A fur baby is thought to be a pet, one that is treated with love and kindness. For others it is their family, best friend, sole companion, bed companion, travel buddy, confidant… something way more than a pet.
When our beloved fur babies life comes to an end there are services available to assist the dying pet and their family members. They offer emotional, social, spiritual and practical support to those planning for their pets death.
As a trained End Of Life Doula and Funeral Celebrant, Jenny will be there to support you and your family, with the loss of your pet. She will be there to assist as a non-medical person trained to emotionally & educationally support pet families during their pet’s last phase of life.
Jenny offers the following pet doula services:
- End-of-Life Plan – The end-of-life plan is a discussion on the specifics of your pet’s end-of-life journey. We will discuss in detail what you would like to see happen during this time and go over the resources that are available.
- Leading the Pack – Support prior to euthanasia and your aftercare support plan.
- Euthanasia Support – Support on the euthanasia day by attending with you or act as a stand in.
- Funeral or Memorial Planning – Create together a funeral or memorial service for your pet.
- Memorial Keepsakes – A variety of options available.
You will be empowered to make choices that attune to your values and beliefs in a safe and supportive environment.
PAW PRINTS ON MY HEART
You came into my heart one day,
So beautiful and smart,
My dear and sweet companion,
I loved you from the start,
And though I know the time would come,
When we would have to part,
You’ll never be forgotten,
You left paw prints on my heart.
Coping with the loss of a pet.
The bond that is made between a pet and owner can be extremely strong. The sense of grief that is felt at the loss of a pet, can be equivalent to a human that you are close to. When we give unconditional love as we often do with our pets, our hearts are vulnerable to heartache of when we face loss.
Sometimes due to our pets health, ageing process or an unexpected event we have to make decisions to euthanize our fur baby. This compounds the loss with an array of emotions we feel during this difficult time. Grief can be crippling and seems like there is no end. There are some things you can do that will help cope with the grief.
It is important to remember everyone experiences grief differently. With the loss of a favourite pet that you and maybe other family members cherished, grief will be different for everyone. Children will also have a sense of sadness around the loss of the pet.
Time is an important commodity, and especially when one experience the loss of a pet. Though you may never forget your pet, there will come a time where the deep sadness will be replaced with a lightness and maybe even a hint of smile when you think of your fur baby.
The pet doula will help you put together a customised ritual or service/ceremony for your pet.
Ten tips for healing the pain of losing a pet:
- Accept that what you are feeling is normal.
- Explain to young children the pet loss in a way they will understand.
- Allow yourself and your family to grieve the loss.
- Express your grieving emotions through journaling.
- Reach out for help and support.
- Create a ritual.
- Create a service or ceremony to honour your pet.
- Memoralise your pet.
- Reach out for a pet support group.
- Don’t be afraid to seek professional services.
How to help a friend grieve the loss of a pet:
- Validate their feelings.
- Remember it takes time to grieve.
- Do something special to remember their pet.
- Send them a card.
- Check in with them regularly – phone or go for a walk.
- Listen. Don’t try to fix anything or advise – just listen.
- Ask them what help they would like.
Create a Lasting Memorial to Honour Your Pet
There a number of ways that you can memorialise your pet. Through memorialising your pet it can help with your feelings of grief and loss.
The goal of the ritual, service or memorial is to celebrate the life of your pet by honouring the love that was shared between you and your pet and family members.
Here are just a few ways you can memorialise your pet:
- Hold a funeral.
- Hold a memorial service.
- Gather your friends and family and do your pets favourite walk.
- Plant flowers.
- Create an alter with your pets memorabilia.
- Create a special place in the garden with a garden stone and your pets ashes.
- Write a poem.
Frequently asked questions about
Jenny’s Pet End-of-Life services
What is a doula?
The word “doula” is a Greek word meaning a non-medical person who gives physical, emotional, and spiritual support to an elderly person or someone with a life-threatening illness.
What is an End of Life Plan?
A pet End of Life Plan is a document that has the kind of health and veterinary care you would consent to, or refuse, for your pet.
End of Life Plan we will discuss in detail what you would like to happen during this time and go over the resources that are available. We will discuss “quality of life’, and talk about values and what is important to you for a greater peace of mind.
How will I know when to call you?
The sooner you plan the end of life journey, the better. We can help in many meaningful ways from a diagnosis stage right on to after death.
Will you provide euthanasia service?
No. Euthanasia service is provided by veterinary clinic. We will, however, be able to provide a service to accompany you to the clinic or act as a stand in if you simply cannot be in the room.
So then, what does a Doula do?
Doulas are specially trained non-medical health care professionals. They are specifically trained in end of life care. The doulas offer suggestions for comfort to the patient and family. They provide support to the family and patient during all phases of care in what can be a very distressing time.
Can I leave my loved pet in your care?
Yes. We will discuss your families level of support requirements in a service agreement.
Will you provide cremation service?
No. There are a number of local business available that offer cremation services. However, I can offer you a memorabilia for your pets ashes.
What are some examples of services?
Assist client with the preparation of key documents including end of life planning; create remembrances for family; create ritual/service and create a funeral service and provide end of life options.
Want to attend pet funeral?
You can. Pet funerals are a way to work with the sense of loss that comes as part of the grief process. Holding a pet funeral is form of friendship celebration for the time that you and your pet had together.