Kitchener-Waterloo

Vet college looking at how to make putting down a pet less traumatic

A researcher with the Ontario Veterinary College is in the process of looking at ways to provide veterinary staff with better resources to make the process of putting down a pet easier for owners.

Alisha Matte wants to help vets make the process more comfortable for pet owners

A researcher with the Ontario Veterinary College is in the process of looking at ways to provide veterinary staff with better resources to make the process of putting down a pet easier for owners. (Atlantic Veterinary College)

A researcher with the Ontario Veterinary College is looking at ways to help veterinary staff make the process of putting down a pet less traumatic for everyone involved.

Alisha Matte, a researcher with the Ontario Veterinary College (OVC), and her team are hoping to create guidelines to help vets make a more comfortable experience for pet owners.

Her research has entered its second, which will look specifically at pet owners experiences. The first phase involved numerous interviews and an Ontario-wide survey for vet staff.

Matte said they will be conducting interviews with pet owners next and have an online survey open for pet owners to weigh in online as well. 

The support that a pet owner receives from their vet when their pets are euthanized can either help alleviate or, in some cases, aggravate a pet owner's grief, Matte said.

"Our whole intention really is to make sure that experience for [pet owners] is the best possible," Matte said.

"So giving veterinary staff the resources and information that they need so they can better understand what they can do to help pet owners through that process."

She said vets often rely on their own past experiences to help pet owners through the moment.

"Vets really just want to do their absolute best not only for the animal's sake ... but also recognizing that's a huge experience and source of grief for the owners as well," Matte said.

now