Message Number: YG2773 | New FHL Archives Search
From: Brett Middleton
Date: 2001-04-19 15:40:00 UTC
Subject: Re: Euthanasia

"Mike Janke" <mjanke@m...> wrote:
> My last two were put to sleep by intracardial injection [...] I will
> not allow this method again, if at all humanly possible. Those two
> were at moments of stress and distress, and I allowed my vet to
> convince me that it would be painless, which it seemed to be.

This is very close to my experience, and I fully agree with your
sentiments. It was a rush situation and I was not in a state of mind
to think through the options, allowing the vet to proceed as she
wished. Never again. Pogey was NOT sedated, and I am appalled at the
torment she experienced in her last couple of minutes of life. (Note:
I am not going to criticize the vet involved, as it was not Pogey's
regular vet, and I bless her for being willing to open her clinic to a
non-client and help us out early on a New Year's day.) If I ever face
this situation again, I will be very firm about the ground rules for
the procedure. Your suggestion to have this worked out in advance of
any possible need is excellent advice.

On a related note, I would urge all you clinicians on the list to lay
down a few rules for your answering service, if you haven't already.
When I called the clinic's emergency number, the service flatly told me
that our need wasn't an emergency. Flabbergasted, I asked just what
would qualify, and I was told "Well, you wouldn't take a person to the
emergency room just because they wanted to die." When I insisted that
the message be forwarded to one of the vets, I was then asked if the
animal was dead yet! Needless to say, this whole surreal conversation
was not very helpful to my mental equilibrium at the time. Obviously
an answering service is not staffed by animal-care professionals, but
it should be possible to train a *little* sensitivity into them.

Alicia <ferretwise@m...> wrote:
> I am a fervant advocate of witnessed euthanasia for all pet owners,
> it is the kindest tribute to be their at the end for them.

I couldn't agree more, though I think of it as a simple moral
imperative that goes along with animal ownership, aside from any
comfort the animal may derive from my presence. I couldn't allow
myself to evade the consequences of my decision, pretending that the
ultimate responsibility was really out of my hands. (Something like
pretending that meat comes from the grocery store and the goings-on at
the slaughter house are none of my affair.)


*SLMW 1.0* Ferrets: A laboratory exercise in Chaos Theory.