I have just finished conducting a very sad but peaceful euthanasia appointment for an elderly lady’s old dog. All went as it should but the thing for me that really made this one experience stand out was the timely human lesson that it provided. You see, the lady in question clearly had some degree of dementia and although everyone took their time to explain, guide and otherwise help make the ultimate decision for her pet go as peacefully as it could, there was a lot of repetition and, in effect, use of the sort of communication skills that one would apply with a child. Her son – a lovely gentleman who clearly loves his mum dearly – was, it could be seen, becoming somewhat frustrated with his mother, something which those of us with aging parents or family members will be able to identify with. The tragedy is the fact that we find ourselves, as human beings, getting frustrated and perhaps becoming short with our loved ones in such situations and all it does is then leave us with an intense sense of guilt at having reacted in such a way. We know, of course, that our loved one is not being the way they are on purpose or to goad us and irk us in any way but it is the human failing that we react the way that we do. My nurse colleague, Claire, and I were talking afterwards and she showed me a video that she had been sent by her own father that really struck a huge chord with me and very nearly moved me to tears, as I believe it sums up in 4 minutes everything that is so devastating about such situations. I thoroughly recommend watching it and challenge anyone not to feel moved and want to call their dad immediately.