Incorporating emotional intelligence during euthanasia work


Dr Kathleen Cooney explained why practice makes perfect

At the 2023 American Veterinary Medical Association Convention, Kathleen Cooney, DVM, MS, CHPV, CCFP, DACAW resident, CEO and director of education for the Companion Animal Euthanasia Training Academy, sat down with dvm360® and shared that practicing emotional intelligence outside of veterinary medicine can help you then incorporate it while at work. Particularly in end-of-life care, emotional intelligence is a necessary skill that will help promote both your own and pet parents' well-being.

The following is a transcript of the video.

Kathleen Cooney, DVM, MS, CHPV, CCFP, DACAW resident: The best way to be better at emotional intelligence at work is to actually practice it every single day, every moment of the day. So, incorporate it into your normal life and your routine, and that way, it just kind of filters naturally into euthanasia. So when we talk about self-regulation, for example, to take those deep breaths and relax our body, we need to do that like 15 times a day, so that it's very natural during any veterinary appointment, but also in particular, in euthanasia.

And one of my favorite tips for this is that right before a euthanasia appointment, is to stop outside of that room, maybe outside of the home, if it's a home euthanasia, and just stop and pause, reflect on what's on the other side of the door and the emotions that we're about to walk into. And think about what our triggers are going to be and also of course, how we want to act, and that is one of the best ways to approach euthanasia.

Register for the upcoming Fetch dvm360 conference

Dr Cooney will be delivering lectures at the upcoming Fetch dvm360 conference in Kansas City, Missouri from August 25, 2023 to August 27, 2023. Register here today to lock in your spot! There will be a chance to earn 20 CE credit hours per individual attendee and more than 180 sessions will be featured covering an array of tracks, so there is something for everyone.

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