Preparing Yourself & Your Family for Home Euthanasia
Consider inviting family or friends for a visit ahead of time. Having those that love your pet spend time with you and to say goodbye to the pet they too considered a friend can be healing. It is also perfectly okay to have those closest to you at the appointment if you wish. Discuss who will be present for the euthanasia procedure. There are no right or wrong answers here – some family members may decide to stay, while others may prefer to be in the next room or away from the home altogether.
Decide where you would like the procedure to take place and the overall feeling you would like to create for your visit. We can work with whatever location is most comfortable for your pet, be it in their favorite bed or outside in their backyard. Some people choose to light candles, have soft music playing, include flowers or essential oils, or read a poem or other reading. Others choose to incorporate cultural or religious beliefs into the visit. Our doctors are comfortable with however you would like the visit to feel, and this is an added benefit to having the appointment in your home. Please know that our doctors will accommodate your requests.
Consider your options for aftercare for your pet’s remains. The most commonly available options include burial at home or at a pet cemetery, or cremation. If we help arrange for cremation of your pet, you have the option of an individual cremation with the ashes returned to you in a wooden urn, or a communal cremation with the ashes scattered in Puget Sound.
Begin to think about how you would like to say good-bye to and memorialize your pet. This can be a key part of the grieving process. Some people may choose to hold a memorial service, light a candle, compose a poem, plant a tree, or write a story about their pet’s life. You can keep a collar, a clipping of fur, or make a paw print or scrap book to honor their memory.
Take pictures of your pet. Taking special photos of your pet can be a wonderful way to remember them. Some pets don’t look quite like themselves near the end of their lives, and you may not want to remember them this way. An alternative would be to take a picture of their paws, a close up of their fur, or focus the camera on just one part of them, like their nose or whiskers.
More Helpful Links
An explanation of what to expect during your appointment with The Good Life.
A brief guide and resources for parents navigating pet loss with their children.