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Having a pet die can be heartbreaking and it is only natural to feel lost, sad and upset for days, weeks, even months after the event. Ask anyone who has a pet and they will tell you that their pet wasn't just an animal - it was a friend and a big part of the family. This is why dealing with the death of a beloved pet is similar to dealing with the death of a loved one. You will need time to grieve and time to say goodbye properly.

Saying Goodbye

Death happens to the best of us. Whether your pet has died of old age and natural causes or has been hit by a car or maybe your trying to find your missing pet, it is important that you remember the good times you have shared. It is okay to be sad and to need some time off from work. Take a day off and spend it with your family. Do the things that your pet loved to do - go for a walk, go to the beach, go for a picnic.

Fill the loss with stories of your pet or take some silent time to think about how much your pet means to you.

You may wish to do something nice to commemorate your pet. Having your pet cremated or buried is a good way to say goodbye. There are pet funeral and burial companies that can arrange private and public funerals for your animal. You can all say a few nice things and then choose a spot to bury your pet. Or, take a family stroll on the beach and let the ashes go in your pet's favorite place to play.

You can also look at more private ways to say goodbye to your pet. You may wish to have a piece of jewelry engraved to remember your pet or frame a photo of your dog and place it somewhere where you will be able to see it every day. Some people will even get a tattoo of their pets name and dates.

Explaining to your children that their best friend has now passed on can be quite difficult and, depending on the ages of the kids, they can take it pretty poorly. Ask them to write a story, write a poem, draw a picture or make a college of their pet. Spend the evening as a family looking through family photos and choosing the best pictures to add to a college or scrapbook of your pet. This is a great way to relive these memories and to say goodbye to your friend.

Moving On

It may seem like a good idea to replace your pet as quickly as possible; however, this is not always the right thing to do. No animal will be able to replace the love you had for your pet. Furthermore, you may find that you are constantly comparing the two animals and that the poor new pup can't do anything right. Before you buy another pet, make sure you have moved on as a family and that everyone is ready.

If your children are not ready they may resent the animal and wish it was your old pet instead. It can take years before you may be ready to add another pet to your family and this is okay. Don't feel pressure to fill the gap with another animal as this can result in another type of emptiness if it is too soon. Dealing with the death of a beloved pet takes time so don't rush it. Let your emotions guide you through this tough time.

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