Losing a pet is devastating for the entire family. It is hard enough for us as the adults to mourn the passing of beloved pet, and it is even harder for children to understand. After all, most often, the child and the pet grow up together and are usually the best of friends. Your local Rockford area veterinarian (or one closest to your home) can help with the grieving process for you and your children. Losing a best friend can break a child’s heart and as the adult, even though you are hurting yourself, you need to help your child understand the loss and how to deal with it. This may very well be your child’s first encounter with the death of someone so close to them and how they handle it can have a big impact on their entire lives.
Children under the age of five probably relate to their pet as a playmate, and may see death as a temporary thing. Children beyond this age can comprehend a little better and may know that death is inevitable although they may not think it is permanent. However, a child that is above the age of 10 knows and understands that death is final. How you help your child to deal with the loss of a pet does depends upon the child’s age. As a model in the home, your child looks to you for guidance and comfort.
When a child is very young it is important that they know they had nothing to do with the death of pet. Children have a way have a way of blaming themselves for everything devastating that happens in the home. Keep the communication open with your child — talk about your pet and what led to the passing, whether it was due to illness, injury or old-age – stressing the fact that your beloved pet is now free from hurt and pain. Don’t be afraid to cry together openly as you grieve as a family. Talk about all the good times you had with your pet, while bringing up special memories of those good times together. Have your children understand that it is okay to talk about your dog or your cat openly while keeping those memories alive. Express that even though your pet is physically gone, the memories and good times of that pet will always be in your hearts.
Sometimes children find more comfort in performing a ritual such as a memorial or type of service within the home to pay their last respects to their beloved family member gone before them. Gather such things as photos, a pet’s collar, a clip of hair and a favorite toy to honor your pet and keep its memory alive through stories and all the good times you had together with that pet. Sometimes this type of ritual can help a child in saying goodbye. If the grieving process seems too difficult to handle, you may need to seek professional counseling to get the family through the grief.
It is important to grieve when you lose a pet – I have been there many times, and it never gets any easier. Each pet is unique in its own way and I have the memories to cherish each of my dogs that I have lost, still missing them. Other pets that you may have in your home could never take the place of those that have gone before you but they seem to ease the pain of grieving. Do not be afraid to talk openly about a lost pet as you share through tears of emotion, sadness and the joy of memories that will never die.
For Vet assistance in the Rockford area, you can check out – http://www.rockfordvetclinics.com/, http://bellwoodvets.com/, http://www.petswelcome.com/illinois/rockford/veterinarians.html http://www.perryvillepet.com/, http://bellwoodvets.com/services_surgical.php – for all cat issues, go to – http://local.catster.com/Spay_Neutering_Rockford_IL-p3154-Rockford_IL.html
For all your pets needs in Rockford, go to your local PETCO – 6305 East State Street, Rockford, IL 61108, (815) 229-0184 – http://www.petco.com/or your local PETSMART – 6320 East State Street, Rockford, IL 61108, (815) 397-7880 – http://stores.petsmart.com/result-details.php?store=493 – PETLAND, (815) 332-4200 – www.petland.com/
For many of your pets essentials, visit your local Rockford area CVS pharmacies. There are four convenient locations – 3134 11th Street, Rockford, IL 61109, (815)398-0048 – 110 S Alpine Rd, Rockford, IL 61108 – 3718 Main Street, Rockford, IL 61103, (815)877-9620- 2454 S. Alpine Rd.,
Rockford, IL 61108, (815)399-5421- http://www.cvsphoto.com/home
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