When Euthanasia May Be the Best Option for Your Pet
At All Kinds Veterinary Hospital, helping you maintain your pet’s quality of life is our most important responsibility. As pets age, arthritis and pain are unfortunately common problems they’re likely to face. However, these conditions do not need to be life-limiting. We offer many pain control options including natural supplements, prescription foods, laser therapy, and oral pain relievers in both liquid and chewable tablet form.
Additionally, pets may experience severe conditions that are not painful but still affect their quality of life, most notably senility. Our main concern is finding out whether your pet’s condition can improve, or has no chance of improvement. If despite our best efforts we are unable to control your pet’s pain or other life-limiting condition, we may need to sit down with you and discuss letting them go peacefully.
How to Know When It’s Time
Knowing when euthanasia is the best option isn’t easy, but it can prevent needless suffering. We encourage pet parents to consider 3 of their pets’ favorite activities and if a time comes when their pet cannot or will not do 2 of these 3 things, it’s usually time to consider euthanasia.
While no one wants to think about letting go of their beloved pet, it is the greatest sign of love and compassion we can show them. Not allowing pets to suffer is a privilege that we cannot extend to our own human loved ones. Therefore, euthanasia is the most humane and loving choice you can make for your pet.
Scheduling a Euthanasia Appointment
We understand that it might feel uncomfortable to set a euthanasia date for your pet, but it is ideal for two reasons:
- First, it holds you accountable. It’s easy to keep postponing an appointment if it has not yet been scheduled, and imagining life without your pet is difficult. However, if you have considered their needs enough to schedule an appointment, then you know in your heart that it’s the right thing to do.
- Second, it enables us to make your appointment a priority. Euthanasia appointments are never kept waiting in the lobby but ushered directly into exam rooms upon arrival.
Making Euthanasia as Gentle and Peaceful as Possible
Sedation may or may not be recommended for your pet, depending on their demeanor. An IV catheter may also be required to more easily administer the medication that will place them under anesthesia. The anesthesia lasts for about 10-30 seconds. After this time, the breathing stops first, then the heart, none of which your pet will feel. The entire process takes about 1-2 minutes. Small muscle twitches and/or release of body functions are normal at this time, as they signify that the body is fully relaxed. Additionally, animals’ eyes do not close after passing, due to their shape.
After Care for Your Pet
Every pet parent has their own preferences for memorializing their companion. You will have the option of taking them home with you for burial, or having them cremated either privately or communally. Our hospital works with a wonderful local, family-owned company that performs cremations for us. They offer group cremations at a lower cost in which your pet’s ashes are comingled with others and spread, or private cremation where there is no comingling and your pet’s ashes are returned to you in an urn of your choosing with their name plaque attached.
Please call or email us at any time if you have questions about our euthanasia and/or aftercare services. We’re here to help you through this difficult decision and offer our support in any way we can.