End of Life FAQs
In this section of our website, you will find some common questions from clients facing the End of Life process. Please reach out with any questions regarding the provided information, or with any additional questions not covered here.
How do I know it’s his/ her time?
The decision to euthanize is difficult. You may hear from others who have faced this before with their own pets that “they’ll tell you when it’s time,” but sometimes it can be hard to know you’re making the right choice. If you are not sure whether pursuing euthanasia for your companion is the right decision, there are tools at your disposal to help guide you. By clicking here, you can view a set of questions to answer and reflect on. You also have the option of an exam – by meeting with our medical staff, a doctor can assess your pet with you and provide their medical opinion.
What is the euthanasia process like? What should I expect?
We typically begin by placing an IV catheter in your pet’s leg that will allow us access to administer the euthanasia solution when it’s time. After the catheter is in place, you can spend some time with your pet and let us know when you are ready to move forward. Once you are ready, a doctor will join you in the room and will remain with you the rest of the procedure. The euthanasia itself is swift and humane. Typically, a first injection is administered that makes your pet relaxed. This is followed by a second injection that completes the euthanasia process. You are welcome to spend time with your pet after the procedure is complete should you wish.
What if I choose not to be present for my pet’s euthanasia?
The decision whether to stay present for the euthanasia itself is highly personal. If you choose not to stay through the procedure, our staff and doctor will remain with your pet until he/she passes. We aim to shower all our patients with love, comfort, and compassion, and these circumstances are no exception.
Can my children be present for euthanasia?
Any and all family members are welcome to be present for the euthanasia process regardless of age. The decision of whether children should be present is different for every family and there is no right or wrong answer. Some families choose to have their children be a part of end of life care in every stage; some families choose to have their children leave the room for the euthanasia itself but will allow visitation before and after the procedure. While our staff is here to support you in every way possible, we cannot be responsible for childcare or the supervision of minors and ask that you consider this in advance.
Do you perform home euthanasia?
Currently we do not provide house calls of any kind. For a list of providers who can facilitate in-home euthanasia, please click here.
What if I don’t want to cremate my pet? Are there any other options?
While many clients choose cremation for their pet following euthanasia, you do have the option of taking them with you following the procedure for outside arrangements. We do not coordinate arrangements outside the cremation options provided. If you would like to pursue burial at a pet cemetery or another cremation facility, you would need to make those arrangements personally. Most cities and townships have a set of rules in place regarding burial – please ensure you are aware of local laws and regulations for your intended burial site if you are pursuing home burial.
When will my pet’s ashes be available for me to pick up?
The turnaround time for picking up cremains depends on the cremation option you selected. Typically, cremation performed by VHA (Separated or Individual cremation) will have ashes returned to our clinic and ready for pick up within a business week of the patient’s euthanasia date. We can always check the status of your pet’s ashes for you – simply call us at 952/953-3737 during our business hours for these inquiries. If you chose Private cremation through Pets Remembered, ashes will be available within 24 hours of the pet’s arrival to their facility – sometimes as soon as the day following euthanasia.
Can you mail my pet’s ashes to me?
Currently, ashes are only available for pick up in-clinic; we cannot ship or mail ashes to other locations or clinics. Ashes can be picked up any time our clinic is open: weeknights 6PM – 8AM, weekends 24 hours.
If you have further questions, please call our clinic at 952/953-3737.