Forever Loved: Dealing with Pet Loss

BevHills_iStock_000020587514_LargeWhen we open our homes and hearts to pets, we are forever changed by their constant love, friendship, and presence. Because owning and caring for a pet is one of life’s greatest experiences, it can be difficult to accept that they don’t live as long as we do. Yet the day comes for every pet owner when it is time to say goodbye to a loyal, loving, four-legged friend.

Dealing with pet loss can be frightening, unnerving, confusing, and devastating. Every member of your family will face the loss in their own way, making a support network not only important but necessary.

Sudden or Lasting

It’s widely perceived that an owner of an aging or terminally ill pet has more time to prepare for an imminent passing – but that doesn’t mean they won’t be affected by grief. To be sure, it is shocking to have to say goodbye after a fatal accident or injury takes the life of a younger pet, but every owner feels the pain of pet loss.

A Word on Euthanasia

The final days and last moments of your pet’s life are unlike any other. It might feel surreal to consider euthanasia for your pet, yet it is often the only way to mitigate prolonged pain and suffering. We are committed to making sure you have the information you need in order to make the best decision for your pet, and strive to honor your choices.

Protect Your Space

When the time comes, we recommend that you give yourself the time to grieve in your own way, and in your own time. You might get negative feedback from people who don’t understand the bond you had with your pet, but try to ignore it. Sadness is often just the beginning in coping with pet loss. You may experience a full range of emotions, including anger, guilt, and depression.

Please do not hesitate to reach out to our associates if you need support, and check out our Pet Loss Library. Similarly, there are local resources that can connect you to other grieving pet owners. We assure you that it’s normal and worthwhile to seek the help you need to get through this heartbreaking time.

Coping with Pet Loss

Honoring your pet’s life is one of the best things you can do. Hold a formal ceremony and celebrate the things you loved about your pet. Invite loved ones and revel in all of the shared memories.

Likewise, we offer the following methods to help you deal with pet loss:

  • Take a few moments each day for quiet reflection
  • Find your favorite picture of your pet and place it in a nice frame for display in your home
  • Create a collage of all of your cherished memories together
  • Plant a tree or flowering bush that reminds you of your pet
  • Add your pet’s memorial to our collection
  • Light a candle honoring your pet’s memory (it will always burn bright!)

Share the Love

Adopting a new pet might seem like a good solution, but it’s vital to work through your grief beforehand. You’ll know when you are ready to fully open your heart again, and your friends at  Beverly Hills Veterinary Associates are happy to help you.

We understand how much your pet means to you. Please contact us with any questions or concerns.