A few months ago I visited a couple’s home in the heart of Denver. I was welcomed into the home by a woman with tears in her eyes. She brought me to where her husband was seated on the floor in the other room, as he held his sweet Basset Hound in his arms dearly. This beautiful pup had passed away overnight, and they spent every moment cherishing him until they said their goodbyes. I remember another appointment where I was greeted by a couple in their backyard, and they told me precious stories of their big German Shepherd, who got his name Einstein because of how smart he was.
These are two of many experiences that I greatly hold dear to my heart, as each pet’s story is a constant reminder of the immensity of love and value our furry family members bring to us.
My name is Thomas and I serve on the Caring Pathways Field Service Team. In this article, I will be writing about what to expect from us when your beloved pet has passed on their own time, either before or after a Home Euthanasia appointment has been scheduled.
Meet Our Field Service Team
Our Field Service Team (FST) is available to serve our clients by either assisting our expert veterinary staff, as needed, or to retrieve and transport a beloved pet that has passed to the crematory. Our team is also utilized when assistance is needed to carry a loved one to the vehicle after an In-Home Euthanasia.
If your pet passes away at home and you decide to utilize Caring Pathways, you will be greeted on the phone or electronically by our kind and respectful Client Care Team, who will guide you through scheduling the pick up, as well as memorialization and cremation options.
After the appointment is scheduled, you will receive a phone call from our FST member with their estimated time of arrival. During this phone call, they will kindly ask to confirm any details about your requests and will answer any questions or concerns.
Upon arrival, our FST member will ask to come into your home and share their condolences. Here they can further discuss any plans you have for memorials or if you have any questions or changes regarding the cremation process. Should you need more support, we will provide grief support information and resources in a folder, including the contact information for our in-house grief support specialist.
When you are ready, our FST member will gently tuck your pet into a basket or stretcher with soft blankets and towels for carrying to the vehicle, which will all be used to safely transport your pet to the crematory. The FST will then step out of the home so that you can take as much time as needed for saying any last goodbyes.
Every home I walk into serves as a reminder that every human-animal bond is unique and filled with loving memories. I use these moments to remember to respect and treat every pet with care and dignity throughout the rest of their journey. I often will say a prayer and send many wishes of peace and blessings. I am honored to serve our pet loving community, and experience so much gratitude for the lessons I learn from these relationships. Memories of Einstein and many others teaches me to not sweat the small stuff; that the dramas of life are easily surmounted when we remember the love that we have around us, especially the love that is always freely and readily given by our pets.
I often hear the statement or get asked the question:
“This job must be so hard…how do you do it?”
To which, I explain that although these are some of the hardest experiences to go through in life, it is a blessing to be reminded of the Love that we share with our beloved pets and each other, and how it is one of the pinnacles of who we are. It truly is “what it is all about.”
Written by: Thomas Zachar, Field Service Team Member
Tom was born and raised in the Midwest where he earned his Bachelor’s degree in Psychology. Since making his way to Boulder in 2014, Tom has worked in a multitude of fields and eventually found his way onto the Caring Pathways team through his brother, Dr. Steve.
Pioneering the Field Service Team, his intention is to provide the best support in whatever way possible to his colleagues and clients. His understanding of the love that we share with our animals allows him to be grateful and have compassion for this step in the journey.
In his spare time he enjoys walks with his Shepherd mix Sasha, playing games, and reading books.