Milwaukie resident Julie Brundage turned to Lap of Love when her cherished dog, Baloo, began to show signs of slowing down

"People assume my job is depressing, and they're shocked when I tell them it isn't," said Dr. Lori Braun, a mobile veterinarian specializing in pet hospice care and in-home euthanasia. Braun works for Lap of Love, a national network of veterinarians dedicated to providing in-home hospice care; she administers to patients in the metro area, including Clackamas County.

PHOTO BY ELLEN SPITALERI - Milwaukie resident Julie Brundage offers Baloo a special treat during a home visit with Lap of Love veterinarian Dr. Lori Braun.Statistics show that there are about 54 million senior pets in the United States, and Braun said helping those pets and their families is "immeasurably satisfying."

Providing in-home euthanasia "can be helpful to the grieving process; having a pet pass away at home can be the first step to healing," Braun said.

"Euthanasia is a final gift of love. You are helping them pass away with dignity, before struggling becomes suffering. Helping these pets is a way of rewarding a perfect life with a perfect passing."

PHOTO BY TERRI JACOBSON - Dr. Lori Braun, a mobile veterinarian with Lap of Love, poses with Gizmo, her 8-year-old French bulldog, and Noodle, her 11-year-old Chihuahua.She added, "I'm grateful for the ability to help families. Studies show that the loss of a pet is just as traumatic as the loss of a human family member. In both cases, you've lost a loved one."

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