Dog Congestive Heart Failure: When to Put Them Down?

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My dog is having a Congestive Heart Failure… when do I put my dog down?When it comes to Congestive Heart Failures, it all depends on the number of factors that you may observe when it is happening. Truly, it is very painful for us to see our beloved dogs in pain. It is much more painful when we come across the thought of having to put them down.Having to know when to put them down is a matter of observation. Always consult your dog’s veterinarian whenever you think it might be time to do so. By then, you will know when to put them down.

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What is Congestive Heart Failure in Dogs and its Causes?

What is a Congestive Heart Failure in Dogs?

Source image: vcahospitals.com

To start off, a Congestive Heart Failure in Dogs is a condition in which the dog’s heart is having problems pumping blood. When it happens, the required blood we need to be pumped every day won’t be met which can result to increase of pressure and fluids that may leak out in the lungs or everywhere in their body.

It sounds quite terrible, I know. Because of this heart disease, your dog’s respiratory system won’t be functioning normally as it should. Hindering of the normal lung expansion may occur as well us oxygen having trouble finding its way to your dog’s blood stream.

What causes Congestive Heart Failure in Dogs?

Well, there are actually lots of possible causes to why your dog may be having a Congestive Heart Failure. But the most common cause of this heart disease is through genetics. It could be that your dog has a family tree or history of older dogs having the same thing.

However, other possible causes can be that your dog is already very old and this can trigger a heart problem. It could also be that your dog might have gotten into a big something that caused this problem such as activity injuries.

Another factor would be the lack of exercise and the wrong diet. Sometimes, in order for us to stay healthy without any physical problems, we all have to make sure we are eating the right foods and doing enough exercise to avoid these. This could be the cause to why your dog has a Congestive Heart Failure.

What are the stages of congestive heart failure in dogs?

What are the stages of congestive heart failure in dogs?

Understanding the stages of congestive heart failure (CHF) in dogs is crucial for pet owners to recognize the signs and seek appropriate veterinary care. CHF refers to a progressive condition where the heart struggles to pump blood effectively. There are several stages of congestive heart failure:

Stage 1: Preclinical or Silent Stage

During this initial stage, dogs may not exhibit any outward symptoms. However, underlying cardiac changes can be detected through diagnostic tests like echocardiography. Early detection allows for timely intervention and management.

Stage 2: Mild Heart Failure

In this stage, dogs may start displaying mild symptoms such as exercise intolerance, fatigue, or occasional coughing. Pet owners might observe subtle changes in their dog’s behavior or activity levels.

Stage 3: Moderate Heart Failure

At this stage, dogs experience more pronounced symptoms, including persistent coughing, rapid breathing, and reduced tolerance for physical activity. They may exhibit restlessness, difficulty breathing while lying down, or a bluish tint to the gums and tongue due to reduced oxygenation. These dogs are typically treated.

Stage 4: Severe Heart Failure

This is the most critical stage of congestive heart failure in dogs. Symptoms become severe and life-threatening, and dogs may struggle to breathe even at rest. They may show signs of extreme lethargy, fainting, or collapsing. Urgent veterinary attention is required to stabilize the dog’s condition, and hospitalization may be necessary. Advanced treatment options, such as oxygen therapy and more potent medications, might be implemented.

Dog Congestive Heart Failure Symptoms

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Maybe you are quite unsure whether your pet is experiencing Congestive Heart Failure or not. It could be something else. In order to know whether your pet really is having a heart disease, take a look at these symptoms that your pet may be experiencing when having the Congestive Heart Failure:

  • Coughing excessively

Pet patients with Congestive Heart Failure mostly experience excessive coughing which usually happens right after an exercise or before bed. This is because there is a fluid build-up happening in the dog’s lungs.

  • Difficulty in Breathing Properly

When your heart is not pumping enough blood and that oxygen is certainly having a hard time getting to the blood stream, breathing would be very difficult at times for your dog.

  • Fainting from time to time

Because of the fluid build-up as well as the lack of oxygen, your dog may faint right after an activity or at random times when their heart is not functioning properly at all.

