Definition (from Merriam-Webster online):

the act or practice of killing or permitting the death of hopelessly sick or injured individuals (as persons or domestic animals) in a relatively painless way for reasons of mercy

This morning we had to put down our little weenie dog.  She had back problems and we couldn’t afford the back surgery.  The surgery isn’t a 100% guaranteed fix, anyway.  But, we didn’t think it was right to put the little girl down before giving rehab a chance.  We gave her Prednisone, took her out to potty with a sash to support her back end, and watched her get better.  Not completely better…her back end still wobbled around and she couldn’t quite get one of her feet to flip right side up, but if that had been her only problem, we would not have put her down.  At that point, she was still able to get around, although she looked like she’d been drinking…a lot, she still liked to play with her squeeky toy, and spend time with the family.  Unfortunately, what the vet told us could happen did.  Due, in part, to her difficulty in movement and partly due to a (likely) loss of some sensation in the bladder, she wasn’t getting all her pee out which led to a bladder infection and could have led to kidney failure.  The last few days she’d been shaking and didn’t want to go out and potty, both of which convinced us that it was finally time.  At that point, her quality of life and level of pain/discomfort were not sufficient for us to be selfish enough to keep her around.

That’s a bit more back story to how I got to this topic today than I had initially intended.  We chose to euthanize our pet, dog, family member because her quality of life had taken a big hit and because she was in obvious pain.

So, here’s my big question:  Why is it that we, as a society, are okay with euthanizing our pets, but not our family members who have terminal/painful diseases?  We force them to soldier on, taking whatever medicine the doctors prescribe and watching their health continue to decline while the costs for care continue to add up.  Why?  Because it’s “inhumane” to kill people, but, apparently, not to watch them suffer and live in pain.  In this, I think our pets are better off than us.


2 Responses

  1. Wow…did you hit the nail on the head!!!! I’d rather die humanely with my brain/organs in tacked than be a burden to anyone. If the afterlife exists, b/c we have been taught through religion, it does; we are longing for the proof of life after death. Maybe we should be content to know we lived a good life & that we have been loved.

  2. Just letting you know that I’ve tagged you for the Kreativ Blogger Award. If you accept, which entails listing some facts about yourself and passing the award along, check out my most recent blog entry for the details. XOXO Random Blogger:)

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