Hospice & Euthanasia

Immediate euthanasia isn’t always the only course of action when your veterinarian gives you the bad news that nothing can be done for your pet. Our animal hospice service gives both you and your furry companion a less anxious and more comfortable passing.

To qualify for this service, your pet must have a terminal illness with a short life expectancy. Your vet will help ease the process of death and dying with pain management medications and quality palliative care. Hospice care does not necessarily mean that your pet’s primary treatment will no longer be treated, but treatments that could cause a significant, adverse effect on quality of life are avoided.

Treatment during hospice care depend on the pet’s individual situation, but examples include:

  • Nutritional support
  • Assistance with urination and defecation
  • Grooming
  • Mental stimulation
  • Symptom management

The overall goal of hospice services is to ensure that your pet is as comfortable for as long as possible, although when dealing with a terminal illness, quality of life can be a roller coaster. As health declines, we get accustomed to a new normal, and your veterinarian will help you to understand how your pet’s condition will change over time and how you and your family can mentally and emotionally prepare when the end comes.

If you’ve determined your pet is ready for euthanasia, our euthanasia service offers the most humane way to say goodbye. Putting your dog or cat to sleep is a solemn time for everyone, but your veterinarian will offer help and advice to prepare in advance for the process. It is important to know what to expect before, during, and after your pet is put down.

Before Euthanasia

You should decide if you want to be present during the procedure. It will be hard to witness your pet pass away, but your presence will be a great comfort during his final moments. You will likely be required to sign a consent form and be sure to talk to your vet about any concerns. Aftercare is also a necessary decision, there are various companies that can assist with cremation or burial.

During Euthanasia

The process will usually consist of the use of an intravenous injection that will quickly stop the heart. An intravenous catheter may be used, which allows easier access to the vain and makes the injection process quick and painless. Sometimes if your pet is very ill and their veins are compromised, your veterinarian may elect to administer the euthanasia solution by an intracardial injection. Sedatives may also be used before the injection, so that your pet is as relaxed as possible. After the injection, a peaceful death will occur typically within 30 seconds.

After Euthanasia

Remember that you are in a safe environment where everyone understands you are going through a difficult time, so feel free to stay as short or as long as you need to. If you have already made aftercare arrangements and payment, you can leave when you are ready. Due to the relaxation of all muscles, your dog or cat may release urine, feces, or other bodily fluids. Her eyes may also remain open, and as energy leaves the body, muscle spasms or sounds may occur. Please understand that your pet has already passed at this point and they are not in any pain.

Consider memorializing your pet in a special and unique way. Therapeutic exercises help tremendously with grief and ensure your pet is remembered in a healthy way.