  • Easily gets tired

Even if you have given your dog a moderate amount of exercises, they easily get tired and perhaps even dizzy. Fainting may come afterward or excessive coughing.

  • Weight Losses

Once your dog is suffering from a Congestive Heart Failure, they will certainly lose the ability to store fat in their bodies. Because of that, their weight may drop.

  • Difficulty in Settling Down to Sleep

Your dog may be trying to pace before sleeping, trying to breathe and relax, but having a heart disease like this doesn’t exactly give them that peaceful sleep or life.

What You Can Do to Treat It

Now, there may be some ways to treat your dog’s heart problem. Though it may cost you lots of money, time, tears, and patience. Once you have consulted a veterinarian, they may be able to do some things to help. What they can do are:

  • Give medicine to your dog that helps the heart work better to correct any irregular pumping
  • Give medicine to your dog that is able to slow down any fluid build-up in their lungs
  • Giving your dog a heart surgery to fix any torn valve or to place a pacemaker to correct heartbeats
  • Give your dog a prescription for low-salt dietary foods to aid in decreasing any fluid build-up in their lungs
  • Give you the advice to limit and manage your dog’s exercises until progress has been made
  • May give you helpful supplements such as vitamin B, taurine, Coenzyme Q, Vitamin E, and carnitine.

To make this work, you have to be consistent in dealing with your pet’s health. Always take the advice of a veterinarian.

Life Expectancy Of Dogs With Heart Failure On Medication

Life Expectancy Of Dogs With Heart Failure On MedicationLife Expectancy Of Dogs With Heart Failure On Medication

Fortunately, with proper treatment and medication, dogs can live for several months or even years after being diagnosed with heart failure. The life expectancy of dogs with heart failure on medication varies depending on the severity of their condition and how well they respond to treatment.

In general, dogs with mild to moderate heart failure can live for several years with the right combination of medication and lifestyle changes. However, more severe cases may only have a few months to a year left to live. It’s important for pet owners to work closely with their veterinarian and follow their recommendations for managing their dog’s condition.

While there is no cure for heart failure in dogs, many can still enjoy a good quality of life with proper care and management of their symptoms.

What to feed a dog with heart failure

Heart failure can cause a decrease in appetite, and it is important to provide a balanced diet that supports the dog’s overall health. A diet for dogs with heart failure should be low in sodium and high in protein.

High levels of sodium can increase fluid retention, which can put extra strain on the heart and lungs. A low sodium diet should contain less than 100mg of sodium per 100 calories of food. Avoiding processed foods, table scraps, and high-sodium treats.Instead, opt for fresh vegetables and fruits as treats or snacks. Lean proteins such as chicken or fish are also good options.

In dogs with heart failure, it is important to limit salt intake to prevent fluid buildup in the lungs and around the heart. Therefore, choosing lean protein sources without added salt is recommended. High-quality proteins contain all the essential amino acids necessary for optimal health. These include animal-based proteins such as chicken, beef, and fish. Additionally, feeding small meals throughout the day can help prevent excessive strain on the heart.

How to Know When it is Too Late to Save Them

When you have been trying, trying and trying to help save your pet from all the pain. There are just those times that it may not work anymore. Those times when it’s just too late. You may know how it’s too late once you have observed these factors from your pet…

  • Symptoms are the same even after all the medication given
  • Your pet is no longer actively moving around the house anymore
  • Your pet is always in the exact same spot
  • Suffering noises can be heard so much
  • No progress has been observed after taking your veterinarian’s advice
  • Your veterinarian sees that your dog can no longer take any more medication
  • More painful symptoms have developed

Once you find anything within the list that matches up to your observation, then I’m sad to say that… it is time. It is time to put them down.

What actually happens during euthanasia, and does it hurt?

In fact, the vet will give your pets a shot. First it’s a sedative.Dr. Shea Cox, a caretaker of the Bridge’s health and mitigating the Bridge’s attention, “This creates a gentle transfer from consciousness and the only sensation that your pets will go through after this injection is to sleep. North California.

