When a Pet Dies … How to Deal with Grief and Mourning

dead petEspecially for folks who haven't been through it, the death of a family pet can be unexpectedly hard to accept.

For children, a beloved pet's passing is often their first experience with significant loss. The powerful feelings of sadness and aloneness that frequently occur after the death of a pet can be difficult for a young person to process.

For adults, the grief can seem almost unbearable. This is particularly true for pet owners who didn't fully understand the depth of the bond they shared with their dog, cat or other animal companion.

Many of us don't anticipate how devastating it can be to lose a non-human family member. Pet owners are often embarrassed by how overwhelmed they feel at their loss – especially in the presence of people who've never shared a special connection with an animal.

If you or someone you know is mourning the death of a pet understand that whatever you're feeling, to whatever degree, is normal and expected. Acknowledging your feelings – allowing them -- is the only healthy way to progress through your grief.

Ultimately you will come to accept your loss and find the strength to move on from it.

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