I have always believed in quality of life in end of life care whether it be for humans or animals. When it is their, our, or my time, I belive in palliative care (comfort care). The rest I leave in the Lord's hands.
As a bedside nurse for decades, I have seen families try to save loved ones by extreme measures when there was little to no quality of life left. That is one of the hardest things a nurse must endure. And, let me tell you....it's tough. The families think they are doing everything they can do to save them, while we care for their loved one watching them rot on ventilators with tubes coming out of every oriface.
I have to tell you that the greatest accomplishments in my life have been the birth of my son and that I was with both of my parents holding their hands when they died. My parents brought me into this world. It was only fitting that they be in my arms as they passed to the afterlife.
I feel the same way about my dogs. I am not going to put a 14 yr. old dog through surgery or diagnostics. I already have a pretty good idea he has cancer. He has been slowing down the last 6 mos. As long as he has a bright, soft eye, no obvious real pain, and a wag for me, we will endure his last days together. He will tell me when it is his time.
I will be there for him just as I was for my mother and my father. No heroics. Just love, comfort, and supportive care.