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Losing a pet can be a very difficult and painful experience. Here are some tips on how to deal with the loss of your pet.

Take a Moment to Say Goodbye

Before making any practical decisions, take a moment to say goodbye to your pet. Take time to be with him, caress him, and express your feelings of love and gratitude.

Seek Support

You don't have to go through this grieving process alone. Seek emotional support from friends, family, online support groups, or even professional therapy if you need it. Talking about your grief and sharing memories of your pet can help you process your loss.

Find Ways to Remember Your Pet

Find meaningful ways to honor your pet's memory. This may include planting a tree in their honor, making a donation to an animal shelter in their name, or creating a photo album of their fondest memories.

Allow yourself to Feel and Express your Emotions

It is normal to feel a wide range of emotions, such as sadness, grief, anger or guilt, after the loss of a pet. Allow yourself to feel and express these emotions in healthy ways, whether by crying, talking to friends or family, or writing your feelings in a journal.

Celebrate the Life of your Pet

Instead of focusing on the loss, try celebrating the life and love you shared with your pet. Host a small service with friends and family to remember your pet, share fun stories and special moments you had together.

Create a Space to Remember and Honor your Pet

Consider creating a special space in your home where you can remember and honor your pet. You can place a photo of your pet, light a candle in her memory, or create a small altar with toys and memories of him.

Books About Pet Loss and Bereavement:

For Children:

The Goodbye Book – Todd Parr (Ages 2-5)

When a Pet Dies – Fred Rogers (Ages 4-8)

Dog Heaven – Cynthia Rylant (Ages 4-7)

Cat Heaven – Cynthia Rylant (Ages 4-7)

I’ll Always Love You - Hans Wilhelm (Ages 8-12)

Maddie’s Wings: A Lesson in Love – Tamera Rickman (Ages 8-12)

The Rainbow Bridge: A Visit to Pet Paradise – Adrian Raeside (Ages 8-12)

Remembering My Pet: A Kid’s Own Spiritual Remembering Workbook for When a Pet Dies – Nechama Liss-Levinson (Ages 8-12)

The Tenth Good Thing About Barney - Judith Viorst (Ages 8-12)

For Adults:

Goodbye, Friend: Healing Wisdom for Anyone Who Has Ever Lost a Pet - Gary A. Kowalski

Grieving The Death of a Pet – Betty Carmack

Coping With Sorrow on the Loss of Your Pet – Moira Allen and Moira K. Anderson

Pet Loss: A Thoughtful Guide for Adults and Children - Arlene Fischer and Herbert A. Nieburg

Pet Parents: A Journey Through Unconditional Love And Grief – Coleen Ellis

The Loss of a Pet - Wallace Sife

When your Pet Dies: A Guide to Mourning, Remembering and Healing - Alan Wolfelt, PhD

For Parents of Grieving Children:

Talking About Death – A Dialogue Between Parent and Child – Earl A Grollman

When Children Grieve: For Adults to Help Children Deal with Death, Divorce, Pet Loss, Moving, and Other Losses - John W James and Russell Friedman

Healing the Bereaved Child – Alan Wolfelt, PhD

Take care of yourself

Thinking Man on Couch
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Remember that there is no "right" way to handle the loss of a pet. Do what you feel is best for you and your pet, and trust that you are making decisions with love and respect.

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