Pet loss: 3 steps for coping with the death of a pet


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Marianne Soucy
Marianne Soucy is the founder of HealingPetLoss.com where she provides information, support, comfort, techniques, and inspiration for pet owners who are grieving the loss of a beloved pet. Marianne is the author of the book, "Healing Pet Loss - 10 Tips For Coping With The Loss Of A Pet", and creator of the meditations, "Inner Peace Meditation" and "Happy Memories After Pet Loss".
Marianne Soucy
Marianne Soucy

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Healing Pet Loss Quote - Kahlil Gibran

Pet loss is one of the most difficult things you can experience as the caretaker of an animal companion. The grief after the loss of a pet can be overwhelming, and you might be surprised how deeply you are grieving after losing your animal companion and faithful friend. Because the love you shared with your pet was so deep and the bond between you was so strong, then the grief following the loss of your pet will also be deep.

The emptiness and the pain of the loss can be hard to deal with, and you might find yourself crying a lot. And you might find it difficult to sleep at night, because you lie awake feeling the enormous hole that the death of your pet left you with, and you worry about whether you could have done anything differently. You might feel overwhelming guilt and be convinced that you have let your pet down. And if you are not so lucky as to have supportive and understanding people around you, then you can feel very alone in your grief and sorrow.

In the following I will share 3 steps that will start you on your path to healing after the death of your beloved pet.

Step #1: Acknowledging your grief after pet loss

Grieving is a process that we all go through when we lose someone we love. But how we experience grief, and how we handle it, is very individual. Therefore, it is important that you honor and acknowledge whatever you are feeling right now. Grief is a very powerful emotion, so the first thing you need to do is to allow yourself to grieve. Try not to resist the feelings of sorrow, sadness, and all the other feelings connected with the loss of a loved one, when

they come. Allow the feelings of grief and sorrow to be there and cry if you need to.

Meditation, such as the Inner Peace Meditation from the Healing Pet Loss Meditation Series, deep relaxation or listening to soothing music are just some of the tools you can use to deal with the feelings of grief after the loss of an animal companion.

Step #2: Create a pet memorial ceremony

Creating your own memorial ceremony after pet loss can be very healing. In a pet memorial ceremony you have a chance to say goodbye to your pet and an opportunity to express your love for your pet and the gratitude for all the joy that your pet brought into your life. When you create your own pet memorial ceremony, you can involve the whole family, so that every one will be a part of honoring the memory of a close friend and member of the family. If there are children in the family, for them to take an active part in creating a memorial ceremony for their pet can be very healing. A pet memorial ceremony is a good place for all those who loved the pet to share letters or poems they have written to or in honor of the pet.

Step #3 Reach out!

If you feel alone with your grief after pet loss, reaching out to others can bring you much comfort. There are many resources available to you so that you can get comfort and peace of mind after the loss of your beloved pet. You can look for supportive and like-minded people for instance

  • in the area where you live,
  • on the internet, such as online forums, pet loss support groups, specialized pet loss websites, or even on Pinterest.
  • and you can also work one-on-one with someone who is willing to be there for you and who understands what you are going through and can help you through your grief.

What is your biggest challenge in connection with pet loss? Please share in the comments below.