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Understanding Hospice Care For Pets

2 Minute Read
small white dog laying on couch with pet parent before in home euthanasia
Dr. Karie Anne Johnson Mobile Vet for VIP Vet Visit
By Dr. Karie Johnson  |  Healthcare  |  Jan 2019

Understanding Hospice Care For Pets

2 Minute Read
small white dog laying on couch with pet parent before in home euthanasia
Dr. Karie Anne Johnson Mobile Vet for VIP Vet Visit
By Dr. Karie Johnson  |  Healthcare  |  Jan 2019
Dr. Karie Anne Johnson Mobile Vet for VIP Vet Visit

By Dr. Karie Johnson  |  Jan 2019

WHAT IS VETERINARY HOSPICE?

Hospice care in the veterinary field is centered around keeping pets comfortable. It allows an owner time to think about the death of their beloved pet and come to terms with their decision to euthanize.

The goal of veterinary hospice is to preserve a pet’s quality of life instead of trying to extend the length of a pet’s life. For more information on this topic, you can read my article, Understanding Your Pet’s Quality of Life.   

This may mean using medications that can help a pet’s pain or condition in the short term but may worsen their organ function. Again, it is their quality of life that is the primary concern not the quantity or amount of life remaining.

Hospice care for a pet generally consists of treatment such as: changing the amount of medications, modifying diets, adding supplements, giving subcutaneous fluids, diapering or helping improve mobility through environmental changes. Hospice care also typically involves additional medications to increase appetite, decrease nausea or vomiting and reduce pain.

PAIN IN PETS

The quality of life for a hospice patient depends on how well the pet parent can notice signs of pain or discomfort. Important signs to watch for include:

  • Increased panting
  • Increased pacing
  • Vocalizations
  • Whining
  • Growling
  • Snapping
  • Snarling
  • Abnormal walk
  • Licking lips
  • Drooling
  • Hiding
  • Decreased appetite
  • No interest in food or water
  • Incontinence
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Decreased happiness
  • Decreased interactions with family
  • Separating themselves from family
  • Flinching when touched
  • Lying abnormally
  • Unable to get up from lying
  • Unable to get comfortable
  • Tucking their tail

If you are interested in hospice care or think your pet is showing signs of pain, you can schedule an in-home appointment with us today. We can help you improve your pet’s quality of life and guide you in keeping your furry family member as comfortable as possible.

As an initial step, you can also use our online Quality of Life Calculator to better assess your dog or cat.

Dr. Karie Anne Johnson Mobile Vet for VIP Vet Visit

Author: Dr. Karie Johnson, Co-Founder of VIP Vet Visit

Dr Karie is a companion animal & equine veterinarian in the Chicagoland area. Her desire to strengthen the human-animal bond while providing enhanced preventative care led her to start VIP Vet Visit – an at-home veterinary care option that provides less stress, more convenience and better care. 

WHAT IS VETERINARY HOSPICE?

Hospice care in the veterinary field is centered around keeping pets comfortable. It allows an owner time to think about the death of their beloved pet and come to terms with their decision to euthanize.

The goal of veterinary hospice is to preserve a pet’s quality of life instead of trying to extend the length of a pet’s life. For more information on this topic, you can read my article, Understanding Your Pet’s Quality of Life.   

This may mean using medications that can help a pet’s pain or condition in the short term but may worsen their organ function. Again, it is their quality of life that is the primary concern not the quantity or amount of life remaining.

Hospice care for a pet generally consists of treatment such as: changing the amount of medications, modifying diets, adding supplements, giving subcutaneous fluids, diapering or helping improve mobility through environmental changes. Hospice care also typically involves additional medications to increase appetite, decrease nausea or vomiting and reduce pain.

PAIN IN PETS

The quality of life for a hospice patient depends on how well the pet parent can notice signs of pain or discomfort. Important signs to watch for include:

  • Increased panting
  • Increased pacing
  • Vocalizations
  • Whining
  • Growling
  • Snapping
  • Snarling
  • Abnormal walk
  • Licking lips
  • Drooling
  • Hiding
  • Decreased appetite
  • No interest in food or water
  • Incontinence
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Decreased happiness
  • Decreased interactions with family
  • Separating themselves from family
  • Flinching when touched
  • Lying abnormally
  • Unable to get up from lying
  • Unable to get comfortable
  • Tucking their tail

If you are interested in hospice care or think your pet is showing signs of pain, you can schedule an in-home appointment with us today. We can help you improve your pet’s quality of life and guide you in keeping your furry family member as comfortable as possible.

As an initial step, you can also use our online Quality of Life Calculator to better assess your dog or cat.

Dr. Karie Anne Johnson Mobile Vet for VIP Vet Visit

Author: Dr. Karie Johnson, Co-Founder of VIP Vet Visit

Dr Karie is a companion animal & equine veterinarian in the Chicagoland area. Her desire to strengthen the human-animal bond while providing enhanced preventative care led her to start VIP Vet Visit – an at-home veterinary care option that provides less stress, more convenience and better care. 

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