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In-Home Pet Hospice

Realizing a beloved pet has entered their end stage of life can sometimes be overwhelming. We never want them to grow old or have their life shortened due to a life limiting issue. But, when they do we are often faced with very difficult decisions. Pet Hospice is limited to supportive care of chronically or terminally ill pets or acutely debilitated pets of any age. River Valley Gateway does not offer routine veterinary services nor invasive surgical procedures. However, River Valley Gateway does offer three levels of care, level 1 which is palliative care, level 2 which is early hospice care and level 3 which is advanced hospice care. We will work with your primary veterinary hospital in obtaining recent diagnostic tests to help complete an individualized plan. Occasionally, additional diagnostics or repeat diagnostics may be necessary to modify an already existing plan. When necessary your pet may need to travel to your regular veterinarian’s office for these tests. However, because we would like to keep the pet at home as much as possible, blood draws can be done in the home in most circumstances. If River Valley Gateway obtains blood for testing, blood work results may not be available for 24-48 hours. Pet hospice care is a unique approach to their end-of-life needs focusing on the pet’s comfort rather than finding a cure for their disease. Blood work results in these cases would serve to allow a professional opinion on how far the disease has progressed in order to help with decision making. Hospice functions on the principle that death is a part of life.

  • Initial home visit and medical assessment for quality of life (~2 hours)
    • review of your pet’s medical records
    • disease education to understand the disease process and what can be anticipated
    • professional opinion on disease trajectories
    • pain assessment and client education on quality of life pain scales
    • home environment assessment
  • Individualized treatment plan
    • additional medications for pain control (we will work directly with your current veterinarian to obtain these medications through their office)
    • nutrition and fluid support (most nutritional supplies or fluid support supplies can be purchased from your regular veterinarian in the event these are necessary)
    • assistance with mobility issues
    • wound care 
    • daily enrichment ideas
  • In-home recheck exams 
  • Follow-up phone calls
  • Changes to treatment plans as necessary