Ten (seven) things

Today's ten things is ten things to do to be supportive when someone dies. We all encounter death, and Carole just lost a good friend. Her list is a great summary and I'm wondering what I could add to it.

The deaths I've dealt with the most in the past decade have been of our animal companions. We don't have children, and I love all of our pets. We had a bad spell where we lost three of our dogs to cancer in a relatively short period of time--probably five or six years. So my list is from the perspective of losing our dear animal companions.

1. Don't say 'it was just a dog/cat/whatever'. He or she wasn't just anything---he or she was my good friend and I spent more time with my dogs than I do with most people.

2. Don't say 'you can just get another one.'  Because while I can, I'm probably not ready to yet.

3. Don't talk about the worse disease that your dog/cat has.

4. Share a remembrance about the pet.

5. Send a card.

6. When sending a card, don't reference that it seems weird to send a card for the death of a pet.

7. Talk about how odd it was for you when you lost your pet--how you still see him or her walking around corners or hear him or her scratching at the door.

Loss is hard, no matter what type of loss.


Comments

Donna said…
I don't even know how somebody could say "it's just a pet" but I have heard it before! And I agree - you aren't usually ready for another one soon afterwards. We needed time to grieve our dog before we got a puppy.
fillyjonk said…
I still have dreams about, and still sometimes feel sad about, the last cats my parents had - they lived to 19 and 21 years of age, so they were around for essentially all of my adult life.

I think in some ways it's harder to lose a pet than a person; there's that element of unconditional acceptance there.
Kym said…
Oh, you are so right. Your list is perfect. (I'm still grieving my wonderful dog, Jake -- and he died over 8 years ago.) Thanks for sharing your list.

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