Today was a bad day. Tomorrow will be worse.
Last night at about 1:30am, my mom called me. She was going to bed and realized Nadia hadn't come in. Nadia has separation anxiety and this was very much not like her. My mom found Nadia in the dog house, but Nadia wouldn't come when called (also out of character). When my Mom went to try to coax Nadia out of the dog house, she found her paralyzed. Nadia wasn't moving anything below her neck. She carried Nadia into the house. This is a feat unto itself as Nadia is 60 pounds and my mom isn't very big. She called me asking what to do, since Nadia is my dog, but lives with my mom temporarily.
She ended up calling two emergency vets, both suggested making her comfortable and coming in the next morning. So she did.
Today I went over and Nadia was laying on her bed, where my Mom had put her the night before. I could tell she was in immense pain. She kept licking her lips. She hadn't been out to go potty since the night before. Mom had gotten her to eat and drink some. I picked her up and carried her outside. I got her up on three legs and she did hop forward several paces over several minutes before becoming exhausted and falling over.
I did a full physical exam and concluded it was an issue with her back right leg. She wouldn't put weight on it and it was definitely painful.
Off to the vet where a professional physical exam confirmed a leg and possible neurological problem. Three X-rays revealed more. Her right hip is out of joint. But not like a normal dislocated hip. No, Nadia has always been a little different, and here she excelled. Instead of dislocating up and over the pelvic bone, her hip was under and twisted at an odd angle. The vet said he'd heard of this, but in all his years had never actually seen it before.
Options were scant. We could sedate her and he could try to manually replace the hip, but it wasn't likely to work, and the sedation alone could kill her (she is 11-12 years old now). We could get a referral to St Cloud to see a specialist, which would come with specialist pricing and no guarantees. Being older, she isn't likely to "bounce back" from a surgery and definitely wouldn't be able to adjust to being three legged if surgical repair failed. She is in too much pain and cannot bear weight which means she would be suffering if nothing was done. The last option was euthanasia.
Of course we agreed to sedate her and try to replace the hip. We were told she'd have to stay overnight and that they'd call to let us know how it went.
We stopped by DQ for lunch and then headed home (30-45 minute drive). I got the call just as we pulled up to my house. They couldn't get the hip back in, even after 13 more X-rays. There was significant damage to her muscles and tissues in that area, indicating she had some major trauma (still not sure what happened). The two veterinarians disagreed on if her pelvis was also broken.
After a lot if tears (which are still coming), a ton or prayers, and a couple conversations, I know that Nadia needs to be put to sleep. She's my service dog, my companion, but most of all, she's family. I can't let her suffer, and I don't think it's fair to put her through more surgeries that are not likely to fix her. It's not a matter of money. This is purely about quality of life and being humane.
I'm beside myself with grief and heartache. Nadia came to me (abandoned on my doorstep) abused, terrified, and sick with heart worms and Lyme disease at 9-12 months old. Within the first year I'd already spent $1200 in vet bills to get her well. It took years of reassurance and training to overcome her overwhelming fear of men. I brought her through obedience class, she got her CGC (Canine Good Citizen), and would accompany me to work at the local pet store on occasion. Just last year she became my service dog. And tomorrow I will sit with her for the last time as she is put to sleep. I am truly devastated right now.