5 Ways to Cope After the Death of a Pet

Pets quickly become part of the family, so when they are lost, it can feel like a considerable blow. The death of a pet is also a common experience, so there are many people who understand what you’re going through and can offer support. While the grief process is unique to everyone, there are some general things you can do to start coping with your loss.

What is grief?

Grief is a term used to describe the feelings and behaviours that result from a loss. It’s natural to feel a range of emotions, including sadness, anger, anxiety, and guilt after your pet dies. You might also experience physical symptoms like fatigue, changes in appetite, or difficulty sleeping.

The process of grieving can be different for everyone. Some people might find that they feel okay quite quickly after the death of a pet, while others might find that their grief lasts longer. The important thing to keep in mind is that there is no normal way to grieve. Everyone experiences these emotions in their own way, and you simply have to ride it out. Here are some common methods for dealing with the loss of a pet. Ashes With Art has published some good info. 

1. Acknowledge your feelings.

It’s natural to feel sad, angry and depressed following the death of a pet. Depending on the circumstances, you might also feel some guilt if you feel that you could have done more to prevent the illness or death. Don’t try to bottle up your emotions or tell yourself that you shouldn’t feel the way you do. Instead, allow yourself to grieve and express your feelings in a healthy way.

2. Talk about your pet

Remembering and sharing stories about your pet can be a helpful part of the grieving process. Talking about your pet to other pet owners and to friends can help you to explore your feelings. As you share your memories, you may find it easier to cope with the emotions you might be feeling.

3. Volunteer your time

If you are missing the companionship that comes with pet ownership, you might find it helps to volunteer. You don’t have to volunteer with animals, but you may find this helps. You could also choose a charity that offers outdoor opportunities or the chance to befriend lonely people. Giving back may help you feel better about your loss.

4. Consider getting another pet

For some people, the best way to cope with the loss of a pet is to get another one. If you’re thinking about getting another pet, make sure you’re ready for the commitment before taking the plunge. See here too.

Adopting a rescue animal can be especially rewarding as you’ll be giving them a second chance. However, you should never rush this step. Make sure you have given yourself the chance to really grieve your pet before you bring another pet home. Replacing one pet with another might leave you with feelings of guilt.

5. Accept that it takes time

Healing takes time, so be patient with yourself as you grieve. Don’t expect to feel better overnight. It’s normal to have good and bad days as you work through your grief. Try to be accepting of your emotions and allow yourself the time you need to heal. You might also feel that you are over the worst of it, only to be triggered by an event that plunges you back into the depths of grief. Accept that this might happen, and simply go with the flow.

Closing thoughts

If you’re struggling to cope with the death of a pet, it might be helpful to talk to a therapist or counsellor. They can offer support and guidance as you work through your emotions. You can also join a pet loss support group, which can be a great way to connect with other people who understand what you’re going through. Finding common ground is an excellent way to process your emotions.

The loss of a pet is always tough, but there are things you can do to start coping with your loss. Acknowledge your feelings, talk about your pet, volunteer your time, and consider getting another pet. Accept that it takes time to heal and reach out for help if you need it. Remember that you will feel better eventually; you might have to just wait out the bad feelings until you start to adjust to life without your pet.

Anabel Cooper

Anabel is a graduate of King’s College London and upon graduating, she set out on a journey to inspire and empower women through her words. Besides working as a digital marketing expert, Anabel is a freelance copywriter.