My Puppy's Last Days: Why Does Losing Them Hurt So Much?

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A Chihuahua puppy in heaven for the article on why it hurts so much to lose a pet.

If you have lost your little animal, your faithful companion, then you will understand that it is not just anything.

A few years ago my husband bought me a dog. A chihuahua so small that it barely fit in the palm of my hand. His name was “Chikis” and he kept me company while I had only just arrived in Phoenix, Arizona.

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When I came home after work, Chikis greeted me with such joy that I no longer felt so alone here.

One day, when I was about 5 months pregnant, my husband and I noticed that our dog was not as playful, but rather sad. We also noticed that he had not eaten.

Minutes later, Chikis passed out. Right away my husband and I took her to the vet to see what was wrong.

The vet told us that he couldn't do much for her, being Chikis, so small, her blood pressure and blood sugar were low, so anything I did for her could be fatal. He prescribed a paste for the sugar to normalize and we took it home.

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Unfortunately, the next morning, my beautiful Chikis no longer woke up. I still remember the pain I felt, I had never lost a pet, and I had never been so fond of an animal. But it wasn't just an animal, it had become part of my family. This was the first time I saw my husband cry, so I understood that it had been important to him too.

Now comes the question: Why does losing a pet hurt so much?

An Angel With A Tail

Angel turning into a dog.
CREDIT: I LOVE MY PET

If you have felt the same pain when losing your furry friend, you are not alone. According to research conducted by Family Process magazine, more than 85% of dog owners have felt pain after their pet passed away.

One of the reasons is because your pet is not just an ordinary animal, it becomes another member of your family, which gives you love and joy. As a consequence, the pain of losing a pet can be compared to that of losing a family member.

Woman saying goodbye to her dog because the pain of losing a pet is great.
CREDIT: FAMILY MAGAZINE

If you wonder how can I compare it that way? It is actually very simple, for example: when an old man has no one in the world other than his pet, this becomes his only company. It is their only joy and the only thing that, sometimes, motivates them to get up to take them for a walk or to play for a while. When your pet passes away, getting away from your best friend is incredibly painful.

And the case is not exclusive to the elderly.

The Pain Of Losing A Pet Is Greater In Children And The Elderly

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Gary Kowalski, author of “Goodbye Toby. When Your Pet Dies ”, explains that 90% of the time, when a pet dies, symptoms such as loss of sleep or difficulties with feeding appear. I also note that children and the elderly were the most affected by this loss.

So if you have a young child at home who goes through this pain, remember that you have to be more patient than normal and understanding. The most important thing is to know that it is not like losing a stuffed animal. It is to realize that there is life and death, that not everything is forever and it is an unforgettable day for a child.

Family with the grief and pain of losing a pet.

If you or someone close to you is grieving losing a pet, remember that it's important to take the time to get over the pain. Do not rush to replace your partner, there is no replacement. When you are ready, you will know if it is time to add someone else to your family.

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