Pet Loss Support & Grief Counselling

We understand losing a pet can be incredibly hard. We have compiled a few resources below to help comfort you during this difficult time.

Coping with the loss of a Pet

Animals bring so much joy to our lives. They bring laughter and companionship and are considered a part of the family. After losing a pet, it’s completely normal to feel immense sadness, loneliness, depression or even shock.

Some people may also feel anger, guilt, or even denial when they are trying to come to terms with their loss. It’s important that you allow yourself time to grieve and process these feelings in your own time.

The bond that you shared with your pet is unique and very meaningful; so don’t be afraid to reach out to your friends and family for pet grief support.

Anticipatory Grief

What is Anticipatory Grief?

When your pet is first diagnosed with a terminal illness, or you realise that your pet is nearing the end of their life, it can be an incredibly challenging time. Not only will your pet need more intensive care and frequent veterinary visits, but you’ll also be trying to emotionally prepare yourself for what is to come.

It can be a crippling time, full of heightened concern, confusion, fear, anger, helplessness and hopelessness. This is anticipatory grief

Pet Loss Support Grief Counsellors

Rest Your Paws offers a full service pet loss support and grief counselling service either for in-person or online sessions. Let us know if you would like more information. One complimentary session may be included with your pet’s end of life care plan.

We have compiled a few resources to help guide and support you through the grief process.

Coping with the Loss of a Companion Animal

~The Last Battle ~

“If it should be that I grow frail and weak
And pain should keep me from my sleep,
Then will you do what must be done,
For this — the last battle — can’t be won.
You will be sad I understand,
But don’t let grief then stay your hand,
For on this day, more than the rest,
Your love and friendship must stand the test.
We have had so many happy years,
You wouldn’t want me to suffer so,
When the time comes, please, let me go.
Take me to where to my needs they’ll tend,
Only, stay with me till the end
And hold me firm and speak to me
Until my eyes no longer see.
I know in time you will agree
It is a kindness you do to me.
Although my tail its last has waved,
From pain and suffering I have been saved.
Don’t grieve that it must be you
Who has to decide this thing to do;
We’ve been so close — we two — these years,
Don’t let your heart hold any tears.”
— Unknown

How to Memorialise a Beloved Pet

Children and Pet Loss

We understand that a pet reaching the end of their life is hugely upsetting for you and your family. How you guide your child through the experience of losing a pet is a personal journey, and we are here to help you at this challenging time.

Our services are designed to give your pet the best care in the late stages of their life. This includes supporting you, as a family, through decisions around saying goodbye. This blog about grief in children is a great place to start.

This resource written by Ohio State University gives you an in depth view of how children cope with loss and specifically looks at different age-related developmental stages.

Will my other pet grieve?

Though our pets may not experience grief in the same complex way we humans do, they recognise and respond to changes in their environment.

When a companion animal dies, surviving pets may become more attached to their owners, be more reactive to stimuli, appear anxious or depressed, or demonstrate a loss of interest in playing, sleeping, or eating.

These behavioural and emotional changes may be a temporary response to the loss, a distress response to the owners’ sadness, a distress response to changes in routine that occur as the result of the death, or an underlying medical condition.

For More Information Visit Our Blog

Other Helpful Resources

Kids Helpline

This website provides many resources to help younger children understand what happens after a pet passes away and ways to mourn their loss.

Pets and People

This website provides a great deal of resources to help support pet caregivers through the grieving process that comes before, during and after the loss of pet.

Pet Loss Partners

For a comprehensive list of resources and books for both adults and children regarding the loss of a loved one. Also provides guides on coping strategies.

Pet Loss Support Groups

Our Wonderful Pets

A wonderful website paying tribute to the human animal bond and honouring the beautiful life they have lived. You'll find many helpful end-of-life resources and community support network.

The Lost Dogs Home

This website gives you the opportunity to memorialise your beloved pet by sharing photos, stories and poems written in your pet’s memory. A beautiful way to celebrate their life!

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