What Happens During an Euthanasia Appointment?
Whether we come to your home or you bring your pet to our clinic, we will use Fear Free℠ techniques to minimize any fear, anxiety, or stress your pet may experience. Our appointments may include ignoring your pet until he or she decides to approach (if shy or scared.) We do this to be respectful of their emotional needs, not because we don’t love him or her. We also may use a species specific pheromone sprayed onto our clothes and equipment, Harp Enrichment Therapy music, tossing some of your treats to your pet (if they’re interested), positioning our body away from your pet, and/or not making eye contact. They will be given a few minutes to adjust to one of our vets being there. This helps put your pet at ease and gives them the opportunity to relax.
Next, we review paperwork and answer any questions or concerns you may have.
Then we administer a sedative/painkiller into your pet’s muscle or under the skin. Within a couple of minutes, any pain or discomfort that your pet is feeling from its disease should subside and a few minutes later, he or she should gently lose consciousness. If you request a paw print, we may take the impression during this time if you are not getting ashes returned.
When your pet is unconscious, we will give the second medication, which is an overdose of an anesthetic agent. This will cause the heart and breathing to decrease until they stop, and your pet will pass away peacefully. This will also take about five minutes. The entire appointment generally lasts between 30 and 45 minutes. If you would like us to help with the aftercare and if we’re at your home, we gently swaddle your pet in a blanket or sheet and transport them back to Graceful Departure Pet Center. We will take good care of your pet during this process.