• Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of www.chronofhorse.com has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.

Announcement

Collapse

Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You’re responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it—details of personal disputes are likely better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts that violate these rules. Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting, but administrators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts upon request.

Outright inflammatory, vulgar, harassing, malicious or otherwise inappropriate statements and criminal charges unsubstantiated by a reputable news source or legal documentation will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it’s understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users’ profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses – Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it’s related to a horse for sale, regardless of who’s selling it, it doesn’t belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions – Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services – Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products – While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements – Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be “bumped” excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues – Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators’ discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the “alert” button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your “Ignore” list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you’d rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user’s membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 1/26/16)
See more
See less

SPINOFF! Cost of treatment vs Quality of life in our Companion animals!

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • SPINOFF! Cost of treatment vs Quality of life in our Companion animals!

    In light of the most recent threads about the cost of care and personal situations, how does one deal with the cost of treatment of a companion animal versus the quality of life?

    In my opinion, the quality of life of the animal is the most important thing! If the quality of life isn't going to be be very good, I will have an animal euthanized.

    If the cost of care is out of my personal ability, I have an animal euthanized.

    If the cost of care and quality of life are just right, I will have surgery on an animal.

    How do others decide?

    My first concern is quality of life for the animal. Then comes quality of life for me/my family.

    I feel that I have a responsibility to myself, my family, and my animals. If I can't take care of myself, I can't take care of my animals.
    Life is too short to argue with a mare! Just don't engage! It is much easier that way!

    Have fun, be safe, and let the mare think it is her idea!

  • #2
    Originally posted by mustangtrailrider View Post
    In my opinion, the quality of life of the animal is the most important thing! If the quality of life isn't going to be be very good, I will have an animal euthanized.

    If the cost of care is out of my personal ability, I have an animal euthanized.

    If the cost of care and quality of life are just right, I will have surgery on an animal.
    A complete, exact Ditto
    <>< Sorrow Looks Back. Worry Looks Around. Faith Looks Up! -- Being negative only makes a difficult journey more difficult. You may be given a cactus, but you don't have to sit on it.

    Comment


    • #3
      Absolutely agree. I can't tell you how important it is to think about these things ahead of time, either. We are dealing with a bad impaction colic right now and my vet knows that surgery is not an option for our horses. This prevents a lot of "what ifs" and lets him know right away what the available scope of treatment will be.
      Lapeer ... a small drinking town with a farming problem.
      Proud Closet Canterer!

      Comment


      • #4
        This is something that haunts me. We have 2 very old cats right now, and seem to be at the vet for something significant but 100% fixable in the past 3 months. I dread that something will come up that is 100% fixable but beyond our means.

        My parents raised my sister and I that our pets are part of our family, but that they are not "children", so there is that mental stumbling block too, but still... putting a price on your companions is so agonizing.

        For me the quality of life is always the #1 consideration. Will they be happy? Comfortable? Would their quality of life be diminished? I'd really weigh if any kind of protracted or painful recovery would be worth the end result. With our old cats (12 and 15) every time we need to take them to the vet, those gears start turning... especially with the older one, who hates being medicated. I've already told our vet that when/if Tally requires daily medication to maintain her quality of life, it's time, because that offers her no quality of life whatsoever.

        Far distant after that I would ask the question of what's the $ cost... and weigh that against the potential outcome. Would it buy a few months, a few years- would it actually FIX anything, or would it just prolong the inevitable? If it was just prolonging the inevitable, and a painful recovery ate into that borrowed time... the more I think about it, the more I come to the conclusion that my willingness to pay is dictated by how much I'm willing to put my pet through to get to the other side, and what waits for them on the other side of it.
        "The nice thing about memories is the good ones are stronger and linger longer than the bad and we sure have some incredibly good memories." - EverythingButWings

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by littleum View Post
          Far distant after that I would ask the question of what's the $ cost... and weigh that against the potential outcome. Would it buy a few months, a few years- would it actually FIX anything, or would it just prolong the inevitable? If it was just prolonging the inevitable, and a painful recovery ate into that borrowed time... the more I think about it, the more I come to the conclusion that my willingness to pay is dictated by how much I'm willing to put my pet through to get to the other side, and what waits for them on the other side of it.
          Very well said.

          When I was faced with deciding "Is it time" for my late appaloosa, this was my thought process.

