Our pets are our best friends, our family and taking the time to remember them can be integral to the healing process.
Rituals are powerful. Ritual helps us to acknowledge the life we have shared with our pets. It invites others to learn how much we love our pets and how much they matter. Creating rituals in remembrance of our animal companions can assist us in beginning to heal.
With the holidays around the corner, it can be a tender time for you or someone you love who’ve had to say goodbye to a beloved four-legged friend.
Below are some things you can do during various parts of your grief journey to honor your animal companion that are special and unique, just as your relationship was to one another. This is also something you can do for a friend who just lost a pet as well.
* Create a special memory album or scrapbook dedicated to your animal companion.
* Take your favorite photo and create a locket or necklace you can wear close to your heart
* Plant a tree, shrub or flower in your garden
* Plant the above but mix it with your pets cremains as a special tribute. Our friends at Let Your Love Grow have a special organic plant medium for this.
* Get a special memorial stone engraved with your animal companion’s name and a favorite quote
* Buy a shadow box frame and create a collage of photos, special mementos of your pet to hang in a special place
* Burn a candle in a special place as a tribute and share a special thought or story with a friend (this one is especially good during the holidays, or the anniversary of your pet’s birth)
* If you have children, tell bedtime stories about your pet & say, “sweet dreams [insert pet’s name]” at the end.
* Donate your time to an animal charity or rescue group
* Set a place for your pet at your next gathering and have friends or family share a special memory about your pet
Equally important if not more, is taking good care of yourself. This is what your pet would have wanted if he or she was still here with you.
Make sure you are getting enough sleep, eating nutritious meals or snacks if you don’t feel like eating a large meal. Give yourself the TIME to regroup and heal.
If you work a full day, set aside five minutes at night to allow your memories and feelings to be present. If you keep a journal, you can jot down notes. There is so much more we can share beyond this blog post. Feel free to look through our Pinterest page for links to other pet loss articles.