Dollars and Pets: The cost of end-of-life services for your pet

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As all pet owners know, the time will most likely come when we must assess and make end-of-life decisions for our pets. This can be one of the toughest decisions you’ll ever have to make and should not be made without consulting your veterinarian, but when do you begin to contemplate the humane options available for your furry friend, and how much do they cost?

American Humane has listed some of the signs that may indicate your pet is suffering and losing their quality of life:

Chronic pain
Frequent vomiting or diarrhea
Loss of appetite
Loss of interest in favorite activities
Cannot stand or falls when walking
Chronic labored breathing or coughing

If you observe any of these symptoms, your veterinarian can help diagnose your pet and guide you through next steps. No pet should suffer if the possibility of a recovery to a comfortable existence is unlikely.

Here is a general list of options and costs to expect when considering end-of-life decisions.

In-home hospice consultation

This is a service where a veterinarian visits your home to review your pet’s medical records and performs a physical exam. Prices run between $250 and $325 for the initial visit, and costs usually are reduced on subsequent visits. Medication is always a separate fee.

In-home euthanasia services

This service often lasts a few hours to give you last moments to cherish with your pet. It typically includes the consultation, sedation, euthanasia procedure and an animal keepsake, as well as grief support materials. Costs generally range from $325 to $375.

In-home euthanasia with communal cremation

Your pet will be cremated with other pets, and the ashes will be scattered accordingly — not returned to you. Cremation pricing varies depending on the weight of your pet (the more they weigh, the more it costs) and can range from $450 to $500.

In-home euthanasia with individual cremation

For this option, remains are cremated alone and your pet’s ashes are returned to you, typically in a custom urn or box, and may include a personalized name plate and an additional keepsake, such as a clay paw print. The price will vary depending on the weight of your pet and can run from $560 to $650.

Animal shelter euthanasia

Basic euthanasia at an animal shelter can run from $25 to $150. Prices increase when cremation is included.

Individual cremation

Cremation costs generally range from $225 to $400.

Communal cremation

Communal costs can range from $85 to $175.

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Source:: East Bay – Lifestyle

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