Cox said that this time would be 5 to ten minutes, when the animal fell into his sleep deep and deeper, “They’re no longer aware.”

When the family is ready, the veterinarian will proceed with the second shot. The most popular drug used in the phase is the pentobarbital, a different type of anesthetic that could cause the heart to slow and then stop.

Cox tells me, the injector is injected into the veins, which may lead to the death in a matter of seconds, or directly to the abdomen, may take 15 and be slowly and gently-slowly- but in both cases, you’ve got yourself, I’m not aware of this part of the process.

The only discomfort a pet has to go through during that time is that it can be needles in the first shot. Cox says that this is being kept with the true meaning of the word “euthanasia”, which comes from the word euthanatos in Greek, which means “good death.”

Useful Videos That May Help You Through the Process

“How to Know When it is Time”

“How to Say Goodbye to Your Pet”“How to Put Your Dog to Sleep”

My experience

After the veterinarian explained what would happen, she gave me a moment of privacy with the dog until I was ready. When I called the doctor back, I took a deep breath, prayed and we started.

The vet started injecting the veins of the dog’s foot and then wrangling me in a beautiful blanket. I can still see his little head coming out and look around the room. Although he’s always feeling anxious at the vet’s office, it’s strange, but it’s so calm today.

The doctor put the dog in my arms. I talked to him, caressed him, and I told him that I loved him and I kissed him. Then the doctor told me she was going to IV, and then she’d give her a shot to calm down and sleep easily. She explained that I would feel the whole body relaxed, and that’s what I did.

Even though I’m drowning, I know my puppy is not scared or miserable at all.After taking the sleeping pills, the doctor waited a bit and then she told me she would take sedation measures. It happened very quickly and all I can say is that it is very human. After it’s over, I have some alone time to sit and be with it.

My advice

Prepare and ask questions. Talk to your veterinarian and understand what’s about to happen.

Let’s make all your decisions first. Whether you want to bury or cremation, make all the important decisions before death. You’ll get too emotional when you have to solve that question afterwards.

Prepayment for all services. Then when you’re ready to leave, you don’t have to bother.

Make it easier with your furry baby if you can. Bring his favorite blanket, bed, or toy. Bring him a treat he’s always wanted, but was never allowed to have. so it will feel joyful and happy without us feeling sad.

Please give the best for your dog to feel happy and happy during this time .You should cry to feel more comfortable, don’t worry or be afraid because everyone understands your decision.

Don’t feel guilty. You’re making this decision because it’s in your fur baby’s best interest – if it weren’t for that then you wouldn’t have. And, remember, if it’s not in your furry baby’s best interest, neither will your vet.

Don’t forget the other dogs that are at your house. because they can be sad because they know a member is gone.

What Will Happen To My Dog Afterward?

You have many choices to do with your pet body after you die.

The vet can tell you about the foster care services that are already in your area. In general, you’ll have to determine if you want your pet to be cremated alone and their ashes will be returned to you.

You can buy countless pieces of ashes and special mementos to bear the ashes of your pets.

But before all of that, Many veterinarians will allow you to spend time alone with your dead pet who died in a room in their animal hospital if that’s where you were killed or in your home before the vet took their body.

Coping Strategies For Dealing With Pet Loss And Grief

Losing a pet is one of the most painful experiences one can go through. I can imagine because I have done it before. Coping with pet loss and grief is a process that takes time and effort. Some ways to deal with the pain include:

Finding someone to talk: Such as a friend, family member, or therapist. It’s important to allow oneself to grieve and not suppress emotions.

Engaging in activities that bring joy and distract from the pain: Such as exercising or volunteering at an animal shelter.

It’s important to remember that everyone grieves differently and there is no right or wrong way to cope with pet loss.

Moving Forward: Healing And Honoring The Memory Of Your Canine Companion

Losing a pet can be devastating, especially when it comes to making the difficult decision to put them down. After your dog has passed away, it’s important to give yourself time to grieve and process your emotions. One way to do this is by creating a memorial for your furry friend. You could plant a tree or create a garden in their honor, or even make a scrapbook filled with photos and memories.

