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Research on looking after a sick pet.

Discussion in 'General Health' started by Caro, Oct 8, 2017.

  1. Caro

    Caro Moderator

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    Interesting article for those of us caring for older and 'special needs' dogs. We love them with all our hearts but sometimes it is so exhausting. We're very lucky to have each other on SF to talk to, just a shame we're all so far apart.

    https://www.thecut.com/2017/10/the-invisible-emotional-burden-of-caring-for-a-sick-pet.html

    Compared to participants with healthy pets, study subjects caring for chronic or terminally ill animals scored higher on scales of depression, anxiety and lower on well-being, and a psychometric test called the Zarit Burden Interview used to measure burden in human caregivers (the study authors adapted the test by replacing the word “relative” with “pet”). In itself, the finding that people with sick pets feel more of a burden isn’t surprising — but the intensity of that burden was. “It’s meeting this threshold for what we would consider to be concerning if someone were in a human caregiving relationship,” Spitznagel says.
     
    ghggp, Ann and Piper's mom like this.
  2. Ann

    Ann Moderator

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    This is so true, Caro. Thanks for sharing this. I agree that it's important to have people to help carry the burden. I always think it's even harder because our dogs can't talk to us and tell us how they feel...so much has to be intuitive on our part.
     
    ghggp likes this.
  3. Sharon7

    Sharon7 Premium Member

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    Very true. Hardly any of my friends knew what we went through every day with Ally's care, and thank God I had my hubby to tag team with. It took a lot of time and was sometimes very frustrating, but because she was still interested in life and did her normal things every day including a long walk, we were determined to carry on. It curtailed our life for about 6 months but I would do it all again. I agree most people don't "get" that level of devotion for a pet. It was exhausting though, so life felt like work, sleep and care for Ally, that's it.
     
    Ann and ghggp like this.
  4. ghggp

    ghggp Premium Member

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    Thanks Caro for this post.

    I however am clueless on the last line... "What are you trading it for?”

    When I lost Mr Chance last year I put him FIRST! I took a back seat to his needs. Getting a baby monitor set up so I could hear him if he barked to go out at 2:00 am in the morning or even several times during the night! I felt like the walking dead. Frustrated sometimes when I could not find the right foods so he would eat. It was a struggle! I was so blessed to be able to work from home and be with him 24/7! Giving him meds, bathing him when he soiled himself, hand feeding him! What ever it took I did it. Just because they are old does not mean you stop loving or caring for them. I don't know how some of you do it having to go to work.

    I was blessed to have a great job so I could afford the vet bills. At one point, when I went to the vet, she was short with me and said, he is just an old dog! Does that mean I won't try anything to make him better? I really never forgave her for that comment!

    My family luckily understood my animals are my sole focus in life, not having any children. I brought them into my life and I must provide for them! I am so lucky that most of my friends are as dog nuts as I am. The compassion they showed when I lost Mr Chance helped tremendously. Sheltie Nation was also the best resource I could have! Understanding and compassion I needed so desperately.

    I guess it boils down to if someone does not understand my dedication to my animals, I don't need them in my life!

    So to answer the question, "What are you trading it for?”. One more month, one more hour, one more minute, one more second with the love of my life...
    Mr Chance! My heart my soul!
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2017
    Hanne likes this.
  5. RikyR

    RikyR Premium Member

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    Well said Gloria. As long as Cody had the will to live, I was willing to do whatever it took to keep him going. I really did not care what anyone else thought or had to say about it. He eventually let me know it was time, and I had to let him go. He was, and always will be my heart dog, I still miss him so very much.
     
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  6. Hanne

    Hanne Forums Enthusiast

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    Although this is hard for me to read and it hurts my heart and tears in my eyes.

    Is it still good to know how much we will do for our best friends, no matter what others think.

    Nobody understands that pain / sorrow - if they have not even tried to lose a furfriend.
     
    ghggp likes this.
  7. k9kreationz

    k9kreationz Forums Celebrity

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    All I can say is....I am sooooo grateful for this board. What I went through with Miko I wouldn't wish on anyone and yet, so many of you have been there too. I don't know how I would have dealt with it if it wasn't for this board and the friends I've made because of it. In all my years on message boards, people have asked me why I'm on them...honestly, when you hear people say, "I've lived through that too" it justifies every single emotion you're dealing with....be it pets, love, family, school, health issues, etc. I don't think I can read that article, but I always wonder....with Miko, at the end, I didn't have a job so caring for him was easy, but when this happens with Koji/Vogue, it's going to break my heart going to work everyday and wondering what I'll come home to. Sigh.
     
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  8. ghggp

    ghggp Premium Member

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    Have you ever considered a remote camera setup so you can keep an eye on Koji/Vogue?

    If I ever had a full time job again I would definitely have a setup like that so if anything happens I could excuse myself from work and get home immediately.

    Love technology these days... To be able to monitor your pets over the web on your computer or smart phone really could help when your pet needs you!
     
    Ann likes this.
  9. Hanne

    Hanne Forums Enthusiast

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    I agree with Cloria

    I had completely forgotten that I bought one when Minnie was a puppy
    and had to be home alone for the first time.

    I felt so bad and sure she would cry and be so unhappy - her mom had left her for 2-3 hours :cry:

    I watched my cell phone and could see that she rubbed a bit in the big bone
    then she walked around a bit and went to sleep completely relaxed :biggrin2:

    I used it twice and it gave me peace :yes:
     
    ghggp likes this.
  10. danisgoat

    danisgoat Moderator

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    Great article Caro! I just went through this over the last two weeks but with my goat, lol. Tiger is 16 1/2 and I had to travel for work, while I was away, he went off feed. My husband was very concerned but really isn't the "goat knowledge" person in our relationship. When I finally got home I was able to figure out that it was probably due to bad hay. With help from the vet, probiotics, cisapride, injectable vitamin B, and banamine he is doing great. I can not tell you what a BEAR I was that week while trying to get that rumen moving again. It was the guilt that I left, the guilt that I couldn't be with him, then the guilt that everytime he saw me I was either drenching or injecting him with meds.....rough week!
     
    Chris likes this.

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