There is hardly a more frustrating and devastating thing than watching your beloved pet live its last days and having to put it to eternal sleep. Sadly, many pet owners have to face situations, when the only options are whether it be done at home or at a vet clinic.
One good thing about euthanasia is that it is carried out to stop the suffering and let a pet leave this world peacefully and painlessly. Definitely, this is no great consolation for a dog owner losing his or her four-legged friend.
When is it time?
This is the hardest decision. Even though one may know deep inside that this is it, there is always hope for a better outcome. Second, this sounds like a grave dilemma: should one do it as soon as possible to put an end to the pain? Is that a sincere desire to ease the pets suffering or just get the burden off from one’s shoulders? Would it be the right thing to do if we tried our hardest to prolong the pets life? Or should we have ended it earlier and thus ease the poor thing’s suffering? Finally, should one stay around the departing friend during the procedure or not?
Do what you think you should do!
Since all people are different and react to stress in different ways, there is no telling, which is the most correct thing to do. This is a very personal matter, and the only right choice is what you think it is. Either way, you do not need to and you should not feel guilty of having done it too early or late or being/not being present in the room during the procedure. You have done your best for the pet, and it is no one’s fault that it has happened this way.
When is it time?
First and foremost, you must be sure you and your dog are ready and there is no choice but to do what you have to do. Your motive should be the fact that you can’t and shouldn’t let your dog suffer just because you cannot make up your mind and summon up your courage. However, you must be sure your dog really feels bad. Some dogs can conceal their pain, and it can be hard to see that things are really bad. For example, there are stories about dogs with advanced cancer running and hopping around its beloved person, tail wagging, and merrily looking him or her in the eyes.
One of the biggest signs that a dog feels bad is lack of appetite: it either has nausea or just does not have the energy to eat. There are other signs as well. For example, a dog may lose interest in things and activities it used to appreciate and enjoy, like fetching or play-ball game. You are the only one who can track changes in your dog’s behavior, their intensity and dynamics, and make the decision.
Now, back to the question: when? There is hardly telling when exactly, because it depends on a lot of things. Should we be present in the room and see our little friend depart? Some pet owners find it impossible to abandon their dogs during the final moment. Others find it extremely distressing to see their pet and won’t look at it for a second. The whole thing is distressing in itself, and people react differently to such events, and either will be correct. The decision is phenomenally personal, and whatever you choose it will be right for you and your dog.
Dr. Goldie has years of experience performing home pet euthanasia, ensuring a smooth, calming and pain-free technique, while providing privacy and support during this difficult time. Our in-home dog euthanasia service is available in Oakville, Ontario. If you have any questions or would like to make an appointment, feel free to call us at 905-876-7766.