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What Happens When Your Dog Dies At The Vet? 3 Practical Approaches To Dog Death

One of the hardest things humans deal with is saying goodbye. Not just when a mourning the loss of another human, but also the loss of beloved pets.

Sometimes, you walk into the vet’s office, hoping your dog will feel better, and the next thing you know, your beloved dog has departed. Processing the news alone is hard, but, what happens when your dog dies at the vet?

Related: Escape Proof Dog Harness 

What Happens When Your Dog Dies At The Vet?

1. Euthanasia

Terrifying as this is, it might be the best solution to give your dog a chance to rest without much suffering peacefully. If you opt for this, your vet might request a blanket, so your dog lies on it. Euthanasia causes a dog’s muscles to relax, leading to the release of any drinks or food in the body. 

In most cases, your dog will receive a sedative to help it relax and prevent any discomfort. The sedative puts your pet to sleep giving it blissful last moments with you. 

Your dog might also receive an intravenous medication for euthanasia following the above procedures. Most veterinary clinics are known to use Pentobarbital for euthanasia. This medication is administered in large doses since it proffers the dog’s unconscious, leading to a quick and painless end.

2. Post Mortem

After euthanasia, you can request the vet for a post mortem. A post mortem is ideal in a situation where your dog suddenly passed away and did not know the cause. It will help you understand your dog’s passing, the illness, or any condition that leads to this outcome. It is also one of the best ways for you to find closure.

Post mortem is the process of opening a dead body’s cavity. Your dog’s vet will, however, need your approval to carry out this procedure. 

3. Funeral arrangements

If you wish to have a funeral for your dearly departed dog, some decisions may come into play, such as burial grounds, attendees, and accommodation that some agencies offer. If your dog underwent post mortem, there is a high chance that the vet will not release the dog for burial at home.

What Do Dogs Die From?

Some major causes of a dog’s death are illnesses or severe injuries from accidents. Any of these are reasons that warrant to visit a vet. If it is an accident, your dog could have internal bleeding or a broken spine. 

Illnesses like diarrhea or even vomiting might look normal but can be signs of deep-rooted health issues in your dog. As such, a visit to the vet will help you realize the gravity of the issue. 

Some of the diseases that lead to a dog’s death include; 

  • Heart disease
  • Elbow and hip dysplasia
  • Vision prone diseases such as glaucoma, cataracts, and lens luxation
  • Liver disease
  • Intervertebral disc disease
  • Kidney disease
  • Bone cancer

When you take your dog for a check-up, especially when he has signs of illness or an accident, it is good to be optimistic and strong for both of you. It is also good to keep an open mind and be ready for any outcome. 

It is hard to know the outcome of your dog when you visit the vet, but it is good to be ready. For example, what happens when your dog dies at the vet? Should you request a post mortem? What will the burial arrangements involve?

Whatever the outcome, it is good always to be prepared. Losing a pet will always be difficult. If possible, have a loved one by your side to help you with the process of grieving. Its best to be prepared, just in case.



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