At iHeartDogs and iHeartCats we often write about coping with the loss of a beloved pet. We do this because we understand that saying goodbye is one of the hardest things you will ever have to do, and we hope that somehow our words can provide a bit of comfort. Having experienced the love and compassion of dogs and cats all my life, I believe they would want us to keep these 7 important messages close to our hearts after they have gone.
1. They understand your sadness, but would rather see you happy
When we are upset, our pets feel it. They seem to know what we need, whether it’s a flood of kisses, gentle kitty headbutts, or just to feel their presence by our side. After they pass away, it’s these moments when their absence hurts the most. Try to remember that although they shared in our pain, they also shared in our joy. Their greatest happiness was sharing in our moments of bliss, and that’s what they would want for us going forward.
2. They know you loved them & did the best you could for them
Our pets feel our love for them in everything we do. From the tone of our voice to the gentle way we stroke their hair. They see past our flaws and insecurities to the people we truly are inside. They don’t need hundreds of toys and custom dog beds to feel how much we care. To them, we are perfect, no matter what circumstances we struggle with during their lives.
3. They will always be with you as long as you carry their memory
No matter what you believe about the soul or the afterlife, nothing can truly die if it lives on in the memories of others. Every time we think about our furry friends or share a favorite story, we are keeping them alive within our hearts.
4. They don’t want you to have regrets
We hope that our pets will live long, full lives free of pain or disease until their time is up, but unfortunately that’s not the way it is. Whether they pass quietly in our arms of old age, or are taken too soon, they appreciate every moment and would hate to think that we feel any guilt or regret about our time together.
5. They know you would have been with them every second if you could
It’s normal to look back after losing a pet and wish that we’d spent more time showing them how much they were loved. Maybe we worked too much, or skipped our daily walks from time to time. Our pets don’t judge us for our choices, but they definitely appreciate our sacrifices.
6. They loved you more than you can comprehend
Our pets are so sincerely and unselfishly devoted to us that it is almost beyond our comprehension. Many have gladly laid down their very lives for their humans. As hard as it is to say goodbye, knowing the depth of that love can help us find the strength to move forward.
7. Loving another animal is not a betrayal, it’s a way to honor their memory
One of the most wonderful things about dogs and cats is that they have no selfish agendas. They simply want us to be happy. After they have passed away, our pets would want us to experience that unconditional love once again – especially if it means transforming another life the way we did theirs.
Featured Image via Facebook/TheCrewBobino
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