Sarah Solomon, Practice Manager of Heath Veterinary Clinic in Burgess Hill and Hurstpierpoint, says: “Anyone who considers a pet a beloved friend, companion, or family member knows the intense pain that accompanies the loss of that friend.
Losing a pet is the worst and most devastating thing that can happen to a pet owner. The UK is well known as being a nation of animal lovers, and so many of us consider our pets as part of the family. Whether a pet is lost suddenly or he becomes terminally ill, there are still some ways to help owners feel a little more in control and help aid grief.
“When a pet dies, it’s important to give yourself time to grieve — it will help with the healing process. Don’t let anyone tell you that it’s silly, or overly sentimental to grieve. Speak to your vet about options for end of life care and what happens when the time comes to say goodbye. There are many ways that you can pay your respect and honour your pet’s memory.”
A special place — Many people opt to plant a special shrub in your garden, perhaps in your pet’s favoured sunny spot or making a mini shrine with some nice stones, a loved toy or name badge, can help you remember your pet fondly.
Create a montage — You can make on-line or framed wall montages and scrapbooks by using photographs of all the special times you and your pet shared with funny anecdotes and stories, a favourite collar or toy and anything else that reminds you of them.
Plan and discuss — There are so many options for end of life care for animals nowadays and knowing all your options may give you a small sense of control over the situation. Some also offer pet bereavement counselling/support and help with choosing final options such as cremations and ashes.
Sarah adds: “Losing a pet is a real emotional struggle for most people. We know how hard it can be so we strive to support our clients through compassion, advice and care. We often attend to our patients in their own homes so that they can remain relaxed and at ease in familiar surroundings.
“We have recently starting using the Surrey Pet Crematorium, which enables us to offer our clients the options of burial, private or communal cremations with a large range of caskets, urns and ornaments so that you can choose the right goodbye for your pet. SPC is an extremely tranquil location with a beautiful Garden of Remembrance where our pet’s ashes can be scattered.”