Frequently Asked Questions

How far in advance do I need to book a euthanasia appointment?

We understand booking an in home euthanasia appointment may be difficult to book in advance. The more notice we receive, the more likely we will be able to accommodate you for the day and time you prefer. We have 5 veterinarians in our practice and we usually have availability 7 days/week. However, we are not an emergency service so we do recommend booking your appointment at least a day in advance in order to guarantee that one of our vets will be available to help you. If your pet’s health has suddenly deteriorated and you need to book an appointment immediately, we will do our best to help. Please contact us at (416) 817-3572 to talk with one of our hospice team members.

What if I have second thoughts after booking a euthanasia appointment?

Sometimes this happens. Due to the nature of our practice, we do not have a cancellation penalty. All we ask is that you give us as much notice as possible so that we can offer our services to another family in need of our help.

Are you open 24 hours?

We are not an emergency service and do not have 24 hour availability. We know your calls are important and we are diligent about returning calls and emails in order to help you get the care you need.

Because you are mobile, does that mean you can come to an emergency situation?

While we do come to your home, we are not an emergency service.  You can contact us at (416) 817-3572 to see if we have any available appointments but you may have to go to your closest veterinary emergency clinic. You can find a list of emergency clinics here.

I’m not sure I’m ready to euthanize my pet. Will you come to my home and help guide me through this stage before the appointment?

Yes, we offer an in-home consultation service. Additional information can be found here.

Will my pet experience any pain or discomfort during the euthanasia process?

Caring for your pets at the end of their life has been the main focus of our practice for the past 7 years so we have a great deal of experience in this area. Your pet may experience some minor discomfort, similar to a vaccine injection, while receiving the sedative. As the sedative begins to work, your pet will become sleepy and then become completely sedated.

Will my pet be sedated?

Yes, the first step of the euthanasia process involves the administration of a strong combination of sedatives and pain relievers.

What happens during the euthanasia process?

Our in-home euthanasia appointment is typically one hour in duration. This may be longer than an in-clinic appointment, as we don't want you to feel rushed. In addition, it allows time for you to update the veterinarian on your pet's health and for her to be there as a resource for you regarding the loss of your pet. You will sign a consent form that allows the vet to go ahead with the euthanasia and outlines your plan for aftercare.

The first step in the euthanasia process is to sedate your pet. This is done by an injection administered in their rear muscle area. As this sedative takes effect, your pet will become drowsy and then fully sedated. This relaxation into deep sleep allows your pet (and you) to feel calm and stress free.

Once the vet knows that your pet is fully sedated, she will administer the euthanasia drug. After your beloved pet has passed, the vet will then offer to make you a clay paw print, and do a fur clipping, at no additional fee, if you would like them. These are lovely memorial items for families to have as keepsakes. Being able to pass in the comfort and privacy of your home, surrounded by the people (and pets) they love and that love them, is an invaluable gift for your pet and for you.

We are pleased to provide aftercare services through Gateway Pet Memorial ( After the memorial items have been made, the veterinarian will place your pet in a cozy blanket into a basket or on a stretcher, and transport him/her to her car (with your help if using the stretcher). She will then take your pet back to her home, where a representative from Gateway will pick up your pet’s body. Burial at their pet cemetery, group cremation or private cremation with return of ONLY your pet’s ashes are all aftercare options.

Should my other pets be present during the euthanasia?

It’s been our experience that other pets in the house need the opportunity to say goodbye.  As long as the other pet is not disruptive to the process, there is no problem with them being there. In some cases, a family will bring them in after their pet has passed, to say goodbye.

Should my children be present during the euthanasia?

You as parents know best, but if we are asked for our opinion, we recommend that they be present. Due to the nature of our practice, all of our vets have a lot of experience in helping children understand the process, depending on their age and level of comprehension. We feel the actual process of euthanasia is often more peaceful than what is imagined in a child’s mind. Seeing their pet calm, not in pain, and having a peaceful passing may be less stressful and upsetting than imagining what will happen.

Why should I say goodbye at home instead of my vet’s office?

 There are many reasons why people choose in-home euthanasia. They include:

i.  not wanting their pet’s final moments to be in a clinical setting

ii.  difficulty moving their large, mobility impaired pet

iii.  more intimate at home

iv.  avoiding the stress of the clinic

Do I need to prepare my pet before the euthanasia appointment? What about food and medication?

We want your pet to be as comfortable as possible so please continue all pain medication right up to the appointment.

We know that families want to make their pets’ final day as good as it can be, so regular meals and treats are fine as well.

Do you provide aftercare services ie. cremation?

 Yes, we provide cremation services through Gateway Pet Memorial.

How do I know I will receive my pet’s ashes?

We have been using Gateway Pet Memorial for many years and have a great deal of trust in them. We have used Gateway for the aftercare of our own beloved pets. Additionally, we have all toured their facilities and seen first hand the dignity and respect with which your pets are treated.

How much does in-home euthanasia cost?

In-home euthanasia costs slightly more than going to your regular clinic because we are coming to you. Our fees depend on the size of your pet as well as the type of aftercare that you are choosing. There may be an additional charge if you are outside of our regular service area or need an evening or weekend appointment. Please email us at or call our office at (416) 817-3572 and we can give you a quote.

Portrait of senior boxer mixed breed dog in autumn afternoon light