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Choosing Humane Euthanasia

Posted by Last Wishes In-Home Pet Hospice & Euthanasia on October 25, 2013 in Uncategorized

When Do I Become Willing to Start my Own Suffering to End Theirs? A Guide for Pet Owners in Choosing Humane Euthanasia Coming to the decision to euthanize a beloved ailing pet can be very difficult.  Pets are now considered by most as part of their family.  I have two cats and two dogs myself, and I would be heartbroken if I lost any of them to an illness.  They each represent a different personality, and each fit into “the pack” in their own way.  One day, the time will come when I will be faced with making the decision of whether...

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Preparing for Pet Loss

Posted by Last Wishes In-Home Pet Hospice & Euthanasia on October 25, 2013 in Uncategorized

Part of what I do as a hospice veterinarian is to help clients prepare for the loss of their beloved pet.  This is a very confusing time for many pet owners.  The news that their pet has a terminal illness is often unexpected and overwhelming.  In order to cope with bad news, some people choose to deny it, some become fixated on or obsess about their pet’s illness and give up living their own lives, and some start their grieving prior to the death in anticipation of the loss. I cannot stress the importance of preparing for the loss of a...

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When should I get a new pet?

Posted by Last Wishes In-Home Pet Hospice & Euthanasia on September 29, 2013 in Uncategorized

Lilly owned a pet boutique downtown. She took her golden retriever, Hank, to work with her every day so he could greet and socialize with her customers. After 9 years together, Hank was diagnosed with end-stage lymphoma, and Lilly made the brave decision to end his suffering after he became ill. Almost a year after Hank’s passing, Lilly said, “Sometimes I think I’m ready to get another dog, but then I feel like it would be an act of disloyalty to let another dog take Hank’s place.” Like Lilly, many people don’t know if or when to get another pet. The...

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Pain, Suffering, and Quality of Life in Companion Animals

Posted by Last Wishes In-Home Pet Hospice & Euthanasia on August 14, 2013 in Uncategorized

Here's an article I wrote for September 2013 Houston PetTalk: Pete’s beloved Irish Setter, Sasha, was first diagnosed with osteoarthritis of her hips and lower spine four years ago. Despite being on medications for her condition, Pete noticed a couple of months ago that Sasha started having trouble getting up and down on her own. Now, Sasha can barely rise without assistance, she refuses to go up the stairs, and she no longer gets excited when Pete grabs the leash to take her for a walk. Pete adores Sasha and doesn’t want to lose her, but he also doesn’t want her...

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Heat Stroke in Companion Animals: Houston, We Have a Problem!

Posted by Last Wishes In-Home Pet Hospice & Euthanasia on July 25, 2013 in Uncategorized

Houston has an average of 99 days per year above 90 degrees Fahrenheit. The heat and humidity levels we see here are very similar to those seen in tropical climates. Air-conditioning is a way of life for most of us much of the year. It is actually vital for the survival of the people and pets of Houston. Heatstroke in pets is a rapidly progressive life-threatening emergency. It is a state of extreme hyperthermia (106-109 degrees F), resulting in thermal injury to the body’s tissues. Although uncommon in cats, it occurs frequently in dogs. ...

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What is Animal Hospice

Posted by Last Wishes In-Home Pet Hospice & Euthanasia on June 22, 2013 in Uncategorized

What is Animal Hospice? Hospice care aims to meet the physical and mental needs of a pet faced with a life-limiting illness. It begins the moment a pet has been diagnosed with a terminal condition and the family has decided not to pursue aggressive, curative therapies. Hospice exists to provide support and care for patients in the last phases of an incurable disease, or at the natural end of life. Pet hospice focuses on caring, not curing. We understand that serious illness profoundly impacts not only the patient but family and loved ones as well. Patients in the last phases of...

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