“Such short little lives our pets have to spend with us, and they spend most of it waiting for us to come home each day,” a well-known American journalist and author, John Grogan, quoted these lines in his best-selling book ‘Marley & Me.’

A bond so unique, just like a family that every dog lover or a dog parent would find it relatable. Cherishing the good days also must have triggered one’s mind to imagine a life without them.

It is not likely to discuss euthanasia regularly, but on second thought, it is a humane act to end a life to relieve the body from all sorts of suffering for a smooth transition. The best way to deal with euthanasia is to know about its types, procedures, and how much does it cost to put a dog down.

Euthanasia is a Greek terminology which means ‘good death.’ It is divided into two types, both of which are quite sensitive topics on the ground of medical ethics:

Passive Euthanasia

It defines the way of withdrawing or withholding treatment necessary for the continuation of the person’s life.

Active Euthanasia

It defines as a deliberate act of the physician to administer an overdose of drugs or using lethal drugs to end the life of a terminally ill person; it can be an intentional or forceful way.

Based on the consent of the patient, euthanasia is divided into three categories:

Voluntary Euthanasia

It entails the will of the person to die with the assistance of the physician and is called ‘assisted suicide.’ The person’s consent is the only critical factor here.

Non-Voluntary Euthanasia

A case wherein the person is unable to decide, and another person (guardian or well-wisher) decides death on his or her behalf is included in non-voluntary euthanasia.

Involuntary Euthanasia

This type occurs without the consent of the person.

Euthanasia of your Dog

Life plays no fair deal, but accepting the truth of being mortal relies on the fact that destiny is undeniable and letting go of no specific alternative. It is alright to precisely be sure of the right time of euthanizing, much before the actual time. In case of doubt, a word with a veterinarian can be of help. Before enquiring about how much it costs to put a dog down, a little introspection can help one decide if the time is nearing, like,

  • If the dog is suffering, is it likely that timely treatment would cure him or her? At the same time, will the cost of the treatment be affordable? Will it be worth taking the effort to save the dog, or is it okay to just let go and relieve him or her from suffering?
  • Is there any symptom that is not usual or if the regular pattern has long deviated from the normal one? An irregular ingestion habit, disturbed digestion, and excretion routine, less active or inactive human interaction, can tell a lot about the life expectancy of the dog.

Veterinary oncologist Dr. Alice Villalobos has been very thoughtful to the dog parents in consoling their emotions and worries. For a vivid understanding of the dog owners, he created an HHHHHMM Quality of Life scale, highlighting factors that help them decide if it is time. It is a well-tried, tested, and approved method that can help reduce anxiety and confusion lurking inside to decide the right time for euthanizing the dog. These factors include:

  • Hurt
  • Hunger
  • Hydration
  • Hygiene
  • Happiness
  • Mobility
  • More good days left than bad

As the parent of the dog, one must try checking these factors, note a detailed observation, and then evaluate on a scale of 1 to 10. It is quite a helpful way to look out for a dog’s quality lifespan.

If all the significant steps are planned well when there is still time, one can spend extra time with the dog, not worrying about the financial ways of dealing with the euthanizing procedure at all. It just does not fit right to search ways for asking how much it costs to put a dog down right away, but a little homework can prove to be a well-foresighted boon. There are easier ways to put down a dog to sleep these days for an easy euthanizing procedure:

First injection: To put down the dog to a night of deep sleep, a combined dose of a sedative, a pain reliever, and an anesthetic is administered. It helps the dog relax, feel no pain, and eventually fall asleep.

Second injection: The euthanasia agent is then administered, which soothingly stops the heart rate.

This procedure is as painless and straightforward as it sounds for a smooth transition well taken care of by the veterinarians. Even though the procedure is quite overwhelming, it is destined to be this way.

Now coming to the significant worry at hand, how much does it cost to put a dog down? Maybe a common question that might have crossed minds after knowing about the procedure of dog euthanasia. It differs from one case to another based on the factors chalked out for a glance:

Size of the dog: There is a different cost parameter for every size of the dog breed, mostly based on their weights.

Residential address: The location of one’s residence is an essential criterion in calculating the overall cost of vet service for in-house euthanasia. The distance of home from the veterinary center also gets added to the bill.

Crematory fees: This is an optional case, wherein it depends on the wish of the parent of the dog if s/he would have a proper burial by the vet center.

All the factors are necessary to keep in mind the size. The medications for euthanizing the dog and the anesthetic agent are not much economically favorable, prices of which differ as per the increasing dose. Logically, a bullmastiff would undoubtedly need more dose than a Pomeranian.

These doses are an efficient means to ensure that the dog experiences no pain or stress in the final moments. An estimated range in the USA is between $50 and $300 to acknowledge the query of how much it costs to put a dog down to sleep.

A veterinary hospice in Tampa, Florida, Lap of love charges $250 for euthanasia alone. However, the local animal shelters, like ASPCA/humane society, may offer a relatively affordable price (around $100). Keeping the dog’s condition into consideration, vet services provide in-house and in-office options to choose from:

Euthanasia to a Dog

In-house Euthanasia

When a veterinarian comes over for in-house euthanasia, there will be extra charges for his travel. So how much does it cost to put a dog down to sleep? Usually, it costs around $85 to $125 depending on the distance from the vet hospital. The procedure for an in-house hospice and euthanasia costs an estimate of $400 to $1000 or more sometimes.

Journeys Home Pet Euthanasia, Dane County, Wisconsin, charges around $170-$320 and $295-$445 in the inner and outer parts of the county, respectively. A regular charge of around $150 is offered by Maryland SPCA, an animal shelter in Baltimore, the USA, for dog euthanasia.

In-office Euthanasia

Taking the dog to a vet hospital is a more standard approach, wherein a few bucks can be saved. However, if the dog has not been through any check-up or treatment before from the same vet, it is more likely that the veterinarian would ask for one before following the euthanasia procedure.

It may cost around $500 or more (including additional charges) at a full-service veterinary hospital. As per Maryland SPCA, the charges can be as low as $50 for low-income dog parents. The Animal Humane Society (AHS) charges $85 for dog euthanasia and offers private and communal creation costing an additional $85 and $25, respectively, following the euthanasia cost.

Additional (or hidden) Costs

Apart from the in-house and in-office euthanasia procedures, it is mandatory to keep a check on how much it costs to put a dog down by including the hidden costs as well. The DEA license costs around $250 per year to record its controlled usage as a precautionary measure.

It is hard to estimate the extras as the change in charges vary from one service provider to another.

To remain on a safer side, it is best to have a clear picture with the vets about how much does it cost to put a dog down in advance to avoid the last-minute hassles. All the necessary details like required medical equipment, the traveling cost of the vet (in case of in-house euthanasia), or any other expenditure, are to be made transparent from the beginning.

Having financially been prepared for the distressing day in advance will give enough time to bid farewell to the most adorable family member peacefully.

Madison Lee

Madison Lee is a graduate of the University of California, Davis, with a degree in veterinary medicine. She has been an expert in pet care and animal behavior for 12 years. Her previous experience includes practicing as a veterinarian and volunteering in animal rescue organizations. She offers insights into responsible pet ownership, breed-specific care, and animal psychology. Her background includes working in animal shelters and as a pet nutrition consultant. She participates in community animal health awareness campaigns in her free time. She also enjoys trail running with her dog and is a wildlife photography hobbyist.

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