Losing a pet and dealing with pet loss grief is one of the most devastating experiences a person can ever have to go through. Pets are devoted companions who faithfully love us unconditionally, despite all of our human faults. When we suddenly lose that companionship the grief can feel almost unbearable. Here are ten healthy ways to help you overcome your pain and deal with your pet loss grief.
Give Yourself Permission to Grieve
Losing a pet is like losing your best friend. Give yourself permission to express your emotions and let yourself cry.
Don’t Part with Your Pet’s Belongings
You’re going to encounter the food bowl and your pet’s bed, but it’s best if you hold on to them for a little while. Instead, move them to another room until you’re ready to pass them along to someone else.
Hold a Funeral
A funeral will help you express your feelings, and will give you an opportunity to say goodbye to your beloved pet.
Reach Out to Your Friends
Reach out to your friends and tell them about your loss. However, keep in mind that not all of your friends are going to understand the depth of your loss.
Reach Out to Pet Loss Grief Groups
Contact your local humane society or animal shelter to see if there are any groups for people who are suffering from the loss of a pet in your area. If there aren’t, consider joining an online group to help you cope with your grief.
Remember Your Pet
Plant a tree or put up a memorial plaque in memory of your beloved pet. You could also create a scrapbook with photos of all of the memories you’ve shared over the years.
Take Care of Yourself
When you’re suffering from pet loss grief, it’s easy to become depressed and to forget to eat. Remember, that your pet would want you to look after yourself and stay healthy.
Go Out with Friends
When you’re grief-stricken sometimes the last thing you feel like doing is going out. However, going out will brighten your mood and help you to overcome your grief quicker.
Help Other Animals
Volunteering at your local humane society or animal shelter will boost your spirits, and help you cope with your pet loss grief.
Don’t Rush Into Getting Another Pet Too Soon
The right time to get another pet is really hard to pinpoint, but if you do it too soon it’s not fair to you or the new pet. You’ll be comparing the new pet to the one you’re grieving over, and the new pet will never live up to your expectations. It’s best to wait until you’re sure you’re ready to bring a new family member onboard.
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