Worse things have happened to you and worse things have happened to me, but there’s nothing like the death of a good dog to bring tears that are so hot and unrestrained.  Perhaps it’s because a dog, a really good dog, is just love, pure love.. – Richard Glover (Australian talk radio presenter, journalist and author)

When is the right time for dog euthanasia?

Dog euthanasia

Don’t be afraid of dog euthanasia. Photo: Taylor Bryant/Unsplash

The right time for dog euthanasia depends on your pet’s health. It is often helpful to look at the quality of life your pet is experiencing. Ask yourself:

  1. Does your dog still enjoy eating and other simple pleasures?
  2. Is your dog able to respond to you in a normal way?
  3. Is your dog experiencing more pain than pleasure? (It is sometimes difficult to determine if our beloved dog is in pain or not.  Dogs may experience pain differently compared with humans.)

You will be able to make a much better decision, and be more comfortable with your decision if you get as much information as possible regarding your pet’s condition. If your pet is sick, ask about the treatment options, possible outcomes, and chances of recovery. In most instances, you will not need to make the decision immediately, so take time to think about what you should do. Discuss the decision with all of the other family members, including any children. Decide what you want your pet’s death to be like.

Prepare yourself for dog euthanasia

Euthanasia is a dignified, peaceful and virtually pain-free process, but it is best to understand what will occur and how your dog’s body may react. Knowing these things may help make the process less traumatic for you.

It is helpful to prepare yourself for the euthanasia process, if possible, by becoming informed and making choices regarding the logistics ahead of time. It is important to have a friend or family member you can talk to and spend time with both prior to and after the euthanasia. The decision to be present during the euthanasia is a personal one, and you need to do what is best for you.

The deep and devastating feeling of grief and loss we can feel after a beloved pet has crossed the rainbow bridge is no less than other grief.  Here are a few ways to help you cope with your loss and remember your pet.

Cathy Beer, Founder of Pets4Life describes her personal experience of the dog euthanasia process


Doctors Finch and Smith