Grief Support

As pet-lovers, we know first-hand what it’s like to lose a beloved pet. We understand how heartbreaking it can be and we’re here to support you through this difficult time. After losing a loved-one, it’s completely normal to feel a wide range of emotions including anger, guilt, sadness, shock, loneliness and denial, and it’s important that you allow yourself a chance to grieve your loss and process these feelings. The relationship you had with your pet was unique and to help you through this difficult time we’ve compiled a list of resources to help guide you through the grief process.

Helpful Websites A website dedicated to helping pet lovers understand pet loss and addressing common questions related to the mourning process. Offers additional bereavement for pet guardians as well as a pet memorial hall of fame. Information devoted solely to helping you better understand and deal with euthanasia and why it’s a humane choice for ill pets. Also includes information related to how pets mourn the loss of their companions and a chat room to discuss your loss with others. A comprehensive guide to understanding grief after the loss of a pet as well as how to handle it when others devalue your loss. Additional resources include helping a child deal with pet loss and how you might know when it’s time to move on after a loss. A site dedicated to helping younger children understand what happens after a pet passes away and why they are experiencing new feelings. Also available in Spanish. – Coping With the Death of Your Pet: How to take care of yourself, your family, and other pets when you’ve had to say goodbye.

Psychology Today Magazine – Getting Over Rover: Why Our Grief Over a Dog is so Intense.

Alberta Mental Health Association – A wealth of local support resources for those struggling with mental illness. – A free phone and web-based counselling support hotline for kids 20 and younger. Includes articles to help children deal with a variety of topics and situations.

Suggested Reading

Coping with Sorrow on the Loss of Your Pet
Moira Anderson Allen
Filled with information and guidance. This helpful book treats this serious subject with sympathetic feelings.

The Pet Loss Companion
Ken Dolan Del-Vecchio & Nancy Saxton-Lopez
The authors share stories drawn from decades of experience leading pet loss groups and practicing family therapy.

Where the tomorrows go
Manoj S. Abraham (children’s book)
“Where The Tomorrows Go” is a journey of the heart that parents can use as a tool to have a meaningful conversation about this emotional subject with their little ones.
Pet Loss Psychologists & Counsellors

Judith Blythe – Calgary Grief Counsellor

Judith Blythe, MSW, RSW, is one of the very few grief specialists in Canada working in the field of pet loss. She is an experienced clinical social worker having worked with the Tom Baker Cancer Centre, the Bethany Care Centre as the Palliative Care Coordinator, Calgary Family Services and the Canadian Mental Health Association where she developed the Bereavement Following Suicide program. Call 403-770-1340 to schedule an appointment.

Pet Therapy Society – Edmonton Pet Loss Support Group

It is the commitment of the Paws to Remember program to facilitate a resolution through the grieving process and group support. They heal the heart through sharing. The Paws to Remember program is graciously put on by Gordon Youzwyshyn – a well-respected member of the Pet Therapy Society or Northern Alberta. The pet loss support group meets on the first Tuesday of each month at 5:00 PM. Should you have any questions please contact Gord via email. While Paws to Remember is free, donations to the Pet Therapy Society of Northern Alberta are always appreciated.

Additional Resources

Cathryn Hanssen, Registered Psychologist
Trio Psychology

Jeannine Crofton, Registered Psychologist
Resolvology Therapy Services

Pet Euthanasia:


How Do I Know When It’s Time?

Pet owners are not only blessed with the ability to make decisions for their pet, but they also share the difficult responsibility of deciding when it is time...



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