As a pet owner, you know the day will eventually come when your family loses that pet and has to go through the grief that comes with such an experience. It’s not easy to deal with and it’s especially difficult when you have young children who love the pet and don’t really understand what’s changed or why it’s happened.
If you’re looking to help your whole family through the loss of a family pet, it’s a good idea to think about the steps you can take. There are so many different ways to go about doing this and some steps that will make a real difference. Keep reading to learn about the steps that’ll make a difference.
Understand the Response Will Be Different for Everyone
Everyone in your family is likely to have a different response to losing a pet, and that’s alright. There’s no right or wrong way to feel when something like this happens. You should understand that just because some people in the family seem more or less bothered by what’s happened than others, that doesn’t mean they aren’t also feeling the loss. Everyone is going to deal with it in their own way and that’s just the way it is. Policing people’s responses to things like this is never a good idea either.
Communicate and Be Willing to Talk
You should be willing to talk things through if this is something that any member of your family wants to do. When you have kids who don’t really understand what has happened or why, being able to talk things through with them can be really helpful, even if finding the right words to say isn’t necessarily the easiest thing to do. But communicating and supporting one another can make a real difference for each of you and it can definitely help you to come through the other side of all this a lot quicker.
Create a Video Tribute Together
There are lots of things you can do together as a family that enable you to create lasting moments of your pet’s life and what they meant to you as a family. Something that many families like to do these days after suffering the loss of a pet is create a video tribute that they can share and look back on for years to come. Find all the little clips and photos you’ve taken of your dog over the years and put them all together into something that’s genuinely meaningful for you all.
Look After One Another
Simply supporting each other and looking after each other when it’s needed can make a big difference. Simply having a shoulder to cry in is often all that a person needs when they’re dealing with something like this. If you’re unsure of how to support each other, don’t overcomplicate it. You simply need to make the most of each other and be thon for other members of your family when that’s what they’re looking for. It’s not much but it helps a great deal.
Talk to Other Families About Their Experiences
If there are other families you know that have been through similar things, they might be able to help you with some tips and guidance with how to assist your kids. That first-hand experience will give them the best insights into how to deal with all this and how to talk to your kids about it. It’s important to help your kids in any way you can, but it’s not always clear how you should make that happen. Speaking to other parents and sharing your experiences might be what you need in order to truly get this right together.
Try to Maintain Routines
It’s a good idea to keep your routines consistent after the loss of your pet, especially for your kids. When you have that structure and the right routines in place, you’ll keep things normal at a time when normalcy is much appreciated. It might sound callous to keep things normal when your kids are sad, but it’s what they need more than anything else when they’re dealing with something like this. The last thing they need is for their whole lives to be thrown into chaos because that won’t help at all.
Do Things You Enjoy Together as a Family
Simply doing things together and spending time on fun things that take everyone’s mind off the loss of your pet can make a big difference. It’s about having a good time even at a time when nothing seems good. You can’t get back to normal and help your kids to move on if you’re all moping around and being sad all the time. Of course, there’s definitely a place for sadness but sooner or later you’ll need to do other things and that’s when being together and doing things you love will become important for you all.
Don’t Rush Into Replacing the Pet
One mistake lots of families make after the death of a pet is replacing it with a new one right away. This might seem like a good idea, but it’s certainly not a good reason to get a pet. There are lots of good reasons to adopt a pet, but doing it to help you get over the loss of the previous one is probably not one of them. For the same of the pet you choose to adopt, it’s probably best to give your family some time to grieve its loss and then move on and find another pet when the time is right to do so.
Seek Professional Help If You Think You Need It
If you feel like a member of your family is really struggling badly with what’s happened, you should think about whether it’s a good idea to seek professional help for them. Talking to a therapist who specializes in child psychology might help them to come to terms with what they’re experiencing in a healthier way. It’s normal to need to work through things and it’s not such a bad idea to seek out those kinds of support for your child if you feel it’d be beneficial to do so.
Create a Lasting Memorial
As your family moves on, it’s a good idea to create a lasting memorial that will always be there to represent your departed pet and how important he or she was to you during their life. You can get things like pet urns by Memorials.com and lots of other items that’ll help you to create these kinds of memorials, so it’s worth thinking about how you can approach this. Adding something of this kind to your garden might be just what your family wants and needs.
There Doesn’t Need to Be Guilt Attached to Moving On
When the time is eventually right for you to all move on, there’s no need to feel any sort of guilt from this. It’s one of those things that is always going to happen eventually and there’s nothing at all wrong with that. Life goes on and sooner or later your family has to carry on with life too. And that might eventually mean getting a new pet when the time is right to make that happen.
Losing a pet is one of the most difficult things your family will go through collectively. You should think about making use of the ideas and concepts above if it’s something your family is going through and struggling with. It’s going to be a tough time but you’ll get through it together in the end.