          Yes, I could have put tons of meds into her body to keep her comfortable. Yes, I could have hauled her to Auburn for x-rays, scans, etc. Yes, I could have pumped her full of bute.

          But the bottom line became this: Does ANY of what I do "Fix" her? Will any of it stop the inevitable? During the process of trying all those things, will her quality of life really be any better?

          When that answer became a resounding "No," I made the decision and called the vet.

          Was $$$$$ a factor? Of course. May bank account is not a bottom-less money pit. And you know what? Even if I had thousands to spend, it STILL wouldn't have changed the outcome.

          This IS the reality of owning an animal.
          <>< Sorrow Looks Back. Worry Looks Around. Faith Looks Up! -- Being negative only makes a difficult journey more difficult. You may be given a cactus, but you don't have to sit on it.

          Comment


          • #6
            *sighs with relief*

            I didn't want to reply to the other threads - scratch that - I wanted to reply, but held my fingers...

            My girls are my family, down from 3 two years ago to 2 now.

            The long and short is "quality" over quantity, and sadly, that includes saying the final goodbye as apposed to getting into vulgar amounts of debt, especially if that means choosing between having a place to live for the three of us 'left'.

            I'm not a hard hearted bitch - I wept all the way to the vet (and even though it was a BLOCK away, I was so upset I got LOST!) and couldn't even be in the same room for the last goodbye, but I KNEW "this be right" for ALL the reasons.
            Eternal Earth-Bound Pets Independent Contractor.


            All I want is to know WHAT HAPPENED TO THE CHICKEN???

            Comment


            • #7
              "Quality of life" is a nonsense phrase that has no meaning but gets tossed around by people wanting to think they've got "the answers" -- and that there actually IS a "right answer".

              All you can do is the best you can do, knowing full well it's probably going to be wrong anway -- that there was a "better" choice that for some reason was not attainable or involves earlier choices that should have been made differently and can't be undone.

              Comment


              • #8
                I'm just really hoping we don't end up losing this forum or the ability to discuss actual farm dogs or cats in this forum from all the non-farm-dog/cat threads that keep popping up on here despite the rules that dog or cat threads have to be about *working* farm dogs or barn cats. (not an outside/inside cat or a dog that might go to the barn with you once in a while)
                You jump in the saddle,
                Hold onto the bridle!
                Jump in the line!
                ...Belefonte

                Comment


                • #9
                  well, but doesn't this apply to horses, working dogs, barn cats, etc.? all animals?

                  In my opinion, the quality of life of the animal is the most important thing! If the quality of life isn't going to be be very good, I will have an animal euthanized.

                  If the cost of care is out of my personal ability, I have an animal euthanized.

                  If the cost of care and quality of life are just right, I will have surgery on an animal.
                  well sort of but I try to take the "cost of care" out of the decision as much as possible by planning ahead- buy animal health insurance, sock away "emergency money". I would feel awful if I euthanized an animal that could have been completely cured if only I'd had a little bit more $$$; likewise, I'd feel awful putting an animal through a procedure that didn't do all that much for the animal just because I could afford it. The animal's age (possible future lifespan), health in general, and other considerations need to be taken into account.
                  Some people's "personal ability to pay" decisions seem very suspect to me. When a family can afford an expensive vacation every year, new cars, new tack, fancy toys, and yet they somehow can't afford to pay the vet a few hundred dollars for an almost certain cure for their animal's ailment one begins to doubt the wisdom of taking cost of care into account in the decision.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by wendy View Post
                    Some people's "personal ability to pay" decisions seem very suspect to me. When a family can afford an expensive vacation every year, new cars, new tack, fancy toys, and yet they somehow can't afford to pay the vet a few hundred dollars for an almost certain cure for their animal's ailment one begins to doubt the wisdom of taking cost of care into account in the decision.
                    I haven't seen anybody say that they wouldn't pay a few hundred dollars for an almost certain cure? Personal ability to pay is just that - personal. One person's limit is going to be different than someone else's even if their incomes were identical, it does not mean that one puts higher importance on their animal than the other does.

                    I had a rottweiller with cancer and spent more on x-rays, biopsies, and other tests then the surgery to remove it would have cost and then put her down without doing the surgery because we found out that the surgery would not fix the problem, only extend her suffering for another few months. The cost had nothing to do with the decision.
                    Lapeer ... a small drinking town with a farming problem.
                    Proud Closet Canterer!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      If my cat would have be ok, (mobile, happy, eating, drinking, playing, cleaning him self) then I would have done the $700.00 every three days blood transfusions. It would only make him stay alive and that was not fair to him or enough fix for me to keep him going through his disease - this is the point where I say euthenize.

