Prepare for the Passing of Your Pet
Even though losing a pet is never easy, getting ready for it can lessen your mental and emotional pain. Here are four suggestions to help you prepare for and grieve the eventual loss of your pet.
#1: Assess your pet’s quality of life
Your pet can’t tell you when they feel unwell, but they can indicate poor mental and physical health. Using a quality of life scale, you can assess your pet’s health and happiness as they age or deteriorate from a chronic medical condition. The quality of life scale allows you to be objective when evaluating your pet and can help determine if they are suffering.
#2: Decide when to schedule your pet’s euthanasia
While an unexpected pet death relieves you of the responsibility of determining when—and if—euthanasia is the best course of action, you might wonder if you failed to notice your pet’s illness. On the other hand, deciding when to schedule euthanasia and when your pet is ready to pass away is never easy. Humane euthanasia, however, can be your final act of love for your suffering pet. Keep in mind that few pets pass away peacefully while they are sleeping.
#3: Discuss how to care for your pet’s body
When your pet passes, you may be unprepared for their after-care. If you know the end is approaching, discussing how you would like to care for your pet’s body can eliminate some stress. Cremation is a popular choice, and you can choose that you receive your pet’s ashes. Aquamation is also growing in popularity as an after-care option but is not yet widely available.
#4: Rely on grief support groups to process your pet’s death
In addition to leaning on family and friends as you grieve, reach out to support groups. Many veterinary universities offer pet loss support hotlines, and a multitude of pet bereavement groups on social media may fit your unique situation. You never have to make your journey through grief alone.
If your pet is declining in health or happiness, ask our team for help in assessing their quality of life and preparing for their eventual passing.