Quality of Life and Euthanasia

Quality of Life and Euthanasia/Cremation Options

Our pets bring joy and enrichment to our lives. The responsibility of a pet owner starts with adoption, vaccines, food, water, proper housing, exercise, love and attention, but often ends in a difficult and emotional end of life decision. We see this as the final act of kindness for our pets in allowing a pain-free, loving, and compassionate environment where they can pass surrounded by people who care for them.

The process of coming to see a veterinarian when it is time to assess your pet’s quality of life and decide if it is time to ease their pain through the process of euthanasia is never easy. It does not get easier no matter how many times you are in this situation; being an advocate for your beloved pet means doing the right thing for them when the time comes.

Having gone through this process ourselves, we want to help you through the process from the exam to deciding on euthanasia and cremation options.

Things to think about prior:

  • Would you like your pet’s ashes returned back to you?
  • Would you like a plaster or glazed clay impression of your pet’s paw print?
  • Would you rather prepay for everything, prior to this appointment, over the phone?
  • Do you prefer an exam room you do not normally use?
  • Would you rather have a house-call for this service? (Distance away and urgency may determine if this option is possible. Additional
    house call and mileage fees will apply)
  • Would you or your children benefit from written materials on grieving and loss?
  • (We have materials in our hospital, free of charge)

Our cremation services provider, Paws to Remember, offers several cremation options as well.

You can visit their website: www.paws2remember.ca

Our provider also recommends AM Stevens Consulting, located in Surrey, for pet loss grief counseling (please call them to obtain rates for services). Scottsdale Veterinary Hospital staff and Paws to Remember staff can offer support and resources to help with the grieving process…you are not alone.

What to Expect When the Time Comes:

  • Sometimes you are able to call in advance to make an appointment with the doctor, but we understand that this is not always the case. Please call us and we will make every effort to accommodate you, so you can come to the hospital as soon as possible.

    We will set up an exam room for you with a blanket and box of tissues. (Let us know if you have a preference or deterrence to any particular room)

  • In most instances, a doctor will do an exam to confirm the procedure is needed. Palliative patients that have had ongoing care with our doctor may not need an exam.
  • You will be asked about cremation options (unless you have given us previous instructions) and you will need to sign your name authorizing the euthanasia procedure.
  • It is not a problem if you would like some time alone to say good-bye.
  • A doctor and technician will be performing the euthanasia procedure. Often the doctor will administer an injection to help reduce your pet’s anxiety and provide pain medication if your pet should need it.
  • After the euthanasia procedure, you can take some time with your pet in the room to say goodbye

If ashes and/or memorial gifts have been requested, please expect ashes to come back to our hospital in 4-7 days. Memorial gifts, including glazed ornaments, may take up to two weeks or longer.

Scottsdale Veterinary Hospital also offers a complimentary paw print (made from plaster of paris) that is ready in 4-7 days after the procedure.

Please feel free to call us with any questions and/or concerns you have regarding this process. We are here to help and we want to do what we can to make this decision and process a little easier on you.