Steps to alleviate the pain of losing a dog (or any pet)
For people who have never owned an animal of significance, it can seem silly to mourn the loss of a pet, but the death of a beloved animal stings and can cause grief long after the event itself.
In the article to follow, we’re going to pinpoint some steps you can take to heal those wounds, though the reality is that everyone has their own way of getting over a traumatic experience. Ultimately, this should serve as a guide, rather than a catch-all method towards acceptance.
Firstly, grief takes time
Pets are a part of the family and grieving them is normal. But while other people will understand your pain on the surface, they’ll soon ask you to move on, or to buy another pet to lessen the pain. The reality is that grief takes time and it’s not going to disappear overnight, especially if echoes of your deceased dog are everywhere you look. Respectfully disagree with these people, and seek solace from those that understand how you’re feeling.
Consider making changes to your home
We’re association machines – our brains are constantly equating an environment with a memory. Your home will serve up many reminders of the dog you’ve lost, so consider taking up DIY jobs around the house to alter the environment you’re in. Why not paint the walls a new color, build something for the living room, or get stuck into gardening? These steps will keep you busy while bringing a change to the scenery. With luck, that’ll sever some of your ties to the past.
Don’t let guilt bring you down
Animals rely on us for comfort and security, and when they die, it can feel as if we’ve neglected to look after them properly. All guilt will do, however, is stop you moving on.
Get a new dog when you’re ready
Ultimately, the best way to move on is to bring a new furry friend into your home. It can feel like a big step, but it’s often just the distraction we need. With time, you’ll build a rapport with the new animal and slowly let go of the past as you know it. It’s not easy, but rest assured that time is a great healer and that you will be able to move on.
A new pet will steal your heart – just as your old one did.