Philadelphia & Surrounding Areas | South Jersey | Delaware
All services are provided in the comfort of your home.
Includes a brief 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 their condition.
Includes a 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 a brief examination by the veterinarian to help explain your pet's condition, discuss symptom management including pain and anxiety, and 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.
There may be an additional charge for extended travel (see Service Area below), holidays ($50 - $100), 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 pigs, guinea pigs, rabbits, ferrets, birds, fish, and goats. 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 with an engraved nameplate and will be returned to your primary care veterinarian within two weeks. They can also be made available directly from the crematory or mailed to you 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 at Nonantum Vet Clinic in Landenberg, PA.
There may be a fee if additional assistance to safely carry your pet out of your home is needed.
We are here to answer your questions every day, from 7am - 11pm. Appointments are scheduled throughout the week, please call for availability.
Sometimes, pets take a turn for the worse overnight, so we do our best to accommodate same day appointments with a few hours notice when possible.
If this is a medical emergency, please contact your local veterinarian or one of the emergency clinics listed in the Local Resources section.
Let us introduce you to the amazing hospice veterinarians in your area.
Brad Bates, VMD
People often ask me why I do what I do. For me, the ability to help pets and their loving families through a difficult time, and in doing so provide more comfort for everyone involved, is more than enough reason. It is a huge honor to help pets spend their last days or weeks or even months in more comfort, and with their families by their side. Everyone speaks of the difficulty of providing hospice care, but for me it is never difficult. Each and every pet and family I help shows me a deeper appreciation for the human animal bond. I feel the love between a family and a pet every time I step into a new home. It is a wonderful thing to be a part of, and to make a difficult situation better is exactly the reason I became a veterinarian.
I received my veterinary degree from the University of Pennsylvania. Although I have experience in a wide array of small animal care, end-of-life and hospice care has truly been a calling for me. I'm so grateful that I can share my experience and understanding to you.
Like most veterinarians, my home consists of many pet children: I have 3 cats and a chinchilla. Like most pet parents, I understand the fear involved when they are sick. The fear of not knowing what to do, how to help, what is too much and most importantly when is it an appropriate time to let them pass peacefully. These are tough decisions, and you need the assistance of someone that will focus on you and your pet specifically. I offer the service I would want in return when those sad days happen to me. Being at home, surrounded by loved ones, and a peaceful goodbye.
One thing I’ve learned after being blessed with such great pets in the past, is that you have to enjoy the time you have with them. Time is less important than quality of time. I remember my little Laker. He was a sickly kitten, born with FeLV infection. He was sick with a severe respiratory infection due to his diminished immune system. His mother had to push him away from the litter. I cared for him and nursed him to health and he became a happy healthy kitten. But at aged 2 he developed lymphoma secondary to FeLV. Poor Laker was quite sick and I tried to help. But there was no medicine that could make him better. Once I thought his quality of life was diminishing and not improving, I let him pass peacefully with the help of my colleague. It was the most difficult day of my life, and that time was the most difficult time of my life to this day, and probably forever. But the thought of him suffering or becoming sicker was worse. I thank the stars every day that I was able to let him pass peacefully before he suffered to death. He will be in my heart forever.
Spoil your pets and enjoy the laughs they bring when they are silly. Honor and remember them when they have passed. I never think of the day I will be without my pets. It helps that every day they make me laugh and smile.
Dr. Brad - In the News:
Samantha Souther, DVM
I have wanted to be a veterinarian for as long as I can remember. From career day in 4th grade, when I wheeled in a wagon of bandaged stuffed animals, all the way through the rigors of veterinary school, animals have always been my passion. I received my veterinary degree from Western University of Health Sciences in California. After veterinary school, I completed a one year rotating internship at an emergency and specialty hospital in San Diego, where I found my calling in hospice care and helping patients with special needs.
During my work as an emergency veterinarian, I was confronted with hard cases and very sick pets. I was drawn to helping the sickest of pets towards the end of their lives. My pets are my family, and I realized my dream was to help other families through hard times with their fur children. Allowing a family member to pass is never an easy decision, but I realized my role as a veterinarian is to help these special pets live comfortably until their time and to pass with dignity. I want to be there to help your family navigate these hard times and decide when the time is right for you and your pet. And I want to help your pet pass in dignity, at home, for their comfort and yours. While it is never easy, I believe one of the most beautiful gifts we can give our pet is to let them pass peacefully at home, surrounded by loved ones. Trips to the vet can be hard on some of our pets, but it is a true honor to be able to come into their home, where they are at ease, and help them pass at peace.
As part of Lap of Love, I want to make difficult times as stress-free as possible and strengthen the bond between you and your pet through their last moments. In addition to helping families as a Lap of Love doctor, I am completing a veterinary residency at the University of Pennsylvania, working with pediatrics and difficult genetics cases. I live in Philadelphia with my husband and our two fur-babies, Maddy, our Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, and Agouti, our rescue cat.
