This very awful event occurred on Wed, February 13th. Let me start from the beginning……
About a month to a month and a half ago, my newly turned 7 year old dog began coughing a lot and very often. My mom saw online that it could most likely be just environmental allergies. I thought that made a lot of sense, just because if all of our allergies were acting up, why couldn’t hers be? So, my mom saw that you could actually give your dog Benadryl tablets. I immediately started giving her 2 tablets every day. She did a little better, but than after a few weeks, we noticed that the Benadryl wasn’t doing much anymore. Not jumping to conclusions, I just figured, maybe I just need to make sure she ate only meat, and no leftovers. I thought maybe she was developing some type of new food allergy.
Sadly, I didn’t even get to try out changing her diet, since the next day she woke up and her stomach was very distended on both sides. My mom and I knew immediately, something was far worse. Plus, she stopped eating and drinking the day she woke up bloated/swollen. She also was very, very lethargic. She never looked like she was in pain, but always very tired. We were fooled by thinking it was the Benadryl side effects.
Once I saw her stomach like that, I went online and searched what might be causing those symptoms. The first thing came up was Congestive Heart Failure. She had every symptom-Coughing, lethargy, loss of appetite, distended stomach. At that point, I was really worried. I read everywhere that once the dog shows symptoms, it’s already too late to do anything, and they usually only have a year longer to live (if lucky). The only thing that made me still have some hope left, was that all the articles and videos I read/watched, stressed that it pretty much always occurs in dogs 12 or older. Midnight just turned 7…..so I thought that was kind of odd.
We ended up taking her to the Humane Society Vet/Wellness Center, because they had very reasonable prices, which we needed, since my sisters and I were going to pay for her. When the vet came in, he listened to her heart for a long time (looking to see if he heard a murmur….he didn’t). So, once he said that he couldn’t hear a murmur, I was pretty relieved, but all of us knew something serious was still going on, otherwise she wouldn’t be so swollen/bloated. The Vet suggested to have her get tested for heart worms, mainly because it was the cheapest test to have done. So we did that, and I thought for sure that would have came back negative, but I was wrong. She came back positive. He then said she could still have a heart murmur, but it could be on a level from 2-3, which is harder to hear. My mom asked to have an X-ray done, to see if the heart is enlarged, and if it was, then we know is was heart failure, and just know that she is already too far gone. He agreed to do the test, and left the room again. When he came back into the room, he didn’t have good news at all. He said he took Midnight back to have another Vet listen to her heart, and he could hear a slight murmur. He also told us to save our money by not getting the X-ray done, since he said just the X-ray alone would be way too much stress on her body. We already knew what she had anyway – Heart worms, which lead to congestive heart failure. She could of had this for a long time and it just kept progressing, and the symptoms would of just shown now. They said heart worm prevention doesn’t even prevent the disease anyway. It actually is a poison to kill it at an earlier stage. We read that your dog’s chance of getting it, is the same percentage on or off the prevention.
My mom read that heart worms is actually very rare for a dog to get, unless you live in one of these three states, Mississippi, Texas, or Florida. Sadly, I live in Florida……yay (not).
As you probably have guessed already, our only option was to put her down. Obviously, none of us wanted to do that, but realizing that she had already gone without eating and drinking for 2 days, she most likely couldn’t go much longer.
We got to go in a private room to be with her for awhile, and to say goodbye. It was so hard. It’s so hard to write about this. The whole time I thought she was going to have close to a year left….never an hour. It was too soon. Everything happened entirely too soon. She was a Lab…They’re supposed to live to 12-15 years old! Not 7! I’m sad, angry, and confused. I’m still trying to take it all in. Just less than 24 hours ago, I was giving her a bath, she was wagging her tale, barking, ect. Never showing any signs of pain, discomfort, or unhappiness.
I keep telling my mom that all she looked like was that she needed a little bit of some type of medicine to just help with the bloating, and she’d be totally fine. She never looked like she needed to die, nor did she seem like she wanted to.
I wanted to stay in the room with her, when she got euthanized, but my mom didn’t think it would be good for my mental or physical health. I already looked and felt like a wreck anyway. I had a roll of toilet paper and paper towels with me the whole time, and filled their trash can to the rim. Plus, I had 3 major bloody noises (from a sinus infection I was just getting over with) too. It was ridiculous. I’m glad I wasn’t there though. My mom said it was extremely hard to watch. Midnight accidentally got her paw stuck in IV tube so the nurse didn’t even bother trying to put it back in her, and just gave her the shot. My mom said she tried so hard to not go down and kept trying to hold on to every breath. Poor girl didn’t want to go.
Well, that’s what went on. It’s still all very surreal to me. I haven’t went out into the backyard yet. All of her food and water is still there. I don’t want to clean it up. I’d really like for her to come back to finish eating and drinking the meal she left behind, but in reality, the rodents will get it first.
R.I.P Midnight I’ll always love you. You’ll never be forgotten, girl.