mourning the loss of a pet blog

Mourning the Loss of a Pet: 5 Tips from Compassionate Pet Care Specialists for Arriving at Acceptance

When a pet’s time on earth has come to an end, the sense of loss can be overwhelming. How can you even begin to express what this sweet, loving family member meant to you? A being that is always there for you, through thick and thin, is gone and all you’re left with are memories and photos. How can you cope?

As pet care specialists, we have the fortunate opportunity to be, albeit briefly, a part of many pets’ lives. We see them grow, and we get to witness the impact they have on their families. Expressing what their death means to you can be difficult, especially when people undermine this grief simply because that member of your family wasn’t human. 

Talk About Your Feelings

However you’re feeling is perfectly valid, and you should discuss those feelings to someone you trust. Remember the love that existed between you and your pet. Tell a loved one about the loss you feel when you come home and they aren’t there to greet you. Talking about your pet and your relationship will heal your heart, and it will also help others who are grieving for a pet.

Help Others Through the Grieving Process

Being there for others during this difficult time can in turn help you accept the loss. This is doubly important when there are children also in mourning who may not know how to express themselves properly. This could even be their first experience with loss. 

You can provide a shoulder to lean on and give words of encouragement. You can also provide a listening ear and be patient as others work through their pain. It’s possible to grow closer with friends and family during an event like this, which can be a final gift of love from your dearly departed pet. 

Celebrate the Life of Your Pet

Your pet gave you unconditional love and was always loyal to you. Your pet was always there to support you during the good and bad times. Your pet was always ready to be your friend, so celebrate the life that was lived. They may be gone, but their impact on your life will forever remain, and in that way they can indeed live on.

Create a Memorial

If you have the remains of your pet, you can honor their life by creating a memorial. You can place the remains in a special urn and have a service in which you share your favorite memories. However, you don’t need to have their remains to create a meaningful memorial.

For example, you could plant a tree in the yard in memory of your pet. Then, you can visit their memory for years to come. A scrapbook of your pet’s life is another great way to keep their spirit alive. You can write an article or poem about your pet and share it with others, especially those going through a similar trauma. 

All of this and more, whatever you feel the need to express is a perfectly healthy way of coping with such a massive loss.

Take Care of Yourself

You may feel like you can’t leave the house or that you can’t handle your daily activities. You may feel like you will never be able to get through this pain. Although it will be difficult, you need to take care of yourself. Eat nutritious meals. Get enough sleep. 

If you regularly walk with your pets don’t stop now, even if it reminds you of them. If you didn’t, then it’s time to start it up. Relaxation techniques such as deep breathing and meditation can also help with acute waves of emotions. Your pet wouldn’t want you to be overwhelmed or unhealthy. Remember: They only wanted to make you happy, and they want that happiness to continue in their wake. 

Pet Care Specialists Who Understand

Whether you feel it is time to bring home another pet or you have other furry family members also going through the grieving process, consider hiring a pet specialist and sitter that understands their importance to your family. At ESP Pet Specialists, we can help out at any time, whether you’re traveling and can’t bring them along or if you just need help exercising them with our dog walkers. For a full list of our services, visit our website, or call (973) 577-1110 to book a pet sitter today.

Your pet deserves the best possible care from a true pet care professional. Evan Perlman is the owner and lead pet specialist at ESP Pets. After an early start with a local doggie daycare, Evan's love of working with pets culminated with his appointment as program manager providing pet services for United Airlines at Newark Liberty and O’Hare International Airports. The entrepreneurial bug then bit, and ESP Pet Specialists was born! View Profile

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