The connections we share with our pets can be incredibly strong. They are with us through the good and the bad, and love us unconditionally. They teach us the importance of companionship, and what it means to have someone to rely on (as well as have someone who relies on us!).

When a pet passes away, the loss is incredibly painful, and sometimes it is hard to know how to express the grief that we feel. Here are some ways that you can express your feelings of loss, and commemorate a pet that has significantly impacted your life.

How to Commemorate Your Pet

Have a Pet Funeral

As with any loss, it is first and foremost important to acknowledge your own grief. One of the best ways of doing is this is by having a funeral, where you may outwardly express your grief with others who understand your loss. Gather some close friends and family members together whose lives were also touched by your pet, and share stories and words of support. Remembering the fond memories and being there for one another will help you remember the joy that your pet brought to your lives, and will make the grief easier to bear.

Make a Memorial Page

Memorial Page for TalkDeath Editor, Mandy’s late dog, Codi. On myKeeper.com

Saying what you feel out loud after the loss of a pet can be very difficult, and sometimes it is much easier to put it into written words. Making a memorial page for your deceased pet can not only  be a therapeutic practice in and of itself, but also provides an everlasting place where you can return and reflect fondly upon the time you shared with them. A memorial page also acts as a medium that can be easily shared amongst friends and family who are mourning as well. Acting as a platform for expressing your shared grief, a memorial page can being great comfort in your time of loss.How to Hold a Virtual Memorial Service keeper memorials

Design a Headstone

via www.rusticstone.net

via www.rusticstone.net

You may choose to bury your pet yourself in your own backyard, or have a professional care for your pet’s burial. Either way, it can be a very therapeutic process to design a personalized headstone for your deceased pet. This can mean anything from getting one professionally made, to creating one on your own from natural materials. Either way, creating a physical marker for the burial place of your pet can be a very personal way of showing how much they mean to you, and how much you care about their final resting place.

Get Inked

Tattoo by @Tamarajamestattoos (Instagram)

Tattoos are certainly not for everyone, but it is becoming increasingly common for individuals to get tattoos commemorating their deceased pet in some way. From paw prints or the pet’s name to complete portraits, there are a number of ways that you can express your love for your pet in tattoo form. The symbolic nature of the tattoo also represents a love that is everlasting, as it is something you will literally carry with you for the rest of your life!

Commission a Portrait

Portrait of TalkDeath Editor, Mandy’s late dog, Codi, by Angus Philip Byers

Having a visual reminder of your pet can be a wonderful way to preserve their memory within your home. While your memories may fade over time, a portrait will stay vivid forever. Commissioning a portrait of your pet will ensure that you have a lovely image of your pet that you can look at time and time again, and remember them as they were at their most beautiful. By hanging a portrait of your pet in your home or office, you can see them each day as you would like them to be remembered: happy and loved.

Donate in Your Pet’s Name

via humanesociety.org

As pet lovers, we are aware of the plight of the many injured, sick, homeless, and abused animals all over the world. What better way to honour the memory of your pet than by making a donation in their name to your local pet shelter? In this way, you know that your pet’s name and memory will be connected with bettering the lives of other animals in need of love and care. Not all animals are lucky enough to have someone to care for and defend them when they need it- every bit of help matters!

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