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How do you know when it's time for the final trip to the vet?

I've posted about Wally before, and I've posted on other threads about similar things with my own advice suggesting that 'you'll know when it's time' and that 'if they stop doing the things they love....' its probably time. 

But this is very very hard for me to tell with Wally, everything I thought I knew about judging whether it's time to have her put to sleep is out the window. She just keeps going, she's eating and eats all her treats off my finger still, she gets up and down all four floors of their cage though very very slowly and with much difficulty now. I've just rearranged some things and taken some toys out so she can get everywhere more easily. 

The thing is, her tumours are so big. I've never seen any like it before, they have almost engulfed her legs and her bum, she has one growing on her throat now and though she eats lots and I've been giving her lots of peanut butter and fatty foods to try keep some weight on her, she is absolutely skeletal. I am devastated because she seems so fine, waddling about, eating, then when I hold her I can feel every bone in her tiny fragile little body. I don't know why she isn't keeping any weight on, but I can only assume more is happening in her little body than I can see on the outside. 

It's so hard to see her so thin and fragile, but her tumours, though bigger than I've ever seen on a mouse before, haven't ulcerated yet and she still eats and seems quite....feisty though very fragile. 

I know this has been a long post but it's hard to explain without going into detail. 

When it's like this, I just don't know what the best thing to do is, I love her so much and I'd rather her go to sleep in her own cage, but tonight, I just couldn't believe how thin she felt. It was truly heartbreaking. Just not sure what to do. 



  • racingmouseracingmouse Mouse
    Posts: 1,327

    Hi Baggy. I know that feeling and the few mice I had who developed tumours all passed at home. I didn`t feel the need to `make that decision` given they were managing to get about, albeit with incapacity and kept eating, drinking and I was happy enough that they were managing. One white mouse I had did linger a bit, but perhaps that`s because her decline was happening during the daytime hours and I was able to watch her more. My other two passed during the night. One female with a large, secondary tumour who had surgery on her previous tumour, took a fit just as she was going to the food dish and I intervened and got her out right away before Maisy, her cage mate saw what was going on. Betsy died on my bed right then. It was very quick thankfully.

    I would say this. The moment you see Wally looking `off` and not doing what you usually see her do, it might be better to bite the bullit so to speak and just travel along to your vet and accept that it`s time, even if there is a small doubt in your mind. If she`s very thin and her tumours are large, it won`t be too long now before they take over. She will probably seem very slow, sleepy and `out of it`, which could mean the pain is setting in. So rest assured, you would be making the right decision.

    She may pass on her own though. It`s crap when this happens and I hated it. I adored every one of my babies and it breaks your heart to see them suffer these damn tumours. They don`t deserve any of it. x

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