For many people, a pet is much more than just an animal. They are a friend and a part of the family. They are there when we wake up in the morning and when we get home from work. And for all those times in between. And they never ask for anything, other than food, shelter and exercise. They become our confidant, our therapist, and our friend.
Losing a pet is therefore extremely painful. It leaves a gap in your life and you are filled with sadness and loss. It can also be hard on family members, especially kids who may have known your pet all their life. One of the ways that people derive a little comfort is to honor their pet and memorialize them. There are many ways you can do this.
A Thoughtful Service
A funeral service is recognized by many as a way to pay your respects and say farewell to a loved one. It is a way to celebrate their life. Creating a thoughtful service for your pet is no different. Invite all the people who were a part of your pet’s life.
There are no rules for how this should proceed. A lovely example is where each member of the family writes a short note to your pet and then reads it during the service. Other people light candles and stand in silence to remember their friend. This is very personal and heartfelt.
If a pet is cremated, many people opt to preserve them forever in a diamond. Pets memorial diamonds are created from the pet’s ashes or fur. It can be kept as a keepsake throughout your life.
An Album or Scrapbook
Another way to remember your pet is to create a dedicated photo album or scrapbook, documenting their lives. Scrapbooks are good as you can write in them as well as adding photos. If it is a family pet who has passed, each member of the family could create their own page with their special memories.
Frame a Photo
Choose one of your favorite photos of you and your pet and buy a special photo frame. Display it in pride of place so that you see it every day.
Set up a Shrine or Altar
Set aside a shelf or table with a photograph of your pet and some of their personal belongings. For example, their collar, tags, and bowl. Add some photos and a candle to shrine or altar.
Plant a Flower or Tree
If your pet had a favorite place in the garden, why not plant a tree or some flowers? Each year when they flower or come into leaf, you will remember your pet.
For people who live alone, coming to terms with the loss of a pet can be particularly distressing. For those people, a pet becomes a friend and a member of the family. And therefore, the grieving process is similar to that of a friend or family member. Honoring and celebrating their pet’s life can be healing and allow them to come to terms with their passing.