Compassion and Care for Your Beloved Pets

Expectations: Your questions about the entire process

What to expect for at home pet euthanasiaCan friends and family be present at the time of the procedure?

Yes, anyone can be present. The decision of who should be present is up to the owner to decide. As to whether a child should be present you might first read the answer to the question “How should I tell my family and friends?”.

Can my pet be put to sleep in my house?

Yes. You have the choice of having the pet put to sleep wherever you want. Some clients choose to have a pet put to sleep where the pet’s favorite spot was in the home. Some people decide to have the pet euthanized in their back yard, in a more natural outdoor setting.

How do I perform this procedure?

If you are unsure about how you want to handle this situation, then what I do is answer any questions you have and usually after all questions are answered, you the owner come to a decision you are comfortable with.

First and most importantly, I want to clarify that there are individual differences in terms of how veterinarians perform this procedure. The following synopsis is written from my personal experience. The following should not be interpreted as clinical advice. You or your pet’s needs are first and foremost in my mind as I talk with you about how the process will unfold. First, when I first speak with the owner over the phone, I inform them they can either choose to be present, or absent during the procedure. I also ask a series of other questions allowing the owner to make the pet’s last moments with their caretakers tailored to their needs.

First, your pet will be given a sedative or tranquilizer to help them relax. During this time, the owner may choose to spend some solitary quiet time with their friend.

The pet is then given a euthanasia solution that allows them to pass away in a painless manner. To give clients time to perform any rituals or say any good-byes privately, I leave the pet after they have been put to sleep, and tell clients to let me know when they are ready for me to come back in their home. That way, they have time alone with their loved one.

As a respectful health care professional, I support whatever wishes the owner’s have, and make every effort to deliver the most compassionate medical care in an atmosphere tailored to address your particular beliefs.
Before the actual procedure takes place, I always ask clients if there any special things they want to do during this procedure. This allows them to realize they can take control of some elements of this process.

the right thing for your petWill it be painless for my pet?

Often, your pet will feel nothing. Caretakers witnessing this procedure will notice nothing but a peaceful release of tension, much like what one would see if watching a pet “go to sleep”. Of course, each pet has a particular set of symptoms that may make it slightly different for them. The following are things those witnessing the euthanasia may see:

  • The eyes don’t close.
  • There may be a last gasping breath, called an agonal breath, that is more of a muscle spasm (the pet isn’t necessarily aware of this).
  • There may be vocalization.
  • There may be muscle twitching
  • The heart may continue beating for a short period after breathing has stopped.
  • The urinary bladder and possibly bowel contents may be released.