Palliative care and pet euthanasia

“Sitting on the couch with someone versed in clinical psychology, choked up and holding back the tears, I mentioned I was going through a hard time with my terminally ill dog. The reply? ‘I cried buckets for weeks when I lost my cat, it was ridiculous really.’"

Dr Megan Alderson

dog and owner

Why is it ridiculous to grieve for a pet? Why do people think losing your closest companion is not as difficult as losing a family member or friend?

When you are losing, or have lost, a pet, you can find yourself in a very lonely place. No one will feel the loss in the same way you will. It will not affect their lives the way it affects yours.

Losing your beloved companion and friend and the decision to choose humane euthanasia may be the most difficult thing you have ever done. A 1994 study found that, with few exceptions, the grief experience associated with the death of a companion animal is like that associated with the loss of a significant human. The difference is that while close friends and elderly family members who pass away are separate from the ongoing daily routine of home life, we set our clocks around those we care for personally and this includes a special four-legged friends.

man and cat

How can we help?

As veterinary professionals, with an abundance of aroha, at The Strand Veterinarian we step into your shoes, treat you and your animal companion as our own and are there to support you, helping with decision making and preparation, for a dignified and timely end of life.

We are supported by a team of mobile, home-call veterinary and aftercare services who assist us to make sure when you choose the day, and the day chooses you – you have the love, support and veterinary assistance required for a peaceful and calm end of life experience.

In the case of the clinic being closed in your time of need (link to afterhours emergency section) our afterhours veterinarians support The Strand Veterinarian, you as our precious client and our four-legged friends on this journey.