You’ve Got a Friend in Me; A new model for pet aftercare

I used to own a pet crematory as part of my end-of-life mobile veterinary service.  Before this, I worked with local crematories in northern Colorado, all of whom did amazing work caring for my patients after death.  Building my own aftercare service opened my eyes to what crematory companies can do for veterinary teams.  And…

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CAETA’s Euthanasia Review Department

For many years, veterinarians and pet owners have reached out to me to talk about euthanasia experiences.  They seek to understand if what they witnessed was normal, expected, unexpected or concerning.  Veterinarians tend to look for answers that will shape how they deliver a euthanasia technique the next time. Pet owners want to know if…

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Pet Quality-of-Life Scales in Euthanasia Decision-Making

I have always approached euthanasia decision-making as finding the path of least regret.  Choosing euthanasia is hard. What REALLY prepares someone to elect euthanasia for a beloved friend?  The physical and emotional condition of the pet, the burden of care for owners and their own emotional health all tend to play a role in when…

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Pointers on Controlled Substances

I’ve written before about how confusing controlled substance ordering and handling can be.  It takes a village to sort through all the rules and regs to play the game correctly and keep the overseers satisfied. In the United States (US), veterinarians can be licensed to obtain controlled substances (drugs) through the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA). …

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Self Care for End-of-Life Professionals

Summer Brooks MS, RVT A few months ago, a member of the Companion Animal Euthanasia Discussion Group on Facebook asked what others do to honor the memory of their patients and how to process a stressful or emotional day.  There were many great ideas, both for honoring rituals and for self-care.  I covered honoring and…

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Euthanasia Drugs; Administration rates matter

If euthanasia becomes necessary to relieve suffering, it should be handled with respect and skill. The speed at which euthanasia solution is administered effects two main things; potential pain and active signs of death. For the most part, veterinarians are taught to inject quickly but it turns out this is only correct part of the…

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Stress + Symptoms = Euthanasia?

The effects of stress on both animals and humans has been well documented, showing how stress can weaken the immune system, trigger the onset of cancer, increase inflammation, upset the gastrointestinal tract, and leave the body in a general poor state of health. It can look like the end of days for many pets, especially…

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