Pets are loved by their owners like parents love children or like siblings love each other. Losing a pet thus often results in overwhelming grief in the pet-owner's soul. Overcoming the blow is a lengthy process and time is the best healer.
While mourning the loss of a pet, the keeper generally goes through various emotional phases, which may be:
1. Feeling Guilty: One tends to feel that more should have been done to save the poor creature. To come out of this feeling, one should keep on thinking about all those steps, which were taken to help the pet recover or to save the pet from dangers. This helps one in overcoming the guilt and realizing that nothing more could have been done.
2. Denying the Loss: There are people who might find it difficult to accept the fact that the beloved pet is no longer there. They might not allow the pet's belongings to be removed from the house. This sense of denial goes only with time. Nothing should be forced on someone who has just lost a pet. As one returns to the daily chores, the mind gets diverted and things start looking better.
3. Feeling Angry: The phases of feeling guilty and denying the loss are often coincided with an overwhelming sense of anger. This anger may be directed at the Almighty, the veterinarian who one feels was not competent enough and the family members who one thinks gave wrong advices or did not help. The anger is often directed towards one's own self at not being able to do enough to save the dear one. Letting the anger come out often helps. Screaming or crying one's heart out often lets the anger out of the system.
4. Feeling down and depressed: If the grieving pet-owner is found to continue in a morose appearance for days and seems to avoid company and day-to-day chores, it is to be understood that the owner is undergoing a melancholic and depressed phase. If this phase continues for more than a month, professional assistance must be sought. Professional help is very effective in overcoming depression.
5. Accepting the reality: After overcoming all these obstacles, the aggrieved mind finally accepts the truth. Everyone does reach this stage sooner or later. The heart still aches at the memory of the lost pet, but the actuality of the loss is finally realized. The loss no longer continues to hamper the regular flow of life.
Once one accepts the fact, one can engage oneself in various activities, which help in reducing the pain and cherishing the relationship one shared with the pet. Those who love to write, can pen down stories and anecdotes of the lost one. Those, who love to paint, can put up a large painting of the pet in some mischievous mood, which can thus be treasured forever. Making a collage of all the pictures of the pet, right from when it was a child, also keeps the aggrieved owner busy and cherishing happier moments.
These ways, of treasuring the love one still feels for one's lost pet, eventually help one in reducing the ache in the soul and moving on.
By: Chad Wiley
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