Dogs are a member of the family and we can feel a huge loss when they pass away. For Derry of PetStay Herefordshire, Worcestershire & Monmouthshire, this loss is incredibly fresh after the passing of her own dog, Dooby.
It can be a sad and difficult experience when grieving the loss of a pet through death or parting. Leading pet charity Blue Cross, emphasizes that mourning a pet can be an unexpectedly hard time with “Feelings of despair, loneliness and even depression”. These strong feelings are incredibly normal for pet owners, and a testament to the special bond we share with our dogs.
For Derry, the sudden loss of her beloved Dooby was difficult to absorb at first.
Dooby, a German Wirehaired Pointer, developed complications due to his age meaning Derry had to make the heart-rending decision to let her companion and friend go.
Derry said: “Dooby was an integral part of our family and loved by all who met him. His joy of life was always evident: he loved people; kids; walks; going in water at any time of year; playing ball; and sausage rolls – not necessarily in any particular order!”
Coping with her own loss, Derry sought to pass on her experience and thoughts to help anyone else who has recently lost a beloved pet.
“It’s taken me some time to share this with people, outside of close family and friends. As with any bereavement, it takes time to assimilate loss into your life and to manage the often overwhelming feelings.
“Whilst it’s been a very sad and emotional time and still is, I have been able to count on the love and support of family and friends to help me at this difficult time.”
It is key to remember to look after yourself during the stress of losing a beloved pet. Looking after your physical and emotional needs during this difficult time is just as important. While many of us have different techniques to cope with loss, it can help to talk to close friends, family or strangers who will understand your feelings.
The Blue Cross, offers a support service for people whose pets have died. Bereaved owners can submit a form or call the Blue Cross to get support from a fully trained team. More information can be found on the charity’s website.
Dogs are not the whole of our life, but they make our lives whole – Roger Caras, Wildlife Photographer
In loving memory of Dooby