Chicago & Surrounding Suburbs
All services are provided in the comfort of your home.
Includes an examination by the veterinarian, a full assessment of your pet's quality of life, and a custom treatment plan to help you care for your pet and monitor his condition.
Includes a brief discussion with the veterinarian, medication to ensure comfort, gentle euthanasia, pawprint impression keepsake, lock of fur, and Lap of Love's Eternal Pawprints booklet. The additional cost for the varied cremation services are detailed in the Aftercare Pricing section.
Includes an examination by the veterinarian to help explain your pet's condition and discuss symptom management, including pain and anxiety. We will prepare an end of life care plan using the appropriate quality of life scale to manage your pet, along with your family's needs and desires.
Holiday appointments may be available. The following holidays incur a $100 fee when scheduled: Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day.
There may be an additional charge for extended travel (see Service Area below), pets over 99 lbs, appointments outside normal business hours (when arranged), aggressive pets, and some exotic species.
Although we mainly see dogs and cats, some of our veterinarians can assist you with other species such as ferrets, hamsters and rabbits. Call for pricing and availability.
With this option, your pet is cremated privately at a licensed crematory. The ashes are contained in a lovely wooden urn within a velvet bag. They are available directly from the crematory, can be mailed to you for $25, or can be hand-delivered to your home for an additional fee.
This option is for families that don't wish to have their pet's ashes returned nor wish to bury at home. Pets are respectfully cremated with other pets at a licensed crematory and ashes are scattered together.
There may be a fee if additional assistance to safely carry your pet out of your home is needed.
We are often available 7 days a week. We do our best to be available whenever needed, often within 1-3 hours, but this may vary with location, time of day, and prior commitments. The more advance notice given, the easier it is to schedule the appointment time desired. If this is a medical emergency, please contact your local veterinarian or see Local Resources section below.
Let us introduce you to the amazing hospice veterinarians in your area.
Juliana Lyles, DVM
Like many veterinarians, I knew I wanted to be an “animal doctor” from the time I was very young. Even though I grew up in the suburbs of Chicago with its abundance of domestic pets, there was never a shortage of injured wild animals, such as rabbits, baby birds, and even a field mouse or two whose tiny little eyes had not even opened yet, which needed my loving care.
I continued working towards my goal of becoming a veterinarian by receiving my bachelor’s degree in Zoology and Genetics from Iowa State University and my veterinary degree from Mississippi State University, where I also met my husband, William. We later added a furry member to our family, our adorable cat Trika.
Throughout my veterinary career I have had the pleasure of working with a wide variety of medical disciplines. I interned at an exotic animals only practice, cared for working Clydesdales and even studied animals at the Lincoln Park Zoo and Shedd Aquarium in Chicago. When my husband joined the army in 2010, we were relocated to Fayetteville, NC, where I concurrently worked at a small animal practice. After my husband completed his military contract, we moved back to my hometown of Chicagoland, where we plan to stay indefinitely.
I have always respected the bond between pets and their care givers, including the end of life care they receive. While I was still a young pre-veterinary student, I had to euthanize my beloved 11 year old ferret, and I realized how peaceful and comforting a process this can be when it’s done with the utmost respect and care . As a veterinarian, I hope to pass that reassurance on to all clients with whom I have the privilege of working.
Kristina Kalivoda, DVM
I grew up in the northwest suburbs of Chicago in a family that has always valued pets as members of the family. I wasn’t entirely certain I wanted to be a veterinarian, ironically because I wasn’t sure I could handle euthanasia. I received my degree in Psychology from the University of Illinois and then took a year off to work full time in a veterinary clinic as an assistant. We had only ever had dogs growing up, and I didn’t “understand” cats at all, but it was at that clinic that the hospital cat decided to attach himself to me and show me the way.
I attended vet school at the University of Illinois the next year, graduating at the top of my class. While in vet school, I discovered a passion for working with exotic animals, and completed an internship in zoological medicine at Texas A&M University, followed by a residency in avian and exotic animal medicine at Cornell University. I did miss working with dogs and especially cats, and have spent the last few years in practice working with all species.
Along the way, I collected several cats, including my long-haired orange guy Apollo. After moving back to the Chicagoland area, Apollo started to lose weight, vomit, and drink a large amount of water. He was already in severe kidney failure at the age of five. I kept him stable and happy for almost twelve months with intensive hospice care at home. He let me do everything I needed there, but he hated the hospital, so when it came time to say goodbye to him, I decided to let him pass at home. I was so surprised by how peaceful it was for him. I am so honored now to help other families say goodbye to their beloved pets peacefully and with dignity in the comfort of their own homes.
I currently live in the northwest suburbs. I most recently said goodbye to my best buddy Oscar, an amazing brown tabby who saw me through all my schooling. I have a three-legged leopard gecko named Achilles, a cockatiel named Percival (Percy), and my little black cat Imp.
Juliana Lyles, DVM
"After 19 years of companionship, the time had come. This was the first time I had to euthanize a pet and I was very anxious about the process. I found the Lap of Love website so helpful. It answered most of my questions surrounding this sad time.
But Dr. Kristina was the real gift...she came right when we were scheduled and explained everything so clearly. She helped Kitty move painlessly and peacefully from life to death. She is an extremely gifted veterinarian but also a gifted human being. I could not have asked for more...she gave our beautiful Kitty a peaceful transition and was very sensitive to how difficult this is for us owners.. Dr. Kristina, please continue to share your gift with others who are going through this difficult time. I hope you know how much I appreciated all you did for Kitty and for me."
