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Children, Pets, and Grief - The Pet Loss Center

The loss of a pet for your child will be an emotional time – and a time that they will turn to you for guidance and love. A time when they will want to grieve for their little friend and to know that they can openly mourn their loss.

While your first instinct may be to protect your child from the pain of the loss, a child will want to have that time to mourn. As a parent, you will be the barometer for how your child will perceive that it´s okay to grieve the loss. I encourage you to openly mourn with them and to ask them how they would like to honor their little pet friend.

Children are very open and honest when it comes to grieving and mourning. They are organically natural in this area. It´s adults that interrupt what comes natural to them as children. Therefore, encourage them to pay tribute to their pet in a way that makes sense to them. Guide them with these ideas:

  • Talk about the pet
  • Draw a picture of the pet
  • Plant a flower for the pet
  • Have a memorial service
  • Do a drive for a shelter to honor the pet
  • Create a Tribute Table to hold special memorial items of the life that was shared together

If you need some guidance, download these letters to help you and your child remember the life that was shared with a special pet.

Click here to Download the Pet Loss Center Older Child Coloring Sheet

Click here to Download the Pet Loss Center Young Child Coloring Sheet