Emotional Wellbeing

Therapy

Mandy Kloppers

When Is the Right Time To Say Goodbye To Your Pet & How To Cope

A pet is part of your family. They could even be crucial support for your emotional and mental well-being. So when they die, the grief is often overwhelming.

When to Say Goodbye

Like human medicine, veterinary care has advanced in leaps and bounds in recent years. The tendency can be to think that we can always cure a pet or put off the evil day when we have to say goodbye. But often, that’s not in your companion’s best interests.

Diagnostic techniques in veterinary science are comparable with human medicine, as can be seen via vendors like mavenimaging.com. Sure, your vet may use the most modern X-ray technology in their veterinary practices, but often that’s just not enough.

It’s important to remember — additional diagnostic techniques are not the same thing as a cure, and you can’t always apply human treatment solutions to animals. It also may not be fair or in the best interest of your pet’s welfare.

Quality of life must always rule over quantity of life. Most vets know when the right time is, especially if the owner’s judgment is clouded by emotion.

How to Manage the Emotional Fallout

The emotion you experience after losing a pet can be raw and overwhelming.

Feeling angry, upset, distraught, and bereft are all valid human emotions. It’s essential to seek support from friends and family members who understand what you’re going through.

Coping with Grief

There is lots of advice and guidance available online from dedicated pet charities. Reading about other people’s experiences will help you understand that you’re not alone in what you feel.

There are dedicated companion animal bereavement counselors – your vet may be able to suggest some – whom you can contact over the phone, via Zoom, or visit in person.

Sometimes talking to an impartial third party can help, particularly if the only people you have to talk to are within your family and are also upset at the loss of their treasured companion.

Create a Memorial

After some time has passed, your thoughts may turn toward creating a memorial. This could be an actual grave in your garden or a shrub or tree planted in memory of your companion.

There are numerous headstones and tangible memorials available, and some pet owners donate to an appropriate charity in memory of their pets.

There’s also a range of pet jewelry made from hair or fur, including rings, bracelets, and necklaces.

The Blue Cross offers a pet bereavement service where you can discuss all the available options freely and confidently. There are also dedicated support lines for specific species, including cats, dogs, and horses.

Final Thoughts

Saying goodbye to your beloved pet is the last gift you will give them, although it’s also one of the hardest things you’ll ever do. Take comfort in the fact that you’re not alone, and take advantage of all the support that’s available to help you through the dark times.