End of Life Care

a close up of a dog

Understanding End of Life Care Decisions

While we hope the day will never come, the sad reality for most pet owners is that they will eventually have to make a decision about euthanasia. Fortunately, it is not a decision that you have to make alone. At Madison Veterinary Hospital, we understand how difficult it can be to say goodbye to your beloved pet, so we have worked hard to provide our clients with the best experience possible.

We begin with a thorough consultation. If a client is considering euthanasia, we will work with them to make an appointment as quickly as possible, often for the same day, so we can evaluate their pet and provide our medical recommendation. For pets with severe illness or injury, choosing euthanasia is the most humane choice, but that doesn’t make it easy. After consulting with our clients, the veterinary team will take them to a quiet, peaceful room to consider their options. We take care to explain every aspect of the process so that our clients are not surprised and feel prepared for the procedure.

We believe it’s important that the pet is close to someone who loves them during their final moments, so we strongly encourage pet owners to remain with their pet during the procedure. Depending on the client’s preference, we may recommend sedation to make the pet more comfortable for the rest of the procedure.

Once the pet and patient are comfortable, one of our experienced veterinary technicians will place an IV catheter. While this is happening, our front office staff will go over the paperwork, discuss cremation options and process payment for the procedure. This step is important because it allows the client to deal with the necessities quickly and efficiently so they can focus their attention on the experience and being there for their pet.

Once the client is ready, the veterinarian will come into the quiet room and administer the euthanasia drug. After injection, the pet will quickly become unconscious and pass away peacefully. The process is fast and painless, ensuring a humane death with no suffering.

After the pet has passed on, the client is encouraged to take as much time as they need to say their final goodbyes. When they are ready, the pet will be retrieved by Faithful Companion, our preferred pet cremation service. We have worked with Faithful Companion for years and know that they will treat our clients and their pets with the dignity and respect they deserve. In the event that your pet dies at home, you can contact Faithful Companion directly.

If you have questions about euthanasia or anything else related to Madison Veterinary Hospital’s end of life care practices, please feel free to contact us. For additional information, including how to manage the grieving process, we encourage you to read this article from the American Veterinary Medicine Association.

a close up of a dog
a cat that is looking at the camera