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Euthanasia Protocols with Dr. Cooney

Kathleen Cooney, DVM, MS, CHPV, CCFP, Companion Animal Euthanasia Training Academy, Loveland, Colorado

In this episode, host Alyssa Watson, DVM, is joined by Kathleen Cooney, DVM, MS, CHPV, CCFP, to talk about her recent Clinician’s Brief article, “Euthanasia Protocols.” Dr. Cooney discusses sedation versus anesthesia protocols, commonly and less commonly used routes of administration, and how to make the event about the pet. She shares a number of helpful tips and vital details to ensure that the final care we provide for a patient is also the best care.

Key Takeaways

  • Be prepared for each euthanasia with plans A and B…and C.
  • Pentobarbital remains the standard medication.
  • There are 5 accepted routes: intravenous, intraperitoneal, intracardiac, intrarenal, and intrahepatic.
  • There is a difference between pre-euthanasia sedation and pre-euthanasia anesthesia.
  • It’s OK to edit down explanations of euthanasia techniques, but answer questions honestly.
  • Inform clients about each step as you proceed, rather than all at once at the beginning.
  • Make the day and the procedure about the pet.

About the Guest

Kathleen Cooney, DVM, MS, CHPV, CCFP, is the Director of Education at the Companion Animal Euthanasia Training Academy in Loveland, Colorado, and the Chief Medical Officer of Caring Pathways in Denver, Colorado. Dr. Cooney is a past president of the International Association for Animal Hospice and Palliative Care (IAAHPC), where she designed the Animal Hospice and Palliative Care certification program. She has authored 2 books and numerous articles and book chapters. Dr. Cooney has collaborated in end-of-life training with AVMA, AAHA, NAVC, IAAHPC, Fear Free Program, and Society for Veterinary Medical Ethics. She is a strong advocate for best practices in all aspects of end-of-life care and speaks worldwide. Dr. Cooney is working toward board certification in animal welfare.

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The Team:

  • Alyssa Watson, DVM - Host
  • Alexis Ussery - Producer & Digital Content Coordinator
  • Randall Stupka - Podcast Production & Sound Editing
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