Resource Center

What Is the Grief Process?

The grief process is as individual as the person, lasting days for one person or years for another. The process typically begins with denial, which offers protection until individuals can recognize their loss.

While grief is a personal experience, you need not face loss alone. Many forms of support are available including pet bereavement counseling services, pet-loss support hotlines, local or online bereavement groups, books, videos and magazine articles.

What Can I Do for My Child?

The loss of a pet may be a child’s first experience with death. The child may blame himself, his parents or the veterinarian for not saving the pet.

He may also feel guilty, depressed or frightened that others he loves may be taken away from him.

Trying to protect your child by saying the pet ran away could cause the child to expect the pet’s return and feel betrayed once discovering the truth. Expressing your own grief may reassure your child that sadness is okay and help him work through his feelings.

Five Ways to Remember Your Pet

1. Hold a memorial service
2. Find a special place for your pet’s ashes
3. Create a living memorial
4. Make a scrapbook
5. Write down your feelings