Pet Loss Support
dealing with the loss of a pet can be very difficult
Whether it is a family pet, child’s playmate, or companion you’ve had since they were just a puppy or kitten, the grief and sorrow that comes with the loss of a furry friend may cause feelings of sorrow and loneliness. Grieving at the loss of a pet is, for many people, strikingly similar to the loss of a close friend or a family member. You should never feel as though the loss is not significant. Others may say it was “just a dog”, but we understand that pets can be much more than that.
When dealing with the sorrow of losing a pet, there are many methods of coping that may be cathartic, including having a portrait done from a favorite photo, attaching your pet’s tags to your key ring, and volunteering with a local shelter or humane society. Many services are available to help you retain tangible reminders of your special companion, including those that can create a pawprint or seal your pet’s ashes into a commemorative urn. Simply writing a letter to your pet expressing how you feel may help you to cope with the feelings of loneliness.
When the pet is a member of the family or a special companion to a child or children, consider coping with your grief as a family by planting a tree in a special place or sharing favorite stories about your beloved pet.
If you feel like there is no one that can understand how you feel, you may want to consider calling a pet loss grief counseling hotline. They may be able to refer you to a pet loss support group if there is one in your area.
- (530) 752-4200, or toll fee (800) 565-1526
Staffed by University of California-Davis veterinary students;
weekdays, 6:30 PM to 9:30 PM, Pacific Time (PT)
- (607) 253-3932
Cornell University Pet Loss Support Hotline staffed by Cornell University Veterinary Students
Tuesday-Thursday 6-9 PM ET, messages will be returned.
- (509) 335-5704
Pet Loss Hotline
Washington State University, College of Veterinary Medicine.
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