The sadness and grief that comes with losing a beloved pet can be equally as difficult as any loss you may endure in your lifetime. Pets are often considered family members and can play a significant and constant role in one's life for many years. Pets can provide comfort, unconditional love, and often become a part of the owner's daily routine.
As the animals' caretaker, owners may grapple with feelings of guilt or regret when coping with the loss of their pet. They may question the end-of-life decisions they make for their animal or have doubts about the care they provided them.
Another challenging aspect of pet loss, is feeling invalidated in your grief. Owners are often made to feel that they shouldn't be grieving with the intensity or for the length of time in which they are grieving their animal, and therefore suffer in silence. Support can be harder to come by when others may not understand the bond or depth of love one has for their animal friend. If you are coping with pet loss, acknowledge your grief, seek out bereavement resources, and connect with others that understand the pain you are experiencing. And just like any grief, take one day at a time and give yourself the grace to feel any and all emotions you may be feeling.