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Author Topic: How to console a friend whose cat has died?
Neffti Noel
We Three Blings


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My best friend is grieving because she found out today that her new cat was run over this Christmas. It was microchipped and the vet has just been in touch. She's been crying all day and can barely speak on the phone. She buried the cat today in her garden.

I really want to help her out, however I've never cried over a pet of mine dying and I'm at a bit of a loss. I used to work in a rescue kennels and cattery where animals were dying and being put down all the time so I guess I'm a bit desensitised to it. Can anyone who was particularly affected by a similar loss give advice about how to approach the subject and help my friend out? Thanks.

Posts: 1157 | From: Westcountry UK "It's Bootiful" | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
Lainie
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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I think you should handle it the same way you'd handle a friend grieving over any loss. Compared to some losses, of course, the loss of a pet (especially a new one) seems minor, but she's not feeling it in comparison to other losses, she's just feeling it.

Let her talk, let her cry. Tell her you're sorry it happened, that you know she loved her kitty and will miss it.

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How homophobic do you have to be to have penguin gaydar? - Lewis Black

Posts: 8322 | From: Columbus, OH | Registered: Aug 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
happyholidaysfrog
Jingle Bell Hock


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I usually send a symathy card for pets. Furbaby losses are hard.

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~All we see or seem is but a dream within a dream~
E.A.Poe

Dream as if you'll live forever, live as if you'll die today.
~James Dean~

Posts: 516 | From: Anderson, Indiana | Registered: Oct 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
violetbon
I'll Be Home for After Christmas Sales


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You could say things that let her know you appreciate the value she placed on her pet. Things like "How are you doing since Fluffy is gone? I know she must have been an important part of your life." "I'll bet Fluffy did some sweet things - I'd like to hear about them" You may have to listen to a few sentimental kitty stories, but just listen and then respond with something like "She sounds like she was a wonderful pet." When my cats died, what I was looking for was someone who really understood what it means to love a pet. I have lots of friends. But I called the one who has 4 dogs and treats them like children, because I knew she'd understand. It wasn't like my life was ripped apart - I just needed to feel a kindred spirit.
Posts: 193 | From: Seymour, Indiana | Registered: Oct 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
Kitsune26
The First USA Noel


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I know that whenever one my critters back home died, I always needed someone to just listen to me, pat my back when I cried, and get me tissues when I blew snot bubbles.

What I didn't need was someone telling me "it's just an animal," or "You can always get another one."

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I'm as giddy as a Japanese school girl in an octopus tank.

Posts: 641 | From: Portland, Oregon | Registered: Jun 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
snapdragonfly
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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quote:
Originally posted by Kitsune26:
I know that whenever one my critters back home died, I always needed someone to just listen to me, pat my back when I cried, and get me tissues when I blew snot bubbles.

What I didn't need was someone telling me "it's just an animal," or "You can always get another one."

I absolutely second that.

It does help me to start thinking of a new kitten rather soon, but I don't want someone implying that my baby can be replaced. They can't be replaced. You can get another one but it's not a replacement for the old one.

Hugs to your friend. It hurts so bad to lose a fur baby!

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"Wolves, dragons and vampires, man. Draw the nut-bars like big ol' nut-bar magnets." ~evilrabbit

(snurched because one of my nutbar family members is all about wolves and another one is all about dragons...)(with apologies to surfcitydogdad)

Posts: 2397 | From: Texarkana, TX | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
LyndaD
Jingle Bell Hock


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Treat your friend as you would a person with any loss or setback. We don't always have to understand why someone grieves to know that they grieve. Listen to her kitty stories, be sympathetic, let her be the one to mention another getting another cat.

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I'll drive it ugly. You can't see the paint job when you're behind the wheel, anyway.

Posts: 570 | From: Central Valley, California | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
Neffti Noel
We Three Blings


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Thanks guys, I appreciate the tips. Have sent a card and spent an hour on the phone with her last night, and just let her talk and cry, she's really shaken up by it. I'll ring her tonight and see if she's had a better day.
Posts: 1157 | From: Westcountry UK "It's Bootiful" | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
   

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