飼主跟狗狗終究會有離別的一天,看著狗狗一天比一天衰弱,飼主往往會難過得心如刀割,或是有「為什麼沒有早點發現」、「應該還有更好的辦法」之類自責的想法,然而狗狗善於體察飼主表情與情緒,看到飼主鬱鬱寡歡的樣子反而更加痛苦。

狗狗的臨終照顧最重要的就是優先為愛犬著想,無論最後的結果如何,狗狗與飼主都能坦然面對,好好說再見!

為了能夠減少未知的慌張,使飼主能夠更加坦然地面對告別的那一天,以下提供六個狗狗在臨終時常見的症狀,讓飼主能夠預先做好心理準備迎接那天的到來。

不進食不喝水

狗狗食慾下降是許多疾病都有的症狀,當狗狗食量減少時可先帶狗狗讓獸醫師評估是否為其他疾病。隨著食量逐漸減少,狗狗的身體狀況會越來越消瘦及虛弱,在完全不喝水的狀態下,在短時間會因為身體虛弱脫水而離世。

在狗狗還願意進食的前提下,飼主可以用餵食濕軟食物方便消化,但當狗狗不願意進食時也不要免強牠喔!

感到極度嗜睡疲勞

在狗狗即將離世前會表現出極度疲勞的跡象,會變得沒有力氣、睡眠時間很長,可能固定在一個地方不移動或者沒有力氣抬起頭,眼神也會顯得無神。飼主可以保持狗狗睡覺的環境清潔,並確保狗狗睡覺的地方舒適。

呼吸急促窘迫

狗狗常見的呼吸窘迫症狀包含呼吸速度加快、張口呼吸、伸直脖子呼吸、無法側躺等等。呼吸急迫的狀況可能是一段時間一段時間發生,在透過適當休息後可以緩解代表情況尚可控制。但當狗狗一直維持在呼吸窘迫的狀態,或是只能靠氧氣供應才能緩解,此時飼主就可以視情況考慮讓狗狗善終了。

對環境失去興趣

大多數狗狗在臨終前會對周圍環境失去興趣作出退縮的態度,開始躲在平常不去的地方、不再對周圍發生的事情作出回應。飼主可以密切觀察狗狗的狀態,尊重狗狗的意願,以輕聲緩慢平靜的方式接近陪伴狗狗。

身體機能失控

在狗狗離開前,嘔吐是一種普遍的現象,由於身體機能下降其消化系統逐漸停止,胃中未消化的食物會令狗狗感到噁心,因此會通過嘔吐來減少不舒適感;在嘔吐嚴重的情況下,如若沒有喝水也會出現身體脫水的症狀。因為身體機能下降腦部功能受損無法自我控制,除了嘔吐以外狗狗也會出現大小便失禁,四肢抽搐及缺乏協調性的狀況。

飼主可以盡量保持狗狗身體的清潔與舒適,勤換尿墊、勤擦洗,在此時避免水洗導致狗狗身體失溫,並在狗狗旁給予陪伴,輕輕撫摸並輕聲鼓勵狗狗。

體溫下降

在臨終前的狗狗,體溫會逐漸下降,所以有時狗狗會出現顫抖的現象通常是一種條件反射,此時飼主可以做好保暖措,在狗狗身上蓋一條很輕的毯子給狗狗保暖,或是在室內讓狗狗曬曬太陽也能夠使狗狗感到舒適。

狗狗的一生也許只有短暫的十幾年,但陪伴彼此的時間卻是如此珍貴與難忘,如何面對摯愛的狗狗離世,是每一位飼主都會面對到的課題,道別的那天總會來到,飼主可以透過瞭解、細心觀察狗狗的狀態,給予狗狗溫暖與安心的環境,好好陪伴狗狗、表達感謝與愛意,筆者認為這會是最好的道別方式。

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