Lastly, remember that it’s okay to take as much time as you need to heal. Everyone grieves differently, and there is no timeline for when you should feel “over” your loss.

FAQ about Congestive Heart Failure in Dogs

Can a dog with congestive heart failure be saved?

Yes, a dog with congestive heart failure can be managed and have their quality of life improved, but it cannot be completely cured. Veterinary care, medications, and lifestyle adjustments can help control the condition, alleviate symptoms, and extend the dog’s lifespan. However, the underlying heart disease causing the heart failure cannot be reversed, meaning the dog’s heart function will not return to normal. The focus is on providing comfort, managing symptoms, and slowing down the progression of the disease rather than a complete cure.

How to comfort a dog with congestive heart failure?

To comfort a dog with congestive heart failure, you can:+ Provide a calm and quiet environment to minimize stress and anxiety.+ Ensure your dog has a comfortable and cozy resting area.+ Offer a balanced diet recommended for dogs with heart conditions.+ Give your dog plenty of love, attention, and gentle physical contact.+ Engage in low-intensity activities, such as short, leisurely walks.+ Regularly consult with your veterinarian for check-ups and adjustments to the treatment plan.

Does congestive heart failure in dogs result in a painful death?

While congestive heart failure in dogs can cause discomfort and difficulty breathing, it is generally not considered a painful death. With appropriate treatment and management, dogs diagnosed with congestive heart failure can often maintain a good quality of life for a significant period of time.

My dog has congestive heart failure and will not eat. What can I do now?

If your dog has congestive heart failure and is not eating, it is essential to seek veterinary advice promptly. In the meantime, you can try the following:Offer a variety of appealing, nutritious, and easily digestible food options.Warm the food slightly to enhance its aroma and make it more enticing.Hand-feed small portions or try feeding smaller, frequent meals throughout the day.Ensure your dog has access to fresh water at all times.Address any underlying causes of decreased appetite, such as medication side effects or nausea.

Conclusion

Congestive Heart Failure is one of the scariest things that could ever happen to us or to someone we love. What is more worst is that it can happen quite unexpectedly or unknowingly. This is why we all must know the causes, symptoms and the possible treatments of this heart disease. It is also heavily advised that when it happens, you have to go to the vet immediately.

25 COMMENTS

  1. Thank you for putting together a readable account of CHF. My puppy is 14 1/2. He was diagnosed about 1 year ago and is on three medications daily. He just seems to be coughing enough a lot lately so I wanted to read up a little more on what’s going on

  2. I’m dying inside.i had my 12 year old chi meme euthanized Dec 21 2017.its fresh I’m broken.she had collapsing trachea,chf,fluid in lungs,and in 2 weeks had 2 seizures.i will forever wonder if rushing to e.r. vet and taking their advice to euthanize was the right choice.she was on 6 meds and the coughing never stopped.the hacking.she still sagged her tail ate a little and moved around the house a little.she still let me know when she wanted to get in bed to go to sleep.i feel like I didn’t do enough.what if the meds made her seize?I had no money for blood work or xrays.did I rob her of another year or did I save her from current or upcoming suffer.i can’t eat or sleep.i drive to vet she was euthanized and sit outside.i drive to my mom’s where she is buried.then I come home to our room we shared.we survived domestic violence together.i had her since she was 6 weeks old.im broken

    • I’m dealing with a 12 yo poodle with CHF and fluid build up.He is in end stage. I’m going to see how it goes. Vets don’t always know. Luis is suffering but I’m not going to let him go unless it gets worse then he will die on his own. If you already put your dog down then there is no reason to be conflicted. You can’t bring her back. Just grieve the loss and move on.

    • ;( I’m going thru the same thing n wonder if I’m being selfish for keeping my baby around .. at what point do I let go of my Buddy that have me. 14 years and helped me race three daughters? I’m so confused-:(((

      • All I can add, having dogs my entire life and many cats and birds, only one dog died at home and i will never witness the suffering that this dog went thru. always put them down to sleep to easy their pain. it was a huge mistake not to rush her to the vet to do so. a stroke happened and you could tell she was hurting. even after i gave her a pain. pill she was 35 pounds and it cost under 100 to put her to sleep. i will never see one of my sweet pets go thru this freaking experience. just a word to the others in doubt. get them to the vet!

