Sunset Home Veterinary Care is a veterinary service that delivers palliative care options and compassionate end-of-life care to older and terminally unwell pets in the comfort of their own home.

Founded by Dr Jackie Campbell, Australia’s first Internationally Certified Palliative Care Veterinarian (CHPV), Sunset Vets provides at-home specialised veterinary consultations, senior pet health care and advice, palliative care services, compassionate in-home pet euthanasia, and grief counselling and support.

Dr Campbell said that palliative care is a rapidly emerging field in veterinary medicine.

“We believe all families should have access to this type of compassionate care, leading a movement to improve care in the final weeks of life. We aim to support families through what they know are some of the most difficult of days.”

Due to increasing demand from pet owners who want the best care for their pet, the Queensland-born company is expanding to Sydney.

“As we launch in Sydney with more vets joining the team, we hope to be able to provide more and more pet owners across Australia with the option of in-home care in the future, and access to an extra gentle way to say goodbye to their much-loved pets.”

Sunset Vets’ palliative care team work closely with the pet’s GP (primary care) veterinarian and act to further support that vet hospital and client bond. Where appropriate, they also assist with referrals to other health professionals, including specialists and allied health professionals, such as animal physiotherapists.

“With an experienced support team available by phone seven days a week, we offer care and expert guidance for clients trying to work through difficult decisions around quality-of-life and euthanasia.

“When the time for goodbye comes, we work with families to ensure their pet is comfortable and that their final moments are spent with everyone feeling supported and at ease.”

Sunset Vets palliative care team not only works with senior pets, but also young pets that are facing a terminal diagnosis.

“Often, it’s a heartbreaking scenario where families may need a little extra care. Their vets assist with the medical management of the pet, but so often it’s the emotional care they deliver to the owners and families that makes the biggest difference.

“Because pets at the end-of-life stage often have more complicated needs, we allocate much longer for an appointment than in a traditional hospital setting. As well as assessing the patient, we help owners understand what to expect from their pet’s disease journey, what to look for in times of crisis, and show them how to keep their loved ones as comfortable as possible,” said Dr Campbell.

The team is also able to help with aftercare arrangements and offer pet owners access to professional grief support, having developed a unique partnership with universities across Australia to deliver a complimentary pet-loss specific grief counselling program.

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