Sue OlsenDankerOak Park, Illinois
"Pet euthanasia service is something that you never desire to use although it is often times inevitable when you have a pet. After our beloved lab mix, Logan, was diagnosed with an aggressive cancer, we knew that our time together would be a few short months at most. We knew when that dreaded day came that we would have to say goodbye to our "dog child" that it would not be easy. Our hearts told us that the only way to spend our final moments together would be in the comforts of home with him surrounded by his toys and loved ones. After contacting a number of veterinarians that offered at-home service, Lap of Love was by far the most responsive and patient with our questions and concerns.
When the day came that Logan gave us the indication that he had lived life to the fullest and that he was ready to cross the rainbow bridge, we contacted Lap of Love. Dr. Michelle greeted us with a warm embrace and she could tell that it was an incredibly emotional day for our family. Her compassion and loving care with Logan was helpful to allow him to be comfortable with a stranger. She was patient with us while we embraced our treasured last moments with him. Dr. Michelle was a great listener as we told her Logan's life story. Before she began the sedation process, she let us have as much time as we needed with him to say our final goodbyes.
Dr. Michelle gave us step-by-step details of what she was doing until she informed us that his heart had finally stopped (which he held out as long as he could). She was genuine in her understanding about how terribly difficult this situation was for us. Her ability to express empathy and sympathy really helped us when we needed it the most. Dr. Michelle somehow made this excruciatingly painful process a little more bearable.
After the process was over, she provided us with a wealth of information about dealing with pet loss which was very helpful. We are grateful for her taking as much time as we needed, before, during and after the process to help us deal with the situation. To our surprise, later that day we received a eulogy from Dr. Michelle via email (and again later via mail). Unbeknownst to us, during those final moments Dr. Michelle had listened intently to everything we had said about Logan's life. She discussed many of the highlights of his life along with how much he was loved and how he will be forever missed. As hard as it was to read, she did a phenomenal job and it's something we'll forever cherish. It truly takes a special person to do what she does and she does it well.
Losing a family member is never easy although Lap of Love allowed us to say goodbye in a loving environment. Although there is never a happy ending in this situation, being able to spend those final moments with a dog we so dearly loved in the peace and comfort of his home producing the least amount of stress on all of us most importantly to him, is something we feel very fortunate to have had access to. Thank you Lap of Love for all that you do and for your follow through on how we're doing. Your services make this world a better place."
Jocelyn Zolna-PittsChicago, Illinois
"Dr. Kristina was wonderful. She took great care of our dear Lily and was very comforting to us. I am very grateful for the care she showed our girl and the empathy she shared with us."
Roxanne BristowGurnee, Illinois
"Our family is ever grateful to Dr. Kristina for her help in setting our cat Roy free from his pain. She was a very patient and caring, and we are so fortunate to have had such a kind soul to help our best friend."
Terriann SternidayChicago, Illinois
"Dr. Kristina could not have been more helpful during this horrible time. She gently guided us through and was incredibly respectful of the heartbreak we were experiencing. She never met Riley before but treated him as if she knew how special he was. Thank you, Lap of Love, for making this a bit easier."
Teresa VahlLake Bluff, Illinois
"Dr. Kristina was so supportive and caring in proceeding with the body care portion of the service, and I was so touched by her remembering all the things I had told her of Ruskin and recounting these things in her post on Lap of Love's FB page in her tribute to Ruskin. Also impressive was how quickly she arrived and calling in advance to estimate exact time of arrival, and how understanding Lap of Love was in general regarding previous cancelled appointments (after Ruskin had a couple of unexpected brief improvements). I would highly recommend Dr. Kristina. I never felt rushed, and felt that I could be myself and grieve in my own way while she was here. Lap of Love is a truly professional service and Dr. Kristina a caring and professional vet, and they all made a very difficult time much more bearable. And my wife and I have nothing but good things to say about the private cremation services that we received the next day from Lap of Love's partner, Family's Pet Cremation. It was very dignified and compassionate. Not once did we feel like we were being sold a product. Rather we were given sincere consideration and time to grieve, and they were flexible in working with us as regards scheduling of any included or extra services we purchased (in our case, in addition to pickup, we elected to purchase viewing rights, which was very important for us, since my wife could only be there for that and thus hadn't had an earlier chance to say goodbye to Ruskin). They had a very nice small viewing room similar to a funeral parlor, which really helped to provide dignity and closure to the whole experience."
Brian SweneyChicago, Illinois
Pet Life and Loss Support Services
VCA Arboretum View
Wings support group
Premier Veterinary Group (Grayslake)
Working through pet loss support group
Premier Veterinary Group (Chicago)
Veterinary Specialty Center Counseling Services - Becky Murray, LPC
Blue Pearl (Skokie)
Chicago Vet. Med. Assn. Pet Loss Helpline
Blue Pearl (Northfield)
Companion Animal Related Emotions Pet Loss Helpline
Golf Rose Animal Hospital
VCA Berwyn Animal Hospital
Helping families in the following areas:
We assist families with in home pet hospice and euthanasia in and around the Chicagoland area. There is no additional fee for travel to the area bounded on the north by IL-176, on the west by IL-59, and on the south by I-88/I-290/Eisenhower Expy.
Extended Travel Areas (additional charge applies to these and surrounding areas):
Preferred methods of payment are check (made to 'Lap of Love') or cash.
Most pet insurance companies cover Lap of Love services. Please have any paperwork ready for the veterinarian to complete so that you can submit it for reimbursement.
Lap of Love700 Nicholas Blvd #310Elk Grove Village, IL 60007
This Lap of Love location is owned and operated by Dr. Juliana Lyles