Everyone here makes a perfectly logical case for pet-euthanasia, yet I know that if the same sensible logic and reasoning were applied to human beings, there would be a storm of outrage. Either euthanasia is universally bad or universally acceptable as a means of mercy-killing. Otherwise, it doesn’t make sense to allow Foo-Foo to be put out of her misery while allowing a man dying of incredibly painful cancer to go on suffering – all due to the idea that you are murdering such a man.
(Oh yes, and please don’t go on with an answer about humans not being animals: both them and us suffer chronic illnesses unto death which aren’t exactly fun)
You have, in part, answered your own question. It **does matter **that we are not animals because unlike even our most beloved pets, we humans are made in God’s image (however tarnished!) and He died to save us for Heaven. So, yes, chronic illnesses “aren’t exactly fun,” but we can and should unite them with Christ’s suffering. This offering assists in our own salvation and that of others! What an awesome thing!
Also, unlike our pets, we can and should have access to hospice care, which offers both pain relief and emotional assistance to the dying and their families. There is usually no reason to be in unbearable pain if proper palliative care is provided. If we have pain beyond relief, then we also have a rather large splinter of Christ’s cross to carry with Him and He will not leave us!
Of course, this is not an easy teaching, but I pray that God will help us all to see His Perfect Wisdom in the teaching of Mother Church.