Had a very sad conversation with my friend today :-(

Supertrooper

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We had a chat about wether it's coming up to the time do decide on having her 37yr old pony to sleep. Although Z isn't mine I've helped look after her for approx 15yrs now and I love her every bit as much as her owner.

There is nothing specific as such that made us have a chat but we both feel she is starting to struggle more and more. She is still bright + eating well but she tires very quickly and her breathing rate is faster than it used to be, she was diagnosed with a heart murmur two weeks ago that wasn't picked up before xmas. We both feel that she is shutting down and she has given us so much pleasure, love and laughter that we have to do the right thing for her and give her a dignafied and peaceful end.

My friend is going to speak to vet in next few days as they know Z well but we know it'll be fairly soon. It's making me cry writing this, not only because I love Z like my own but I'm so very sad for my friend xx :(
 

StarFell

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What a horrible decision for you and your friend to have to make :( What a lucky pony though, to have such a caring owner who is prepared to make that decision for her and let her go in a quiet, dignified way. I'm sure you'll do the right thing by her. *Hugs*
 
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Try to be happy that Z has been much loved and well-cared for, enjoy the wonderful memories you have been given by her and be proud that your friend has your support in this last stage in her pony's time here. She is a kind and responsible owner who is lucky to have such a caring and understanding friend. Be there for them both as it will mean a great deal.
 

billy2

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I can understand what you are going through, but please check she doesn't have a virus - my (now) 36yo had a period a couple of years ago when he just seemed tired and couldn't get up if he went down in the field (had to get him up 5 times one day, one of us pulling, the other pushing). After a week of this I put him on box rest telling myself if he was the same after a week I would do the right thing. He was fine! And is still here today. He had no other symptoms. A virus can cause a heart murmur.
 

McNally

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What a horrible decision for you and your friend to have to make :( What a lucky pony though, to have such a caring owner who is prepared to make that decision for her and let her go in a quiet, dignified way. I'm sure you'll do the right thing by her. *Hugs*
Lucky pony to have 2 caring "owners"
I made this decision in the summer for our gorgeous pony and its the hardest saddest thing but the huge relief as i drove home after having her pts was incredible- even though i worried about doing it she was free.

Its the last thing you can do for a very treasured friend

Love to you both xxx
 

Supertrooper

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I can understand what you are going through, but please check she doesn't have a virus - my (now) 36yo had a period a couple of years ago when he just seemed tired and couldn't get up if he went down in the field (had to get him up 5 times one day, one of us pulling, the other pushing). After a week of this I put him on box rest telling myself if he was the same after a week I would do the right thing. He was fine! And is still here today. He had no other symptoms. A virus can cause a heart murmur.
Thanks for this, I will mention it to my friend. She had bloods done in nov and was found to be very anaemic, she has been on a iron supplement since which did initially perk her up no end but now it doesn't seem to be helping xx
 

Kellys Heroes

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I really feel for you as even though my partloan mare is only 17, I'm dreading the day when we will have to think about this (hopefully in a long time to come).
Try and be happy that Z has had 2 mums for such a long time, both loving her equally, I'm sure she's given you so many happy memories and you will both come to the right decision for her.
K x
 

BlizzardBudd

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*hugs*
i can understand how hard this must be for you. Just make sure you do cover all the possible explainations, like billy2 has said. hope you dont have to but it will be the kindest thing in the end if she is starting to struggle with day-day life
 

ladyt25

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we went through this with my sister's 1st pony many years ago. We had no idea how old he was officiallly - we naively bought him as a 13 yo but were told shortly after by an instructor who looked at his teeth he was nearer 30 than 13! lol. We had him many years so i reckon he was at leats late 30s before he went.

He couldn't eat hay so we struggled to keep weight on him and fed him a porridge like consistency feed. He started having breathing problems but was ok (ish) and was still bright and alert (and still his normal miserable self!) and was regularly checked by the vet aswe worried about his weight. We had had his breathing checked out and he had a growth on his larynx. I think eventually he got growths internally as somedays he couldn't eat all his food and would have a 'moment' where it looked like he had stomach pain.

We knew it was only a matter of time but our vet advised as long as he was still eating and was still happy (he would still come running in whickering for his food) then to just keep doing what we were doing. However, one day he just had changed, is breathing got worse and that day he came in to eat but couldn't eat and breathe. It was not nice, he had had enough that day and we called the vet. It was all quite calm and peaceful TBH - it was evident he had just had enough. I think you (or the owner) will know in your heart of hearts when this pony has truly reached the end and you can comfort yourself that you have given them the best life possible. I would much rather have to make the decision to put down a horse who's had a fantastic long, happy life then have to cut a healthy horse's life short.
 

Pearlsasinger

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Try to be happy that Z has been much loved and well-cared for, enjoy the wonderful memories you have been given by her and be proud that your friend has your support in this last stage in her pony's time here. She is a kind and responsible owner who is lucky to have such a caring and understanding friend. Be there for them both as it will mean a great deal.

I can't put it any better than this.

However I do echo billy2. We were ready to have our 28yr old pts last autumn. She didn't winter well last year, a recently qualified vet had told us that she had fluid on her lungs, which was caused by heart problems. Senior vet checked her over in August and could find absolutely nothing wrong. Needless to say, she is still with us and any-one who saw her racing the others up the field, bucking yesterday wouldn't have guessed her age.
 

billy2

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One other thing - if she still seems anaemic after adding an iron supplement, it would be worth finding out if she is actually still making red blood cells.
 

Supertrooper

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One other thing - if she still seems anaemic after adding an iron supplement, it would be worth finding out if she is actually still making red blood cells.
That may make sense as the vet who came out to her a couple of weeks ago said that very old horses can often show up as anaemic because they stop making red blood cells. Is there anything that can be done for this?

The other thing that worries us is that she occasionally seems to mild stomach ache, she poo's ok and we give her lots of water in her feeds and she drinks well (not excessively though). There's just something not right with her xx

As I say friend is going to call vet and have a chat with her as she knows Z well and has looked after her for along time xx
 

Echo Bravo

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Like the rest of us of getting on, we get tired, could do with a boost to give us energy, go by your gut instinct or what the vet says, but it sounds like your pony is slowly shutting down as we all do in old age and there is nothing you or the vet world can do anything about it.
 

billy2

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Sorry to say, if they do stop producing red bloods cells they won't start again. Watch the tummy aches, they may well get more frequent and more intense. Best wishes whatever happens.
 

jroz

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It's better to let them go when they are still happy and somewhat enjoying their days. My friend had to make the same decision last Spring.
 

Clippy

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It's better to let them go when they are still happy and somewhat enjoying their days. My friend had to make the same decision last Spring.
I absolutely agree, and would say, however crippled emotionally you may feel, please don't leave it too late. Let her go with dignity instead of delaying for your own sake
 

Sue C

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I really feel for you, having made this decision twice, on a 28year old and a 4year old. The four year old was harder as he had his life ahead of him. The 28 year old was my first pony Flight, I had her since I was 9. The only comfort I can give you, time does heal your heart, remember the horse does know you are doing the right thing, but does not know what the injection is. She has had a good life, never starved or beaten like some poor ponies, its best to let her end it pain free, happy and with you.
 
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