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Quality Of Life Scale

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 Click here to download Dr. Villalobos' Quality of Life Scale                                

     Quality of Life Scale1 
        The HHHHHMM Scale

Pet caregivers can use this Quality of Life Scale to determine the success of pawspice care. Score patients using a scale of 1 to 10.

 Score

                                          Criterion                                                     

H: 0 – 10 HURT – Adequate pain control, including breathing ability, is first and foremost on the scale. Is the pet's pain successfully managed? Is oxygen necessary?
H: 0 – 10 HUNGER – Is the pet eating enough? Does hand feeding help? Does the patient require a feeding tube?
H: 0 – 10 HYDRATION – Is the patient dehydrated? For patients not drinking enough, use subcutaneous fluids once or twice daily to supplement fluid intake.
H: 0 – 10 HYGIENE – The patient should be brushed and cleaned, particularly after elmination. Avoid pressure sores and keep all wounds clean.
H: 0 – 10 HAPPINESS – Does the pet express joy and interest? Is the pet responsive to things around him or her (family, toys, etc.)? Is the pet depressed, lonely, anxious, bored or afraid? Can the pet's bed be close to the family activities and not be isolated?
M: 0 – 10 MOBILITY – Can the patient get up without assistance? Does the pet need human or mechanical help (e.g. a cart)? Does the pet feel like going for a walk?  Is the pet having seizures or stumbling?  (Some caregivers feel euthanasia is preferable to amputation, yet an animal who has limited mobility but is still alert and responsive can have a good quality of life as long as caregivers are committed to helping the pet.)
M: 0 – 10 MORE GOOD DAYS THAN BAD – When bad days outnumber good days, quality of life might be compromised. When a healthy human-animal bond is no longer possible, the caregiver must be made aware the end is near. The decision needs to be made if the pet is suffering. If death comes peacefully and painlessly, that is okay.
*TOTAL= *A total >35 points is acceptable for a good pawspice
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1.Adapted by Villalobos, A.E., Quality of Life Scale Helps Make Final Call, VPN,
09/2004,for Canine and Feline Geriatric Oncology Honoring the Human-Animal
Bond, by Blackwell Publishing, Table 10.1, released 2006.

6 thoughts on “Quality Of Life Scale

  1. I will use this wonderful quality of life scale when my dog is discharged from the hospital. Will you please review this history, and recommend a Pet Hospice service to help me care for him at home (Cotati, California)?
    My 11 y.o. Brittany Spaniel had an acute cervical disc expulsion/rupture on March 15, 2018. On March 16th, he had successful removal of all the disc material at UC Davis. The neurosurgeon thinks he will walk again, but that may take weeks to months. At present, he has tetraparesis, but is able to stand with support.
    He is able to eat a slurry of Ensure & his z/d canned food, but has had significant weight loss. Integrative Services will consult today, and tailored physical therapy will follow. As soon as I have contacted a Pet Hospice, I can begin planning for our return home. I’m staying in Davis until I can bring him home. Another concern is his safe transport, both
    to home from UC Davis, and then at home during his recovery.
    I would appreciate your recommendations for his care at home!

  2. My 3lb toy yorkie was shot in the left temple. The pellet is lodged in the middle of his brain. Surgery is not an option. This was 5 days ago. He is blind and deaf. Not sure if he will ever be “normal” again. I’m not sure how to help him. Please advise any techniques that will help give him the best life possible.

    1. hi Tiffany. I just had my 5lb yorkie (that I raised) put to sleep. She was 13 and had congestive heart failure. At first, I could deal with it while she was on diuretics. But as time progressed she became weaker andi could no longer keep her alive for me. It was the hardest thing I have ever done. I had her mother and dad but they have been gone. I have her sister from the same litter. my last litter was 5 AKC female yorkies. WOW. I kept the 2. her sister is lost and depressed but in good health. I cant imagine someone cruel enough to do this to your baby. It is a difficult decision but after reading your story I had to reach out to you. I will pray for you and your little one. they are family.

  3. All 8 of my cats score umder 80, but they have good reports from the vet – one is routinely described as “perfect.” My angel would have scored a 36 hen he died – lying in the closet because he couldn’t walk withour falling over and refusunf food and water. Is somethung off here? Cats are all between 8 and 16 yeaars old and the oldest died at nearly 18 or fst growing liver cancer. The older cat came to me as seniors and in 3 years nothng has changed. I know from their former guardian (passed away) thar they were never social. One is naturally timid, since kittenhood. I have had 3 since early kittenhood and adopted the rest as adults. One is an *unplanned* hybrid turned lap kitty and twp re former ferals. We had a foster who suddenly practiced outraageously bad litter box habits – he peed on the counters! And began attacking the other cats, after 2.5 years. He was 7. Solved the problem, not by euthanasia, as advised, but by finding him a loving home with no other cats. Peace out.

  4. We have a 9 year old cocker spaniel with CCD. This quality scale will prove to be very useful, especially when my partner and I struggle to agree when the time is right to stop our dog suffering. He may score higher in somethings one day than others. Thank you

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