Brad Bates, VMD
"Dear, sweet, crabby sissy-witch,
How can I ever put down in words how much you mean to me? To say you were my spirit animal is an understatement. I have so many words for you, Ti; so many things in my mind and my heart that I will speak into the wind now that you're no longer here. Poppy says the love is eternal, and of course he is right. Still, I wish you were here with me. Thank you for taking care of my heart more than I could ever take care of you. Thank you for 18 years of unconditional love.
Your Popples and your Googer continue to miss your disdain. Secretly, and also outwardly, they know you loved them. Those gentle head kisses were everything to them. Thank you for loving them.
It's so hard to adjust to being without you. The canyon is empty, and there's no one to usher me to bend, no buzzard-ry before meals, no bone biting, no craw, no baggages. None-dle.
We are eternally grateful for everything you gave to us --- the language, the laughter, the catitude, the love.
I know you went back to the light from whence you came. My heart will always miss you, Dolly. Rest In Peace, my baby. I love you.
Bridget BorlakBridgeton, New Jersey
"Thank you to Dr. Souther, an angel who came and made the hardest decision I had to make, bearable. Your light touch and kind heart made Kitton's last moments on earth stress free and peaceful. There is nothing easy about saying goodbye to your best friend, and you handled the situation with grace and warmth. I didn't want to take Kitton out of the house for the end, and your service allowed me to give her a peaceful passing at home. Thank you Laps of Love and Dr. Sam."
Ridley Park, Pennsylvania
"My sweet little Molly was diagnosed earlier this year with Lymphoma. This was her second cancer diagnosis. She had been in remission from Leukemia for 6 years! I did everything I could to treat her cancer, but she did not improve. She was so special to me and had endured so much during her 13 years of life that I was determined to make sure her last moments were peaceful, in my arms, and in our home. I wanted the last place that she saw and smelled to be her comfortable home. We contacted Lap of Love to discuss Molly's situation and they assured us they would be there for us when the time was right. When we felt that it was time, we called and scheduled an appointment with Dr. Brad. He was wonderful! He called to let us know he was on his way, which helped prepare me for his arrival. When he arrived, he assessed Molly and assured me that it was the right time. Knowing when it is the right time is a very difficult thing to decide. It never feels right, but he helped me accept the decision I had made. Dr. Brad was so patient and made sure we were ready. He gave her a little sedation which helped keep Molly calm. She was so tiny and didn't have many good veins left because she had a lot of blood draws and IV's from her cancer treatments. Dr. Brad was spectacular and very gentle with my sweet baby! I am so grateful that he chose this profession which allowed our Molly to rest peacefully in my arms at home. Dr Brad was wonderful and our experience was exactly the way I had hoped it would be. Rest in Peace my sweet Molly (4/29/17). I miss you more and more each day!"
Michele BrunkerLevittown, Pennsylvania
"Knowing that our beloved Duchess was in her final days we needed to make sure her transition was as comfortable as possible. Dr. Brad and his assistant supplied the needed
Comfort for our Duchess and quietly gave us the comfort needed to get through this difficult time.
Thank you Dr. Brad we take comfort in knowing the right choice was made when we contacted you."
Jeffrey SamuelsPhiladelphia, Pennsylvania
"We had our sweet Paula for longer than projected. She was loving and loved until the end, which snuck up on us in 48 hours' time. On the morning that it became clear that she was suffering , Donna from the Lap of Love hotline answered my early morning call efficiently and sympathetically ,and arranged for Dr Brad to come within a couple of hours. He was competent and compassionate and made a painful situation as easy as it could be. Thank you !"
Julia CohenHavertown, Pennsylvania
"When it became clear that it was time to say goodbye to our Tiny Wonderful Cat, we desperately wanted to spare Tiny the traumatic car ride to the vet, the smells, the dogs in the waiting room, the cold metal table, etc. Our vet recommended Lap of Love, and Dr. Brad Bates responded within three hours. His gentle disposition and kindness meant the world to us. Dr. Brad went slowly, explaining every step and answering questions, and not proceeding until we were ready. Tiny passed away peacefully in his own little cat bed with his loving family giving him pets. It was hard for us, but not for Tiny. This sweet cat gave us so much in life...I am grateful we were able to give him this dignified, painless, peaceful end.
We also appreciated the information on the Lap of Love website, which helped us decide it was time to let Tiny go."
Dottie ParkerPhiladelphia, Pennsylvania
Pet Life and Loss Support Services
U Penn School of Veterinary Medicine
VSEC: Philadelphia, PA
Day by Day Pet Support
Veterinary Specialty Center of Delaware: Newcastle, DE
VSEC: Levitown, PA
Metropolitan Veterinary Associates: Norristown, PA
Keystone Veterinary Emergency and Referral: Havertown, PA
Helping families in the following areas:
We proudly serves the Greater Philadelphia area, including New Jersey and Delaware. Travel fees ($30-$75) may apply based on distance travelled from our veterinarian.
Preferred methods of payment are check (made to 'Lap of Love') or cash. All major credit cards are accepted.
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 LovePO Box 63583Philadelphia, PA 19147