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Rainbow Bridge In-Home Pet Euthanasia helps create peaceful memories

It’s time to end stressful partings, home pet euthanasia is here

As pet owners, we all know that saying goodbye to our furry friends is one of the most difficult things we will ever have to do. 

While euthanasia is a common practice, many of us struggle with the thought of taking our pets to the local veterinary clinic for their final moments. Many dogs and cats don’t enjoy their visits to the vet and they can feel stressed and anxious on the drive to the clinic or when they walk in the door.

But what if there was another option? A way to say goodbye at home, surrounded by familiar sights and smells? Some vets are now offering in home euthanasia as an alternative way to farewell your beloved companion.

Dr Audrey Harvey is one of those vets. With over 30 years’ experience in small animal practice, she has helped many pets cross the Rainbow Bridge. 

When it comes to her own dogs, they are euthanased at home in their bed with their human and canine family surrounding them. 

For the last two years she has been offering this service to pet owners of the Moreton Bay region and Brisbane North, in Queensland through her business Rainbow Bridge In Home Pet Euthanasia. Dr Audrey has also inspired her colleague and good friend Dr Dave Kahl to offer a similar service to pets on the Sunshine Coast.

Dr Audrey feels that not only is home euthanasia more peaceful for pets and their people, but it gives pet owners some control over a distressing time. They can to some extent choose the time of the appointment, as well as the location for their pet to rest, whether it be on the couch or under a favourite tree in the backyard. 

They can have family present to support them and they can prepare a playlist of songs that are meaningful to them. Dr Audrey describes one visit where, as the little dog took its last breath, the playlist turned to Ed Sheeran’s song, Visiting Hours. The first line of that song is, “I wish that heaven had visiting hours”. It was a perfect song for that moment.
Home euthanasia also allows you to grieve in privacy and comfort without having to worry about other pets or people in a clinic setting.
Georgia recently had to have her dog Maggie euthanased and she chose to have it done at home.

“Dr Audrey brought a nurse with her when she came to my house and they were both so kind. They explained the whole process to me, and when I was ready Dr Audrey gave Maggie a sedative injection while her nurse fed her chocolate, which she loved – typical Labrador! 

She fell asleep with her head in my lap. Dr Audrey then shaved her leg and put an IV catheter in her vein. When Maggie was given the euthanasia injection, she passed away so peacefully. She was in her own lounge room, with her family and it was all very gentle. There was no rush, and afterwards they helped to take her for cremation. It was sad but I’m so glad for Maggie that we could do this at home”.

One thing Dr Audrey would like all pet owners to consider, if they are exploring the option of home euthanasia, is timing. It is not always possible for a vet to come to your home at short notice in an emergency so you need to plan. 

If you want the home euthanasia experience then you may need to say goodbye a day or two before it is necessary, so you can be sure a vet has time to come to you. There have been many times where pet owners have called for an immediate house call because a pet has suddenly declined and needs euthanasia quickly, but Dr Audrey has been unable to attend due to other appointments. 

These pets needed to be euthanased at a veterinary clinic which was not what the owners were hoping for. 
Don’t leave it until the last minute to make end of life plans for your beloved.
Choosing home euthanasia means you can spend the last moments with your pet in the comfort of your own home, surrounded by familiar sights and sounds. However, it's important to be prepared.

  • Firstly, choose a space where you want your pet to go to sleep. Consider using soft blankets or pillows for their comfort. You may also want to dim the lights or light candles as this can create a calming atmosphere. Make sure there is room for everyone who wants to be present as well as your veterinarian and their assistant if they have one.
  • Secondly, make sure all family members are aware of what will happen during the process. This includes any children who are old enough to understand death and dying. If children are a bit young to know what’s going on, arrange to have a carer for them so you don’t have to worry about them while focusing on your pet. Other pets can be kept out of the room but it’s important to give them the opportunity to see and sniff their deceased companion afterwards.
  • Thirdly, speak with your veterinarian about how they conduct in-home euthanasia procedures. They will walk you through the visit so there are less likely to be any unexpected issues on the day.
  • Fourthly, look into aftercare options before your appointment so your crematorium can be prepared to receive your pet, or you can have a place prepared if you are choosing home burial.
  • Lastly, take a day or two off work afterwards if needed so that you can grieve and surround yourself with support from friends or family members during this difficult time.

It's never easy to make the decision to say goodbye to a beloved pet. 

However, when their quality of life has declined and they are struggling, home euthanasia can provide a peaceful and comfortable environment for them to pass away.

To learn about Rainbow Bridge In Home Pet Euthanasia servicing Moreton Bay & North Brisbane, please head to the website:

You can follow Dr Audrey on Facebook: 
and @rainbowbridgevet on Instagram.

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