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How do I Know When it’s Time?

This can be a difficult question to answer and we will help guide you in deciding when the time is based on their quality of life.  Below are some conditions of your pet to help you assess their quality of life. Keep in mind, euthanasia is defined as a "good death" that ends suffering. ​

  • Your pet is having more bad days then good (you can use a calendar and simply use a happy or sad face).  Signs that their quality of life is not good and makes for a bad day may include some of the following:​​​​​​

    • Your pet is having trouble walking and getting up even on prescribed medications​

    • They are experiencing chronic and intractable pain that doesn't go away on medications

    • They are nauseous, frequently vomiting, or having abnormal bowel movements which cannot be resolved by a veterinarian

    • Your pet is having trouble breathing

    • They are weak and lethargic​

    • They are not wanting to eat or drink much or eat and drink at all​

    • Incontinence such as accidents in the house or not being able to eliminate without assistance or falling​

    • No longer greeting you when you arrive home​

    • They have lost interest in their favorite activities (playing, engaging with you, curiosity)

    • Isolating themselves, especially in places they never go

    • Not grooming themselves (especially cats)

*****Remember changes can be gradual and difficult to recognize. Look at videos or photos of how they used to be before illness and how did they look and behave compared to now ?*****

  • See pet loss support page for more guidance and overall grievance support


Euthanasia old dog
Quality of Life Scale
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