After losing a pet, many people take great comfort in connecting with others who are going through the same experience. Often, in our own circle of friends, family and co-workers, we are unable to find the emotional support we need as we work our way through the grief of losing our pet.
More and more people seem to turn to the internet, and with the help of complete strangers they are able to navigate through the wide range of emotions that go hand in hand with loving, and losing a cherished pet.
Facebook has many pages dedicated to pet loss. People will often post a photo and message and receive words of comfort from someone who may even be in a different country.
There are pet loss newsgroups and forums. People can post questions, talk about what they are feeling, or even look back on older posts and perhaps find comfort in reading a message or answer someone had previously posted.
There are tribute websites where you can create a wonderful tribute to your beloved pet and share it with others.
There are candle lighting ceremonies, Pinterest groups, and even pet bereavement counsellors who specialize in helping people who are grieving the loss of a pet.
Some people find comfort comes by way of rescuing a pet. They may choose to donate money in memory of their pet in hopes that their loss will at least help save another pet. Still others choose to adopt a pet and find this to be extremely comforting and rewarding. Having a new pet enjoy eating from their pet's bowl, sleeping in their pet's bed and playing with their toys can be a great source of comfort. However, adopting a pet while your emotions are still raw from your loss is not always the wisest move. A pet is a lifetime commitment and making a rash decision to adopt a pet is not fair to you or to the pet you adopt. Instead, I recommend volunteering at a shelter or rescue group. This way you can still enjoy being with a pet, but not have to make a commitment until you are ready. Taking time to heal is always recommended.
There is no right way or wrong way to grieve. No one can give you an exact timeframe as to how long you should grieve for. However, it is important that your grieving is productive; that it is helping you heal and move forward. Whatever method you choose to help you deal with your loss, make sure it is working for you.