Pet Loss is Real Grief
Posted on 21st November 2017 at 16:40
Sadness overwhelmed me today reading about the sudden death of Cosby a guide dog partnered with David Blunkett. The story broke a few days ago but I only heard about it today as Lord Blunkett was on the radio talking about grief.
I can't even begin to imagine the heartbreak of not only losing a close companion but also losing a life changing partnership that allowed him to live his life so fully.
Some people find the idea of close relationships with animal mystifying, others couldn't imagine life without them. Where ever you sit on that scale it is worth remembering that when an animal dies or has to be given up for some reason, for example if the owner has to go into a care home, then real grief follows. Sadly many people who experience pet loss are not allowed to
grieve. They fear being judged - "after all it was only a..." so bury their feelings, stiffen their upper lips and carry on. But who wouldn't grieve being loved unconditionally for years? Who wouldnt grieve being around a loving presence that absolutely doesn't care about how much money you have, the state of the house or how much you weigh? This pressure in society to bury our feelings and carry on is huge, so I commend David Blunkett for talking so openly about his heartbreak over Cosby.
The loss of a companion animal can be a major bereavement, so if you know someone who has experienced pet loss please don't ask "what are you going to get next?" rather ask them if they'd like to talk about what happened then listen without judgement, criticism or analysis. Do this and you will help them more than you will ever know.
Further reading on this topic article: Loss of the purest loss
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