No one wants to think about the loss of a pet if they have not yet experienced this. And if you have experienced this you likely want to forget the experience. Losing a pet is like losing a member of the family. And if there are other pets, they lose a close companion too.
The Stages of Grief
The same stages of grief that humans experience when they lose a human friend apply to losing a pet. Elizabeth Kubler Ross’ stages of grief, Shock and Denial, Pain and Guilt, Anger and Bargaining, Depression, Reflection, Loneliness, the Upward Turn, Reconstruction and Working Through, and finally Acceptance and Hope, all apply to the loss of a pet. ‘
A Grief Story
When I lost my dachshund in August of last year, I grieved horribly. But what was unexpected was the loss that Henry’s best furry friend, Baby experienced. I thought that I might lose Baby too! He moped, would not eat or drink and had a drawn sad face. It was AWFUL. He would smell and sniff in their favorite hang outs, hoping to see Henry come around the corner, but no Henry. Eventually, he got better, but it took months. Eventually he got a slight kick in his step again, and now he even plays and barks again. But it took a while.
Be patient with yourself. It takes time. And don’t make the mistake of replacing your lost pet too soon. Some people find comfort in a favorite photo of their pet, being placed in a prominent spot. I could not look at pictures for a while, it was too painful. Do what works for you.
Share Your Story
If you would like, share your story of the loss of a pet and any helpful hints you have by emailing me at jennifer (at) jennifernorene.com. If you would like to read more about the stages of grief, you can here.
Take care, my fellow pet loving friend. This too shall pass, even if it seems like it won’t.
Until next time,
Your Friends at Bubbles and Bows