The truth about euthanasia… and why you shouldn’t leave! By Dr. Steph, Posted on September 12, 2018,
Want the blunt truth!? Yes. They DO know if you’re not there. They DO notice when the door closes behind you and you walk away because “its too hard for you.” Don’t let your pet’s last memory be of you walking away. They know you’re upset… and they know you’ve left.
It’s also not fair to your vet or their staff to leave THEM to comfort your pet in it’s final moments… that‘s YOUR responsibility. No one can bring peace to a pet in its final moments like it’s owner can. Period.
So just do it. Be brave. Be selfless. Give your pet the dignified, peaceful ending they deserve. And if you seriously cannot bear to deal with being there for them until the end, ask your vet whether you can be there for just the sedation. This is a good “middle ground.” Be there for them as they get sleepy with a sedative… this gives you the opportunity to tell them your goodbyes so they can hear your voice, feel your touch and smell your familiar comforting scent as they drift off under sedation. Once sedated, your vet can excuse you while they inject the final euthanasia solution.
If you do leave your vet to say the final goodbye… make sure that (at some point) you thank them. Vets dread this as much as you do. And yes… our hearts break every time we are the last person to kiss the nose, give a belly rub or shed a tear into the fur of that animal that lived its life as someone’s beloved family member (and our patient).
And our hearts break even more as we look into those soulful eyes and say “it’s okay” as someone else’s “fur baby” takes their last breath… while looking back into the eyes of a stranger.