Coping with the loss of a pet can be a distressing time for a pet lover as well as their family and friends. It may be challenging to know what to say or how to help them cope with their heartache and move on with life.
Here are some useful suggestions to help you, or someone you love, during their time of loss.
Allow time to grieve
Losing a pet is as difficult as losing a family member for many devoted pet owners.
The overwhelming sense of sorrow that comes with the loss of a beloved pet can shatter your heart and daily life. Employers are becoming more compassionate when it comes to this and allowing leave for staff (http://www.bbc.com/capital/story/20180912-when-a-pet-dies-should-you-be-allowed-time-off-work) to tend to sick and dying pets or to grieve their loss. But not everyone is able to do this so take time out when you can and give yourself permission to grieve.
Look after yourself
As basic as it sounds, remembering to eat, drink and sleep is vital during a bereavement period.
Give yourself the time to unwind and destress however you find best. This could be:
Dealing with death
Making the decision to put down a beloved pet can be a harrowing experience as owners can be conflicted between the need for love and companionship and the knowledge that their precious animal is suffering.
Again, be kind to yourself or your loved one through this journey. Your local vet may be a great source of comfort and information for you. They may offer to come to your home, to allow you one last night together or to stay with them as they pass.
Keeping their spirit alive
“I believe cats to be spirits come to earth. A cat, I am sure, could walk on a cloud without coming through.” Jules Verne.
Cats live forever in the memory of those who loved them and a keepsake to symbolise their life is a lovely way to solidify this memory.
Turn their collar into a bracelet
The beautiful supple leather of the Moshiqa cat collar lends itself perfectly to a symbolic bracelet to wear on those days you need to feel close to your departed pet. The cat shaped buckle is also an ideal place to engrave a remembrance date. https://au.landofmeow.com/collections/moshiqa-collarsFrame your memories
Using either a standard photo and frame to keep a photo or a 3D frame that allows you to store precious items, such as their sweet little collars and tags, a framed display is a delightful totem to keep their presence forever in your home.Create a special space
A memorial stone to honour the life of your pet is another nice way to commemorate your pet. Whether you choose a professionally engraved stone or opt for a permanent marker message on a smooth stone, establishing a special place that you can visit to remember and visit may help.Craft their life
Collect all those little mementos – their registration certificate, receipt from the first vet visit, registration discs or even plane tickets - to create a scrapbook alongside printed photos, written memories of happy times and poignant quotes.Share your grief
Post an image of your picture of your pet with a message of love or beautiful quote, such as
“When the cat you love becomes a memory, the memory becomes a treasure”.
Letting people understand your grief enables them to be there to support you during your time of loss. A kind word or a fond memory may be all that is required to bring a ray of light into what can be a dark time for many people.A pet funeral
To help find closure and a sense of peace, some pet lovers find a funeral or celebration of their pet’s life cathartic. By dealing with the loss of a pet in the same way that the loss of a family member is treated, the grieving pet lover is offered acceptance and support.
Allowing people to grieve in their own way and in their own time can be the best way to help someone who is suffering.
Remember the joy
“What greater gift than the love of a cat?” Charles Dickens.
And we agree that the pure unconditional love you receive from a cat is second to none. Think of the joy you brought to each other’s lives and try to remember that one day the good times you shared will outweigh the sadness you feel today.