    • Please don’t beat yourself up. I’m going to put my Chi down when I get my SS check next week, he also is suffering from heart disease.
      I also have had a heart attack, open heart surgery, and a defibrillator implanted 5 yrs ago. I’m on 32 pills daily, and suffer from all kinds of heart related problems. The pain of a heart attack is the worst imaginable and I wouldn’t want my dog ever to experience it. Nor would I want him to go through the everyday hurt of having a damaged heart. If there was legal euthanasia for humans, I would stand in line. You did the right thing, believe me.
      It’s hardest on you, but you released him/her from daily agony. Finally at peace with no pain.
      Stop torturing yourself, if you’re young enough and have enough money for the care, save an old dog, if just for a little while, who might be euthanized just because it wasn’t wanted. Do it for your dog.

    • Hi Jennifer feeling the same glad i found your post. the doctor was so stern with me and said you need to do it TODAY. I researched more after and am afraid i didnt do more, it kills you. Prayers for you

    • Hi Jennifer, just wondering how you are doing with your loss. I read your heartbreaking post and you did the right thing. We need to do what is best for the dog, she was in pain and as so very hard for us to let go we have to honour her and not keep her living for ourselves. I am in a similar situation with my little girl and i cant believe how devastating it is. I know i dont have the strength to live without her. Wrong, weird or musplaced but I dont want to go on without her, she has made such a huge difference to my life that When she goes I will too.

    • Oh im so sad for you and me both.my dog was just diagnosed with chf.seeing him cough he seems so miserable.like you i have no money for all these test.so idk approx.how long hes had it.i dont think i would have put y ours down yet if je was still eating and moving.but who knows.i wonder if mine is suffering himself and was wondering when to know when to put them down.i love my furbaby so much and this is litterslly killing me.i know exactly how you feel.

    • Jennifer
      I hope by now you are at peace with your decision and have been able to move on. You absolutely made the right decision to let your girl move on. I believe that some dogs enter our lives as our guardians and teachers as well as companions. She helped you through some horrible times and you were kind enough and selfless enough to let her go peacefully.

  3. JENNIFER I am so sorry. I understand your pain. On Dec 22 we put our 13 yr 10 months Chicky, a beautiful Shih Tzu to Rest. It was the most difficult thing i’ve ever experienced. In September she was diagnosed with CHF and the vet noticed something else on her lung, he gave her shots, to relieve the fluid in her lungs and a shot for pain, sent us home with meds. She was doing great for weeks. Then the meds stopped working and she started cough and gagging. In hind site we realized she was in pain for several weeks, crying and not breathing well. We are second guessing ourselves to because on Thursday night she was playing with her brother and she ate well. Thursday night she didn’t sleep well. Friday morning she didn’t do her usual rubbing her face and body on my pillow, which is somet she always did. She would not take her medicine or eat. We brought her to the vet, he did an X-ray and noticed the thing on her lung had grown and was pressing on her wind pipe. He gave her a shot of steroids hoping it would help, planning another shot the next day, we brought her home and she was really struggling to breathe, she couldn’t lie down, I tried holding her but her breathing got worse. We called the vet and told him she wasn’t breathing right and was exhausted because she couldn’t lie down, we loved her, held her and kissed her as the meds calmed her. She is finally at peace. We are haunted, wracking our brains about whether or not we’re to hasty. In my heart I know I was not going to let her suffer. I loved her like I’ve never loved anything else in my life. When she left the fluid from her lungs ran out of her nose and at that moment I realized we must have done the right thing.
    I’ve been reading on lots of sites that the second guessing is normal and the depth of pain we feel is a measure of the love we had. Praying for our peace and comfort….

    • OH MY LORD!!

      SO SORRY FOR YOUR LOSS!!!!!!

