How to Plan for Euthanizing a Pet


It’s a part of life that we’d all like to think we’re mentally prepared for. It’s the way of nature, after all: When we adopt our pets, we know on some level that we’ll eventually have to make some difficult decisions as they get older. We understand that, in most cases, we will outlive our cats and dogs. During your pet’s final weeks or months, it’s important to prepare yourself and your family for the complex range of emotions that you will feel when let your pet go. Make sure that you and your family know what to expect, and take a few extra steps to make the most of your time with your pet:

  • Firstly determine if this is the only option left to you, and if it is one that you can live with. Make sure that there are no lingering doubts and ‘what-is’ in your mind. If there are, clear them with your vet. Understand realistically what the situation entails and the repercussions of putting down or not putting it down at that juncture, so there is no guilt or avoidable regret later.

  • Make an appointment with your vet to discuss the method of euthanizing to be employed: Intravenous euthanasia is the most commonly used method, wherein a high dose of barbiturate is used intravenously to end the pet’s life in the most peaceful of ways.
  • Concentrated gas introduced in a small chamber is another way to euthanize a pet; this is a method usually used only for smaller animals.
  • Sometimes an injection is given into the heart or the body cavity of the animal. This method however can be torturous for the animal as it may take a considerable amount of time for it to die. This method is illegal in some places as well.
  • When a larger animal such as a horse or cow is required to be euthanized, the only option may be to shooting. Though it may seem barbarous, when done accurately, it is quick and the animal may scarcely be aware; death being nearly instantaneous.
  • When the time arrives, you should steal yourself to say good bye to your pet. Take your time and do this. Not saying good bye properly may be denying yourself closure that you may deeply regret in the times to come.
  • Consider how you may want to dispose of the remains of your pet; whether you would like to cremate, or bury. There may be restrictions and/or permission required in order to be able to inter your pet on your own property.

Filed Under: Pets & Animals

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About the Author: Fred Goodson has a passion for pets and animals. He has 4 dogs and is planning to have another one. He is also a blogger who writes about pets and animals. Currently, he is living in New Jersey.

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