Client handout: Help kids say goodbye to their pets
Sarah Mouton Dowdy
Sarah Mouton Dowdy, a former associate content specialist for dvm360.com, is a freelance writer and editor in Kansas City, Missouri.
Age-appropriate ways of talking about veterinary euthanasia and honoring the life of a dear departing pet.
Click on the logo to learn more about this series.Euthanasia offers a unique opportunity to help children understand and process death-perhaps for the first time. And while it's true that parents are the ultimate experts on their children, if they approach you for advice on what to tell their kids, telling clients to say "whatever feels right" misses the boat. If these clients knew what was "right," they wouldn't be asking you!
Give clients something more concrete (or in this case, paper). The handout below offers age-appropriate advice to guide parents through the euthanasia discussion with their kids. (Heads up: The handout encourages parents to reach out to their veterinarian if they are unable to have the discussion on their own, so be ready to provide support. This article can help.)