You are currently viewing 14 ways to cope with pet loss

14 ways to cope with pet loss

dog at rainbow bridge

Learning how to cope with pet loss can be challenging. Know that there is no right or wrong way to grieve. Everyone grieves and copes with loss differently. Are you struggling with not knowing what to do after the loss of your pet? I have listed 14 ways that can help you cope with your loss.

1. Cry as little or as much as you need too

Crying has many benefits for your body and mind, especially during difficult times. Don’t hold back on letting your emotions go, as these tears often help release some of the pain and stress.

2. Talk about your feelings

Reach out to someone who understands the relationship you and your pet had. Talk to them about how you are feeling. These people care about you and want to help you. Seek professional help if you need to.

3. Write in a journal

Keeping a journal has therapeutic value as it provides you with a way to explore your feelings, emotions, and memories in one place. They say that time heals pain, but only if you work with that pain. There is no right or wrong way to journal, just write from your heart. Download our free ‘30 writing prompts – working through grief’.

journal writing prompts

Join our free Resource Library to download journal writing prompts and more

4. Look after yourself

Make sure you take time to eat and rest. These may seem like such small things but are crucial for your well being. Exercising may be the last thing on your mind, but it releases a happy hormone, endorphins. Also getting some fresh air on a small walk can help clear your mind.

5. Write a letter to your pet

Sometimes it is easier to write it down than say it aloud. Although, saying goodbye is never easy. Write a letter to your pet to let them know how much they mean to you and share your favourite memory with them. You can keep this letter, bury or burn it, or pray (reading the letter) to Heaven – do whatever makes sense to you.

6. Reach out to grieving community group

Talk and listen to others that are going through a similar experience as you. There are many free online support groups that you can join. There may even be a support group in a nearby town or city. Try not to close yourself up. Reach out and share your feelings and memories of your beloved pet.

pet loss group

Join our Pet Loss Support Group to share your story and connect with others

7. Try to stick to your regular routine

This is important especially if you have other pets or children. Routine can create a sense of comfort and can reduce your stress levels. The structure of a routine will help keep your body functioning properly.

8. Hold a farewell ceremony

Rituals can help us come to terms with what has happened and give us an opportunity to say goodbye. Hold a private ceremony for your pet or attend a service at a local pet cemetery or crematory.

9. Remember your pet

Take time to remember your pet. Think of their personality and the things they used to do. Remember the good times. Remember the special moments you had together. Treasure all these memories and even look at pictures if you feel like up to it.

10. Get a memorial created

Custom memorials are a great way to keep your pet close to your heart. Commission a pet portrait or have a piece of jewelry created from their hair, ashes, whiskers, etc. This will be truly a unique and special way to honour them.

memorial keepsakes

Take a quiz to learn which memorial keepsake is right for you

11. Visit or volunteer at an animal rescue

You may not be ready to welcome another pet into your life right away. Surrounding yourself with other animals can be very therapeutic. Visit or volunteer at a local animal rescue. Share your love with the animals, which will add some light to their day and yours.

12. Read a ‘Letter from Heaven’

Know that your pet will always love you – they will always be watching over you. Read a reassuring ‘Letter from Heaven’ (cat and dog versions) and even download it for free to print and frame for your wall. A reminder that they are safe, free from pain, and missing you every day.

letter from heaven

Join our free Resource Library to download a letter from Heaven and more

13. Make a donation

Giving can bring you joy in life, so why not consider making a donation in memory of your pet? A tribute to their life while helping a cause that is close to your heart.

14. And remember to take your time

You and your pet had a special bond – you deserve to take time and reflect on your emotions. Don’t let anyone rush your feelings or try to get you to move on before you are ready to take that action. Everyone grieves differently and you should do it in your own time and how you want to.

Check out our Grief Support Resource Library for free access to ‘30 writing prompts – working through grief” to start taking action on working through your pain while remembering your beloved pet.

journal writing prompts

Join our free Resource Library to download journal writing prompts and more

Receive Grief Support Resources delivered to your inbox (plus, a storewide discount code)

This Post Has 3 Comments

  1. Dorine Lisa Mort

    It does get better with time, but once in a while( like right now) I get overwhelmed with grief, and just start balling my eyes out, its been 20 years but I think because I never found out what happened to my dog( my roomate let her out while I was at work)and I never saw her again that makes it so hard, she was my EVERYTHING, I loved her with every fiber of my being, more than any family member or friend or boyfriend in my life, I didnt need any of them, I just needed her, my Yogi, my noodle bug, my babygirl, GOD I MISS HER!!!

  2. Hailey

    Sunday morning my dog Phantom died unexpectedly from a very enlarged heart. He was ten years old and was my everything. This is my first canine pet loss, I’ve dealt with dogs in the past who was our family dog but Phantom was my dog. I feel so empty without him. He was doing fine all day and when I got home from shopping he just got too excited like he always did and just laid down but not in a normal way. The rest of the night he had a really hard time breathing. My mom drove me to the vet at midnight and from there that’s how the rest of my night went. I got an update each hour and it sounded like he had a 50/50 chance but he was breathing on his own which was good. They told us to go home and try to get some rest and they would update us in the morning. Just as I got home (we live 35 minutes away from the emergency vet hospital) I received a call saying he took a turn for the worse. I was not expecting that news, I felt like I was dreaming. Just then a nurse walked in telling the vet his heart had stopped and they started CPR right away. She told me she’d call as soon as she could. We got back in the car to head back to the hospital to be there, about five minutes into the car ride I received a call saying he didn’t make it. At 3:33am in February 6th, 2022 my fur baby Phantom had passed. I am still in shock and can’t stop crying. I have another dog named Paris and they were always together. She is sad but doing okay. How does one try to cope with such an unexpected loss? We had such a special bond, I got him as a birthday present and that day he knew I was his and he was mine. I just miss him so much! He was my baby and I’m having such a hard time to try to accept the fact he’s not here but everywhere I look I’m reminded of him. Life is just not fair sometimes. I know he’s pain free and watching down on me, but I wish I could just hug him and kiss him one last time. I love you Phantom, I always will xoxoxo

  3. Alicia Colwell

    Hailey my name is Alicia and I’m going through exactly what you are. I’m writing this as I’m sobbing and have my photos open on my phone with my world Quigley my dog who passed April 26th,2022 from a very enlarged heart. I can’t get pass it or accept it. I talked to the The Pet Physic Laura Stinchfield in August and Quigley told her he’s coming back to me and said my brother is bringing him back and he said for me to look for him and he will be whiter than him and a little bigger but the same breed which is Maltese/Poodle. He said to look for him at the circle and I have no idea what he meant and it’s killing me.

Leave a Reply