Friday, July 03, 2009
I have a huge decision to make and I'm having trouble with it. Coda - he's 30 years old and very lame. Would it be right to take him through another winter? Or would it be kinder to have him put down this fall? At some points in winter he doesn't leave his stall other than to get water. I can blanket him, that's not a problem, but we have weather down well below zero, snow, ice, and severe winds. He'll keep weight on with a lot of special feeding. Unfortunately his girlfriend can't eat that much, so they can't live together, which takes away one of his joys.
John thinks he's a pretty happy horse. He's happy to see people, he's happy to eat his good grub. He's in love with his Soxy mare. He's got some things to live for.
But in the winter, when it might get down to 15 below and people are not coming out other than to give him his good grub, and his Soxy mare is in the adjacent pen, is there much to live for?
Would it be better to end his life on a good note, after a summer of grass and companionship? Or to have him possibly go downhill in the winter, when he's been miserable for a while? And once it freezes we won't be able to bury him, and may not even be able to get his body up the driveway to take it for disposal.
I'm really leaning toward having him put down this fall. But thinking of actually doing it is so hard, and I feel like maybe I'm rushing into this.
I'm under a little pressure to make a decision, because we need to be buying alfalfa now if he's going to stay with us. But I could probably find some later, it would just be more expensive. Maybe I should just sleep on it for a month or 3...
What would you do? Or what are your thoughts on euthanasia and how you know it's time?