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Think Twice before Buying a New Pet for a Grieving Pet Owner


Loving & Caring Thoughts

Posted On: Mar 31, 2017

Think Twice before Buying a New Pet for a Grieving Pet Owner

Faced with a relative or friend who suffered the loss of a beloved pet, it's natural to do everything possible to cheer up your loved one and make her or him feel better. Your first instinct might be to get a new animal for this person. That's an understandable urge, not to mention thoughtful, and it's extremely kind of you to think of doing something like this for someone who's meaningful to you. However, think twice before you head to the humane society or pet store. Giving an animal as a gift is a risky proposition under the best of circumstances because pets are such personal choices. Ask yourself a few questions before deciding on this route.

Is Your Friend Ready for a New Pet?

Don't go thinking that you can replace a pet with a new animal like they're interchangeable. It's wonderful that you want to do something nice for someone who just lost a beloved creature, but make sure that your generosity won't increase your loved one's grief. Is s/he even ready for a new pet yet? Has s/he talked about it? Even if your loved one has discussed the possibility of getting a new animal, there's a huge difference between talking about something and actually being ready to do it.

Is S/he Still Grieving?

Even if a pet owner knows that s/he wants a new pet someday, that doesn't mean s/he has finished grieving the animal that just died. You cannot rush this process, nor can you rush your loved one. Don't go on about how it was “just an animal,” either. Pet owners form intense bonds with their animals. It's like losing a friend or a family member.

Does Your Loved One Want the Same Kind of Pet?

You can't just assume that a person who lost a dog will unequivocally want another dog. Sometimes, the pain is too much, and pet owners simply cannot own the same type of animal that just died. That's why choosing a pet is so personal, you see.

Will Your Loved One Get Along with the New Animal?

This is the number one reason why you should never get a pet as a gift for anyone, let alone a grieving pet owner. As mentioned, pets and their owners bond, often right from the start. People prefer to pick out their own pets because, often, they feel a connection when they meet the animals they're supposed to take home.

Once your loved one is ready, you can approach this subject. However, you need to involve the bereaved every step of the way. Otherwise, you'll do damage instead of providing comfort.