How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Dr. Andy Your Own Question

Dr. Andy
Dr. Andy, Medical Director
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 28645
Experience:  UC Davis Graduate, Interests: Dermatology, Internal Medicine, Pain Management
14008320
Type Your Dog Question Here...
Dr. Andy is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My 15 year old XXXXX XXXXX has renal failure. We took him

Resolved Question:

My 15 year old XXXXX XXXXX has renal failure. We took him to the vet the other day because he has lost a lot of weight and hardly drinks and doesn't eat.....not even a dog biscuit. His legs are weak, but he can still use the doggie door slowly and make it down the stairs. It breaks my heart to see him hunched over and barely able to move. His bun is 130, crea is 8.8 and phos 16.1. We contacted a vet to possibly come to our house tomorrow morning to put him down. The guilt is killing me and I keep thinking maybe he is doing better, but I know in the end he will just get worse and there is nothing we can do. At what point is it time? If it were your own dog what would you do?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dr. Andy replied 1 year ago.
Welcome! My name isXXXXX am a UC Davis graduate, and currently, a Medical Director of a veterinary hospital.

I am sorry to hear about this concern for Hunter.

Often, I will not answer that final question, what would I do if it were my own dog. Why? Well, there are financial implications, resources I may have available that you do not that can affect decisions.

But, you wrote the perfect information for me to answer that question.
The BUN is well over 100, which can easily cause nausea and uremic ulcers in the stomach.
The phosphorous level is very high, easily also contributing to nausea.

But, its not just about the numbers. Hunter is clearly not feeling well, with both poor appetite and thirst.

Without hesitation, I would absolutely support euthanasia. Certainly, you could hospitalize him for intravenous fluid therapy which may bring the values down for a short period of time. But, the question is whether the values will ever drop enough to be able to manage him at home, as well as, how quickly will they rise after therapy.

In this situation, unless he was to be immediately hospitalized and kept on a high fluid rate for at least 48-72 hours, euthanasia is the right decision. No question.

I never assume everyone has the financial resources to try hospitalizing to bring down kidney values, and again, even if they drop some it will either be not enough, or he will have to be maintained getting fluids under the skin every day thereafter.

I think Hunter has lived a wonderful long life as a result of your care, and I would not disagree at all if you elected to do euthanasia.

Please let me know if there is anything I did not cover for you. I hope that information has been helpful.
Please remember to select Reply to Expert, if for any reason you need further clarification, have more questions, or were expecting a different type of answer. DO NOT rate if you are not satisfied yet or have any other questions. My goal is to try and provide you the best answer possible.
Dr. Andy

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Do you think at his age it is worth hospitalizing him and putting him through the stress of the treatment? He also has glaucoma and list sight in one eye, cataracts on the other, some hearing loss and he also has a tumor sore on his leg that keeps breaking open and bleeding. We can pay for treatment, just not sure if it's worth the stress to him.
Expert:  Dr. Andy replied 1 year ago.
Hi Shannon,
If cost were no object, and it greatly depends on your vet as well, you could try.
That's where things are tough for me. My wife would likely want me to try.
I would say that if you did hospitalization, unless there is a dramatic decrease in the values based on a recheck blood test after 2-3 days, I would not go any further.

But, would I disagree with not hospitalizing? Absolutely not. I would only say that if not hospitalizing, euthanasia should be done soon.

With the concurrent issues as well, I think your vet would absolutely support if you didn't hospitalize.

Dr. Andy
Dr. Andy, Medical Director
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 28645
Experience: UC Davis Graduate, Interests: Dermatology, Internal Medicine, Pain Management
Dr. Andy and 4 other Dog Specialists are ready to help you

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • You are a light at the end of scary tunnel when $ are tight, but people need professional help to turn to for help with their dear pets! Linh Charleston, WV
< Last | Next >
  • You are a light at the end of scary tunnel when $ are tight, but people need professional help to turn to for help with their dear pets! Linh Charleston, WV
  • $1,000 spent at his vet, and I finally get the correct diagnosis from Nancy Holmes for $15 Carol Cedar Hill, MO
  • I think this is the greatest web site in the world. Thanks to all! Judy New Haven, CT
  • I have referred several friends to your web site. I'm impressed with how easy it is to use your site, the Experts available and the quickness of answers. Nina USA
  • I am completely pleased with the quick response that I received in our time of need for our dog, Jasmine. I couldn't believe how quick the response was and I thank you. It's good to know you're there!! Jasmine's Mom USA
  • Please let everyone involved with your site know that your Expert, Dr. Lucy, has saved my dog's life. I will recommend your site to all my pet loving friends. Thank you again for simply being there! Sonya G Easley, SC
  • Last night my Expert spent close to 3 hours working with me on my dog's illness. Thank you so much for this opportunity to share in her care and knowledge! Cathie M Pompano Beach, FL
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Dr. Gary

    Dog Veterinarian

    Satisfied Customers:

    2534
    DVM, Emergency Veterinarian; BS (Physiology) Michigan State Univ
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RY/rydergar/2012-6-6_192240_IMG0328.64x64.JPG Dr. Gary's Avatar

    Dr. Gary

    Dog Veterinarian

    Satisfied Customers:

    2534
    DVM, Emergency Veterinarian; BS (Physiology) Michigan State Univ
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/JA/Jav917/2012-2-20_54059_201221802254JoananddavidArchuleta3.64x64.jpg Joan's Avatar

    Joan

    Vet Tech

    Satisfied Customers:

    4544
    Vet Tech for over 30+ years working w/Dogs/Rescues
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/JA/jadedangel57/2011-11-8_193134_janenewsm.64x64.jpg Jane Lefler's Avatar

    Jane Lefler

    Breeder,Behaviorist, formerVet Asst

    Satisfied Customers:

    13847
    Former vol Vet Assistant.Breeder 16+ years Dog trainer / behaviorist
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/ER/ERPetNurse/2011-11-7_1293_b.64x64.jpg Candy's Avatar

    Candy

    Veterinary Technician

    Satisfied Customers:

    7108
    Practicing Veterinary Technician for 26 years.Former Veterinary Practice Owner, Technician Trainer
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/BA/babybloo/2011-3-10_62613_DavidandI.64x64.jpg Theresa's Avatar

    Theresa

    A Voice for Your Pet

    Satisfied Customers:

    4704
    19+ years experience in small animal medicine
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/VE/vetforyou/2012-6-20_33122_PearlPhoto.64x64.jpg Dr. Andy's Avatar

    Dr. Andy

    Medical Director

    Satisfied Customers:

    4430
    UC Davis Graduate, Interests: Dermatology, Internal Medicine, Pain Management
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/VE/VetAnswers/2013-4-5_8257_prof10.64x64.jpg Scott Nimmo's Avatar

    Scott Nimmo

    Dog Veterinarian

    Satisfied Customers:

    3977
    BVMS, MRCVS.
 
 
 
Chat Now With A Dog Specialist
Dr. Andy
Dr. Andy
Dog Specialist
28645 Satisfied Customers
UC Davis Graduate, Interests: Dermatology, Internal Medicine, Pain Management