Forum Archives

Return to Forum List

help with rituals around pet loss

You are not logged in. Login here or register.

OnAnIsland posted 4/29/2014 08:07 AM

Tomorrow we have to let our dog go. He is a 13.5 year weimaraner. He lost one leg to cancer 17 months ago. He has a stomach tumor now, and is evidently in pain. He is not eating, and not really walking.

I am googling rituals to help kids deal with pet loss before I pick up my boys at school. I will have to tell them that tomorrow after school, Max will be gone.

On the infidelity front, we are at a much better place in our R and M to deal with this than we were when we had to make the decision on amputation at Thanksgiving 2012.

Thanks for any suggestions.

gulliblelass posted 4/29/2014 08:24 AM

Not sure if this will help but when we made that decision to call the vet out we decided to have one last night with our beloved golden.

We made a huge bed up in the lounge and all of us and our other dog all slept in the middle with duvets, pillows etc. The evening was spent spoiling her rotten. Letting her have exactly what she wanted. She loved ice cream and milk. I forget the amount of bowls that she had that night.

She cuddled into all of us and nuzzled us throughout the night, it was as if she knew.

When the vet arrived all of us bar my Hubby (he was to upset to stay) stayed in with her and talked to her whilst they put her to sleep. We then left her laying in the lounge so that our other dog could sniff and realise that she had gone and when and only when we were ready to do so, buried her in the garden.

When we talk about it now, the children say it was that last night of spoiling and sleeping with her that made it easier to bare and they remember that evening with great fondness.

We have made her burial site very special. If anyone came into our grounds they would think we have buried a human there! She has fresh flowers every couple of weeks or wild ones, dependent on what is growing at the time. She has a few ornaments things (butterfly on a stick, candle holders) and at Christmas, she has lights strung in the tree that bends over her grave.

Some people might think we're mad but it gives my kids great pleasure at Christmas to see her area all lit up and it helps us. We have a bench overlooking her grave so when its nice we can go and sit and have a drink.

She grew up with my children and I belive it's helped them immensely. We have one of her puppies (she's 9 now) and she sits by the side if we're out there but never steps onto the grave! I'm sure she knows her mum is in there.

Hope this helps even if it is a bit OTT!

Will be thinking of you tomorrow when you have to take that sad step.

Hugs and love to you all. xx

lieshurt posted 4/29/2014 08:34 AM

gulliblelass, that was beautiful. Thank you for sharing that.

OnAnIsland, I'm sorry about your furbaby.

[This message edited by lieshurt at 8:35 AM, April 29th (Tuesday)]

Exhausted in OH posted 4/29/2014 08:44 AM

We read "Dog Heaven" by Cynthia Rylant. My kids loved the thought of our Daisy doing all the things she used to love doing before her old body betrayed her. Hugs to you and your family - losing a pet hurts so much more than you "think" it should.

tushnurse posted 4/29/2014 08:45 AM

We do something similar with our animals as Gulible does.

When you know it's coming we share with the kids that the time is coming, and that they will be saying good bye. We always have had large dogs, Danes, Goldens etc. So when they pass we do the cremation thing.
We usually take them to McDonalds, or someplace to get a belly full of cheeseburgers, and give the kids the option of being there. The only one we didn't give them the option of was when they were about 4&6, too young. Then to the vet, and we all sit on the floor, and love on our sweet babies as they cross the rainbow bridge.

Once we have the ashes we spread them in a way that we know they would be happy. Our first Golden, in a river we float several times every summer, a place he loved. Our Dane, a very sunny spot in our yard where she loved to lay, so she could watch her people, and warm her bones. Our second Golden, again by water. Our current lab will be at the Duck club, because she lives to retrieve those damn birds. We also plant a tree/bush/flower in honor of them representing their personality. My goofy Dane, got a spazzy, crazy spreading Clematis vine, My first Golden yellow tiger lilies, as he was strong, yellow, and constant (they bloom all summer long). My second golden, a slow growing (because he was kind of slow) spruce, because he loved the snow, and Christmas time, would lay by the Christmas tree the entire time it was up.

