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5 Life Lessons Children Can Learn from the Death of a Pet

Category: 

Bereavement Relief

Posted On: Sep 16, 2016

5 Life Lessons Children Can Learn from the Death of a Pet

Losing a pet can be a traumatic experience for a child. It can leave them feeling confused, abandoned, and depressed. However, you can help your child cope with their grief and use the opportunity to teach them valuable life lessons. These learning opportunities can help prepare your child for adulthood.

Cherish the Time You Have

When faced with the mortality of a pet, a child may become aware of their own mortality or that of their friends and family. This is a good opportunity to teach them to make the most of the time they have now. Depending on their age, you can talk to your child about having goals, spending time with the people they care about, and deciding what is really important to them.

Treat Others Well

It can be easy for us to say things we don’t mean or take people for granted, especially if we don’t realize how limited our time with others truly is. Reminding your child that their pet had a good life and was well taken care of can help them see how important it is to cherish others. Talk to them about making sure that they treat others well so that they can say goodbye without regrets.

It’s Okay to be Sad

Some children associate crying or sadness with being weak or too negative. This is a great opportunity to show your child that it’s okay to be sad and to show those feelings to others. Lead by example by openly talking to your child about how you feel about losing the pet or share a story about a losing pet that really affected you.

Choose Healthy Expression

Talk to your child about ways to express their feelings about losing their pet. It could be writing a song, painting a picture, or writing a story. There are also multiple children’s books about grief and death that may be helpful when talking to your child about this difficult subject.

You Can Love Again

After some time passes, it may be a good idea to talk to your child about how they’d feel about getting another pet. This could be a great lesson on how we can love and care for someone new while being respectful of our loss.