                      I am all about dignity in animals. I never want them to suffer (if it could be helped) and if they are heading towards euthenization I will do what I can to get them that wish before it is too late and their dignity runs out.

                      I would sell my house to make sure my horse gets proper medical attention he should need before I give up on him. Same goes for my cats. We take them into our homes/barns for life (ok not so much horses but still many of us still do keep our horses for life) so we should be more then able to proivide, or do whatever it takes to help them when they need it.

                      You make an excellent point Wendy. Lavish vacations, cars, toys etc. So sad and so very true.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        We've closed the thread this one was spun off from, as it was a bit of a stretch for this forum. Generally speaking, at this point we want to keep threads about pets in this forum basically restricted to topics that are specifically related to critters living in or frequenting a farm environment.

                        I can imagine that would encompass some topics that aren't about a *working* farm dog, per se, but purty darn close.

                        Yes, it's kind of a fuzzy definition, but we had way too many general pet threads inundating this forum, so we're trying to be accommodating without letting the forum totally go to the dogs.

                        This thread addresses the topic more generally and can apply to horses and the rest of our farm dwellers, so feel free to continue the discussion.

                        We've been looking into some options for expanding some of the non-horsey discussion, but for now, we want to keep it limited.

                        Thanks!
                        Mod 1

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I think it is a personal decision that should be made by the owner of an animal. I've had dogs and cats and horses whose sire/dam were top quality and in shows and listed in breed books, and I've had dogs and cats and horses I've rescued.

                          And in the 1980s, I owned by UGA vet school and Briarcliff Animal Hospital records, the 20,000 alley cat. So I guess you can see where I stand. BTW that 20000 cat lived to be 18 yoa, and she was in the experimental treatment program that was used to test ketaconozole before it was approved for humans. So anyone who has used ketaconozole should appreciate Dominica Lee.

                          (I also donate to humans in need and animal rescues--I paid 1000 in 2001 to send a guy and his mentally ill mother and 2 cats and one dog back to Wyoming when they wwere hitchhiking thru GA from FL.)

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Agree. Quality of life is the #1 consideration. I let a horse go on too long once. His death still haunts me, and in his memory, I vowed to never grasp at straws again and always listen to the animal himself. A few years after his death, I had my heart cat PTS due to rapidly spreading cancer. I absolutely believe she did not know she was sick yet. Looked great, eyes clear, frisky and playful, absolutely herself. But there were multiple abdominal masses spreading, and the vet made his opinion clear that she would have a downhill course all the way from that point, that he did not think surgery would help (too many masses, all of which had appeared just in the last few weeks), and that she didn't have long. I chose to spare her that because of quality of life.

                            There do have to be cost considerations, though. I'm not Barbaro's owners, and I don't think I need to apologize to my animals for not being Barbaro's owners. They don't care; they just know if their needs are met and they are happy with me.

                            When I took my barn cat Emily in last fall totally 3-legged lame and had to leave her to be fit in when they could (I had to work; couldn't stay), the vet office asked me up front if there was a limit. Just an informational question, totally non judgmental. I appreciated them asking that in such a matter-of-fact manner. Yes, there was a limit, and I told them so. Emily's surgery that day fell below it.

                            I do agree that you need to make these decisions beforehand, without emotions attached. It's much easier to have your guidelines set firmly before you are faced with an acute situation.

                            Right now, I watch my black Veneziano mare. She had a fracture/dislocation of a hind fetlock, and she is only pasture sound now. That leg is unstable, per the vet, and you can move it ways never intended when you pick it up. But she shows no signs of pain (I think she gave herself a neurectomy at the time of injury), gets around well enough while protecting that leg, and gets up and down. I always watch her roll and watch her movements. She gets up on the same side always but has no problem flipping herself over to get there. Eyes clear, head up, interactive. I bought her to try to tap the genetic goldmine and get a few foals, and I'll breed her this year, but I will also watch her like a hawk as the weight and strain increase and also as she ages - that joint is a massive case of arthritis just waiting to happen. It looks like a squishy grapefruit. I don't see anything wrong, nor does the vet, with using her as a broodmare right now. When she tells me it's getting to be too much, I'll make the call, even if she's pregnant at the time. Quality of life has to come first.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I am very fortunate that I worked for my vet for several years before I got my current job. I know that she would do everything feasibly possible to "fix" any of my animals (horses, cats, etc) if something were to happen to one of them. With her, I could always work off payment- which is a huge relief to me. That being said- there's no way I could afford to do expensive colic surgery or something like that. I don't think that makes me a bad owner. If it came down to it, I would have to put aside the heartache and make the decision to euthanize if it came down to it.
                              I'm good at being uncomfortable so I can't stop changing all the time -Fiona Apple, Extraordinary Machine
                              If I were your appendages, I'd hold open your eyes so you would see- Incubus

