by Pawlicy Advisor
Veterinary Terms

What is Euthanasia?

Euthanasia is a medical procedure performed by a veterinarian to end a pet’s life painlessly. Alternatively, euthanasia may be referred to as “putting an animal down” or “putting an animal to sleep.” Euthanasia is typically performed when a pet is suffering due to a painful or incurable disease or injury.

When this procedure is performed due to the pet owner not being able to afford the appropriate veterinary treatment it referred to as economic euthanasia.

How Euthanasia Works

Most veterinarians use a type of seizure medication to perform euthanasia. An IV injection will be administered with this medication, which quickly renders the animal unconscious and then shuts their brain and heart down, resulting in their death. Euthanasia is considered a painless way to pass away, making it a humane way to end an animal’s suffering.

NOTE: Some pet insurance plans offer coverage for veterinarian-recommended and administered euthanasia.

Key Takeaways

  • Euthanasia is a painless way to deliberately end an animal’s life when they are in pain and suffering.
  • Specific pet insurance plans offer coverage for veterinarian-recommended and administered euthanasia.
  • Pet insurance is key tool in preventing economic euthanasia.

Related Terms

Exam Fees
An exam fee is the cost your veterinarian bills you for your pet’s appointment or physical examination.
Read More.
Fecal Exam
A fecal exam (or fecal flotation) is a type of diagnostic test a veterinarians use to identify internal parasites and irregularities in the stool of a dog or cat.
Read More.
Gold-Standard Care
Gold-standard care refers to the highest quality veterinary care that all pets deserve to receive.
Read More.

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