Making the decision to end your pets life is a highly emotive
dilemma. Knowing that you are alleviating suffering can
help to rationalise that choice. However, where pain is
not the primary concern and evaluating the "quality
of life" of a companion is the yardstick by which that
calculation is made can often leave owners greatly troubled.
Counselling owners on this matter can occur on a daily
basis for veterinary surgeons and determining the right
outcome is unique to each and every case.
Last week I had to support my wife in concluding that this
was the right decision for her much loved cat, Maggie, who
had been her companion for almost 19 years. This was never
a moment that either of us had wished but on reflection
was entirely appropriate.
There is some comfort in recognising the full life that
she led and by burying her in the garden beneath some freshly
planted snowdrops we will be reminded of her presence in
the years to come.