One of the hardest parts of being a dog owner is having to say goodbye to a beloved companion, family member, and best friend. Finding ways to remember your dog is helpful in working through the grieving process while also having a reminder of your time together.
Grieving the loss of a dog, even when the death is expected, is a difficult process. Memorializing the pet in a way that is meaningful to you and your family can be helpful in the grieving process. Different people in the family may take longer to mourn the loss of the dog, and giving everyone time and space to grieve while staying supporting and together is very helpful.
July 5th is pet remembrance day, and it may be a good time to talk to your family if you have lost a pet. There are several ways to honor your pet that provide a beautiful memory of their place in your life.
Host a Celebration of Life
A memorial or celebration of life service for the pet can be a small family event or a larger event open to friends and loved ones and their pets. Some people choose to do this at their home, or it could be done at a favorite dog-friendly beach, dog park, or a friend or loved one’s home.
Ask people to speak about their favorite memory of the dog, or to send in their favorite photos and develop a memorial photo album that can be shared online or sent to individuals.
Sponsor a Kennel at a Rescue or Shelter
Many dog owners find comfort in sponsoring a kennel at a local shelter or rescue. This can be done in the family name or in the name of the pet. A sponsorship is a particularly meaningful option for those families who adopted a pet from a shelter and want to continue to help dogs find loving homes.
Dog Jewelry Items
There are many different options in dog jewelry items that are customized with your pet’s name. Brackets, rings, lockets, cuff links, and other types of jewelry in the shape of a paw or with an engraving of your dog are a long-lasting way to remember your beloved pet.
There are specific jewelry items designed to allow a small amount of cremains to be placed into the jewelry. This is often done as a way to remember family members when they are cremated, and it can also be done to remember your beloved pet.
Creating a Memorial Garden
Most dogs love spending time in the backyard, and a memorial garden to celebrate your pet’s life is a beautiful option. A paving stone can be engraved with the dog’s name, image, or a favorite poem or line of scripture, or you may choose a more ornate and larger monument stone as a central focus of the garden.
Planting a tree to remember your dog is another way to add a permanent reminder of your pet to your backyard area. Memorial garden benches with your dog’s name engraved are another way to memorialize your pet and provide a comfortable place to sit down and just remember.