End of life care for your pet

in the peace and privacy of your home

A trip to the veterinary clinic can be very stressful for many pets, especially if the clinic is noisy and busy. Some pets may have difficulty making the trip due to problems with mobility and pain. Most pets will be much more comfortable in their favorite place at home, rather than at a clinic. There are many benefits of at home euthanasia. Explore this page to learn more about the process.

Preparing for your pet’s euthanasia

How much notice do you need?

We always appreciate as much of a heads up as possible so that we can accommodate both of our schedules and coordinate with our cremation service. However, we understand that euthanasia can be very difficult to predict and we will always do what we can to accommodate short-notice and same-day appointments.

How is the euthanasia performed?

Dr. Renner will arrive at your home. If you haven’t already done so, we will help your pet find a comfortable place to lay down and will give treats if he or she would like to have them. We will discuss any of your concerns and questions and confirm your aftercare preferences. We will walk you through the euthanasia process. We will never rush you – you are welcome to take any time you need with your pet. When you are ready, your pet is given an injection under the skin of a sedative so that your pet will be comfortable and relaxed. Then when you are ready, the euthanasia solution is given, usually in a vein in the pet’s arm or leg. Once the euthanasia solution is given, a painless death occurs, typically within seconds. Dr. Renner will confirm that the pet has passed.

Will the euthanasia be painful?

Euthanasia stems from the Greek words Eu and Thanatos which mean Good Death and is not painful.

Why do you give a sedative before the euthanasia?

By giving your pet sedation before euthanasia, we can relieve your pet from any anxiety and pain they may be feeling, and make the process more peaceful.

Should my kids be present?

You know your children best. If your child is old enough to decide on his or her own, allow them to decide and let them know you support their decision. If your child is not present for the euthanasia, give them the option to see their pet afterward and show them that is OK to touch and talk to your pet. Teenagers may appreciate time alone with your pet after the euthanasia to be able to express their emotions privately. Allowing your young child to see your pet deceased can help them process the reality that the pet is not just asleep. Please see the following articles and activities for information on how to talk about euthanasia with your children and help your child cope with the illness and death of a pet.

Additional Resources:

Should my other pets be present?

We always encourage that your other pets be present. Allowing your pets to see and smell their deceased housemate will help provide understanding and closure. Like humans, pets grieve in different ways.  Some may be depressed, some may cry and whine, and others may not pay much attention to the deceased pet and continue as if nothing happened.

What are the after care options?

Private Cremation

Private cremation is for owners who would like to have their pet’s ashes returned to them. We use Faithful Companion Pet Cremation services. Dr. Renner will let Faithful Companion know the time of your pet’s euthanasia. A Faithful Companion employee will arrive at your home and will wait outside until Dr. Renner informs him that the euthanasia is complete and the owners are done visiting. The Faithful Companion employee will transport your pet to their crematorium in Plain City for cremation. Your pet will be cremated and returned to you by Faithful Companion within 24 hours. If you prefer to transport your pet to Faithful Companion yourself after the euthanasia, that may be done as well. Faithful Companion has a peaceful viewing room where you may watch your pet being placed into the crematory if that would help give you closure. The high standards of care and respect we give your pet continues even after they have passed.

Because it can be hard to make these decisions at the time of your pet’s euthanasia, it can be helpful to visit Faithful Companion Pet Cremation Services to see the available urns and personalized pet memorabilia they offer. Because Your Visiting Veterinarian does not believe in profiting off of your pet’s aftercare and wants you to have the complete freedom to choose what items you would like to have to remember your pet, all payment for aftercare will be paid directly to Faithful Companion. If you know what you would like before your appointment, feel free to call Faithful Companion and order ahead of time.  Otherwise, they can help you complete your form on the day of the appointment.

Communal Cremation

A communal cremation is an option if you elect to have your pet cremated, but do not want the remains returned to you. Faithful Companion will come to your home to pick up your pet after the euthanasia or you have the option of driving your pet yourself to their crematorium in Plain City. Your pet’s ashes will be buried at Highland Pet Cemetery in Fort Mitchell, Kentucky. If you would like to visit, there is a marker for the Faithful Companion communal cremains burial area. However, your pet will not be individually identified.

Home Burial

If you elect to have your pet buried in your yard, there are a few important things to keep in mind. The first is to check with your county ordinances for restrictions and your local utilities office to mark your yard. You also want to make sure that your pet is buried at least 3-5 feet to prevent another animal from digging up your pet. Not only would that be emotionally traumatizing for you, but the euthanasia solution used in your pet is deadly to other animals if they were to be consumed.

We’re here to support you with compassionate and gentle end of life care for your pet. Contact us with additional questions or concerns.

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