Freud has stopped eating again. He has not eaten anything in more than 24 hours. We do not know why because he had some blood tests this week and his kidney levels, although abnormal, are similar to the test from a couple of months ago. There must be something else wrong as well.
Yesterday afternoon he started shivering and showing signs of loss of coordination. I emailed my vet who is fantastic and always replies really quickly. He thought Freud was probably dehydrated which is a common problem for dogs with kidney disease, especially when they’ve stopped eating. As part of his treatment for the disease, I give him fluids subcutaneously. I have a bag of IV fluids which I inject with a needle under his skin. This gets absorbed by the vascular system and helps to keep him hydrated and flush away the toxins the kidney is having trouble dealing with. A sort of doggy-dialysis. So I gave him much more than I would normally give, in fact, he had 450ml of fluid injected under the skin yesterday and the shivering has stopped and he appears fairly normal again this morning, although still not eating.
I could have taken him into the Vet overnight last night for IV fluids, but I made the decision not to. I know I need to let him die and I want that to happen at home and not at the Vet. He would have hated being there and no-one is there overnight either. I got up a couple of times in the night expecting him to have passed away but he was still breathing and he’s looking much better this morning.
He’s so thin and frail now. It’s hard to tell whether he’s in any pain because dogs have quite a high pain threshold, but I have some doggy codeine to give him if I think he is. He was experiencing back pain earlier this week and the vet gave him an injection of morphine. They say dogs can read our emotions really well, and I think I can read Freud’s emotions fairly well too because after the morphine, he was on cloud 9. I was half-hoping he might pass away that night, after the morphine, in a pleasant haze of pain-free euphoria. But he didn’t. I’m sure we’d all like to depart the earth in this way, but more often than not, our deaths are a painful, drawn-out, downward spiral. At least Freud has the option of lethal injection.