Page name: Euthanasia [Logged in view] [RSS]
2009-09-15 13:02:15
Last author: sequeena_rae
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Sadly there may come a time in your dogs life when he or she is too ill to carry on. Having your dog PTS is a very hard decision and is one that should not be taken lightly. A lot of owners consider putting their dog down when all that is wrong is simple old age. If your dog can do any or all of these then a trip to the vet probably isn't required;

- He can eat, drink and sleep comfortably without shortness of breath.
- He can still exercise
- He has control over his bladder and bowels (disregard this if there is a disease that prevents him from doing this)
- He is comfortable and is not in pain.

If your dog has a chronic condition like arthritis then some days will be better than others. If he has a bad day it doesn't mean it's his time to go. It simply means you have to keep him comfortable and the next day you are likely to have your bouncy little pup back - at least for a little while.

His time has come - what happens?

If this day sadly arrives then your vet will administer a barbiturate injection to your dog's foreleg. A barbiturate is a lethal dose of a drug which your dog reacts to as an overdose to an anaesthetic. Your dog will feel no pain at all. Within a few seconds your dog will be unconscious and his breathing will slow down. After this cardiac arrest happens, and then he will pass away peacefully.

You may feel that you cannot bear to be with your dog when this happens but please please stay with him for the last few moments of his life. He has devoted his entire life to you, he has never stopped being loyal and neither has he stopped loving you.

It's over. What now?

Once your dog has passed he is not simply thrown out into the bin. You have a lot of options.

- Burial at home. If you wish to then you can take your dog home with you and bury them in your garden.
- Pet cemetry. I believe this is only in America but it works just as any human funeral would.
- Cremation. If you choose this your vet will take your dog away in a plastic bag. It sounds horrible but it is for health and safety reasons. There are 2 types of cremation. You can opt for a mass cremation where your dog will be cremated with other dogs. You get the ashes back but you can't be sure that you have your dog's ashes. If you can afford to pay a little extra you can have a private cremation for your dog only.
- Another option is Taxidermy. It's considered vulgar by many but if you can't face letting your dog go then this may be the option for you.

Coping with the loss of your dog

may feel any or all of the following emotions;

- Shock
- Denial
- Anger
- Guilt
- Depression

Do not think you are being silly grieving for your dog! Your dog has been part of your life for many years and became a member of your family. Now you are suddenly without him, there is no shame in grieving for a pet!

There are things you can do to make your transition from grief to acceptance easier. Holding onto your grief forever is not healthy. You will always miss your dog but you WILL get to a point where you don't want to cry when you think of him and can share memories with your family and LAUGH.

- Hold a memorial. Probably the best way to say goodbye. You can do whatever you want. Do it with your family or do it by yourself. This is your time, and your goodbye.
- Learn about the grief process. That way you know what's coming and how to deal with it.
- Be patient with yourself. You're not going to get over your dog's death in one night.
- Talk to people who understand. Share memories with friends and family. Cry, laugh, drink. Do whatever you want.
- Look after yourself. It is very easy to forget about yourself when grieving. Make sure you eat and sleep enough and pamper yourself every so often. Oh and take a shower, stinky pits are never nice ;)
- If you think you are truly depressed do not feel ashamed! There are pet bereavement counsellors who can and are willing to help you!

Explaining to your child

Children do not think like we do. They do not make rational decisions so you have to be careful how you break the news of your dog's death. The worst thing you can do is use euphamisms instead of the words "Death, dead and dying". Your child is a person and they need to be told the truth - but do so gently.

If you tell your child your dog was put to sleep then they may develop a fear of going to bed as they may think they will never wake up.

Involve your child every step of the way. Explain why Rex needs to die and ask her if she wants to be with him when he does. Some parents do not do this as they want to shield their child from the pain but don't deny them this. They are losing a best friend, of course they want to be there when he goes.

You may feel you have to be strong infront of your child but it is OKAY to cry infront of them. If you don't they may begin to wonder why mummy and daddy don't cry. Didn't they love Rex?

Allow your child to memorialise your pet. Let them plant a tree, a flower or make a card. Anything that they want to do.

A dog's prayer

Treat me kindly, my beloved master, for no heart in all the world is more grateful for kindness than the loving heart of me. Do not break my spirit with a stick, for though I should lick your hand between the blows, your patience and understanding will more quickly teach me the things you would have me do.

Speak to me often, for your voice is the world's sweetest music, as you must know by the fierce wagging of my tail when your footstep falls upon my waiting ear.

When it is cold and wet, please take me inside, for I am now a domesticated animal, no longer used to bitter elements. And I ask no greater glory than the privilege of sitting at your feet beside the hearth.

Though had you no home, I would rather follow you through ice and snow than rest upon the softest pillow in the warmest home in all the land, for you are my god and I am your devoted worshipper.

Keep my pan filled with fresh water for although I should not reproach you were it dry, I cannot tell you when I suffer thirst. Feed me clean food, that I might stay well, to romp and play and do your bidding, to walk by your side, and stand ready, willing and able to protect you with my life should your life be in danger.

And, beloved master, should the great master see fit to deprive me of my health or sight, do not turn me away from you. Rather hold me gently in your arms as skilled hands grant me the merciful boon of eternal rest --- and I will leave you knowing with the last breath I drew, my fate was ever safest in your hands.



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2009-09-15 [Teufelsweib]: Burial at home. If you wish to then you can take your dog home with you and bury them in your garden.

this isn't allowed here =/

2009-09-15 [sequeena_rae]: Is it not? :O How come? All the pets I can remember are buried in my mum's garden :)

2009-09-15 [Teufelsweib]: I have no idea. I guess because practically everyone here has a really small garden. in fact, we had no other choice than cremation when my dog diedO_o
and I just looked it up and indeed, here your pets (except smaller ones like rodents or birds. so I guess only cats and dogs) will all be cremated.

2009-09-15 [sequeena_rae]: Well that's a shame though it does make sense in a way x

2009-09-16 [de Morte]: Some vets prefer to give the animal a sedative so the animal is more comfortable before the actual euth. The sedative (Tramadol) can make the animal fall asleep or just go limp, that is nothing to worry about, just lets you have some time you see your pet for one last time while they aren't in pain.

2009-09-16 [sequeena_rae]: Tramadol? :O I take that for my arthritis!

2009-09-16 [de Morte]: Injectable... We also do catheters before euths so the Owner doesn't have to watch us stick a needle in there leg... only on dogs though...

2009-09-16 [sequeena_rae]: Thanks!

2010-04-17 [Kyrinn]: This can apply to cats too.. I held my beloved Serah in my arms as they gave her the shot that would make her fall asleep forever, and I remember the look of comfort she gave me just before she closed her eyes and passed. She was in so much pain and had been for a while, she couldnt eat or drink, and she was wasted away, but she still gave me that happy look she used to when she was well... I cried so hard when I knew she was gone, and I have tears in my eyes as I type this now. My son I thought was too young to remember but he tells me now that he remembers enough, that I was sad but that Serah looked so comforted laying in my arms. They cremated her for me, and I spread her ashes around the base of a tree where we knew squirrels lived, knowing her spirit would be forever stalking them there. 

Just thought Id share. I loved her so much, she was my baby. :)

2010-04-18 [sequeena_rae]: You're so right!

And I am so sorry for your loss but you know now she's in a better place xx

2010-04-18 [Kyrinn]: :)

She is. We ended up rescuing another kitty from a cat rescue. She picked us. She looks a lot like Serah did, only with short fur. She is full of love (and gas as well as lots of energy) and she took my son in as if he were a kitten. I look at her and she makes me laugh. :)

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