First, thanks to everyone who has made suggestions on ways I can help Sam. All of them are wonderful and appreciated.
Now, what you all need to know. Sam's condition is chronic, progressive and painful. He has deteriorated much faster than I anticipated. When we arrived in Nashville, three months ago, the vet was able to treat him with Prednisone and an increased dose of Tramadol. At that time, he also told me that we were at the maximum dosage of Tramadol. When that dosage became ineffective, we would have to move on to something stronger; most likely Morphine. We are very close to that eventuality.
Sam's mobility is also seriously compromised. Some days he can move around pretty well. Most days, walking is a struggle. I have to escort him outside and stay outside with him while he does his business. Then, most of the time, I have to assist him to get back in the house. I'm not carrying him in and out but he needs me to motivate him.
Being a caretaker for an elderly dog is heart breaking and exhausting. This is especially true of a dog like Sam; a dog whose personality and physicality is such a huge part of who he is. Those of you who have met Sam, or have members of the Samily, will understand what I mean.
Last fall, I wrote a post called Choices. I'm asking myself the questions in that post almost daily now. The answers are telling me that I will have to make a choice, soon. It's made all the more difficult by the fact that Sam is still Sam. He's not yet telling me that it's his time but, it's not in Sam's personality to quit. Knowing Sam, I doubt he will ever tell me. The last appointment we had with our regular vet, he warned me that Sam wasn't going to make this easy on me. I always knew that would be the case.
9 hours ago