End of Life Care

There is never an easy way to say goodbye to a beloved pet, but we are here to support you through difficult times and offer end of life care with options to make the “good death” as easy as possible for you and your family.

What will happen, and does it hurt?

Our veterinarians will give your pet a sedative injection or place a mask to administer anesthesia. The only discomfort your pet should experience throughout is a possible pinch from the injection of sedative. This provides a gentle transition from consciousness to unconsciousness. Your pet will experience only a sensation of falling into a deeper and deeper sleep. This period will likely last between five and ten minutes, at which point your pet is no longer aware.

When your pet is fully unconscious, our veterinarians will administer an injection of another anesthetic which causes the pet’s heart to slow and then stop. The injection may be given intravenously or intracardiac which works in seconds, or into the abdomen which may take up to 15 minutes and is more gentle and slow. In either case, your pet, having been sedated, will not be aware of or experience this process.

In cases of reptiles and amphibians your pet may be placed in an incubator while the euthanasia process completes.

After the euthanasia has been performed you are welcome to take your pet home for burial or utilize other options as desired. Those are detailed below.

Euthanasia Options

Standard Euthanasia:
Owner will schedule an appointment time and is welcome to be in the room with the patient who will be sedated and comfortable, giving time for goodbyes. When the owner is ready, the veterinarian will provide the euthanasia injection. Aftercare options are detailed below.

Medical Euthanasia:
Owner will schedule a time and bring the patient as scheduled. Owner does not desire to be present for the procedure, and patient will be carried by our technician to the working area where sedation will be administered and the euthanasia process completed. Aftercare options are detailed below.

Aftercare Options

Home Burial:
Our staff will prepare a burial box and present to owner prior to departure from our clinic. We provide this service free of charge.

Medical Cremation:
For small pets weighing 1 pound or less, when the owner does not desire ashes returned. Our staff handles all arrangements for a nominal fee.

Country Cremation:
For pets weighing over 1 pound, when the owner does not desires ashes returned. Our staff handles pick-up arrangements with a local pet crematory and owner pays crematory directly.

Separate/Individual Cremation:
For pets of all sizes when the owner wants ashes returned. Our staff handles pick-up arrangements with a local pet crematory who will return ashes in a simple receptacle to our clinic for owner to pick up. Owner pays crematory directly, and may contact crematory for special arrangements such as urn selection or home delivery of ashes.

Owners are welcome to specify their choice of crematory, or our staff will utilize one of our trusted providers. Whatever option you choose, know that your pet will be handled with the dignity and respect he or she deserves.