Loss is a tough subject to understand, even for therapists. As people continue to feel stricken by grief throughout their lives, therapists must familiarize themselves with pet loss as well.
The loss of pets is one of those subjects that is extremely close to the heart and difficult to deal with, be it naturally or because of some disease. With that said, crucial workers, therapists, and psychologists should consider understanding how pet loss affects people and pet parents. Pet loss is particularly hard when the dog in question is a rescue dog and people feel that they saved their lives once by adopting them. Falling to do so for the second time may leave the individual devastated and depressed.
Loss and death are uncomfortable topics to deal with. And when it comes from a beloved pet, it is much harder. With that said, here are four reasons why helping professionals should understand pet loss:
- Professionals on Stigmatized Grief
Loss of pets is a big change. This kind of loss can be associated with the feeling of stigmatized loss. In such cases, patients or people going through it feel a sense of shame and are not able to reach out for help.
Furthermore, those who face such losses may feel that they are left behind, which leads to survivor’s guilt. That said, helping professionals can help families and individuals to understand what such grief means and how it feels.
Additionally, professionals can help in normalizing such grief for the said persons. Professionals can help them understand where the pain and grief are coming from.
- Understanding the Grief of Loss
Most people feel that grief comes in certain ways, they try to make sense out of the generic understanding of grief. However, what they miss is that grief does not fit through a cookie-cutter and is different for everybody.
Understanding what grief means and how it affects you will help the concerned people to grow out of the pain and grief.
What’s more is that not understanding the type of grief could lead to emotional stagnation, which could potentially transcend into something else. The loss of a pet could affect the children and parents differently, which is why it is important to understand how it affects individuals.
Professionals should make an effort to understand how grief is being processed by different members of the family, before helping them.
- Euthanasia: The Impact on Pet parents
When it comes to the natural processes of things, pet parents may be able to deal with the issues better and easily. However, when pet parents choose euthanasia, matters become a little complicated.
The use of euthanasia can leave pet parents guilt-tripping and with a possible emotion of shame. Most pet owners go through troubling emotions after the same. Also, help professionals have found that pet parents who choose euthanasia may find it difficult to sleep later.
Professionals should make an effort to walk families and individuals through this. To make matters easier, medical and care providing professionals should ask about how the loss of a pet happened, and how they are feeling. This would help in gauging the situation better from the get-go.
- Understanding Role of Attachment to Pets
Pets play an important role in our lives, which is why it is crucial to understand grief and loss. As pets leave a lasting effect on the pet parents, they end up missing the pets even more. Be it the first experience of loss or the second one, the pain and grief felt are the same.
Understanding the impact of a pet, and how the death of the pet affects families, individuals and children would help in bringing positive reinforcement. It could help in building resilience and change the perspective regarding life.
Traumatic experiences, especially such as the loss of a pet, shape the mind. As families do not prepare for the loss or death of a pet from the beginning, it could become difficult later. Understanding this would help professionals to provide advice.
Furthermore, it would help the professionals to prepare the family for the upcoming loss.
Professionals can play an important role during the loss of someone special. As pets are extremely loveable and play an important role in our lives, most of us do not expect them to leave us.
As life goes on, pets too, age with us and leave this world. With that in mind, parents and adults should prepare for the loss as their furry balls begin to show signs of aging, this will help in softening the blow.
What’s more, after the loss of a pet, going to therapy could help. Loss affects everyone differently, which is why speaking to a professional could help you deal with it better.