The Hardest Day


Duration: 0:53:47
Country: United States
Director(s): Ross Taylor
Producer(s): Ross Taylor and Luke Rafferty

The Hardest Day is a film that explores the intimacy of the human-animal bond – specifically, the last moments before, and after, the passing of a pet at home with their owner.

Friends in social media feeds post memorials of their beloved pets almost weekly, often in the most heart-wrenching of tributes. It is a somber, and intense, testimony to the bond and the pain that comes when it is broken. And yet, it’s a moment that is rarely documented.

This film examines the intense last moments shared between people and their pets. The decision to have at-home pet euthanasia is part of an emerging trend (to have end of life care in the home, instead of in a clinic). Nationally, tens of thousands of pet owners go through this painful experience each year. This project lends insight into this intense bond between humans and their beloved pets.  It also examines the remarkable love that wraps around the community, while wrestling with the universal notion of loss. The acts of kindness from the vets, and support staff are also documented in ways unseen before.

A cornerstone idea of the film is this – we want people going through the unseen traumatic experiences of loss with their pets to know they’re not alone. All too often, people are dismissive of the pain that accompanies this loss. This project lends insight into this intense bond, and why we feel as connected.