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Helping Your Pet Cope With Loss

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Photo of Riley, Cavalier King Charles SpanielWe all mourn the loss of a pet, but if you are a multi-pet household, the remaining pets may need support in dealing with the loss of their buddy.

I wrote yesterday about the passing of Dillon and the relationship he had with his brother, Riley.  Their relationship was a typical brother/brother one, competitive on one hand but very nurturing and caring on the other hand.  Now that Dillon is gone, Riley’s life will be very different and he may have trouble coping.

Here are some things to do that will help your pet cope with loss of an animal companion:

  • Keep your pet on their normal schedule.  The loss of a companion is a very big change in your pet’s life, so keeping everything the same (walk times, feeding times for example) will not add extra stress to a distressed pet.
  • Keep something with the deceased pet’s scent on hand.  Your remaining pet will be comforted if he is able to pick up the scent of his companion.  This will probably not be as important as time passes, but for the first few weeks having his scent around can be reassuring.
  • Spend a little extra time with your pet.  Spending extra time with your pet will help reassure him that you will not leave him.

Losing a pet is difficult for the entire family.  Taking these steps won’t take away the pain but will help ease it a bit for your pet.


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