Flash's story- what would you do? - The Horse Forum

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post #1 of 10 Old 10-22-2012, 07:18 PM Thread Starter
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Flash's story- what would you do?

I've been having a tough time with Flash lately, which may lead me to put him down soon if things don't improve. I'd like you guys to read a brief summary of his events, and tell me what YOU would do if you were in my situation. I'm so confused and don't know what to do, and would really appreciate your guidance.
I bought Flash last July as a skinny, malnourished almost 3 year old who had thrush in all four feet, badly underrun heals, a bad case of rainrot, horribly sharp teeth, a badly bowed tendon and very little training. I just felt so bad for him that I couldn't leave him there. It took over 6 months to heal the tendon and rainrot and one year to fix the thrush. In May, he was diagnosed with wld in all four feet (mild). He still has it, but its slowely improving. In July, he came down with the flu and took a while to recover. A few months ago, he started getting sick and we discovered he had an abscessed tooth. I sadly cannot afford the $5000+ surgery costs, so we are trying desperately to cure it with antibiotics (treatment is currently at 1800 and rising). His abscess has been slowely improving, but last week he went downhill and we discovered he has a severe bloodworm infestation that had gone unnoticed on all his fecals. He's receiving treatment, but the vet is still not sure if he will pull through this. This treatment will run me another few hundred, possibly more if he colics, doesn't respond to treatment, or has internal damage. His immune system is dangerously compromised and his body is not able to fight things very well. He's getting an immune support supplement, and a special diet but is dropping weight and becoming depressed. I hate to give up on him, and am not ready to do so at this moment, but I know that soon, I may have to make this decision. I am not rich, and already owe the vet quite a bit of money, and cannot afford to keep paying for expensive treatments.
Please guys, I need help. If this was your horse, what would you do? I'd like to read everyone's responses, and hope they help me come to a well-informed decision with the best interest of Flash at heart. He is my heart-horse and I only want what's best for him.
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post #2 of 10 Old 10-22-2012, 09:21 PM
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It sounds like he is suffering, I know you have put lots of pain sweat and tears into him but. I think its his time. :(
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post #3 of 10 Old 10-22-2012, 09:44 PM
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It sounds like your poor boy has had a rough first years of his life. When it comes to my animals, I ask my vet to be realistic with me about what I'm facing. It sucks when money stands in the way of healing. Maybe you should just take it day by day for a little while. I believe Flash will let you know in his own way.
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post #4 of 10 Old 10-22-2012, 11:21 PM
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I am sorry, but in your situation I would put Flash to sleep.
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post #5 of 10 Old 10-22-2012, 11:48 PM
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Following and commenting on your other current thread, I would give him every chance possible, which you are doing already. I agree with him telling you eventually what he thinks about all that. Let him get over the worm issue, and do what you said in the other thread, continue the antibiotics as planned. THEN see if it has effect.
You said on another thread you have come much closer to him you could have ever imagined in this hard and critical time.
You know, I bought a horse once with a whole slew of health issues. He was supposed to be slaughtered. I couldn't let that happen. He pulled through. Took patience, lots of nerves, and money I didn't really have. I had him for 24 years. Do I regret any of it, time, money, nerves? Not one bit.
It's been a rough road. With lots of setbacks. I've payed the vet over one year and by gosh, it hurt. So, im biased.
Just don't give up too soon.
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post #6 of 10 Old 10-23-2012, 12:20 AM
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I think you will know what to do when and if the time comes. All I can say is that at least he was a horse that was loved, as many horses don't get that opportunity
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post #7 of 10 Old 10-23-2012, 04:29 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all your input. I do truly appreciate everyone's help and honest opinions and it has made dealing with this a bit easier. I don't think Flash is quite ready to go yet, but he is starting to show signs that he is tired of fighting all this. I'm really hoping that he'll pass some of these worms soon without getting an impaction, but when I asked the vet she said its just a wait and see game on whether he'll pull through since his system is already compromised and we don't know how much damage the worms have done. We're also still not sure if the antibiotics will cure the abscess. He only has two weeks left of antibiotics, so if we can get rid of the worms then he may have a fighting chance. This is all just so emotionally exhausting. I really hope I can save my boy, but am starting to feel discouraged.
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post #8 of 10 Old 10-23-2012, 09:42 AM
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Don't get discouraged. The worms caused his setback. He was going uphill just as he was supposed to do. Just a really bad timing for these boogers to come out. Once you take care if that, and have tackled anything what's still waiting in there to hatch, he will have a much better chance, trust me. If it affects how the antibiotics work, I can't tell you but it will for sure make it easier for his system to fight the infection, since he is most likely anemic now too.

When I had sick horses I used to grate an apple or a carrot and mix it into the feed. Works just like the piece of chocolate for a kid who got hurt
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post #9 of 10 Old 10-28-2012, 09:29 PM
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I am so sorry you and your guy are going through this. Take it day by day and love him.
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post #10 of 10 Old 10-28-2012, 09:41 PM
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I would put him down. But, I always keep in my mind that an animal in my care is just that; an animal. I do a reasonable job of keeping it healthy and happy, but it it becomes a really heavy financial burden, or if the efforts to bring the animal to health are making it perfectly miserable during the long and unpredictable road to a "maybe' recovery, then I would put the animal down.

Humans know that they are mortal. They also know that pain or discomfort in the present is sometimes required to get better from some illness or injury, so they know to think past the suffering to the coming recovery.

Animals do not. To them, the present is all there is. If it is full of suffereing, they cannot think, "yes, but I'll be better soon." They only know the current pain, so you have to carry that thought of the future for them. If the future is uncertain, then for what should they suffer?
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