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Pet Grief Support - In Loving Memory of Our Pet Community
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686059 tn?1293833827

Euthanasia - When is the right time?

This is such a very sensitive and difficult question and process. When is the right time to euthanize a beloved pet?
I believe that when a pet no longer has the quality of life that he/she deserves, God will utilize us and the vet to make to most humane act of love and not prolong suffering. I belive a pet should be surrounded by at least a beloved family member and this process can be done in the comfort of your home (Some vets will come to your home for a small fee) or at the vet hospital. Usually the pet will be sedated, before the final injection.

I just want to make sure people who have had the misfortune to be in this situation, not feel the guilt that accompanies the having to put a pet to sleep (some people feel as if the killed their pet or feel like a murderer) and it's the opposite, it's a necessary act of love to avoid a slow painful death. How did you feel having to make this painful decision?
6 Responses
874521 tn?1424116797
all you're words are so very true its hard to know just when its enough and not to have to live with all the quilt afterwards.
It is an act of love and nothing more.
In my own experience, I tried everything that was humanly possible, the age/tolerance/pain level and disease of our pets has to be taken into consideration!
If all of this is within reason than we do our very best to prolong their life.
HOWEVER IMO at times we are simply keeping them alive because we are unable to let go and not in their best interests. Going to extreme measures when our kids are in pain and have little chance for a full recovery isn't what they would want. They usually communicate to us when they've had enough, they will loose their spirit to fight for life....and naturally stop eating/drinking/loss of bodily functions
We need to be vigilant and  preserve their pride and dignity as we would with any loved one....
A good family Vet will definitely come to our house's at this time and help make the event the least possible stressful it's most important that we are with them and holding them right up to the end....they know already how much they are loved but need us close right up to the last.....
Its one of the hardest decisions any of us will have to make, we just have to ask ourselves 'what is in their best interests' and not our own.
973741 tn?1342342773
It is such a difficult decision and brings such pain when you love your pet.  There is no right or wrong as everyone has to be in their own comfort level with it.

My Triskits died on her own so I did not have to make the decision.  However, some of you know that I lost my mom which was beyond painful.  She had a dog and it was my dog as well in that she got her my freshman year in college . . . I spent a lot of time with this dear dog.  Her name was Cookies and she was a sweet little terrier poodle mix.  When my mom passed away, Cookies came to live with me (and Triskits).  She had many good years with us but the last year was difficult.  She became blind, couldn't hear, and was in pain as well as other things  and was just a sad little dog.  But I couldn't bring myself to take her to the vet to be euthanized.  I called the vet and had all of the details ready.  I couldn't plan it out----------  it just broke my heart.  So it was a spur of the moment decision.  I woke up at 6 am and took her in with an envelope for the vet.  It had a check in it (they knew me as this had been my vet or many years) and a note about how special Cookies was).  I handed her to the vet tech who didn't know I was coming but saw me getting me out of my car.  She didn't say a word and took Cookies for me. I know I should have stayed but just couldn't.  I was making the right decision----------  she'd lived over 18 years and was miserable. I kissed her goodbye and left.  The vet wrote me the nicest letter afterwards.  I think I made the right decision or at least the right decision on time and how for me.  So Cookies and Triskits play in heaven together until I get there to play with them.  Man--------  I've got a lot of folks and creatures I can't wait to see again someday!
Avatar universal
It is such a hard decision to make, you pray that they would die in their sleep, but seldom does that happen.  You don't want to act too soon, but also don't want them to suffer.  You feel guilty after, but deep down know you shouldn't because there was absolutely nothing else that could be done.  It is definately hard.
675347 tn?1365460645
Instant and definite decision. No questions. But when the vet came and I had to sign the paper of consent, it was like signing a death warrant. It WAS signing a death warrant. There was nothing to rest the paper on. I signed his life away on a beautiful book all about the Sun. (The cover of that book bore the imprint of my signature so much I couldn't bear to see it any more and gave the book away.)

I wanted her to be quick with the final shots. He was already in pain, and every second counted. There was no hesitation or regret. Deep down I knew I had authorized someone to kill him. My dearest friend. But pain was in charge, nothing else by that stage, so it had to be done. I told him I would help him, and I did.
686059 tn?1293833827
Thank you all for sharing. Your words and experience will help and ease someone currently in this difficult situation. There is no way around it. It's raw, painful and emotional. We keep all families and beloved pets in our thoughts and prayers.
Avatar universal
Last year I got him a playmate, but shortly after that he started having seizures. There were many factors into what might have been the cause, I think the not knowing of what caused this hurts the most. For the past year his seizures kept geting closer, and I think looking back, I don't think the vets really paid much mind to it. Last month he had three more seizure in about 2 hours, last Tuesday he had 5 so I had to make that heartfelt decission to let his body rest. I did not use the Potassium Bromade as it just cost way too much and it seemed that anything we kept throwing at this illness, it did not change the fact that he was having seizures every 3 weeks.
I cried my heart out and I was on the kitchen floor and just in some much hurt, but then it seemed that he was there with me looking at me with his sweet eye's and doing his high five to me to want to help me feel better- he was so comassionate.
The next day I went and got a puppy. I am not in love with him yet, it was so soon...but that playmate that I had gotten for Max, now needed a playmate as she too was sad for him getting ill.
I will add, that I will never allow a vet to just put down my dog, always make sure you understand what that vet plans to do. I made sure this time that my dog was allowed to go to sleep before they but his body to rest. The vet did not do this the last time and I have to live with that memory of my dog looking at me like " what did you just do".  
Rest in peace Max, this new puppy will never take your place, he just came to help us mend our hearts. I loved you so much !!!
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