For Pet Parents

Grief Resource for Pet Parents

Nothing compares to the love you share with a dear pet, therefore both of you deserve a way to commemorate and celebrate this extraordinary bond when this furry companion passes.

The connections we make with our pets, who remain a physical and emotional constant in our lives through all its ups and downs, are incredibly powerful and validating. The loss of a pet impacts everyone differently. In truth, the loss of a pet is often more painful than the loss of a person. We value pet relationships—whether month-long or decades—because they tend to be intensely honest, reliable and deep. The intimacy is so close that it tends to surpass our relationships with most people. Just consider how often we touch our pets' bodies in a single day...

Yet, we often hear that friends, family members or colleagues don’t quite understand the upset that losing a pet can bring, and grieving for a pet can be a very lonely experience. It helps to share these feelings with someone who you're sure knows from personal experience how distressing pet loss can be, and who will listen with empathy, compassion, and without judgement. The last thing you want is to interact with someone who dismisses your grief—it is especially risky when disclosing the loss in a workplace.

You may struggle to find words to express your thoughts and emotions at the time of death or you feel self-conscious or shaken about the depth of your despair. Furthermore, a new loss often reminds us of previous ones, and the resulting cascade of  feelings and sensations can be surprising and overwhelming. Be gentle and patient with yourself. You deserve the space to grieve freely and to go through it at your natural pace.

RemembeRing is meant to help you through this naturally traumatic time.

The inner token provides a special opportunity for a final farewell message. And when you display your RemembeRing frame, each time close friends and family see it will provide a new opportunity to consider opening up about your grieving process. You may also decide that you want to speak with a counselor or pastoral care provider for professional support.

You may worry you'll burden friends or family with talk of grief, or you are anticipating the time you will have to say goodbye to a pet who is still living, or are heartbroken about a pet who is missing or stolen. You may even wish to call a friend about a pet who passed away many months or years ago.

Feelings of despair, loneliness and even deep depression can occur. There may also be a strong sense of guilt and doubt, particularly when a decision has been made to euthanize or rehome a pet. These feelings are normal and a testimony to the special bond between people and their pets.

The relationships we share with our pets are meant to be celebrated, yet when they die we can feel vulnerable opening up to others about the pain because we fear it will be devalued by others. Please take a look at our blog posts because they go into greater depth about specific aspects of the pet loss experience and you may find them helpful.

Selection Of Books To Help Grieving Adults: 

  • Pet Parents: A Journey Through Unconditional Love and Grief, Coleen Ellis
  • Saying Good-Bye to the Pet You Love: A Complete Resource to Help You Heal, Lorri Greene and Jacquelyn Landis
  • When Your Pet Dies: A Guide to Mourning, RemembeRing and Healing, by Alan D. Wolfert, PhD
  • The Pet Loss Companion: Healing Advice from Family Therapists Who Lead Pet Loss Groups, by Ken Dolan-Del Vecchio and Nancy Saxton-Lopez
  • Coping with Sorrow on the Loss of Your Petby Moira Anderson
  • Buried Deep in our Hearts, Tracie Barton-Barrett
  • Journey Through Pet Loss, by Deborah Antinori
  • Losing My Best Friend: Thoughtful Support for Those Affected by Dog Bereavement or Pet Loss, Jeannie Wycherley
  • Humphrey Was Here: A Dog Owner’s Story of Love, Loss and Letting Goby Mark Asher
  • Goodbye, Friend: Healing Wisdom for Anyone Who Has Ever Lost a Petby Gary Kowalski
  • The Grief Recovery Handbook for Pet Lossby Russell Friedman, Cole James and John W. James
  • Grieving the Death of a Petby Betty J. Carmack
  • Soul Comfort for Cat Lovers: Coping Wisdom for Heart and Soul After the Loss of a Beloved Felineby Liz Eastwood
  • The Loss of a Pet: A Guide to Coping with the Grieving Process When a Pet Diesby Wallace Sife, PhD
  • Going Home: Finding Peace When Pets Dieby Jon Katz
  • A Final Act of Caring: Ending the Life of an Animal Friendby Mary and Herb Montgomery
  • It’s Okay to Cry: Warm Compassionate Stories That Help You Find Hope and Healing After the Death of a Beloved Petby Maria Lutz Quintana, Shari L. Velebra and Harley King
  • Heart Dog: Surviving the Loss of Your Canine Soul Mate, Roxanne Hawn
  • For Every Dog an Angelby Christine Davis
  • The Rainbow Bridge: Pet Loss Is Heaven's Gain, by Niki Behrikis Shanahan
  • There is Eternal Life for Animals, by Niki Behrikis Shanahan
  • Cold Noses at the Pearly Gates: A Book of Hope for Those Who Have Lost a Petby Gary Kurz
  • Signs from Pets In The Afterlife: Identifying Messages From Pets In Heaven, by Lyn Ragan

Grief is a normal and natural process; however, the loss of a loved one can cause such emotional distress that warrants professional help, which is beyond the scope of RemembeRing. While our product is designed as a compassionate intervention, our materials and website content are for informational purposes only. They are not intended to replace professional mental health evaluation, counseling or care, especially in a crisis and if severe grief persists.

Also, please be aware that people who provide pet loss support vary greatly in their education, training, experience, and expertise; explore your options carefully and consult your healthcare provider as needed.

If you are looking for resources to address thoughts about suicide, self-harming, or harming others, contact 800-273-8255 or visit Call 911 or your local emergency services for help if you are experiencing a mental health emergency.