St. Louis & Surrounding Areas
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 cherry wooden urn with an engraved tag 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.
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 by a pond in the country.
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 6am - 10pm. 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.
Dawnetta Woodruff, DVM
From the age of 7, I knew I wanted to be a veterinarian. Growing up on a farm, our family had many dogs and cats - but as with most animal lovers, there is frequently one that touches your heart more than the rest. For me, that one was Whitey, my Great Pyrenees. She was by my side every day as I did chores at the barn, as I played outside, and even as I waited at the bus stop. She was a gentle soul, and always seemed to sense my mood. When I was happy she wanted to play, when I was sad she would sit with her head in my lap giving me comfort and companionship - but when I moved away to college, Whitey got sick. My parents called to tell me that Whitey may not be able to hang on until I returned home. I went home that weekend to see her one last time, and I felt blessed that during Whitey's last minutes, we were both at home and she was able to lay her head in my lap and pass away with dignity and in peace.
During my career as a veterinarian, I have worked in a mixed animal hospital, in an emergency clinic, and in a small animal hospital. The experiences have been very different, however my favorite aspect of the job remains the same; I love interacting with clients and witnessing the bond that they have with their pets. A pet loves unconditionally and brings joy to the family. I believe it is the same kind of unconditional love that allows us, as veterinarians and pet owners, to make the difficult decision of when to say goodbye to our beloved companions.
We are never truly ready to let go, and euthanasia is never an easy decision - however a familiar, comfortable environment can make the process less stressful and more peaceful for everyone. My hope is that I can provide a listening ear, professional advice, and a compassionate experience for you and your pet when the time comes to say goodbye and allow them move on to a better place.
Photo Courtesy of St. Louis Post Dispatch
Carrie Roberts, DVM
I wanted to be a veterinarian from a young age and consider myself lucky to have grown up in a family of medical professionals. My parents helped me nurse several injured animals (wild and domestic) back to health throughout my childhood. It was incredibly rewarding to watch those animals thrive, and it solidified my decision to pursue veterinary medicine.
Our family dog was an amazing Labrador named Shadow. She was an incredibly smart and loving dog. She was our shadow, always following us around to be part of our activities. She seemed to be able to sense and react to human emotions in a very special way, which made me feel even closer to her. When she fell ill suddenly, we were devastated. She was diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer, and we were informed that surgery would not extend her life. We made the difficult decision that day to let her pass peacefully. It was incredibly painful to lose her, but I am thankful that she didn’t have to suffer. I will always be grateful for the time that we shared and all of the wonderful memories of Shadow that I keep close to my heart.
I grew up on the West Coast, and graduated from Oregon State University College of Veterinary Medicine in 2007. Since graduation, I have worked in small animal practices caring for dogs, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs, rodents, and other small pets. I especially enjoy working with senior pets and assisting them with their unique needs. I recognize that a lot of pets are fearful upon entering a veterinary hospital and assisting with end of life care surrounded by their family with treats, toys, blankets can ease their distress.
I consider it a privilege to work with pets in the comfort of their own home. I enjoy hearing stories about each pet and how they have touched the hearts of their loving owners. The human-animal bond is truly beautiful and special. Helping pets pass peacefully is one way I can help honor that bond.
My husband and recently moved to the St. Louis area with our four cats: JB, Wyatt, Izzy and Baker. We enjoy volunteering with rescue organizations to help find forever homes for pets.
Dawnetta Woodruff, DVM
"I was very impressed with the level of empathy and caring of Dr Dawnetta. When she arrived she showed real interest in my life with my aging cat, Buddy and was easily able to get to know him through a few quick stories. She took time and showed respect for my feelings and lack of understanding of the process. In all, she made me feel very comfortable and also showed love for my good friend Buddy while he peacefully went to sleep."
Serge TraylorUniversity City, Missouri
"Ruby was the sweetest little dog in the world but she was not well and we knew that what was best for her was letting her go. This was the first time we were ever faced with a decision like this. The hardest thing we ever had to do but we wanted this done in our home rather than at a vets office. Fortunately, my wife met a couple who had used Lap of Love for their pet and they talked about how Dr. Dawnetta was great. We contacted Lap of Love and we were pleased to hear Dr. Dawnetta was coming to our home. To say the least, from the time Dr. Dawnetta came into our home and to when she left with Ruby, she was so kind, so loving and so understanding yet she performed her duties making Ruby comfortable allowing her to pass peacefully. Dr. Dawnetta wrapped Ruby in a blanket and placed her in a basket. I was grateful to be able to carry Ruby out to Dr. Dawnette’s car for one last ride. We were very grateful to have Dr. Dawnette help us through this very difficult time."
