Sadly, each of us who loves and cares for a pet will one day face the illness, old age, or passing of our beloved animal friend. It is important to have compassion and support in facing the most emotional and painful decision you will make regarding your pet. Gladstone Veterinary Clinic is here to help you determine quality of life, consider hospice care options, and provide dignified and gentle care at the end of your pet’s life.
Quality of Life
Quality of life is a frequent term used to evaluate how an animal is doing in the midst of disease, both physically and psychologically. Consider the following questions regarding your pet’s quality of life:
- Can he move around on his own?
- Does she eat and drink normally?
- Can he relieve himself on his own?
- Does she seem irritable, restless, or confused?
- Does he avoid his favorite activities?
- Is she interested in the activities around her?
- Is he withdrawn much of the time?
- Does she seek out unusual places to sleep or hide?
Keeping a good day/bad day calendar can help you assess quality of life over time. Too many bad days in a row is a sign that quality of life has been compromised. If you are struggling with determining your pet’s quality of life, please ask our compassionate doctors for help.
In some illnesses, when quality of life allows, hospice care can be provided to make a pet’s final days or weeks more pleasant with the help of pain medications, subcutaneous fluids, slings or other assistance devices, and other care. The focus is to relieve physical discomfort and suffering as much as possible during this time. The goal of hospice is not to cure your pet’s illness, but rather to ensure a peaceful end-of-life experience. We can teach you how to provide intensive home care to keep an ill pet as comfortable as possible, and help you continue to evaluate quality of life to determine when it is compromised.
Euthanasia is the most emotional and painful decision we are faced with in our pets’ lives. We are dedicated to compassionate and gentle care when it is time to end pain and suffering and give your pet peace. A quiet comfort room where you and your family can say goodbye, a peaceful and painless euthanasia, a remembrance journal, a clay impression of your pet’s paw, a partnership with Dignified Pet Services for cremation services, and comfort and support from our team can help ease this difficult process. For established patients, we also provide home euthanasia services during our regular business hours.
End of Life Resources
Dignified Pet Services—dedicated to providing high-quality after-care (cremation services, memorials, etc.) for pet companions. 503.885.2211
DoveLewis Pet Loss Support—provides monthly no-cost pet loss support group meetings in the Portland area, as well as pet loss information and resources.
Compassionate Care Home Pet Euthanasia Service—home euthanasia services 24/7. 503.880.1172
At Home Veterinary Services—home euthanasia services 503.281.1631