We know how difficult this time can be, we are here to support you

Although some pets pass away at home, the large majority are euthanased by vets because their quality of life often deteriorates towards the end making euthanasia the kindest thing.

Sometimes it is obvious when that decision needs to be made, but other times it can be very hard to determine when the time is right and we can help you to determine the right time.

Euthanasia means 'gentle or easy death' and that is achieved by an overdose of anaesthetic. Apart from the prick of an injection it is painless, smooth and rapid, and can be done either at the veterinary practice or at home.

The final arrangements for your pet

There are various options available following your pets' passing. Some owners prefer to take their pet home to bury, whilst others choose to have their pet cremated.

If you decide on cremation for your pet, you can choose whether your pet is cremated along with other pets, or has a private cremation.

With a private cremation, your pet is cremated individually and their ashes are returned to you in a casket or urn for you to keep, or in a cardboard tube for you to scatter or bury.

At such an emotional time, most people choose to let us organise the cremation, but it is also possible for you to take your pet to the crematorium or pet cemetery yourself.

The Association of Private Pet Cemeteries and Crematoria website provides information about the burial or cremation of pets.

There are several pet crematoria and cemeteries in the area, but it may help you to look at the website of Cambridge Pet Crematoria Tewksebury, who provide cremation services to our Hospital.

From Friend To Friend


You're giving me a special gift,
So sorrowfully endowed,
And through these last few cherished days,
Your courage makes me proud.

But really, love is knowing
When your best friend is in pain,
And understanding earthly acts
Will only be in vain.

So looking deep into your eyes,
Beyond, into your soul,
I see in you the magic that will
Once more make me whole.

The strength that you possess,
Is why I look to you today,
To do this thing that must be done,
For it's the only way.

That strength is why I've followed you,
And chose you as my friend,
And why I've loved you all these years'.
My partner 'till the end.

Please, understand just what this gift,
You're giving, means to me,
It gives me back the strength I've lost.
And all my dignity.

You take a stand on my behalf,
For that is what friends do.
And know that what you do is right,
For I believe it too.

So one last time, I breathe your scent,
And through your hand I feel,
The courage that's within you,
To now grant me this appeal.

Cut the leash that holds me here,
Dear friend, and let me run,
Once more a strong and steady dog,
My pain and struggle done.

And don't despair my passing,
For I won't be far away,
Forever here, within your heart,
And memory I'll stay.

I'll be there watching over you,
Your ever faithful friend,
And in your memories I'll run,
'..a young dog once again.


Coping with your bereavement

If you are having difficulty coping with the loss, or impending loss, of a loved companion, you may find these sites of help:

Blue Cross - Pet bereavement support service

The Pet Bereavement Support Service offers confidential support, understanding and practical information for pet owners and others in contact with animals through its free telephone - 0800 096 6606, open 08:30am to 8:30pm every day and e-mail - support line service.

The Ralph Site

The Ralph site is a not-for-profit website that provides information for and support to pet owners around the loss of a beloved companion. It was set up by vet Shailen Jasani after his beloved cat Ralph died in a road accident.

The Samaritans

You can talk to Samaritans at any time of the day or night - call 116 123.