      I’m dealing with this right now!!
      First Pet since 1973

      This One…Has never been raised as a dog—or called one!!
      He’s My Son—
      My Son’s Brother…He has Aunts and Uncles…

      Never been taught to stand up and go in circles for a treat???
      (Do we make Our Children Do This?)

      NO

      But My Son, knows every word I say!!
      He’s ,been brought up like a child!

      His Heart Disease—Is not Good!!

      I have No Idea—How I’m gonna mange this!

      (Maybe you are not here anymore!!)

      But if you find this post—Please Email Me!
      Hugs!
      Linda

      • I’m so sorry I too am dealing with this too. All three of my shitzus are older, one has congestive heart failure , if she lives thru the night I may take her to our doggie dr. But what really can they do? I don’t want to give her meds to prolong this. But I don’t want her to suffer. This dog was the dog my mom loved sooo much my mom died 2 yrs ago at age 92 from Alzheimer’s so this is very very hard for me

      • The thought of my dog dying is insurmountable. She has cancer and think the pain meds is giving her chf. She is 13years old, have only known her for 3 years but she is luje my little girl. Have run out of gabupenton and $ and can see her kicking at her tummy and legs where the tumours are. Have tramadol and metacam but have to be so careful with the doses. So paranoid she will stop breathing in her sleep. U cant bear the thought if losing her. Lost my mum years ago and the pain is the same. I swear she understands wha i am saying and knows when i am crying. This is the worst thing ever. I dont want to luve without her.

      • Linda…..
        I read your post and immediately felt connected with you. My Dexter also has no idea he is a dog. He has been in my life for only five years as a therapy dog but it’s been a lifetime of bonding. When I got him we rescued each other and he was 8 years old and trained. I needed a therapy dog and Dexter needed a new home. Now he has CHF and I’m going to have a broken heart for the rest of my life. I truly do not know how I am going to make it thru this.

        I have buried both of my parents four months apart over twenty years ago. I have been diagnosed with a progressive noncureable neuropathy which has me home bound. My husband has to help me now with most of my daily tasks. Not having Dexter is going to be harder than anything I can imagine.

        I know I have just thrown up all over everyone reading this and totally lost the reason for my post…back on track.

        Dogs love us the same way God loves us – Unconditionally without question and always with open hearts. Kinda funny they all have CHF because they love us so much from their hearts they worked it so much showing us. My point is we need to hold onto the love we have received and know that it is one of a kind and that they might not be here with us daily they will still be with us in our hearts.

        We can be the “Dog Gone Love” Club I now it May sound funny but we are all in the same situation.

        My prayers are you are doing well please email me at sblilbit@aol.com if you would like to follow up.

        I hope I have not in anyway offended anyone in anyway it is not my intention. God bless.

        Sue

    • I lost my sweet Baylee 3 weeks ago from CHF. He was doing ok the day before had slowed down buy did not seem in any pain. That night started breathing heavy couldn’t settle down. Would breath very heavy and would not sit or lay down.Took him to his vet cardiologist. In their emergency dept. Put him in oxygen crate. Just thought he was getting treatment and they said he wasn’t getting better. Dr suggested putting him down.I had not even thought about this. I didn’t have anytime
      To say goodbye as they said he might get really bad and collapse so they did it on table in emergency room
      I am second guessing myself.He was my everything and I wish I could be with him.

  4. On November 19 2017 It was the worst day of the year I put my 13 years old chihuahua CHIKI it was a hard decision not just for me but the all family but after reading this article make me think that I make the best decision
    WE LOVE YOU CHIKI FOREVER 🐶

  5. I just put my Oreo down. He was 11.5 years. We we’re going for 1 km walks at least daily for these years. He loved meeting people at the door and looking out the front window for my return. He’d do great tricks catching treats,rolling over, waiting staying. Until he heard the ok! Thursday he was diagnosed with congestive heart failure. He spent a night at the vet’s. Had to be sedated as he hated it. I took him home Friday. He hated the pills and couldn’t do anything he loved. He crawled under the table and was restless all night. His breathing was fast and his eyes were sad. We made the call took him for a walk in the park (carrying) stopped at a&w bought a grease Patty that he never gets,took him in and said goodbye. I’m glad he only suffered shortly. I’ll miss him dearly.
    I wish vet’s would stabalise pets in this circumstance and give you pills for a week a cardiologist report and let you make the call. I’m glad I got to say goodbye but I could have gone to Mexico for a week with what I was charged.

