabbits have great ear veins as well so great access for injection rather then having to mask.

IMO in this situation I may be partial to a 2nd oppinion first. Did the vet do any x-rays or ultrasound?
 

ranedrops

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no xrays or ultrasound. Said he can feel the mass and thinks it is a liver tumor. He said he can also feel the spleen and other organs moved. He also said she is filled with fluid thuis the weight gain and mushy tummy. He doesn't think surgery is an option and so he recommends a peaceful end.
 

ranedrops

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Also wanted to add that in the last 4 weeks she has lost weight on her body. You can feel her spine and ribs slightly now but has gained weight which must be all in her swollen abdomen. The vet told us the average lifespan for a rabbit of her size is 6-8 years. She is 6 years old. His opinion is to let her go peacefully.
 
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HEM

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We are so sorry that you have to make this decsion. We are sure that it is not easy and wishing you the best
As mentoned, the decision should be all yours and you know Zoey best. It does sound, from what you said that your vet has told you, that she is indeed in pain and there is not much that can be done.
Make sure to spend a lot of time with her and show her as much love as you can, which we're sure that you're doing. Zoey knows how much you love her and knows that you are doing everything that you possible can
Either way, good luck. We will be thinking of you and Zoey.
 

missyscove

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I'm so sorry that you are faced with this decision. Inhalant euthanasia is considered an acceptable form of euthanasia by the AVMA Guidelines on Euthanasia (warning, graphic descriptions of varying euthanasia techniques for different species) . I'm presuming he's referring to the use of an inhalant anesthetic, like what would be used to anesthetize an animal for a surgical procedure (carbon monoxide or carbon dioxide can also be used.) My own rabbit was euthanized with an injection. she received one injection in a catheter in her arm and it turned out that due to poor circulation, she needed a second injection in the heart (I knew that's where they were injecting her, but I didn't tell my mother that at the time as I thought it would upset her).
 

ranedrops

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Just returned from talking to the vet again and picking up a few more doses of pain meds.(which have escalated from $3.50 a dose to $13.50 a dose needed 2x per day...wow) We wanted to make the appointment for Friday evening, He will not allow us to be with Zoey when she is euthanized with the gas. This really bothers us as we want to be with her. I don't understand why.

I called another vet I had used for my cat and he said no problem with us being with her with the same type of euthanasia. He will examine her first so it will be second opinion as well. We have made the appointment for Friday evening. I hate this.
 

ranedrops

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Is inhaled euthanasia as peaceful as by needle? I am guessing she will fall asleep first?
 

ladysown

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having seen animals die... depending on the age of your daughter you simply will NOT want to go that route...to let her hold the animal while it is put to sleep. Let her say her goodbyes and then once the animal is dead, take it home, have a burial so she can say her good-byes. Seriously... it is for the best to do it that way.

I am sorry that you are needing to deal with this.

Do it sooner than later. Alleviating suffering is the best final care you can offer a beloved pet.
 

ranedrops

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My daughter is 16 and has been present when our dog and cat passed. She is insisting on being with Zoey. She said she could never let Zoey die without her there, she loves Zoey and needs to be there with her. I respect her decision and will honor it.
 

Imbrium

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I'm so sorry you're having to make such a heart-breaking decision! :pray:

He will not allow us to be with Zoey when she is euthanized with the gas. This really bothers us as we want to be with her. I don't understand why.

I called another vet I had used for my cat and he said no problem with us being with her with the same type of euthanasia. He will examine her first so it will be second opinion as well. We have made the appointment for Friday evening. I hate this.
I'm glad you found a vet that will allow you to be with her. when our family dog got put to sleep when I was 9, I made the decision to stay in the waiting room while mom went in the back with Annie... she said her death was very peaceful. when I was 17, our cat Sheba accidentally got locked in the garage the very night my mom's van's radiator decided to dump a bunch of antifreeze onto the floor and we had to get her put to sleep - that time, I chose to be with her. in retrospect, I regretted not being there with Annie.
 

Bunnylova4eva

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I too feel its very important to be able to be with your bunny when it is put to sleep. Not that a person has to be, I guess, if they don't want to, but to have that option. At the office where we take our buns, owners are not allowed to be there when their bunny is put to sleep as they use gas and an injection directly into the heart. We've had two buns put down and I think that's what made things the worst-the fact that I couldn't be there. It made me put off a decision that I knew needed to be made but couldn't handle the thought of not being there. Eventually both of those buns were put to sleep, but only after suffering much. So, if you have the option of a vet who will let you be there vs. not, I feel like it'd be important for you to be there. Or, maybe you can tell the other vet you do understand how they euthanize and that you don't mind being there when gas and an injection into the heart is given-that its just vry important to you to be there. They may be willing to work with you on that.
 

MiniLopHop

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That is horrible your vet won't let you be there. I don't think I could work with someone who wouldn't bend on that. I personally feel I have to hold my animal, at least hold their paw, when they cross. It is harder for me to grieve otherwise, but that is just me. My vet is awesome and let me be with Indy during his abcess removal the last time because we weren't sure he would make it. I just had to promise not to pass out. I stood out of the way and held his paw and whispered nice things in his ear while they worked. I'm still glad I was there to tell him it was ok to go when he started to have seizures. At least in my mind it helped make his crossing easier. *shrugs* Then again, I could be strange.
 

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