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Client handout: Helping pets who have lost their best buddy
Losing a housemate can be hard on the entire familyincluding the other pets. Point clients with surviving pets to this handout for solace and tips.
Sometimes we see that when highly attached pets are separated, the surviving pet demonstrates a "distress reaction"-or as clients might say, "Lady's just not herself since Teddy passed. She's depressed."
While it might not be wise to indulge in everything your clients believe about the thoughts and feelings of their pets, there's no doubt that some highly bonded animals do display distress at the loss of a "buddy." And a surviving pet's distress can really start to stress out your clients, who may already be having a hard time dealing with their loss.
As a practitioner, you can help facilitate better communication about grief and loss when you form a real, lasting connection with pet owners. For those pet owners who are dealing with a distressed pet following the loss of another, try using this handout to offer them solace and tips on how to handle the situation.