When it comes to pet loss, it can be a very challenging time for the owner, and on top of that, not everyone will understand the way you feel or why. Many non pet owners can’t seem to understand why pet owners get, so upset when their pet passes on, they think ‘it’s just a pet’, but many owners have developed such a strong bond and relationship that it’s just like losing a loved one. Today we will take a look at how we can deal with pet loss, and some steps toward recovering from such a great loss, and remembering our best friend.
First and foremost, it is important to understand that it is ok to cry, it is not a sign of weakness, but rather a sign that this is how much we loved our beloved pet, and it will also help in the recovery process. Letting your emotions out is quite an important part of moving on, and in many cases can help relieve some of the stress and anxiety that comes with losing a loved one. When we lose a loved one it is normal to feel many emotions, like guilt, anxiety, anger and even rage, but these mixture of emotions will pass in time, it is also important to some extent to ‘go through the motions’.
All the mixed emotions we go through when losing a pet can be almost identical to that of losing a close relative or friend, so it is also important we talk about our loss. Try to find a friend who knows what you’re going through, maybe someone who has lost a pet themselves, it won’t help talking to a friend who has never had a pet, or doesn’t understand your loss. Once you can talk to someone who understands then let your emotions out. In addition, talk about how you feel, and the kind of relationship you had with your pet, all this will help shed some of the burden, and actually make you feel a little better.
Another thing many pet owners do when they lose their loved one is to create some sort of memorial to them, like maybe a photo album of past pictures taken in happier times. Moreover, if there are children in the home they will share the loss, and sometimes be overwhelmed with the passing of their favorite pet. Therefore, talk with them about how happy their pet made them feel, and maybe create a memorial to him, like planting a tree and dedicating it to the lost pet. If, you have decided to bury your pet in the garden, you can decide to mark the grave with a small headstone, or by planting a rose tree. However, be certain to talk it over with everyone within the family, and make it a joint decision.
Some people like to write their feelings down in a journal, and this can often help, especially if you don’t have someone to talk with who really understands what you are going through. After a while you will find you will spend less time thinking about the loss, but rather all the happy times you had together, and this is when you can decide if you are ready for another best friend, or take a break for a little while. That being said, some pet owners find it makes it easier to volunteer for the local pet shelter, and this may also be where you find someone to talk to about your loss, as well as helping others find a best friend too.
Finally, when losing your best friend, whether it be a dog, cat, or any other pet that you have become very close to, remember that time heals, and over time you will feel less emotional when thinking of your best friend, and eventually be able to move on. As with the loss of a family member, you never really get over it, but you will eventually think positively when thinking about the lost loved one, things you see each day will remind you of the good times you had together. Nevertheless, just be sure not to let your feeling bottle up inside, it is important to let it out in order for you to move on, do something positive relating to your loved one, and avoid any negativity, as he wouldn’t have wanted that for you when remembering him, or her.