When Your Dog Dies – Tips From Pet Owners Who Understand

Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen, a blogger named the, “The Adventurous Writer” posted a long list of advice from her readers about what to do when your dog dies.  Here are a few of our favorite ideas:

Remember the funny stories about your dog, and make an album

“We have to put our 14 year old dog to sleep two weeks ago.  Not sure how, but he broke his femur bone and he would have had to undergo major surgery to put pins in his leg, or if the break was caused by cancer they would have to amputate and hope the cancer didn’t spread.  Neither choice was good for a 14 year old. I had to explain to my children that “Floyd” wouldn’t be coming back from the hospital.  We had a funeral and memorialized our dog by telling her funny stories about him-how he liked to chase chickens, how he rescued (by barking to a neighbor) another dog that was drowning in our pool, and how he like to sleep in Mommy and Daddy’s bed with his head on the pillow.  We found several pictures of him and made a little album.  This helped us heal when our dog died”. – Roni Jenkins

Give yourself time to mourn when your dog dies

“Many people advocate getting a new pet to replace the emptiness, while others say to wait,” says Sherry. “Personally, I think you have to give yourself a little time to grieve pet loss before jumping into a new puppy given they require so much attention. However, that’s just me.”

Let yourself grieve the way you need to

“The most important thing is, don’t be afraid to cry, to grief, to miss your pets,” says Sherry. “Too often people let society deem what’s appropriate to grieve over and what’s not. Pets are an important part of people’s lives today and just as hard to lose as anything else, so it’s very important to just let yourself grieve.”

Share your memories of your dog

“My golden retriever Katie was a huge part of my life for 13.5 years,” says Regina. “We went through everything life tossed at us as a team, including my bout with cancer over six years ago. After she passed away, I hosted a memorial service with my friends. We sat in a circle and each guest told a happy story about Katie.  Before each person spoke, I lit a small candle.  After that I passed a balloon around and, as it reached each person, they had to express a wish for Katie in Eternity.  When we completed the circle, I released the balloon and said that it not only carried our wishes Heavenward to Katie, it would grant those same wishes to every pet who had ever been loved and lost by anyone in the group.” – Regina Leeds


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