Vet’s plea to owners who leave their dogs alone when they’re put to sleep

By Staff 7 Min Read

A vet has issued a desperate plea to any dog owners having to say goodbye to their furry friends – urging them to stay in the room so they don’t spend their final seconds alone

Putting a pet to sleep is the hardest part of owning a dog, but sometimes it is your only option.

If you’ve grown up with a furry friend, you know how quickly they become an integral part of the family. Even the idea of having to say goodbye to them one day can fill us with an overwhelming sense of grief.

But if they’re growing old and suffering in pain, putting them to sleep is the most humane option. Many owners choose to stand in the hall while the injection is administered, unable to watch their beloved pet die in front of them.

But, a vet has issued a desperate plea urging owners to stay with their doggies until the very end, no matter how upsetting it is.

Speaking to Reddit back in 2022, one vet said: “It might be hard to say goodbye but it’s hell for them. They already don’t like the vet, they’re confused, they’re scared, they’re sad and they’re looking for you when they take their last breath. I can try to provide them as much love and comfort as I humanly can but at the end of the day, I’m a stranger to them.”

Explaining how a woman dropped off her 13-year-old dog to be euthanised, the vet said the poor pooch spent its final moments desperately scanning the room for her owner. She added: “I told her we didn’t have a vet in clinic as she was on farm calls all day, but she insisted on leaving her there at 9am knowing that our vet wouldn’t be back until well after 6pm.

“She was too busy to bring her back later, so she left her sweet girl to be alone all day before dying. I kept her with me for most of the day, took her for a small walk, bought her a cheeseburger and donut on my lunch and laid on the ground and cuddled her while she cried, scared and confused.

“I kissed her and told her she was a good girl while she crossed the rainbow bridge, but her eyes never stopped looking for her family. Dogs know what’s happening, don’t do this to them. Be there when they cross that bridge. It won’t kill you, I promise.”

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Sharing their sympathies with those unable to stay with their pets as the injection is administered, the vet stressed: “This very obviously does not apply to anyone who had absolutely no choice during the pandemic.” While most users thanked the vet for their honestly, others recalled their own heart-breaking experiences with having to say goodbye to a beloved pet.

One user said: “While it is one of the hardest things we ever have to do, it’s our last gift of love to them, after a lifetime of devotion. We stopped at McDonald’s and I ordered her a chocolate sundae. She had refused food for two days prior, but had a tentative, single lick of the chocolate while we cuddled her.

“My vet is one of the kindest people alive. He comes out to our car and gives her a big cuddle. He positions us so I can cuddle her and look into her eyes as she passes. He wants the last thing she sees to be me reassuring her.”

Another agreed, adding: “I recently held my sweet little angel baby as her body went limp in my arms. A piece of me died that day but she was surrounded by love and died peacefully in my arms feeling safe. I cannot fathom not being there for her as she drew her last breaths. We truly don’t deserve the love, adoration and loyalty of dogs.”

A version of this article was published on 18 October, 2022

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