Euthanizing a beloved companion animal is probably one of the hardest decisions a pet caregiver will ever make. When a pet’s death is inevitable, euthanasia may provide a compassionate end, while giving the family control over where, when, and how their pet will die.
Bad news has been defined as “any news that drastically and negatively alters the person’s view of her or his future.” A more inclusive definition of bad news is “…situations where there is either a feeling of no hope, a threat to a person’s mental or physical well-being, a risk of upsetting an established lifestyle, or where a message is given which conveys to an individual fewer choices in his or her life.”
Veterinarians are obligated to both the pet and the client to initiate and facilitate euthanasia discussions when they know that death is near. End-of-life discussions clarify the client’s wishes regarding the pet’s death, help minimize regrets about how the pet’s death was handled, enable the client to make decisions ahead of time, and allow the client to cope with the death of their pet.
Learn how to foreclose on liens involving animals left at your clinic after services were rendered.