So we try to make it something particular to each one's personality.

((((and strength))))

FaithFool posted 4/29/2014 08:45 AM

We did that with two Siamese we had to let go after very long lives. The vet came and we all had a shot of whiskey and a good cry (the man of the house was the most devastated).

He took great care to wrap them in their favourite blankets and we buried them with their favourite toys under a rose bush that my mum planted after the ceremony.

It was much more soothing than a trip to the vet and coming home with nothing.

Kajem posted 4/29/2014 12:07 PM

We took our dog on a trip that was the best day of her long life. She got to visit her favorite places, eat all of her forbidden foods, before it was time to say good bye and cross the bridge. She was cremated and her ashes were spread on the lawn in various places that were special to her. Under the slide where she would lay in the shade and keep several bunnies in a nest warm. Momma bunny always used the fur our dog shed as nest dressing. Under he tree and near the orange trees where she would pick up the fallen oranges and toss them. It was fun for her to entertain herself!

She was probably fed a pound of candy kisses that day!!! She loved them.


nowiknow23 posted 4/29/2014 12:18 PM

When I was a kid, we had a cat we had to put to sleep. Before we took him in, we made him as comfortable as we could, and each of us had a picture taken with him.

As an adult, each time we have lost a pet there was no warning. But after the burial, we would pull out the photos we could find of them, and allow DD and DS to pick some to frame or put in a scrapbook, or whatever they wanted. DD has a scrapbook of all the animals she has loved who have died. DS just has unframed pictures in a drawer of his dresser.

((((Onanisland, H, & kiddos)))))

Williesmom posted 4/29/2014 19:57 PM

I always take their collars off when I bury them.

I currently have Buddy's tag on my key ring. I think of him every time that I see It.

Wishing you and your family peace.

[This message edited by Williesmom at 7:57 PM, April 29th (Tuesday)]

undertherug posted 4/29/2014 20:56 PM

We have lost 3 of our dogs during the past several years. We have always kept their collars and they have been the first ornaments on our Christmas tree each year. When we hang them on the tree, we take a minute to talk about them, how much we miss them, and favorite recollections about their lives. Keeps them close.

OnAnIsland posted 4/30/2014 00:44 AM

Thanks for sharing your stories and rituals. It is so hard to lose Max and to watch the pain of my sons. We prepared some of his favorite treats, and fed him ice cream. we set up sleeping bags and a sofa bed and told stories of Max. We slept in the living room. We looked at his baby album, and this morning, my 9 year old showed it to Max, page by page explaining everything that I had explained to him last night. Lots of tears, and a hard part coming still for me and my husband at the vet. we are not blessed with the conveniences of a vet in the USA. we will be taking him into the exam room of the vet, but hope to keep him comfortable.

thanks again. I will check in later to share how things went.

OnAnIsland posted 5/1/2014 15:58 PM

It was a tough day, but everyone seems to be doing ok a day later. The actual procedure was handled as well as could be given the constraints of a veterinarian in our country. The vet staff was super loving to max, non judgmental of us, and supportive. They sent us a lovely card signed by everyone there; we received the next day.

I stayed with Max to the end. It was quick, and he seemed peaceful. My boys were sad when they came home from their post-school playdate to a dog-free house. I tried to remove most triggers, but made space to think and talk and mourn him. I expect much crying and grieving in the days to come. After 13+ years, it is strange not to have him to structure my day. Thanks again for sharing your stories and support.

tushnurse posted 5/1/2014 16:44 PM

That for me is the hardest part about losing a pet. There is so much that just becomes part of the routine of life, and suddenly it isn't there. It makes it all very real.

(((and strength, and peace)))))

wanauld posted 5/1/2014 21:38 PM

I'm sorry for your loss. I'm sure Max was a very special part of the family. Warm thoughts and hugs to you.

nowiknow23 posted 5/1/2014 23:02 PM

RIP Max.

(((((onanisland & family)))))

Return to Forum List

© 2002-2018 ®. All Rights Reserved.