Being there for your friend after the loss of a dog
July 12, 2012
Whether you've been a pet parent at some point in your life or have never cared for an animal, you can only imagine what your friend must be going through after having a dog pass away. During this trying time, your loved one can be going through a whole range of emotions, and in many ways it's like losing a family member. This can be a tragic experience in any person's life, and having friends by your side is the best way to process those complex feelings. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when you try to brighten your friend's outlook.
1. Be an active listener. One of the best ways to cycle through grief is by giving your friend an open forum to air anything that may be on his or her mind, reports GriefHealing.com. It may be the emotions that come from being with the pet during his or her last days, or simply remembering the better times with the companion. Put the focus on your friend's grief and provide suggestions rather than direct advice. As much as you're there to help, it's your friend's job to work through the tough emotions and come out stronger on the other side.
2. Inform others of the loss. If you have an extended group of buddies who haven't heard about your friend's loss, take it upon yourself to let them know. This could provide an opportunity for them to reach out to the grieving dog parent on their own, or you can use it as a means of getting the whole gang together to cheer your friend up. Even something as simple as a card signed by all of your loved ones could be a wonderful gesture. If your friend knows that there is a strong support system, it may help him or her get through this trying time.
3. Suggest a pet bereavement class. Sharing experiences with individuals who are going through the same thing can be very beneficial, so a pet bereavement support program may be perfect for your friend. The Bideawee U Pet Loss Support Program is perfect for those in the New York area and will allow fellow grieving pet parents to have the ideal environment to share their feelings and get the insight they need to move on.