How to Prepare for Your Pet’s Passing
Losing a pet can be tough, but being prepared can make it easier to handle emotionally. Check out these four ways to prepare for and cope with your pet’s passing.
#1: Assess your pet’s quality of life
It’s difficult to know when your pet is feeling sick or unhappy, but there are signs that point towards poor mental and physical health. To evaluate your pet’s health and happiness as they get older or suffer from a long-term medical condition, you can use a quality of life scale. This scale helps you assess your pet objectively and enables you to determine if they are experiencing any discomfort.
#2: Decide when to schedule your pet’s euthanasia
The sudden death of a pet may relieve you of the difficult decision of euthanasia, but you might also wonder if you missed any signs of your pet’s illness leading up to their passing. On the other hand, it can be tough to decide when it’s time to put your pet to sleep. It’s important to keep in mind that very few pets pass away naturally in their sleep, so choosing humane euthanasia may be the kindest thing you can do for a pet who is suffering.
#3: Discuss how to care for your pet’s body
If your pet passes away, you may not know how to plan for their after-care. It can be helpful to talk ahead of time about your preferences for how to handle your pet’s body. One option is cremation, where you can receive your pet’s ashes. Another option is aquamation, which is gaining in popularity but not yet widely offered.
#4: Rely on grief support groups to process your pet’s death
During the grieving process, it’s important to seek support from both loved ones and support groups. Consider reaching out to pet loss hotlines offered by veterinary universities or connecting with one of the many pet bereavement groups on social media that may relate to your specific situation. Remember that you don’t have to go through this journey of grief by yourself.