Given time, healing will occur for the grieving owner. However, there are several things you can do to help facilitate the healing process:
  • Give yourself permission to grieve. Only YOU know what your pet meant to you.
  • Memorialize your pet. This makes the loss real, helps with closure and draws in social support. It also allows you to express your feelings, pay tribute and reflect.
  • Surround yourself with people who understand your loss. Let others care for you. Take advantage of support resources for bereaved pet owners.
  • Be patient with yourself. Do not let others dictate how long mourning should last.
  • Learn all you can about the grief process. This will help you realize what you are experiencing is normal.
  • Give yourself permission to backslide. The grieving will dissipate and your life will be "normal" again. Be aware that holidays, smells, sounds or words may trigger feelings.
  • Accept the feelings that come with grief. Express them through talking, writing, singing and/or drawing.
  • Get lots of rest, good nutrition and exercise.
  • Indulge yourself in small pleasures.