My pet died, what to do?
If you came to this article because you recently lost your pet, we are very sorry! Everyone who lives with nonhuman animals knows how much it costs when they leave. Unfortunately, most pets have a life expectancy lower than that of humans. For this reason, all of us who share our lives with nonhuman beings sooner or later will pass through this moment.
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In this moment of deep sadness it is very common for tutors to ask themselves, ” My pet has died, and now ?” YourCatCareguide wrote this article to help you in this very complicated time or to prepare it if it has not already happened.
The loss of a pet
Pets nowadays play a key role in the emotional stability of the humans who live with them. Animals bring many benefits to humans, either by reciprocal exchange of love and affection or even through therapeutic effects such as assisted therapies with dogs , dogs used to help autistic and elderly children , therapies with horses , etc. The importance of animals in our lives is undeniable, as is the bond that is created between us and them. For that reason, when an animal dies it is clear that his death will be dramatic and leave marks on everyone around him.
Unfortunately, society does not see the loss of a pet as it sees the loss of a member of the human family. For this reason, it is very common that those who lose a pet tend to isolate themselves and suffer psychologically due to this devaluation of their pain by society .
My cat died and I’m very sad.
If your cat or other pet died it is normal and perfectly “healthy” that you are sad. You lost your partner, a friend who was with you every day, who received your love and paid you back. This time is too complicated to overtake, but you’ll be fine. Here are some tips that we consider important to follow:
Accept your pain
Begin by accepting your pain and it is perfectly natural what you are feeling. All of us who have gone through this know how much it costs and we all feel it differently. Just as when we lose an important person to us, we all experience mourning differently . Pain is part of the mourning, we can not help it. No problem crying! Cry and cry a lot! Release all that’s in there. If you have to scream at the top of your lungs, yell! If you feel anger, get physical exercise to release it, it is the healthiest way to do it.
Talk about it
As sociable beings we are, we need to talk. This situation is no exception! You need to talk to someone, be it a friend, family member or acquaintance. You do not need opinions, you need to be heard and understood . Look for your friend who knows how to listen and who is always present when you need to. You may also want to talk to other people who have been through it recently. If you do not know anyone who has been through this, look in forums and social networks. Nowadays there are many groups where people share what they feel. It is easier to manage painknowing that we are not alone and believe me, you are not! All of us who love our animals and have already lost some, we know exactly what you are going through and how hard it is to deal with this pain.
Get help from a professional
Talking to a professional can help you overcome the loss. The therapist will be there to help without criticizing or judging, which can be very helpful for you to overcome this terrible moment of your life. Especially if you feel that you are not able to live normally, if you can not normally perform day-to-day tasks such as cooking, tidying, working, etc. Do not expect the problem to get worse to the point of being very difficult to combat. You have no problem getting help. Today there are many psychologists who specialize in mourningand many of them with much experience in grieving processes related to the loss of companion animals. Ask your veterinarian if you know a professional near your area. Many veterinary clinics already work with psychologists who assist in the grieving process.
How to Bury a Dog
After an animal’s death, many people do not know what to do with his body. In an act of desperation, some people even throw their animals in the trash or empty grounds. You need to know that this option puts public health at risk ! There are many diseases transmitted from animals to humans.
If you liked to bury your dog or other pet, there are some animal graveyards in some cities. They are places with specific authorizations of municipalities and follow the necessary requirements for the safety of all.
If you want to bury your pet in your yard, use a sturdy plastic bag that seals. Never throw the animal in the river or in the trash . Corpses are a very dangerous source of contamination for our soil and groundwater.
Collect dead animals
Talk to a veterinary clinic in your area and ask if they have this animal collection service. The garbage generated by the clinics is hospital waste and the municipalities collect and incinerate (including animal corpses).
In large cities, such as São Paulo, there are crematoria for animals . You can even keep the urn with the ashes of your faithful companion.
Funeral for animals
For some people, a farewell ceremony can be very helpful in the pet loss acceptance process . Of course society does not accept this kind of ceremony as it should. What matters what society thinks if you are suffering? Surround yourself with your best friends and the people who understand you. If organizing a funeral is important to you, do not hesitate to do so. There are already some specialized services in these animal ceremonies. You can hire a specialized service or organize a ceremony yourself. Do what you feel most comfortable with and whatever helps you to overcome this moment!
How to tell the child that the pet died?
Children bond very strongly with pets. In fact, until a certain age, the children even believe that the pet is their best friend . The death of the pet can be very traumatic for the child. We know that for this reason, a lot of adults prefer to lie or make up a story so the child does not realize what actually happened.
Child behavior experts say you should not lie in situations like these. Regardless of the child’s age, you must tell the truth . Children are much smarter than adults sometimes think. Stories such as “the puppy went to sleep and did not wake up” or “the cat decided to leave” will awaken many doubts and confusion in the children’s heads, who will quickly realize that you are lying. If they find out you lied, they may feel betrayed and the feeling of betrayal can hurt the child even more.
Ideally you will tell the whole truth to the child. Psychologists advise that this time take place in a home setting where children feel comfortable , like their bedroom. Tell the truth, but do not shock the child. You do not want the child to be scared and think that the same thing will happen to other friends or family.
After telling the child, respect the moment of her sadness. Most likely, the child will cry and be sad. It may also happen that the child does not react immediately. Like adults, children have different kinds of grief. You should respect the child’s space when she asks you to. Be near to comfort her when she sees what she needs. Let her talk and express her feelings as this is very important so that she can overcome the loss.
Everyone at home is sad, do not be afraid to show this to the child. It is perfectly normal for everyone to suffer if your pet died, it was part of your family. Also be an example to the child that together they can overcome and accept what happened. If the child sees that the parents are well, she knows that she can stay as well.
Should I adopt another pet?
Some tutors consider whether or not they should adopt another animal after their pet’s death. Other tutors can not even think of putting another animal indoors. Most likely, even if after a few months, the issue of a new adoption will arise.
The adoption of a new pet will not erase the emptiness that his faithful companion left when he left. However, the presence of a new animal in the house can help to overcome mourning . Ponder very well before making this decision. Do not expect the new animal to be the same as it did. There is a great tendency to look for what we have lost. Remember that every animal is a world and even if it is of the same species and even race, each animal has its own personality and will never be the same as the one that left. If you decide to adopt a new animal, adopt with full awareness that you are an individual totally different from the previous one, with whom you will live new moments, new adventures and build a story from scratch .
If you have decided to adopt a new animal, for example a new puppy, visit an association near your home. Adopting a mutt has many advantages and unfortunately, thousands of dogs are waiting for a home. Also many of these dogs are going through mourning because they lost or were abandoned by the tutors they trusted so much.