Get Professional Advice
I strongly suggest you have a professional vet who specializes in end-of-life care involved, and have them meet your dog and you well before you’re facing hard decisions. I used Dr. Sara Hopkins of Compassion4Paws.com. She provided a sounding board for me, and since she is an in-home hospice vet, she could offer advice that was based on seeing my dog in my home environment, rather than a vet’s office. This gave her insight into my dog’s personality and quality of life that was hugely beneficial.
People say, when it’s time, you’ll know it. No one can know your dog and the relationship you have as well as you do, but end of life decisions are made easier if you have actual guidelines to follow. This Quality of Life Scale was sent to me by the in-home euthanasia vet that did Sagan’s acupuncture and quality of life consultations. It was enormously helpful. I suggest you fill it out for a day AFTER that day has passed. For example, if today is Monday, rate your dog’s for Sunday.
I can’t say enough good things about the amazing experience we had at Precious Pets. I was able to have a memorial, a private cremation while looking at photos and reminiscing, able to collect and organize cremains according to my wishes, and left knowing that I had my dog’s remains, and no one else’s. The staff here follows all rules that are appropriate for human family. It was incredible, and very very healing. They will accept your loved one any time of day or night with just a phone call, so you don’t have to worry about making decisions in a hurry or under stress. If I had it to do over again, I would have toured the facility sooner, just so I knew what to expect…it would have given me more peace of mind. Note that transportation is available.
I have had friends use Seattle Pet Cemetery for their dog’s private cremation and were very pleased with the level of service they provided. Note that transportation is available.