Lost a pet? You may experience anticipatory sadness

For those unfortunate enough to not have a furry loved one in their life, they don’t fully understand how important these furry friends really are. They can say things like “but it was just a dog/cat”. As an animal lover, you know that these furry animals are more than just an animal and a pet; they are a member of the family. Just like when you find out that a family member is dying, it’s the same with your furry friend, you are completely devastated when you hear the terrible news that they have a limited amount of time to live. This doesn’t really help you when you find out you have to say goodbye.

When you hear those words, you can get lost like in a vicious roller coaster ride, you can experience so many different emotions from minute to minute. From anger, to sadness, to regret and finally maybe acceptance. Acceptance doesn’t mean you forget them, it just means you accept that this is where their next step in their life journey is.

Everyone is different when it comes to grief and loss, but in one way or another everyone still feels the terrible pain of loss. In fact, anticipatory grief can be even worse than when death occurs because you have to watch the process unfold almost in slow motion. You often read all the information about what is coming. Learn all about euthanasia. You deal with all of your pet’s ups and downs while trying to be strong for them. You will be looking for signs that the time has officially come when you must send your loved one to eternal rest from pain.

These are real emotions that you feel and should be taken very seriously. You should talk about it like any other very painful time in your life. You can discuss this with a trusted friend or professional counselor. There is even a pet loss or bereavement counseling center that you can access. You should also consider joining a pet loss support group. This can be very helpful for those anticipating grief and for after their death. You can also find great comfort in finding ways to celebrate your pet’s life through a dog bucket list or doing great things to make the most of your time together. It also helps to talk to your vet so you understand everything that will be going on. They will answer any questions you may have so you know what to expect. This is incredibly helpful because the part of the grieving process that can be hardest is not knowing what will happen next. It can also lead to thoughts and questions about life, death and the afterlife, which can also be helpful during this coping process.

The bereavement of a pet is a very real thing that can be difficult to handle. When walking with a sick pet, you will have a whole range of very strong emotions to deal with. These little critters are so much more than furry animals shedding all over your home. He cuddles with you when you are sad. They are there to listen to you when things are tough. They are your family members and your best friends and nothing can be more painful than saying goodbye to them.

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