Pet Hospice 101: What is Pet Hospice?

For many people, the word ‘hospice’ is associated with a special medical center where terminally ill patients go for end-of-life care. Hospice, however, is a philosophy, not a place. The hospice philosophy is best described as- ending aggressive treatment for a cure. The focus shifts from actively treating to find a cure, to providing the best quality of life, and minimizing pain and suffering.

The 3 Prong Approach

Pet hospice care is a three-prong approach: listening to clients’ concerns and fears, educating clients on quality of life, and helping clients plan for euthanasia or natural death.

When a pet owner is in the heartbreaking position of caring for an ailing pet, it can be difficult for them to have a proper perspective on when to consider a hospice approach. As the veterinary provider, you can refer a client for a hospice consultation under several circumstances:

  • When you must deliver bad news 
  • When you see a client in denial
  • When you are concerned a client may be naively putting their pet at risk of suffering
  • When a client is highly emotional
  • When a client is struggling with the decision of what to do

An objective, professional hospice consultation is the first step to helping a client understand pet hospice. A consultation can take place at a clinic or in the client’s home, and generally lasts 45-60 minutes. By listening to the client’s concerns and fears, and talking the client through the hospice philosophy and practice, a consultation helps a client become educated and empowered.

Benefits Of Our Hospice Service

There are several benefits of referring clients to a Gentle Journey hospice service:

  • Clients feel free to be honest when receiving unbiased support
  • Clients have increased levels of trust in a separate agency specializing pet hospice services 
  • As a separate pet hospice service, we can dedicate more energy and resources to a needy client and still communicate feedback directly with your clinic

Our commitment to you, as the treating veterinarian, is what sets Gentle Journey apart.

Our Mission

The goal of pet hospice is to make sure that the pet is as pain-free and comfortable as possible. This goal is best achieved when veterinary clinics and pet hospice providers work as a team to provide a high-quality care and services for clients. 

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