Final Care Planning
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Sharing your life with an animal companion involves more than just romping in the sunshine, or spending quiet time together lounging on a Sunday afternoon. It’s about taking responsibility for the complete welfare of another being. And, as you well know, it often feels as if your pet has taken on the same level of responsibility for your happiness and well-being in return!
According to Nick Trout, a staff surgeon at Boston's Angell Animal Medical Center and author of Tell Me Where It Hurts: A Day of Humor, Healing and Hope in My Life as an Animal Surgeon, our pets give us a sense of purpose and a reason for getting up in the morning. “Pets devour the loneliness,” he writes. “They ground us, help us escape the grief, make us laugh, and take full advantage of our weakness by exploiting our furniture, our beds, and our refrigerator. We wouldn't have it any other way. Pets are our seat belts on the emotional roller coaster of life–they can be trusted, they keep us safe, and they sure do smooth out the ride.”
Yes, they do. And it’s up to us to consider the many ways we can return their kindnesses, by helping them to live their best lives while in your company. That means keeping them healthy, well-exercised and well-fed. Visiting their veterinarian regularly, and returning the love they give us tenfold.
What is “Responsible Care”?
According to the detailed list provided by the Association for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, responsible pet care includes:
Fortunately, our community has a wealth of resources for the responsible pet parent–including this website. Check out our growing archive of Living Well resources, which includes a page of Helpful Community-based Links–and if you’re on Facebook, friend our page. We’ll keep you up-to-date on pet care resources in our area, all in the effort to help you live well with your animal companion.
Nick Trout quotation
ASPCA “Responsible Care”