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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 38023
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience.
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I had my dog put to sleep 2 weeks ago today. He was

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I had my dog put to sleep 2 weeks ago today. He was diagnosed with stage 2 kidney disease in February seemed to be doing well until a few days before he was out to sleep he stopped eating. He had a vitamin B12 injection but it didn't help he got worse & by the Monday he was just lying there hardly drinking or eating. The vet took his bloods the day before which showed he was end stage with creatinine levels in the 800's. I'm tormenting myself thinking I had him put to sleep too early. Could he have rallied?

You're speaking with Dr. Michael Salkin. Welcome to JustAnswer. I'm currently typing up my reply. Please be patient. This may take a few minutes.

My condolences for your loss of Balu. A creatinine at that level indicates stage IV (of I-IV) chronic kidney disease. To answer you directly, patients at that level can "rally" but only if they undergo intensive diuresis (rapid infusion of large amounts of IV fluids) or dialysis (which is rarely performed in such a patient). What's most important to recognize is that although rallying can be seen, these patients recrudesce (relapse without cure in between events) quickly because their kidneys have lost the ability to perform satisfactorily on their own - without the aid of either diuresis or dialysis. Hence, the choice of euthanasia is most often made at this stage. You were correct to have the final kindness performed for Balu. Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.

infusion, not influsion

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Thank you. I asked the vet about flushing his kidneys but was told it wasn't appropriate at end stage. I feel I was pushed in to having him put to sleep before he was ready. He wasn't in pain I don't think but had lost 4 kilos in weight wasn't really drinking or eating. But when the vet came to our home to give him injection he barked & wagged his tailvwhich makes me think I did it too soon which I am finding very hard to bear as I loved him so much.

His vet gave you good information. He was euthanized before he developed the vomiting, bloody diarrhea, and seizures of severe azotemia (uremia). The timing, then, wasn't too soon but, instead, not so late at which time he would have suffered more. I applaud your decision. Please continue our conversation if you wish.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Thank you. I hope I can come to terms with his loss.

You're quite welcome. Should this continue to be difficult for you, please consider a pet loss support group to whom you can be referred by Balu's vet.

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Thank you for your kind accept. I appreciate it. You may receive an inappropriate follow-up from the site ostensibly sent by me. It wasn't and I apologize in advance should you receive it.