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6 Tips for Coping with Pet Loss

Whether you’ve lost a furry friend, a scaly soul mate, or an aquatic ally, losing a pet is tough. We often consider our pets as family, so saying goodbye can be painful. 

This blog is a part of our Living With Loss: Grief Campaign.
To see more campaign content, click here.

Here are 6 tips to help you cope with losing a pet.

1. Let it out

There’s no one way to grieve. Some people say they feel sad, angry, numb, and even guilty after the loss of a pet. These feelings are all a natural part of grieving. Perhaps writing down how you feel in a diary can help you to process your emotions. Don’t hold back – let those emotions flow. 

2. Create a memory box

Create a special box to keep photos of your pet and their favourite toys or accessories. You could channel your emotions into something creative like a collage or a painting and keep that in your memory box, too.

3. Spend time with other animals

Consider spending time with other animals. You could offer to walk your neighbours dog, or volunteer at a rescue shelter. This could give you with a sense of purpose and a connection to animals. Knowing that you’re making a difference in their lives might help you feel a little better.

Shilouette of a dog and a cat for pet loss blog

4. Practice self-care

Take care of yourself physically and mentally. Get enough sleep, eat well, and do things that make you feel happy. Even if you’re grieving, you deserve to take care of yourself. You’re allowed to do things that make you feel better – your well-being matters.

5. Consider getting a new pet

When you feel ready, and if everyone in your home agrees, you could consider getting a new pet. Getting another animal doesn’t mean you love your old pet any less, so don’t feel guilty if you are thinking about it. You have lots of love to give; another animal would be lucky to have that. If you’ve just lost your pet, it may be too early to think about this right now, but eventually, getting another pet might help you feel less lonely, and you can establish a new routine.

6. Reach out for support

Don’t bottle it all up; share your feelings with your friends or family. Sometimes, talking about your pet and the memories you shared can be incredibly therapeutic.

If you feel that you can’t share how you’re feeling with someone in your life and you’d like to talk to someone then you can contact Meic. Meic is a free and confidential helpline for children and young people up to 25 in Wales. We can help if you’re worried about something, have questions, or need information or advice. Call our helpline from 8am to midnight every single day: 080 880 23456 or chat to us online.

Remember, healing takes time. Be patient with yourself and know that it’s okay to seek help when you need it.