There is nothing like the death of someone you love, whether it be a person or a furry friend. Sometimes the pain is so overwhelming that it feels like you will never be able to get over it and move on, but it is possible, once you go through the grieving process. The grief we feel shows in many different ways, and depending on the type of person you are, the way grief shows itself and how you get through the process will depend on you. For those who have ever owned and lost a cat to death knows the pain that is involved with that loss. And you can identify with others who have lost their cat to a death. You will want to be there for your friend or family member if they have recently lost their cat, but how do you do it so that you give them the best support? Here are some tips for you on how to help a friend who is grieving the loss of a cat.
1. Let them grieve their way
There is no right or wrong way to grieve your pet. While some can grieve a short period of time and then it’s over, quick and easy, others may have a harder time. They may feel an array of emotions, like sadness, anger, maybe even go through a period of depression. The degree of mourning can also depend on the relationship your friend had with their cat. Some relationships run deeper than others. It’s important that you never say or imply that your friend needs to just get over it and “move on.” This is insensitive, so instead, offer to be there for them. Let them know you are there, you are a good listener and give them validation for their feelings.
2. Send them a condolence
There’s nothing like getting a condolence in the mail; a hard copy written in your own writing. Knowing they are being thought about during their grief can really help your friend know you are there for them. Let them know that you want to help an d offer to make some sort of donation to an animal shelter in your are, in their pet’s name.
3. Offer to be of help in a physical manner
Sometimes people need a little extra physical help to help spark the life back in them. The loss may be crippling them in a physical state where they are having a hard time preparing meals for themselves, getting dressed, taking care of household chores, shopping and more. These little things can help to cheer people up to know that they are not alone and being looked after by a friend. If your friend is willing, you may want to suggest grieving groups where they can get support from others, then offer to looks some up.
4. Offer to help memorialize their pet
There are a lot of different ways in which you can memorialize pets today. You can offer to help your friend memorialize her lost cat by creating a photo album for her with pictures of her and her feline, a collage, a necklace or piece of jewelry with the pet’s name on it, or any other way you think your friend might appreciate and find to be a touching memorial. Sometimes, planting a tree in the yard with a plaque of the pet’s name is a nice way to always remember the beloved.
Whenever a friend loses a pet, try to remember how you might feel if you lost a loved one, whether it is covered in fur, or of the human species. It doesn’t really matter because grieving is grieving and the more help you are to help them get through it, the better they will be for it. You will build a better bond with your friend and they will hopefully be there for you if the tables are ever turned. If you ever think a friend is not moving past the grieving process and may even be so sad they are contemplating suicide, get help by reaching out the National Suicide Prevention Hotline.