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Caregiver Education – Animal Hospice

BrightHaven: Pioneer & Leader in the Emerging Field of Animal Hospice

Hospice became a way of life at BrightHaven as we have cared for hundreds of senior and special-needs animals since 1990. In doing so, we have learned so much about love and the circle of life from our animal loved ones. We focus on achieving a state of wellness, joy or balance whether for continued life or for transition. At BrightHaven we concentrate on helping the “being” to be the best they can possibly be, regardless of age, illness, or type of being – human or animal!

Our hospice care is very much aligned with hospice care for humans where love, comfort, dignity and quality of life are of the highest importance, and the spiritual aspect of the journey is highly honored. We strongly encourage anyone interested in learning about animal hospice to first read more on many available websites on the subject of death and dying including the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) and the Hospice Foundation of America (HFA).

BrightHaven provides leadership in the development and application of animal hospice and its philosophy of care. We are dedicated to improving the care and support of animals with a serious or end-of-life illness. We foster respect and awareness for animals as sentient beings and promote an understanding of death as a natural part of life.

For BrightHaven’s definition of animal hospice, please visit https://www.brighthaven.org/what-is-animal-hospice/.

Our animal hospice education, based on holistic healthcare and following the wisdom of the animals through over 600 hospice-supported deaths, includes a wide range of interesting topics:

Death is not the extinguishing of the light… It is the putting out of the lamp because the dawn has come. –Rabindranath Tagore

BrightHaven Resources to Help Your Animal Live Well Each and Every Day!

Gail & Joey
(Photo by in joy photography)
  • Walking with My Dog Through (End of) Lifean intimate look at a profound life passage, from terminal diagnosis through hospice care and natural death. (Author: Carol Howe Hulse, BrightHaven Education Program Manager)

Online Learning

  • BrightHaven Guide to Animal Hospice: The Gentle Shift – BrightHaven Founders Gail and Richard Pope paint for you a simple picture of their healing philosophy by demonstrating how they progressively learned about holistic healthcare, embraced new concepts and witnessed healing miracles. For instance, they explain what happened when, with great trepidation, they completely changed their trusted commercial diet to one based on raw meat. Gail and Richard also share how a beautiful black cat profoundly shifted their thinking about natural death.
  • BrightHaven Guide to Holistic Animal Hospice: Navigating a Terminal Diagnosis – One of the most difficult things for any animal lover or pet parent to hear is being told by the vet that your animal’s illness is terminal. This course, presented by BrightHaven President and Founder Gail Pope and Education Program Manager Carol Hulse, helps you to navigate this path with a deeper sense of peace, confidence and clarity. It includes a variety of tools to help you to plan and implement the best way forward for your unique situation.
  • BrightHaven Holistic Animal Hospice: Fundamentals – BrightHaven is a leader in the emerging field of animal hospice AND we’re also renowned for our holistic healthcare. We’ve combined these two specialties into this course, presented by BrightHaven President and Founder Gail Pope and Education Program Manager Carol Hulse, as many pet parents and other animal lovers want to learn more about animal hospice in general – and holistic animal hospice care in particular – to help their loved ones live the best life possible each and every day!
  • BrightHaven Guide to Animal Hospice: The Animal Dying Experience – In this two-part course, BrightHaven Founders Gail and Richard Pope, who have been present at more than 600 animal deaths, will take you through the final stages of the animal dying experience and how this very special time of life is approached and honored at BrightHaven. They also offer some practical things that can be done by the caregiver for hospice support, which is focused on the animal’s comfort and wellbeing. You will discover that the dying process and death are nothing to fear, which is one more important life lesson from the animals.

Other Resources: