Thursday, January 13, 2011
Bucky Update - Decisions
Bucky is fifteen years and two months old. He started "getting old" when he was about nine, when he turned into an off-track-bowling-ball on walks. But he never lost his mental sharpness and appetite for food and attention. He injured a disc in his neck when he was ten, so we started carrying him up and down the stairs. He had pancreatitis in June 2009, so we started cooking for him. Winter has been hard on him in the last few years, and we know it'd be a challenge for him to pull through this one. In the past few days he's have more and more difficulty standing up. He has almost no muscle tone left in the hind quarters, so sometimes he topples over. He has no control or awareness of his eliminations. We clean the floors A LOT.
The end of life question is looming. Trinket passed away suddenly, and spared us the most difficult decision. In the ancient days dogs would go off to the woods when the time came. Sometimes I wish we are living in the ancient days, but that would be irresponsible of me, to escape the decision making.
When is it ever a good time to play God? Does Bucky gain a few extra days in his life because we can't manage to squeeze in another vet appointment between music, sports, Chinese lessons, movie dates? Or are we simply tired of the care-giving and need an excuse to end our suffering? I've always thought we are among the most responsible dog parents, but are we going to live up to our own standard?