What To Expect
When you call:
You can contact us via email (email@example.com) or phone (727-210-5517) during business hours (Monday-Friday 8am-4pm). You can expect a call, text or return email within 4 hours. Evenings, weekends and holidays, responses may be delayed. Calls made to us after 5pm will be returned in the morning. Our voicemail or auto responder will be more specific about when you can expect to hear back from us. Our Facebook page will also have updates on availability. We are happy to answer questions and talk to you about your pet’s quality of life. Please understand that without a physical examination, we cannot give you specific advice about your pet’s medical care. Weekend and evening appointments are available on a limited basis. The more notice you give us, the better the chance that we can get to you after hours.
If you schedule a house call pet hospice or pet euthanasia appointment, the veterinarian may bring an assistant or technician to help. For everyone’s safety, please allow our staff to handle your pet for examinations and injections. For pet euthanasia appointments, you will be able to hold your pet immediately following the sedative injection. If your pet is fearful or doesn’t like to be handled, please let us know ahead of time so we can make arrangements to reduce their stress level.
Photograph provided by Laurie Meehan-Elmer.
Pet Hospice Appointments:
Pet hospice visits take place in your home and last approximately 1-3 hours. We will need your records from your veterinarian (including lab results and doctor’s notes) sent to firstname.lastname@example.org or fax to 866-622-6461 beforehand for review. At the visit, we’ll talk about your pet’s condition, a physical examination will be performed by a licensed veterinarian, and recommendations will be made for care. If you are considering euthanasia, that service can be performed at any hospice visit. The only additional charge will be for cremation.
Pet Euthanasia Appointments:
You do not have to have a hospice appointment prior to in-home euthanasia. All new patients must have a brief physical examination prior to sedation unless they are aggressive. If you are unsure if euthanasia is appropriate, then we can address your concerns at this time. You may decide to return to your veterinarian, have a hospice consultation with me, or proceed with euthanasia. We will support you in whatever decision you make.
If you choose to euthanize your pet, we will have you sign a consent form. Part of that form is a waiver that your pet has not bitten anyone or had contact with wildlife recently. If your pet has bitten you or another person, it is extremely important that you let us know before we set an appointment.
Euthanasia visits can take place at your home (inside or outside), at a location special to you and your pet or at an outdoor location near my office in Seminole, FL (meet-up appointment). Appointments typically last 20-45 minutes (we schedule every patient for an hour, just in case you need it). All pets will receive a sedative injection to relax them before euthanasia. If your pet is eating and not vomiting, having some special treats or even table food available to distract them can ease this process. The injection is given under the skin and may sting for a brief moment. After that, your pet will fall asleep (sometimes they even snore). Once they are sleeping and you are ready, the final injection will be given. Your family will be given time to say goodbye to your pet. If you find yourself needing more or less time, feel free to say so.
The doctor or technician will provide you with a lock of your pet’s fur and a clay paw print before leaving. If you would like more than one, please let us know.
Helping Hands can arrange for cremation of your pet. The doctor or technician will prepare your pet for transport in a basket or on a stretcher. You are welcome to come out to the car to say goodbye. If you prefer to make your own arrangements, please let us know. If you aren’t sure what to do, just ask – we are here to help.