End of Life Care for your Pet

When a pet becomes a part of our family, they bring joy, companionship and comfort. In return, they need love, care and devotion, and having a pet may sometimes require an ethical or moral choice to be made on their behalf. Being a pet owner can involve difficult decisions, and perhaps none more so than when your pet is dying.

If your pet has been diagnosed with a terminal illness or has begun to suffer increasingly from age-related ailments, humane euthanasia may eventually be the only option you have. Most people want to have as much time as possible with their pet before they have to say a final goodbye. Many believe that they can provide their pet with a good quality of life for some time to come. Your role is to recognize suffering and to provide care and relief to your animal, whether through medical means or through euthanasia. As long as you are able to ensure that your pet is receiving the care that they need during their remaining days, it may be possible to give your pet more time. But whether or not you decide to either delay or rule out euthanasia, you are always responsible for providing care to your animal.

Make sure you discuss your situation with your veterinarian and that they know what your wishes are for your pet, and what you can reasonably do for them; as your pet’s illness progresses, the care they require may become much more complicated, time-consuming and costly.

Read more about end of life care for your pet.

At any point, you may decide that caring for your pet is no longer an option. Humane euthanasia can often be a very kind decision for an animal, and is certainly a more responsible and compassionate decision for an animal if you are no longer able to meet their care needs. It is important that, no matter what you decide, your animal’s welfare always comes first.

You may also choose to surrender your animal to the Ottawa Humane Society. You may contact us at any time to discuss this choice and what it would mean for you and your animal.

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