Some friends of ours recently lost their loving dog, who had been a part of their family for many years. The kids have never known life without him and are adjusting to this new and painful void.
When I heard he had passed away, I was immediately transported back to the day nearly four years ago when our 12-year-old German Shepherd died. I remembered what it felt like to miss something so fiercely, even the little things that before I took for granted or annoyed me. I missed the fact that I had to step over her when I woke up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom. I missed picking up her poop in the yard. I missed hearing her bark every time someone walked past our house. I missed her whines at night when it was time for her treat. I missed her spinning around in circles and chasing her tail. I missed her happily meeting us at the door every time we got home.
Losing a pet is so hard. My kids were really struck by the fact that their friends no longer had their puppy to greet them when they walked in the door. They understood the sadness our friends felt. I asked them if they wanted to do something to help cheer them up, and they immediately said they wanted to deliver flowers and a homemade card.
My three-year-old can’t write yet, so he and I found a link to an adorable pet sympathy coloring page to use for the cover of our card. You can find it here. They also have similar cards for the loss of other pets or family members. My Kindergartner chose a message and wrote it on the inside of the card. Then we picked out a small bouquet of flowers and set it on the porch of our friends’ house.
We sure hope this simple gesture helps to comfort our friends during this difficult time. Service doesn’t have to be grand or large. Sometimes it can be something small and thoughtful that lets someone know you care.
What are some ways you have comforted friends or family when they’ve lost someone close to them?