I have a 13 year old Shepard Terrier mix. Over the last four months, her health has been deteriorating. She has pretty significant gum disease that has undoubtedly affected other organs by now. Her back hips are gone to the point that she struggles to move without a lot of motivation. I switched her to a boiled chicken/rice diet in order to get her eating better (she had been on dry dog food most of her life) and her appetite is still low.
She is having digestive problems, energy problems, etc. I have consulted with a vet, there are some very expensive things that could be done (removal of her teeth and hopefully treatment of her gum disease) that may prolong her life, but at 13+ years we all know we are fighting a clock.
Unfortunately, I feel at this point I am delaying my pain of letting her go by forcing her to endure more. There are very few times when she shows excitement, and the final straw for me was her unwillingness to chase the wildlife that she has spent her life on a mission for.
I have set a date with my vet (1 week from today) in the hopes that there will be some miraculous recovery, but I am looking for other options. I am going to bury her on the lake property that my family purchased the same time as I rescued my dog. This is four hours away from my vet and the nearest animal shelter.
As hard as it may be, I would prefer to be the one to put my dog down. I've been told by the vet that regulations would not allow me to do that. Obviously the humane society has similar rules. What are the (humane) options for putting my own dog to sleep? I understand that in the old days, a .22 would do the job just fine but I don't think I'm going to buy a gun just to shoot my dog and all of my firearms are meant for large animals, not a 30 lb dog.