Euthanasia of a dog, or more often referred to as “putting a dog to sleep,” is not the topic we would like to discuss every Sunday afternoon. However, the thought of putting a dog down once the animal is too old or too sick is something that most dog owners have to have in mind.
The average cost of dog euthanasia is between $50 and $300; however, there are additional costs and considerations that pet owners need to be aware of as well.
You probably consider your doggo to be your best friend, or even a member of your family, and none of us want to think about our family members passing away. But when it comes to the point of no return, it is useful to prepare yourself. This also includes knowing the costs of dog euthanasia and other expenses which might arise in the process.
While euthanizing your dog is quite a unique experience for you, and a big decision to make, it might help knowing that it has become quite a common procedure, performed on a daily basis by canine experts.
If we look at the statistics we will see a striking number of cats and dogs put to sleep on a regular basis. Between 3 and 4 million of them are euthanized every year in animal shelters alone. And this is without even counting numerous dog euthanasia cases outside of shelters where statistics are not reliable.
As PETA explains, the word euthanasia refers to the good or merciful death. Taken from the Greek language “eu” means good, and “thanatos” means death.
It is also a quite simple procedure nowadays, consisting of two injections – one which puts your dog into a very deep sleep, and the other one which slowly stops their heart rate. During the procedure, the only pain which your dog might feel is the initial pinch from the first needle, after which everything is painless and allows for a smooth transition.
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In order to be able to focus on the technicalities and saying a proper goodbye to your beloved pet, you need to be prepared for the costs of euthanasia. Vet expenses can be very high, but nothing can surprise you if you do your research and prepare on time.
On average, dog euthanasia costs anywhere between $50 and $300 in the United States, but this is not to say that it cannot go over that price. The price is affected by various factors, such as whether you are doing cremation with euthanasia, whether you are going to the vet who knows your dog or not, whether the vet is coming to your place, etc. Let’s break this all down further.
Basic Costs of Dog Euthanasia
If a veterinarian comes to your home to perform this procedure, there will be added expense of him traveling to your place. There might be a fixed price for travel to the agreed point as part of the package deal together with the procedure, or it can be a separate cost which can vary depending on the distance.
Usually the cost of a vet coming to your house to do the procedure can be around $85 to $125. You can save some money by taking your dog to the vet’s ambulance, in which case the price is on average $60.
You can also expect additional costs if you never took your dog to the exact vet who will perform the procedure. In this case, the veterinarian will decide to do the check-up before euthanasia, and it’s usually not optional.
In certain cases, vets will charge using additional medical equipment. Don’t be afraid to ask about the added euthanasia costs in advance and insist on all the costs being transparent. This means that the vet should inform you about the additional cost before using any extra equipment so that you can approve of these added costs before they are actually made.
Immediately after euthanasia, many dog owners decide to do the cremation. The costs here can also vary from $80 to $165 depending on your dog’s weight and other factors.
There are options for a discount on this part if you opt for a communal cremation. The main difference is that in this case instead of getting your dog’s ashes in an urn which you can take home, it will be performed together with other dogs’ cremation and the ashes would be scattered around, so you don't get to keep them.
Don’t be embarrassed to go for the cheaper option. Just because you want to cut down on some expenses doesn’t make you a bad person or diminish your love for the deceased pet friend. Otherwise, some owners skip cremation and choose to bury a dog instead, as long as it's legal to do so in their state.
When people die, we order gravestones, monuments or gardens to be created for their graves. Some dog owners may want to include memorabilia to remind them of their pets, and there are several options to choose from.
Instead of bringing ashes home in a regular box, we might decide to put it in a decorative urn. These urns are often provided by the pet cremation services and pet cemeteries. Prices can vary depending on our taste and preference, design and materials used. For example, a lavish dog cremation urn made of decorative materials or carved wood can reach the price of over $100.
There are even shops specialized in creating and selling things to remind you of your late dog, such as Memorial Gallery Pets. Dog owners often order framed photos, paw prints as pendants or memorial plaques to honor their animal which would incur extra costs.
If you choose to bury your dog instead, you may want to use a memorial stone. These are often cheaper than urns and there's plenty of good pet memorial stones available to purchase online as well as pet coffins for a more memorable burial.
In order to be fully prepared for dog euthanasia money-wise, always ask how much the procedure costs and if there are any additional or hidden expenses. Ask your vet about the complete process, equipment and possible extra costs that the vet expects to have. Think about whether you want to cremate your dog or bury the dog; if you want to find the right urn in advance or get a pet memorial stone, and see if there is an additional charge for delivery if you are ordering them online.
To avoid surprises when you see the dog euthanasia bill with everything added, make a list in advance. Think about the celebratory things you might want and add them to the list. When you summarize the complete costs, put aside an additional small amount of money just in case.
Dog euthanasia is definitely not the brightest topic pet owners like to discuss, but if you are an owner of a very ill or very old dog, there is a high possibility that you might face this in the near future. Having a plan can not only save the money, but also reduce your stress when the sad day comes.
It is important to be prepared for it and know how much dog euthanasia costs, especially since expenses can vary depending on many factors. Once the sufficient amount is prepared for the procedure itself, as well as the accompanying requirements, you may focus on saying proper goodbyes.