How will you know when it’s the right time to put your pet to sleep? To make this difficult decision, it is helpful to get as much information as possible about your pet’s condition. Arrange a time to speak with your veterinarian to discuss the medical issues, treatment options, quality of life and  possible outcomes of terminal disease so you can know what to expect. It will also help to take note of your pet’s behavior at home, paying special attention to the number of good days and the number of bad days in a given period of time (weeks or months). More specifically quality of life can be assessed by asking a few basic questions:

  • Does your pet enjoy human interaction, or he/she now seems withdrawn?
  • Does your pet soil him/her self ? This can be stressful and it can also cause skin rashes and infections from sitting in urine and feces.
  • Does your pet seem to be in pain? Can this pain be controlled by medication?
  • Is the appetite normal or is it a challenge to get them to eat?
  • Does your pet still enjoy “basic activities” such walking? Can your pet move around without difficulty?

Familiarizing yourself with the process of euthanasia may help lessen the stress and anxiety of the event. Do not be afraid to ask for help with coping with loss and grief.

Learn more at VetMed for more information.