A recent article on MSNBC covered an unsettling trend. Apparently, there are pet owners out there, who know they do not have long to live, who intentionally euthanize their healthy dogs and cats in order to have them buried with them upon death. Instructions for this act have been given verbally, but have also been explicitly laid out in wills.
The article sited several examples:
1. Sam: A 17-year-old Shih-tzu whose owner sat down her family and said that the first order of business upon her death was for Sam to be euthanized so he could be buried with her.
2. K.C.: A 14-year-old Tortoiseshell cat who was euthanized based on the wishes of her 84-year-old owner.
3. Tom Tom: A healthy 2-year-old Yorkshire Terrier who was euthanized after his owner’s death because the owner felt like, “nobody would love him like he did”.
It seems as though these pet owners are requesting euthanasia because they fear the unknown – not knowing who will care for the pet, how much love and attention the pet will receive, where the pet will live, and if the pet will be taken care of in the manner to which he/she has become accustomed.
So, the article gives alternatives – namely, set up a plan. This might include looking into loving, responsible rescue organizations, setting up a trust for the pet so money is not an issue for continued care, and investing in prepaid pet health insurance so medical expenses will be covered going forward.
What do you think? What are some other alternatives to this trend?
Heather Kalinowski lives in the Seattle area with her husband, newborn son, and two rescued pups – an Italian Greyhound named Ava and a Spaniel mix named Jackson. She enjoys reading, writing, spending time with her family, and volunteering with Italian Greyhound Rescue.