When to Put a Dog Down – Your Guide To Saying Goodbye


The fact that you’re seeking info on when to put a dog down tells me you’re struggling right now. First, I’m so sorry you’re going through this… This is not an easy time for any animal lover. I am sure your pet appreciates that you’re taking the time to figure out what is best here.

As an animal communicator, people hire me to psychically connect to their dog so I can ask the pet directly, “Is it time?” So, I’ve had the opportunity to learn about pet euthanasia and what it means right from the dogs (and animals) themselves. Because of that, I’d like to introduce you to the concepts that the animals have shared with me about this, through my thousands of animal communication readings over the years. Of course, you’ve already been considering your dog’s quality of life, ability to eat and drink, and whether or not they’re in pain – but here are some other factors that dogs I’ve psychically worked with have wanted their humans to consider as well.

How Do You Know When to Put a Dog Down

Deciding when to put a dog down (euthanize) is an immensely challenging and emotional process that many pet owners face. The journey to this decision involves a delicate balance of compassion, empathy, and a deep understanding of your furry friend’s well-being. And it’s not just that! Of course you don’t want to make the wrong decision (we all worry about that – but more on that later), but you also may deal with people who don’t even sympathize with your predicament – people saying “It’s only a dog!” (UGH!)

The silver lining is, there are SO many people out there (like me) who do understand the tough place you’re in. And while you’re weighing the usual pros and cons (I’m sure you’ve already been pouring over these questions: what is her quality of life like? Can she still eat? Is she in pain?), you’ll have an easier time making this decision if you take into account the big picture.

when to euthanize dog

Trust Your Intuitive Connection with Your Dog

Your dog is tapped into you intuitively at all times. Whether you’re trying to send a message to him or not – he’s aware of your thoughts, feelings, emotions, and ideas. He’s also able to subtly send you his own thoughts, feelings, and emotions as well – and you don’t have to be a professional psychic to pick these messages up. 

Knowing how connected your dog is to you may help you trust your gut more in the decisions you’re making around his health and well-being. 

Assessing a Dog’s Quality of Life 

Assessing a dog’s quality of life, when faced with this incredibly tough decision, means considering various aspects. Physical, emotional, and behavioral. Before we move forward, here are some key factors to help you evaluate your furry friend’s well-being:

  • Physical Health:
    • Pain Levels: Monitor for signs of pain, discomfort, or distress. Persistent pain can significantly impact a dog’s quality of life.
    • Mobility: Evaluate your dog’s ability to move comfortably. Mobility issues, whether due to age or illness, can affect overall well-being.
  • Appetite and Hydration:
    • Eating Habits: Changes in appetite, refusal to eat, or difficulty swallowing may indicate underlying health issues.
    • Hydration: Ensure your dog stays adequately hydrated. Dehydration can exacerbate health problems.
  • Behavioral Changes:
    • Interest in Activities: Note any decline in your dog’s interest in activities they once enjoyed.
    • Interaction: Assess their social behavior and interaction with family members and other pets.
  • Cognitive Function:
    • Mental Alertness: Changes in mental alertness or cognitive decline can impact your dog’s overall happiness.
    • Response to Stimuli: Evaluate how your dog responds to stimuli and environmental changes.
  • Incontinence and Hygiene:
    • Toileting: Incontinence or difficulty with toileting may affect your dog’s comfort.
    • Grooming: Consider their ability to groom themselves. A decline in personal hygiene can be a sign of distress.
  • Comfort and Sleeping Patterns:
    • Sleep Quality: Observe their sleep patterns and assess whether they are restful.
    • Comfort: Ensure your dog has a comfortable and safe environment.
  • Veterinary Guidance:
    • Consultation: Regular veterinary check-ups are crucial. It’s important to seek your vet’s advice to understand your dog’s specific health conditions.
    • Pain Management: Discuss pain management options with your veterinarian to enhance your dog’s comfort.
  • Emotions:
    • Happiness: Does your pet seem happy?
    • Enjoyment: Do they have things they still enjoy that they can do?

