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Categories | Pet Grief Counselling

Loss Grief Counselling

Our pets become a huge part of our lives, with many of us referring to them as “our babies”. That is why when it unfortunately comes time for them to leave us, it can be such a difficult thing to deal with. Loss grief counselling can help with this.

What is Loss Grief Counselling?

As anybody who has ever had a pet will know, the worst time is when it comes time to have to say goodbye to them because they are sick or in pain. While this is awful enough, it can be even worse if your pet passes away unexpectedly.  Many people think “oh, it’s just a pet, it’s time to move on” but this is not necessarily true. You need to give yourself time to grieve and mourn for your pet and one way of doing this is by using a loss or grief counselling service.  These services help you manage and understand your pain and feeling of loss, and help you to come to grips with the sad circumstances.

What is involved in Loss Grief Counselling?

Loss grief counselling is all about giving you the tools that you need to work through the natural grief that you are feeling at the loss of your pet and the emotions that come along with that. It is about expressing what you are feeling and encouraging you to talk about it, rather than locking the grief away and pretending that it doesn’t exist.

There are different types of loss grief counselling available.  One is a phone support hotline. All you have to do is call the number at any time and someone will be on the other end ready to talk to you, or just listen if that’s what you need.  You can also find support groups. These usually consist of a group of people in the same situation talking about their loss and memories underneath the guidance of a group leader. These services are often free but can incur a charge.  There are also pet loss counsellors available. These are trained counsellors that specialise in the sad loss of pets and they will be able to equip you with the tools that you need to accept your pet’s death and move on. A charge is usually involved with these counsellors but it is worth it.

How to Choose Loss Grief Counselling

If you feel like you cannot talk to your family or friends about the loss of your beloved pet or you feel like you need more help dealing with your loss, then a loss grief counselling service is ideal.  You can find these services by talking to your vet, your local shelter or humane association, or even by going to your church or local hospital. Of course, you can always search for a counselling service through our directory or on the internet, or look through pet magazines for advertisements.

Your grief at your pet’s loss is genuine and so you want to choose a loss grief counselling service that understands how difficult a pet’s death can be. You want to feel like you are being supported every step of the way and that the person you are speaking to understands exactly where you are coming from.  Your counsellor should be an excellent listener and also well versed in different coping strategies that they can pass on to you.  Most importantly, you need to feel comfortable with the counselling service.  If you are not, then feel free to tell them that it is not working out.

If there is a charge for the loss grief counselling service, find out what this is and how it is administered.  Also find out how the service operates.  For example, do they charge you for phone calls that you make to them or for the sessions that you have with them?  Is it a free service where you sit with other individuals that have also lost their pets or you are talking to a volunteer counsellor?  Money is often the last thing on your mind at such a sad time but it is important to consider this so you are not hit with unexpected bills.

Also find out if the service will allow you to contact them before your pet’s passing, such as when euthanasia is a real option.  Talking to the counsellor then can help to prepare you for the realities and help you to make the difficult decisions such as if you will stay with your pet, how your pet’s remains will be handled and so on.

Talking to the right person about your pet’s loss will allow you to work through the negative emotions that are associated with death, and help you decide how you would like to best remember your pet – through photos, funny stories, scattering their ashes and so on. It is all about bringing you to a state of peace so you can remember your pet with the happiness that they deserve.

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