For pet owners and practitioners, the events surrounding the end of a pet’s life are as important and meaningful as the sum of all the care provided throughout his lifetime. That’s why AAHA teamed up with the International Association for Animal Hospice and Palliative Care (IAAHPC) to provide the 2016 AAHA/IAAHPC End-of-Life Care Guidelines.

End-of-life decisions are medically, emotionally, and ethically challenging for everyone involved. After the loss of a pet, studies show 30 percent of pet owners experience significant grief and 50 percent will doubt their decision following euthanasia.

In addition, team members who work with end-of-life patients and their owners have a higher risk of developing compassion fatigue. In veterinary medicine, these issues are especially prevalent because veterinary professionals encounter death three times more often than their human medicine counterparts.

A first for the veterinary profession, these groundbreaking guidelines will provide your practice team with the framework and tools to develop a comprehensive, collaborative end-of-life plan and better recognize the needs of your patients, clients, and team members during this difficult time.

Sponsored by the AAHA Foundation, Aratana Therapeutics, Ceva Animal Health, and MWI Animal Health/AAHA MARKETLink, the 2016 AAHA/IAAHPC End-of-Life Care Guidelines review the latest information to help staff address central issues and perform essential tasks to improve the quality of life of a pet who has entered the final life stage. In addition, these guidelines define the role of each staff member so everyone on the healthcare team can work together to offer the best-quality medical care.

Aligning your practice’s protocols with AAHA guideline recommendations is a key step in ensuring your practice continues to deliver the highest standards of care.

Access the end-of-life guidelines and more online at

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