Assessing your dog’s quality of life is a deeply personal and compassionate process. It requires a thoughtful consideration of their individual needs and an understanding of their overall happiness and well-being.

The Unseen Animal Dying Process

At the Soul Level, your dog possesses a profound wisdom and purpose in your life. Dogs, as spiritual companions, have specific roles in our healing, evolution, and connection to unconditional love. Once they fulfill these roles, they embark on a transition that transcends the physical realm.

1. Soul’s Graduation:

Did you know your pet’s soul is all-knowing, having already navigated the path of healing and love? 

Dogs have specific jobs with each of us: they want to help us heal, evolve, and align with unconditional love (they have already done this themselves) in addition to loving us. When they have completed their job with us, they leave our lives in some way. (You can read about this and how to work with it in my Animal Lessons book). At the Soul Level, dogs embrace death as a graduation in which they are moving from one level, with a certain job to another level with a certain job. And when they’ve completed their job, they then move on to planning out their passing. 

2. Planning at the Soul Level:

The unseen, soul-level planning guides the animal dying process, a concept often misunderstood by those seeking information on when to put your dog down. Animals, including your dog, actively participate in choosing the how, where, when, and even who will be present during their passing. Euthanasia is one of the choices animals may make, even though it’s difficult for many to understand this.

3. Trusting Your Gut:

Trust becomes a crucial element in discerning your dog’s wishes amid your own emotions, fears, and heartbreak. No matter what choice you make, you can’t go wrong. Your dog (cat etc.!) is actually running the show from that Soul Level. 

So how can you make sure that it’s your dog’s wish rather than your fear or broken heart?  Trust.  Trusting your gut ensures that your dog can get his/her wishes through to you. When you go with your gut here, it can also help alleviate years of guilt, if your gut is saying, “It’s time” because you know that you’re giving your dog what they’re asking for.

When is it Time to Euthanize a Dog?

Deciding to euthanize a beloved dog is one of the most challenging moments a pet owner faces. It involves a delicate balance of compassion, understanding, and navigating through various considerations.

First of all, the decision to euthanize a dog often comes with emotional turmoil. Understanding the depth of your connection with your pet and acknowledging the pain of separation is crucial. Navigating through your emotions becomes a significant part of the decision-making process. Trusting your feelings and recognizing the impact on your dog’s quality of life are paramount.

Second, facing unsolicited opinions from others can add complexity to an already difficult decision. People may have contrasting views, making it essential to filter external input. While advice from friends and family may be well-intentioned, the ultimate decision rests with you, as the pet owner. Trusting your connection with your dog and your understanding of their needs is key.

Last but not least, consider the pros and cons. The decision of when to put your dog down involves a thorough evaluation of your dog’s current state. So weighing the pros and cons requires a comprehensive assessment of your dog’s ability to engage in daily activities and enjoy life, while also maintaining a reasonable level of comfort.

Ultimately, navigating the challenge of deciding when it’s time to euthanize a dog requires a blend of compassion, self-reflection, and trust in your connection with your pet. 

Understanding Animal Afterlife: What Happens to Your Dog After Death? 

Here are some additional resources for you to explore as you and your dog feel your way through this tough situation. Understanding what animals are experiencing as they cross over, may make it easier for you to make your decision.

Subscribe to my YouTube channel and find out more about how to connect with your pet on the other side

For more information on pet loss, check out this link. Knowing what happens with a pet after it crosses over may help give you some relief in making your decision with your beloved pet.

Want to talk to your pet who’s passed into the afterlife as soon as tonight? My Dream Connect Method is perfect for this! Knowing that pets can communicate after death is a source of hope and reassurance for those who have lost their beloved companion. Download my Dream Connect Method here and learn how to connect with your pet in the afterlife.

Whatever you decide, know that your pet loves you and I love you too. Your dog thanks you for taking the time to make sure you’re making the best decision for his greatest and highest good.