  6. I read these stories and know it’s only a matter of a few days before I am faced with this decision. I will question and beat myself up because it’s just not natural to take a life of someone you love, sick or not. I have raised my dog ELVIS for 17 yrs. Rehabed him thru 2 strokes, slipped discs and pinched nerves. I cant fix this heart falure thing. I cant save my baby. Its destroying me. Its the good days he still has thats conflicting. Please god, give me the sign.

  7. Susan- thank you for all the great information love and support you provide here on this site. It has been so helpful for me and others. As you can see I have posted a reply to a post. Please let me know if it is accepted. I do not do this often so I’m always concerned about saying something that may not be accepted within quidelines. Thank you in advance for your assistance.

    Sue
    Dexter’s Mom

  8. This is a very poorly written piece. I don’t trust the information here. Go to a different source of info. There are better ones.

  9. We had to say goodbye to our dear little Chi Poppy yesterday, August 14th 2018 at 9.20am. She had been diagnosed with a grade 5 heart murmur and congestive heart failure nearly 3 years prior when she was just 10 and half years old. She was diagnosed after developing a persistent cough.

    For almost 3 years she had her meds every day, twice per day, although she hated them (we had to give them in treats). For most of that time although she was never her old self she had excellent quality of life and continued to love and be loved.

    For the last few weeks however she started to go downhill…she couldn’t sleep properly at night, couldn’t lie down and get comfortable, which got progressively worse. We made her a little bed cradle to sleep in which helped for a while. But then she started getting siezures..short lived but with the most awful little cry.

    On Monday 13th she was down but perked up in the evening and even had a brief spell with her old “puppy face” on. Then Monday night was terrible. She was exhausted, couldnt sleep at all and was obviously in constant pain. Early Monday morning she took a drink of water and could not get her breath even after her meds she was gasping for air and in constant pain. Her eyes said it all…”Daddy I’ve had enough”.

    My wife took her to the vet…I just couldn’t do it. He said her resps were over 60 and her heart was all over the place, there were no more meds and nothing could be done. She was dying. So he put her off to sleep. We buried her at home Tuesday morning. And now there is a Chihuhua shaped, but definitely not Chihuahua sized, hole right through my heart that will never be filled. But she is pain and suffering free and we had nearly three more good years with her from diagnosis right up until she told us it was her time.

  10. Thank you for this website, it was the information I was looking for. I have a 13 almost 14 yr old yorkie poodle mix. My dog has been having what we expected to be the starting of heart problems a little over a year ago. With the pandemic going on it was harder to get him in last year. We finally got in and its confirmed he has an extremely enlarged heart which is causing his trachea to collapse causing lots of coughing. We have noticed him panting lately and progressively worse boughts of shaking. He is still eating and some days still active, but I think we are on the downward spiral. It breaks my heart we have had him since my daughter was 7 and she is in her 1st year of college. He is like my other child and it was always us 3, so its hard to think of saying goodbye in the future. I used to work as a vet nurse assistant, so I want to make sure I am not causing him any suffering for my own selfishness of wanting him here. Thank you for making the videos it helps to hear others journeys as well.

  11. Going through CHF with my baby chi torture also with great days, great
    Appetite and mostly good mood, nights are more difficult, coughing started 2 days ago, once he collapsed but was fine thereafter, think it was activity intolerance, agree and know exactly what you speak of when we talk of unsure what is enough, correct and right time, the ache in our hearts and void in our lives, sure I will miss him everyday he is my baby, I like the song for him May the long time sun shine upon you shine all around you and the light within guide you on..your way on. Sure will be missed and remembered always, its terrible they have to go through this, innocent creatures.

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