Bill FoxSaint Louis, Missouri
"We just wanted to add our thanks to Dr. Woodruff and all at Lap of Love for all they did for our family. Tickle was part of our family for 11 years and while that didn't seemed too short twice that wouldn't have been enough. She was the perfect pet for our family; even-tempered to the point that on more than one occasion she allowed the kids to use her as a step-stool! I tried to find a good picture of her to post but in every picture her tail was blurry. I finally realized that was because that was how she always looked - wagging!
We knew for a long time how her sickness would likely end but I always imagined it at the vet's office. As it got closer I realized that would be horrible for her (no disrespect to her vets - they were great. But most pets fear the stainless steel table). I can say that having this done in the home surrounded by her family was the best possible outcome for Tickle. I cannot speak highly enough of Dr. Woodruff's manner and knowing exactly what to say to make this easier on my family: particularly that we were not ending her life so much as allowing it to end peacefully. If we were to go through this again I would consider no other option.
Thank you Lap of Love!"
Marvin MengEdwardsville, Illinois
"I knew my time with Skippy was going to be short. He had a tumor that was growing rapidly and I was hoping to have him with me until the end of the week. When he walked away from breakfast and his rear legs gave out I knew it was time for him to move on. I called Lap of Love and was told Dr. Dawnetta would be there in a few hours. I enjoyed the time I had with him all the way through. She came in and was very compassionate and caring, professional absolutely, her empathy was what really assisted me. I had prepared for this moment for the last few days so I knew what I wanted and she let that happen. Skippy was a circus performer and he performed a few of his favorite tricks and ran like I hadn't seen him do in awhile. He and I cuddled after that. Dr Dawnetta let me know everything she was going to do before she did it which made the his passing very easy for me. She has a great demeanor that Skippy was at ease with from the moment she came in."
Alan CinaSt. Louis, Missouri
"Dr. Dawnetta was most kind, empathetic and gentle--would recommend her to anyone in this kind of need. A true Blessing."
Karen GenderSt. Louis, Missouri
"Words cannot express how thankful we are that we found Lap of Love and Dr. Dawnetta. After nearly 18 years of unconditional love and friendship, our sweet little boy Jake had started to have seizures, pain and confusion. His last 24 hours were so difficult:(. We had an immediate sense of peace and relief when Dr. Dawnetta arrived. She treated our baby with so much love and kindness until his last heart beat. I am so grateful there are people like her in the world."
Jen ArterTown and Country, Missouri
Pet Life and Loss Support Services
St Louis: Animal Emergency Clinic South (Big Bend & 141)
St Louis: Animal Emergency Clinic O'Fallon
St Louis: Associated Veterinary Specialists (Bridgeton)
St Louis: Midwest Veterinary Referral Clinic (Chesterfield)
St Louis: Veterinary Specialty Services (Manchester)
Illinois: Animal Emergency Center (Collinsville)
Christine Corrigan Mendez, M.Ed., PLPC
Allison White (licensed social worker)
Baue Pet Services - grief class & pet loss support group
Paws Forever Pet Loss Support Group
Forever In My Heart Pet Loss Group - Franklin Co Humane Society
Helping families in the following areas:
Proudly serving the St. Louis / St. Louis Metro areas including:
Affton, Arnold, Ballwin, Chesterfield, Clayton, Fenton, Frontenac, Kirkwood, Lemay, Maryland Heights, Mehlville, Oakville, St Louis City, Sunset Hills, Town & Country, University City, Valley Park, Wildwood
Proudly serving the IL / Metro East areas including:
Belleville, Columbia, Dupo, Fairview Heights, Millstadt, Swansea, Waterloo
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 Love5640 B Telegraph Rd, #238St. Louis, MO 63129
Nine Network: Pet Hospice Home
Tails Pet Magazine: Conscious Living: Understanding Veterinary Hospice
Tails Pet Magazine: Caring Beyong a Cure: a Look at Veterinary Hospice
Metropet Magazine: Canine Grief - When Our Furry Friends Lose Their Buddy
St. Louis Post Dispatch: Pet Owners Say Goodbye at Home
St. Louis KPLR 11: Pet Hospice
St. Louis Fox 2: Pet Hospice Care
This Lap of Love location is owned and operated by Dr. Dawnetta Woodruff