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Pet Euthanasia

How To Prepare for Cat Euthanasia: Vet-Recommended Tips

If you've made this difficult decision, but aren't sure what to do next, here are four vet-recommended tips to prepare you and your cat

Dr. Karen Whala

April 17, 2023

The loss of a beloved furry friend is one of the hardest things a pet parent will go through. Unfortunately, because our lives are so much longer than theirs, it’s an experience most of us will have.

It can be daunting to figure out how to prepare for cat euthanasia, but when you’re nearing that difficult time, there are a number of ways you can ease the transition for you, your family, and your beloved pet.

4 Tips to Prepare for Cat Euthanasia

Although the procedure can be performed in a veterinary clinic, in-home cat euthanasia may be better for both you and your pet. It allows the pet to pass in a familiar environment and gives you a comfortable space to grieve privately.

1. Stay With Your Furry Friend During the Euthanasia Procedure

Though it may be hard to see your companion pass away, there are many reasons to stay with them in their final moments. Remaining in the room can help keep your cat calm and may also be beneficial for your own health. While it may be a difficult experience, many people find comfort in being present during the cat euthanasia process and find it helpful for their own grieving process.

Additionally, being present can also help you feel more connected to your cat and reassure you about the decision of moving forward with pet euthanasia. Although difficult, it is often the most compassionate choice. Seeing your pet pass peacefully and surrounded by everything and everyone they love can help you cope with loss.

Stay With Your Furry Friend During the Euthanasia Procedure

2. Give Your Beloved Friend Comfort With Their Favorite Toys or Blanket

Keeping your cat around their favorite toys and blanket can make your animal feel more relaxed and ease their transition. When they’ve reached the point that their quality of life makes euthanasia the best option, they may be in pain.

You can create a comforting environment for your beloved cat by providing warm blankets and familiar objects, such as stuffed animals. This is a way to surround them with warmth and familiar scents and also offer a soft surface to rest on and alleviate discomfort.

Related content: How do I prepare my dog for euthanasia?

3. Offer Your Cat Their Special Treats But in Small Portions

If your cat has a favorite treat, you can let them enjoy it in moderation. However, be careful not to overdo it. Check with your vet first to ensure it won’t make them feel worse. Occasionally, some medications make animals nauseated. This is entirely normal, and your vet will help you handle it if it happens.

If giving your cat some treats is approved by the vet, give them small bites and wait a few moments in between. The last thing you want is for them to eat too much too quickly and feel ill.

Hand-feeding your pet with small treats is also a good way to spend some time with them before they pass. Spoiling them a little can make their last days happy ones.

4. Consider the Presence of Your Other Pets and Family Members

Having your pet's favorite people and animal companions present during the euthanasia process can help to reduce stress and provide support. It is also beneficial for small children to be involved in the process, as it can help them understand what has happened and cope with their loss. It is important, however, to have an honest and age-appropriate conversationwith them about the procedure. If you have older children who live away from home, let them know in advance, so they can be present if they wish.

If they are able to remain calm, it may also be helpful for other pets to be present. Animals grieve their friends and seeing their companion pass on may help them process the loss in their own way.

Presence of Your Other Pets and Family Members

5. Decide What Comes Next

Planning ahead for aftercare can be helpful during this difficult time. Euthanizing a cat can be emotionally draining and by making informed decisions in advance, you can have more time to focus on your cat and make the most of your remaining time together.

In some states, burying pet bodies in the yard may not be an option, so it may be necessary to consider cremation or other burial options. CodaPet offers cremation services that allow you to plan for your pet's euthanasia and aftercare needs at the same time. By taking care of these practicalities ahead of time, you can alleviate some of the burden and focus on spending quality time with your cat.

Find the Right End-of-Life Care Option for Your Cat

When a cat is suffering and has lost quality of life, pet euthanasia can be the final gift of love you give to your pet.

CodaPet provides compassionate pet euthanasia services to make your cat’s passing as peaceful as possible for both of you. If you are considering euthanasia for your beloved feline and need assistance, CodaPet is here to support you and your cat every step of the way.

Dr. Karen Whala

Fresno, CA


Dr. Karen Whala has always had a soft spot for the older pets she’s treated in practice and saw a need for these beloved pets to pass peacefully at home rather than in a clinic setting. To that end, she started Peaceful Passing in 2018 to help families assist their terminally ill, injured, or suffering pets as they transitioned from life in the Fresno and Clovis areas.  Read More