One of the most amazing friendships a person can have is with a four-legged pal.
Sure you’re in charge of your pet’s well-being and become their personal pooper scooper, but nothing beats the unconditional love and affection they show you.
Sadly, unless you have a parrot, chances are you’ll outlive your pet and be forced to have a tear-jerking goodbye.
People often go to the veterinarian to put down their ill and elderly cats and dogs, however not many know what their final moments are truly like.
But Twitter user Jessi Dietrich had been curious and asked her local vet on what a pet typically goes through when they’re about to close their eyes for the last time.
His answer was devastating.
Asked my vet what the hardest part was about his job &he said when he has to put an animal down 90% of owners don’t actually want to be in the room when he injects them so the animal’s last moments are usually them frantically looking around for their owners &tbh that broke me
— jessi dietrich (@jessi_dietrich) July 27, 2018
“Asked my vet what the hardest part was about his job &he said when he has to put an animal down 90% of owners don’t actually want to be in the room when he injects them so the animal’s last moments are usually them frantically looking around for their owners & [to be honest] that broke me,” she wrote.
“And for this reason I’m literally gonna be cradling my homeboy rick when his time comes with all his favorite (sic) toys and endless ear scratches at the ready regardless of how distraught I am,” she followed up.
Social media users responded to Dietrich’s tweet and shared their own experiences with having their pet put down.
“I work as a tech at a vet clinic. I’d say 80% of owners want to be there! But we give them an injection to make them sleepy first (basically surgically anesthetized) so the transition is that much smoother,” one person responded.
“And when owners don’t want to be apart of the actual euthanasia, they stay for the sedation part so at least they are with them until they are sleeping. Makes everything so peaceful (well as peaceful as that can be I guess).”
“I don’t care how hard it is, I was literally bawling my eyes out and still made sure to hold my cat while they injected her both times. One a pain killer and then the one to put her to sleep. I could NEVER leave my family to die alone,” another chimed in.
“Oh my god, I could never do that! When we put my dog down after he got cancer, I looked right into his face, doing my best to hold in my emotions, so he knew I was there. If I end up having to put my cat to sleep, I’ll do the exact same thing,” a fellow pet owner added.
Hillcrest Veterinary Hospital, a clinic in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa shared a similar message on Facebook, begging to public to stay with their animal companions during their last moments.
“I beg you DO NOT LEAVE THEM. Do not make them transition from life to death in a room of strangers in a place they don’t like. The thing people need to know that most of you don’t is that THEY SEARCH FOR YOU WHEN YOU LEAVE THEM BEHIND!!!!!” the post written by a “tired broken-hearted vet” said.
“They search every face in the room for their beloved person. They don’t understand why you left them when they are sick, scared, old or dying from cancer and they need your comfort,” adding that a pet owner shouldn’t be a “coward” and comfort their furry friends in their time of need.
Dr. Lauren Bugeja is a veterinarian from Melbourne and told Mamamia she goes to euthanize pets in their family home.
She said some pet owners leave the room as they become too distressed, but she and her nurse make sure to comfort the animals if their human is gone.
“If a pet is getting left alone in an unfamiliar environment like a vet clinic or consult room, then they would be more likely to be worried as they do not know where they are,” Bugeja explained.
“For this reason, I would recommend staying in the room with your pet if you choose to do it at a clinic,” but added she would never pressure anyone to ever stay in a room if it would cause harm to their emotional well being.
Do you remember what it was like saying goodbye to your first pet? Tell us your story in the comments.