Let’s Talk: Navigating the Painful Choice of Pet Euthanasia with Dr. David Sender

Dr. David Sender shares his insight as a resident at The Auburn University Veterinary School of Medicine into navigating the painful choice of euthanasia for pets. 

David Sender on Pet Euthanasia
Dr. David Sender is a resident at The Auburn University Veterinary School of Medicine.

Who Is Dr. David Sender?

Dr. Sender is a Chicago, Illinois native who completed his veterinary training at the University of Illinois. After his time there, he went to Colorado State where he completed a small animal rotating internship. He then went on to be a Clinical Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine at Midwestern University College of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. Sender is now a resident at The Auburn University Veterinary School of Medicine. 

My Experience with Dr. Sender:

As many of you all know, I lost my beloved buddy Cam in April of this year. His passing was unexpected and excruciatingly painful, though God in his kindness has blessed my family and me through support and love from our community. After a few days of frantic veterinary visits here in Birmingham, I made the decision to take Cam to the teaching hospital at Auburn University Vet School. This is one of the most advanced clinics in the United States for difficult cases in animals large and small. Here we met Dr. Sender, who gently and gracefully walked with us through our last few days with Cam. He cared for Cam in his last days, and eventually performed the euthanasia after we all came to the conclusion that this was the most loving thing to do.

           Dr. Sender helped us determine how to best love our Cam until the very end.


                       I am so grateful for the six years my family and I had with our beloved Goldendoodle Cam.

Things We Discussed In This Podcast:

  • How to go approach the painful choice of euthanasia, and how to determine if this is the most loving option for a beloved pet.
  • We discuss this decision from the pet owner’s perspective and from the vet’s perspective.
  • Dr. Sender addressed the factors that should be considered before choosing euthanizing pets.
  • Dr. Sender emphasized that the decision should be a team effort between owners (who are distraught and emotional) and vets (who have more objectivity, but not always clear answers).
  • Dr. Sender addressed considerations for different scenarios. He addressed dogs who have severe trauma and/or a poor diagnosis. Dr. Sender also discussed what this choice looks like when dogs are just declining due to “old age.”
  • Dr. Sender shared his perspective in discussing the emotional toll performing euthanasia causes vets. He notes that different pets and family dynamics are harder to handle than others.

I hope you enjoyed this episode! As always, if you have time to rate, review and subscribe to The SavvyCast on iTunes, it would be SO appreciated!!! Blessings to you!!!

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