4 Steps to Prepare for the Passing of Your Pet
Even though losing a pet is never easy, being prepared for it beforehand can lessen your mental and emotional pain. Here are four strategies for assisting with grieving and preparing for the eventual loss of your pet.
#1: Assess your pet’s quality of life
Your pet can’t tell you when they feel unwell, but they can indicate poor mental and physical health. Using a quality of life scale, you can assess your pet’s health and happiness as they age or deteriorate from a chronic medical condition. The quality of life scale allows you to be objective when evaluating your pet and can help determine if they are suffering.
#2: Decide when to schedule your pet’s euthanasia
While the burden of determining when—and if—euthanasia is the best course of action is lifted by a pet’s unexpected death, you might wonder if you failed to notice your pet’s illness. On the other hand, figuring out your pet’s readiness to die and when to schedule euthanasia is never easy. However, keep in mind that few animals die peacefully while they are sleeping, so humane euthanasia can be your final act of compassion for your suffering pet.
#3: Discuss how to care for your pet’s body
When your pet passes, you may be unprepared for their after-care. If you know the end is approaching, discussing how you would like to care for your pet’s body can eliminate some stress. Cremation is a popular choice, and you can choose that you receive your pet’s ashes. Aquamation is also growing in popularity as an after-care option but is not yet widely available.
#4: Rely on grief support groups to process your pet’s death
Reach out to support groups in addition to relying on your loved ones and friends during this difficult time. Numerous veterinary schools provide pet loss support hotlines, and a plethora of pet bereavement groups on social media may be suitable for your particular circumstance. You never have to go through grief on your own.
If your pet is declining in health or happiness, ask our team for help in assessing their quality of life and preparing for their eventual passing.