Losing a loved one is never an easy obstacle to face. For us, there are a lot of different support options out there to help cope with a loss. However, your pet can also go through trauma and feel the loss as well.
Behavioral changes are the most obvious sign that your pet is experiencing grief. While they differ from pet to pet and in severity, keep an eye your for the following signs that your pet is having a hard time dealing with a recent loss.
Signs to watch for:
-changes in sleeping pattern (sleeping more often, not sleeping at all)
-vocalizations (barking, meowing, howling)
-Lack of interest in playing walks
-destructive behavior (biting, scratching)
-increase in separation anxiety
-searching for a deceased companion
-increased need for attention
*Keep in mind that sometimes these symptoms may also be related to an underlying health issue. If any symptoms persist, we recommend scheduling an appointment to get a professional opinion
Even if you are experiencing grief yourself, don’t forget to give your pets the attention and support that they need to assist in the healing process. For the weeks following the loss, try to not leave your pet alone. Especially if the loss is of another household pet who they are used to having around even when you’re not. Try to maintain your schedule. Meal times walks, bedtime…keeping things routine will help to make sure that your furry friend doesn’t experience more confusion. Distractions can also help keep your pet occupied. Keeping them busy and introducing some excitement will be beneficial in easing their mind.