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                I agree 100% with Mustangtrailrider. I believe quality of life is important. I also believe in "trying" just as much as possible, as long as the animal is comfortable AND one can afford it. We just had one of our barn cats PTS last week and it was a tough decision to make. He had a tumor on his face that was inoperable. He had become a house cat while we tried treatment. As long as he could eat we kept hoping it wasn't cancer, but when he began to quit eating we knew it was time. He had lived a good long life but it was still hard to make the final decision.
                                Patty
                                www.rivervalefarm.com
                                Follow us on facebook - https://www.facebook.com/pages/River...ref=ts&fref=ts

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Oh... pfttt. I thought it said companion horses. I have 2 companion horses. I will do what I have to to keep them healthy and living, but if they become uncomfortable, or say, need surgery, forget it. I love them both dearly, but neither are suitable for riding and I'm going broke feeding them as it is.

                                  I seem to have a knack for keeping things alive. Exactly how much longer do we think a 32 year old large pony will live? Feeding her is more than half of the monthly hay/grain/shavings budget.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by NoDQhere View Post
                                    I agree 100% with Mustangtrailrider. I believe quality of life is important. I also believe in "trying" just as much as possible, as long as the animal is comfortable AND one can afford it. .
                                    I am going through this right now with my gelding. Friends think I am nuts for spending so much to save him (Laminitis) when he will never be more than a pasture puff. That horse is EVERYTHING to me and I have the CASH to pay for his treatment. I would never put my families financial future in jeopardy but I would spend every dime that we had to give to save him.
                                    RIP Sucha Smooth Whiskey
                                    May 17,2004 - March 29, 2010
                                    RIP San Lena Peppy
                                    May 3, 1991 - March 11, 2010

                                    Comment

                                    • Original Poster

                                      #19
                                      Someone brought up the idea of an expense fund and insurance. I think that is a very good idea if that is important to you.

                                      If any of my horses were to colic, I would not put them through surgery. I think the surgery is very risky and is not without a painful recovery. I think that the stress and pain during the colic episode and recover make surgery no an option to me. I hate to see animals in pain.

                                      I would rather euthanize an animal, even if it could recover, because I hate to see it in pain. I am one to euthanize too soon vs too late. Others I know wait longer than I would. That is ok.

                                      I have seen animals suffering while the owners were waiting for a little bit longer to try another treatment or another week or whatever. It kills me! I hate seeing the animal in pain.

                                      Talk about dog, cat, horse, pig, cow, or chicken. It makes no difference to me. I love my animals, but I have my limits. I am not going to put myself into debt to prolong the inevitable. I am not going to cash out my savings to pay for a life extending surgery on my 10 yo lab mix. If the animal is going to be debilitated in the future as a result from the injury or illness, I will not do any more.

                                      Sometimes the kindest thing we can do for our animals and ourselves is let go!
                                      Life is too short to argue with a mare! Just don't engage! It is much easier that way!

                                      Have fun, be safe, and let the mare think it is her idea!

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        I know a woman who is losing her house because she spent the money on treating various illnesses of her Great Danes. She was running a rescue but many of the dogs weren't adoptable and not a lot of funds were coming in. Now the remaining dogs, who are healthy but older, will have to be euthanized as she goes through foreclosure. She apparently also spent her 401(k) funds on her dogs. It's sad, but you can't put yourself in this kind of position no matter how much you love your animals.

                                        I work with rescues, and take in older animals. While some are adopted, others stay here and live out their natural lives. I think that's key - I can't take in a ten year old animal and spend $10,000 on vet care for it. It would mean no other elderly animals could be fostered. If they have something that is easily treatable, no problem, but surgeries and such are generally out of the question. Of course, it is different when you have had an animal its entire life and yours is the only home it has ever known. Never an easy decision, but the animal must not suffer.

                                        Comment

                                        Working...
                                        X