Signs Your Dog is Dying


This title alone may be enough to scare the living daylights out of you. After all, dogs are loyal companions that will stay by your side to love and comfort you until their last breath.

Even the possibility of losing them can feel like an immense burden is weighing you down. Here are some warning signs that just might give you a hint beforehand that your dog is indeed dying, but do try to take it easy and one step at a time.

Simply because she is exhibiting a few of these behaviors does not necessarily mean that she is dying, even if it is a cause for concern.

That can be different for all the dogs out there. Just take a deep breath and try to relax before you continue to skim over the various signs.

If you are concerned, the following are signs your dog is dying, but they can also be signs of other reactions within the body. So, it’s critical not to panic immediately, especially since your dog can tell when you’re feeling low.

Lack Of Appetite

On a normal basis, you might see your dog happily bouncing from place to place, asking for food, and getting excited at the prospect of it.

A lot of owners also train their dogs by giving them treats when they behave the way they want them to. This is a way of ensuring that positive reinforcement helps them continue to follow that behavior. Clearly, food and water mean a lot to them when they are healthy and have a hearty appetite. When they get sick, all that drains away and leaves them with little to no interest in food or water.

This is because, by that point, their organs start to shut down and their brain does not send the signals to the rest of the body that they need such basic things to continue to survive and sustain themselves.

Do not panic right away if this happens for a day or two, as it may simply be a mild problem like nausea.

Extreme Lethargy And No Energy

This is one of the most obvious factors that can clue you into the fact that your dog is slowly nearing her end. There is a very sad reason for that; sometimes, your dog decides to stay out of the way and curl up in a different spot than they are used to without getting up at all, despite your poking and prodding.

signs your dog is dying

On a normal basis, dogs are known to be joyful creatures filled with sunshine. They have a great deal of pent-up energy that they expel by playing around, bouncing, and showing excitement every chance that they get.

This does not stay the case when they lose interest in such trivial activities, as all the energy that they used to have instantly leaves their body, allowing them to feel hollow and worn down.

One of the reasons is that they do not like to put their family through a traumatic, sad experience by letting them see them so down and weary. This is why they choose spots that they have never been to before so that their family members do not stumble on them. They try to maintain a level of distance that can help them feel less sad when the time comes for them to leave this world.

Difficulty Breathing

Normally, your dog might breathe evenly, as they are supposed to, when all their organs are perfectly intact.

This may not be the case once their organs are taken over by something as destructive as cancer.

It may cause their breathing to be labored, and you may hear some odd rattling and wheezing sounds that could show that they are having a lot of difficulty breathing properly.

Problems With Movement

It is not only their lungs or hearts that may get caught up if they are nearing the end of their lives. It may also be their muscles that usually ensure that they can walk steadily without any issues.

When they start to stumble around, their body shakes as they try to move, or they keep falling down after every attempt, it is likely that it is almost over for them.

Being Extra Cuddly

Yes, though a lot of times dogs isolate themselves before they die, they can also get very cuddly and snuggly right before they reach the stage of wanting distance.

Their love is unconditional, even more so than that of the humans who own them. It can mean that they know that it is their last chance to get belly rubs or pats on the head before they exit this world.

It is natural to want some support and comfort from loved ones when things are about to come to an end. An excess of this need for affection could be a possible sign that things are about to be over.

Problems With Bowels And Incontinence

As we just discussed, dogs do not have as much control over their muscles once they start to realize that they are going to die.

One of the muscles that they are likely to lose grip over is the sphincter muscle, which controls when and how they urinate and defecate.

This means that you might see them urinating or see their waste lying around where they are sitting. They may not have the strength to get up and do it in the appropriate place, which inevitably leads to incontinence.

Caring for Your Pet After Death

Remember, while all this is happening, managing your emotions is critical in helping your dog remain calm.

Read more:

Saying Goodbye to Your Dog: How to Know When It’s Time

15 Signs Your Dog is Dying: How to Know When Your Dog is Ready to Go

How Do I Know When My Dog is Dying? End of Life Care

Published by Amber L. Drake

Dr. Amber L. Drake is a celebrated author and a distinguished cancer specialist, renowned for her comprehensive research in canine cancer prevention and nutrition. She is widely recognized for her commitment to helping dogs lead long and joyful lives, as well as for her contributions to veterinary medicine education. As the CEO of Canine Companions Co., the Founder of the Drake Dog Cancer Foundation and Academy, and the Co-Founder of Preferable Pups, she has become a respected and influential figure in the canine community, earning the admiration and respect of dog enthusiasts around the globe.

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