"when the time comes to say farewell, hold me gently in your arms and I will go without a whimper "

Phylis Feiner Johnson 

Home Euthanasia

  • Translated from Greek, means "good death", and refers to the practice of intentionally ending a life in order to relieve pain and suffering.  When comfort-oriented care no longer maintains quality of life, you may choose a painless, peaceful, assisted death as a last gift. Your beloved companion’s last moments should be stress free and surrounded by family in a familiar, quiet environment. Home.
  • Prior to my visit, I'll spend the time you need to feel comfortable with your decision to euthanize. and will proceed at a pace that you choose. If you're unsure, we can plan a visit for me to perform a comprehensive exam and discuss your pet's condition.  If you're sure that euthanasia is the best path, as hard as it is, we will need to discuss plans for body care after euthanasia.  This should happen prior to my visit.
  • Upon arrival, I will gently greet and examine your pet.  I know this is a heartbreaking time, and I want to make sure you understand what will happen during the euthanasia.   When you're ready, I'll give a heavy sedative injection.  This will cause your pet to completely relax and alleviate any anxiety.  He or she will become very drowsy, or sometimes fall completely asleep under anesthesia.  Last, I will give an injection of a barbiturate drug that will cause the heart to stop.  This is an overdose of an anesthetic-like agent, and leads to a peaceful death very rapidly, often within seconds.  After, I'll listen closely with a stethoscope to confirm death.  There may be small movements, vocalization, or loss of bladder/bowel control afterward.  These are normal, and do not mean your pet is still alive.  If you decide on cremation, I will transport your pet to the crematorium.  If you are planning a home wake, memorial, or vigil, cremation is still an option.  I will give you instructions for contacting and transporting remains to the facility when you're ready.

Aftercare

  • Prior to my visit, we will discuss your plans for your pet's remains,  This is a very difficult, but necessary conversation to have.  Some families choose to lay their loved one to rest in a special location at home.  I offer transportation to a local crematorium after our appointment.  You may choose to have a private cremation, in which all ashes are returned to you, or a communal cremation, in which none are returned.

Memorials

  • I offer a clay paw impression mailed to you.  There are many other memorial options to be found both online and at local crematories, such as urns, ornaments, and pendants.  Please see the memorial area of my resources page.