Coping with the loss of a pet

#1
Lightbulb  Leigha Offline
So, I lost a pet this year due to cancer. My cat was so brave it seemed, to the very end. Cats don't often show their pain, you won't hear wincing or crying out if they're suffering. It was hard to detect that he was sick in the first place. I still can't talk about his death (out loud) with others, without crying. I'm past the shock of it all and no longer weep like I did when it just happened. But, there are days when his absence is felt more than others. I think that's just a byproduct of losing a loved one.

What I've gleaned from this article is how to make grief, meaningful. Not sure if I'm really ''using'' my grief in a constructive way so far, but it would be a good idea to stretch myself and give it a try. This is an insightful read, and hope it helps you too if you're going through the grief process. 

https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/11876-2017062211876
Reply
#2
C C Offline
"There is a lack of formal societal or religious processes for grieving and mourning the loss of a pet."

Could a recognized, consensus ceremony (and supplemental protocols) be assembled from aspects of rites performed by animals themselves? (Funeral rites in animals)

Callous remedy, perhaps, but I usually just got a replacement pet. But there's always one or more fondly remembered as special or eccentric compared to others -- distinct in terms of behavior/character.
- - - -

ACADEMIC PAPER ... Religions, in spite of their differences, converge on some fundamental points, and some of these points concern our responsibility toward animals (conceptual clarification): ... Each religion responds to the restlessness of the human heart by offering a particular viewpoint. Because of the various ramifications of religious traditions in the course of history, the overall stand as regards animals is not always clear. Nevertheless, we can still identify at least two areas of global convergence, one dealing with the interdependence between all living things and the other with the significance of the triad animality–humanity–divinity.

First then: the interdependence of all creatures, material and spiritual. The very use of the word “creatures” reflects a common kinship. The universe, charged with its own dynamism, shows how most creatures flourish by using other creatures. Religions see therefore the entire biosphere as a unified, dynamic whole. This universal creaturely kinship is not a flat or chaotic landscape. It is a hierarchy. All living things occupy a specific position within this hierarchy. Humans may be the highest within the material realm but they are certainly not the highest overall. Our position bestows on us not only power and authority but also special responsibilities. The major religions accept that a lack of human respect toward animals often generates a corresponding lack of human respect toward other humans, especially the poor, the underprivileged, the physically or mentally challenged, the sick, and the old.
Reply
#3
Magical Realist Offline
My favorite all time pet was an beatup alley cat that lived 9 lives all the way to about 18. One day he just disappeared and never came back. I prefer that way of dying as I never had to face the reality of his death. He might actually have been translated like Elijah the prophet was. Smile
Reply
#4
Leigha Offline
(Nov 17, 2020 09:39 PM)C C Wrote: "There is a lack of formal societal or religious processes for grieving and mourning the loss of a pet."

Could a recognized, consensus ceremony (and supplemental protocols) be assembled from aspects of rites performed by animals themselves? (Funeral rites in animals)

Callous remedy, perhaps, but I usually just got a replacement pet. But there's always one or more fondly remembered as special or eccentric compared to others -- distinct in terms of behavior/character. 
- - - -

ACADEMIC PAPER ...  Religions, in spite of their differences, converge on some fundamental points, and some of these points concern our responsibility toward animals (conceptual clarification): ... Each religion responds to the restlessness of the human heart by offering a particular viewpoint. Because of the various ramifications of religious traditions in the course of history, the overall stand as regards animals is not always clear. Nevertheless, we can still identify at least two areas of global convergence, one dealing with the interdependence between all living things and the other with the significance of the triad animality–humanity–divinity.

First then: the interdependence of all creatures, material and spiritual. The very use of the word “creatures” reflects a common kinship. The universe, charged with its own dynamism, shows how most creatures flourish by using other creatures. Religions see therefore the entire biosphere as a unified, dynamic whole. This universal creaturely kinship is not a flat or chaotic landscape. It is a hierarchy. All living things occupy a specific position within this hierarchy. Humans may be the highest within the material realm but they are certainly not the highest overall. Our position bestows on us not only power and authority but also special responsibilities. The major religions accept that a lack of human respect toward animals often generates a corresponding lack of human respect toward other humans, especially the poor, the underprivileged, the physically or mentally challenged, the sick, and the old.
This is meaningful. There's something doubly heartbreaking about losing a pet (compared to losing a loved one, dare say) in that pets love unconditionally. Although this cat of mine that passed away, was a tough one. His breed was one for being rude and finicky. lol But, he was unique and special in his own way, and I'm sad that he suffered in the end. When I was a Catholic, there were notions that pets don't have souls so there won't be any in heaven, but I don't believe that's a commonly held Christian tenet. I agree with that first sentence though ''There is a lack of formal societal or religious processes for grieving and mourning the loss of a pet." 

So very true, and people who don't own pets may not grasp the magnitude of losing one. C'est la vie.
Reply
#5
confused2 Offline
I'd say having a pet is like adopting a child - the love for the pet is unconditional - that's the bond that gets broken when they die.
Reply
#6
Secular Sanity Offline
My son’s dog died while he was overseas. It was the first grave that I had ever dug. I cried the whole time. I bought a pet stone memorial, built a grape stake fence around her grave and created a memorial video for my son. Looking back, I think that having to dig the grave actually helped with the grieving process. She was a golden lab and extremely smart. I still miss her.

Sorry for your loss, wegs.
Reply
#7
Zinjanthropos Offline
Word yesterday from my grandchild in BC. Her Betta fish, named Wow, died*. She's 2 ½ and she told her mom and dad to flush it down the toilet because in one of the children's movies she's watched that's what was done, so a dead fish could reunite with its parents.

* some disease called 'hole in the head', ever heard of it? Starts with an eye falling out.

Edit:
Quote:Hexamita. The main way people believe hole in the head is caused is a bacteria called hexamita. Hexamita is a type of parasite that lives in the intestines of bettas and all fish. Normally it is perfectly harmless, but if a bettas immune system becomes too weak, it can infect the other organs around the body.

Never had a dog. We've had a few cats. Last one died 3 years ago. Wife took it hard, very upset then. We agreed to no more pets. Has freed us up considerably as we now move about in our retired years.
Reply




Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)