One of the most valuable considerations in making the in-home pet euthanasia decision rests in determining your animal’s quality of life. You know your beloved pet better than anyone else. This is truly an individual decision, best made by you and your family with the professional help of your veterinarian to assess your pet’s overall health condition.
When choosing the time to say goodbye, it can be a painful and heartbreaking experience. It can be accompanied by feelings of guilt and uncertainty, often leaving you questioning whether you made the right decision. If you’re reaching out to me, you likely intuitively know that it’s time. In my experience, there is no “perfect” day and no right or wrong decision.
There are some indicators and behavioral changes that can inform you on your pet’s quality of life. Some signs include whether they’ve become uninterested in food or water and are having trouble going to the bathroom on their own. This can be accompanied by accidents in the house and significant weight loss, as well as difficulty getting up and standing on their own.
Some more difficult symptoms to watch for include seizures, labored breathing or even crying out and whimpering regularly. Pets near the end of their life may become confused, or lose interest in their normal daily activities. Sadly, some can even have an adverse reaction to your touch, hiding away from you and the family. For others, it can be difficult to determine if they’re in pain or suffering. Often times, our faithful companions hide their pain; cats will continue to purr and dogs will continue to wag their tail and seek out comfort from you, even as they experience pain and illness.
If your pet has been diagnosed and is suffering from a terminal illness, you may already know that the time is coming near. Once they start to have more “bad days” than good, you may need to start thinking about how you’d like their final moments to be.
It may be helpful to keep a log of any noticeable behavioral changes and calendar “good days” and “bad days” to help you further assess if your pet is making improvements or experiencing diminishing quality of life.
Here are some indicators and behavioral changes to consider when making an assessment of your pet’s quality of life. If your pet is experiencing any of these conditions, pet home euthanasia would be the right decision: