Ensuring Your Pet's Care In The Event Of Your Death

As a pet owner, you care for your pet very deeply and only want what's best for them. Have you considered how what's best for them will be handled in the event of your death? To learn more about how to ensure that your pet is well cared for in case of tragedy, consider the three tips below.

Consider Who Will Provide Emergency Care

While it's not something that anyone likes to think about, for many, severe injury or death is an unexpected occurrence. If such a tragedy were to befall you, do you have emergency care in place for your beloved pet?

Emergency care is important for the health and wellbeing of your pet and will ensure that they stay safe and cared for in the midst of such a tragedy. It can be easy for loved ones to completely forget that you have pets to care for or for them to assume that you already have emergency care set up. This is why it's so important to choose a few responsible friends or relatives who you can provide the emergency care that your pet will need.

Make a list of loved ones who you would trust 100% with the care of your pet. After making the list, ask each loved one whether they'd be willing and able to provide such a service in the event of your death. For those who agree, provide them with keys to your home, a packet of information regarding your pet's usual care (including diet, grooming, veterinarian, exercise, etc.), and any information regarding who you have chosen to care for your pet permanently.

Consider Who Will Provide Long Term Care and Guardianship

Once you've ensured that your pet is cared for in the short term, it's time to take a look towards long term pet care and guardianship plans.

Similar to choosing a short-term caregiver, it's important that you choose someone who is not only willing and able to provide the care that your pet will need for the rest of their life, but who you also trust to make the best decisions (health and otherwise) for your furry companion. It's best to choose someone who has pets of their own or who has experience caring for pets in the long run. It's also vital that whoever you choose, you provide them with a backup option in the event that they change their mind or circumstances don't allow for them to uphold their promise. You may choose another loved one as a backup option, or worst case scenario, a trusted rescue or no-kill shelter whom you trust to care for your pet until they can find them a new forever home.

Set Up a Trust to Ensure Proper Care for Your Pet

Now that you've set up the short term and long term care of your pet, it's time to think about what this care will cost and how you can fund it.

Your best option for funding is to set up a trust. A trust will ensure that your pet is cared for exactly as you see fit, and that funds will be provided for each and every expense your pet may need for their health, wellbeing, and happiness. It's usually best to choose someone other than the caregiver to be the trustee, as this will prevent conflicts of interest. When funding the trust, keep in mind that your pay may live longer than expected, may require emergency medical care, and that costs such as feeding and grooming will likely increase as the years go on.

To learn more about how to set up a trust for your pet and how to ensure that your pet's guardianship is handled legally, consult with an estate planning attorney today. Contact a firm like Lynn Jackson Shultz & Lebrun PC to learn more.