Is my dog dying?

Is my dog dying?
Is my dog dying? Signs that my dog is about to die.

Death is not an easy thing to accept and coming to terms with the fact that a dog is dying is just as difficult to process.

One of the hardest things for dog owners is knowing that their lives are much shorter than ours. It is rare for a dog to live more than 20 years, and most dogs don't even live that long.

It's unusual for a dog to pass away unexpectedly and without warning. It is much more likely that your dog will give you certain clues and symptoms that he is reaching the end of his life.

In this post, we'll tell you what signs you can look for to know when it's time for your dog.

How do I know if my dog is dying?

In nature, showing signs of injury or illness makes an animal a target for a predator, this can make it difficult to distinguish whether your dog is near the end of its life or not as it will try to hide any signs of weakness.

Older dogs often show a gradual decline in health and energy, changes in routine and mood.

While few dogs die of natural causes, some signs may indicate that he is dying. There are several signs to look for that can help you determine if your dog is nearing the end of his days.

Signs that my dog is dying

Decrease in physical activity.

A decrease in a dog's normal physical activity, especially when they are older dogs, can indicate that a dog is dying.

A clear sign is when your dog does not want to go for a walk. What used to be one of his favorite activities of the day is no longer exciting him. Dogs lose interest in their favorite things, whether it is walking, playing, jumping up to their owner, etc.

Loss of interest.

Most dogs begin to withdraw into themselves, as they get older. They do not respond to what is going on around them. 

They lose interest in their favorite toys, don't want to play, and don't get as excited when their favorite people come home. 

This is due to multiple reasons, such as simply wanting to rest all day due to lack of energy or that your brain functions begin to shut down. As a result, you may experience the confusion that makes you seem detached.

Loss of appetite.

Dogs that are near the end of their lives often experience changes in their appetite. This is often due to anxiety, depression, separation, stress, and some illnesses.

A dog that has lost its appetite will generally refuse both food and water, regardless of whether you offer it its favorite food or treats.

As a dog's digestive organs shut down, so will the sensation of hunger or thirst. As a result, the dog may vomit bile and show signs of dehydration.

It is necessary to take action in these cases and keep him hydrated and offer him the food he likes on a constant basis since by not eating his organs may start to fail and he will feel a lot of pain.

Continue to offer him food, in smaller quantities and as often as necessary, and try to keep him hydrated by giving him water with a dropper or a syringe.

Changes in dog's behavior or personality.

When a dog is very sick or about to die, his behavior is different, they present changes in their behavior derived from fear and mood.

Some, when they feel sick or close to their last days, will not want to be bothered by anyone, others will prefer the company of the person they trust the most.

Many dogs prefer to spend this time alone and look for a secluded place, it is something instinctive from their origins.

Others show signs of vulnerability in their day-to-day lives, do not shy away from loud sounds, do not receive positive or negative stimuli within their environment, and simply wait with their heads down.

Loss of coordination in dogs.

It is very common for dogs to lose coordination because they do not have the muscle strength they once had, which can affect their balance.

Their nervous system fails, the animal may have trouble getting up, will bang against walls, and move in an uncoordinated manner.

Altered vital signs.

When a dog is dying, normal bodily functions may begin to fail, breathing is very slow or altered, dehydration, excessive panting, and abnormal temperature.

  • The ideal is a body temperature of 38 to 39 degrees Celsius.
  • When at rest, small dogs have a heart rate of 90 to 140 beats per minute, medium dogs have a heart rate of 70 to 110 beats per minute, and giant dogs have a heart rate of 60 to 90 beats per minute.
  • Breathes at a rate of 10 to 30 times per minute.

In this case, see a veterinarian as soon as possible for a check-up and proper care.

What to do if my dog is dying?

The first thing to do is to contact your veterinarian to evaluate the situation, his history, and his symptoms, so he can advise you on what measures to take and what will be the best decision.

He or she will help you to give him the best care and prepare everyone for his departure.

  • When a dog is dying the best thing to do is to accompany him at all times, dogs are very afraid of the unknown, they will feel vulnerable and it will be important and comforting for them to see you there.
  • Try to provide comfortable places for him to rest.
  • Accompany him and pamper him with gentle care, to avoid causing him pain or injury.
  • Carefully monitor his interactions with other pets and children who may not understand the dog's condition.

The end of a friendship.

The death of a dog is the end of his journey, the end of an important chapter, and a strong bond between you both, so be sure to say goodbye to him and take your time to mourn and grieve for as long as it takes.

Don't be afraid to accept your emotions, it is common to feel a mixture of feelings.

Seek the support of your family and friends and remember that grief is part of the recovery that will eventually transform into beautiful memories of good times with your furry friend.