I write this because I lost a dear friend of mine named Cotton today. A sweet white fluffy cat, and one that I will see again in the next life.
11 wonderful years, and so many memories. Pets mean a lot to most people. People tend to love their pets and consider them as family members. I know I do and always will.
Caregivers go to an extent of celebrating birthdays of their pets, carrying their pets pictures around, or even take them for a vacation. Therefore, when a pet dies, it is not abnormal to feel overwhelmed by pain and sorrow.
Pets are a source of emotional support, companionship, unconditional love, and acceptance. If one gets to understand the bond between humans and pets, you are already coping with pet loss – knowing that grieving pet loss is not a bizarre incident.
Finding excellent ways to deal with the death of your pet, you are already coming closer to the day when the pet loss memories bring smiles instead of tears.
Let’s have a look at the best tips to deal with the loss of your pet. (I admit today I shed some tears, some of sadness and pain, but others because of knowing that it is not the end, but the beginning of an eternal journey, as we must all go through because such is life, I love you cotton).
9 Ways On How To Deal With The Loss Of A Pet:
1). Acknowledge That The Loss Is Real:
Most people will tend to pretend it’s just a pet and some tend to feel like that they should be over it. It’s very key to sink it into your brain that the death of your pet is real and come to terms with it.
One study noted that people tend to be closer to dogs than they are to some of their family members.
Some people will tend to tell you that it’s just a pet, to those people who say this, be mindful, because not everyone thinks that way! Animals feel as we do, look it up, there are plenty of stories out there.
2). Look For Support:
There are various in-person and online support groups specifically meant for people at any stage of grieving the loss of a pet.
One place is called Rainbow Bridge – a very popular community that deals with any pet-associated bereavement.
Most people have been helped via this online support community. Like they always say, you need a back to lean on when the going gets tough. It’s also an ideal time to call your pet-loving friend and share out what you are feeling.
3). Talk To Your Vet:
There is a likelihood that your vet deals with people in your situation and that’s why he/she is a very key resource to your grieving.
They are likely to assure you that you are not alone and that they can further direct you to helpful local resources.
One study indicated that 19% of people who have lost pets, tend to switch vets since they could not face the same office again, taking it as a place of pet support and loss can help you cope up.
4). Take Care Of Yourself:
If you are having a very hard time coping up, you should not pass on some of your holiday fun. People often tend to make their obligations and socializing thin at such times even when all seems to be ok.
Don’t turn your life into an indoor one or even go into depression. Remember that your pet has always been comfortable under your comfort.
Try as soon as you can to get back into your normal life. Remember to eat a healthy diet and sleep enough as well.
5). Do Something:
In honor of memories to your pet, do something honorable. In case you have the ashes of your pet, decide on where to bury them.
You can also dedicate a song, tree, park fountain, or anything in remembrance of your pet. Also, you can give your pet’s food as a donation to a food bank or a shelter.
Do not act like you never had a pet. Although the dedications make you sad, they are a good way of remembering and cherishing your pet’s memories.
6). Get Another One At The Right Time:
It’s ok to immediately find another pet after losing one. The new pet will equally bring companionship. If you had two pets, there is a likelihood that the other pet is also missing company.
Your children too may be missing the pet. If it works out for you – without feeling guilty, get another pet almost immediately.
At the same time, do not push yourself so much to be ready to acquire one. Some people may be nervous about getting another pet.
7). Stay Connected With Friends:
Most people love taking their dogs for an evening/ morning walk and in the process, they get to know more people. Therefore, after the loss of your pet, you should not stay indoors all day long.
Get out and meet people, talk to them, and share your story rather than being alone all day. Face-to-face meeting with people has been one of the sure ways to get rid of your stress and thus cope up with pet loss. Furthermore, you can invite your friends for lunch/dinner or hang out makes you stay positive!
8). Give Yourself Time And Permission To Grieve:
Men, in general, do not cry publicly and tend to rarely share their feelings. It’s good to remind yourself that the love for your pet is equal to the love for people. Thus it’s normal to feel like crying and hurt when your pet dies. I know I did.
Your feelings are right and do not try to thin the bond that was between you and your pet. Your pet loved and adored you truly, so allow yourself to feel anything about your pet. Just move toward the loss of pain.
9). Consider Holding A Fairwell Ceremony:
A pet farewell ceremony should not be as typical as a human funeral ceremony, it simply means setting aside some time to commemorate and say bye to your pet. This has proved to be so therapeutic to some people as it helps you get closer to healing.
Grief can be a very emotional, frustrating, and emotional thing that one can experience. It’s worse when one loses a pet.
Our societies do not guarantee pet owners to grieve pet loss openly, therefore, most pet owners feel alone and isolated.
Fortunately, there are many resources available to help pet owners know that they are not alone and their feeling is entirely normal.
I hope this was helpful to you, if you have any comments or anything that would help others in the loss of a pet, please comment below, as it is comforting to hear from others, and get different ideas on how to deal with it.