Lose A Pet

It’s something that a lot of us go through, but which doesn’t always receive as much sympathy or support as it should do. Losing a pet at age 12 was a big milestone in my life – it affected me greatly, I can still remember my Mum collapsing to the floor when my Dad had to tell her that our beloved Tom Cat Basil had been hit by a car. We’ve sadly lost other pets since then, but Basil was our first family pet to die and he was so full of character and mischief that picking him up from the vets, wrapped in a blanket that was dotted with his blood was something I will never forget. When he died, I emptied a Groovy Chick box I had full of girly rubbish and filled it with photographs of Basil as a kitten and wrote a little note to him. I still have the box to this day and it reminds me just how much I treasure the animals we share our lives with.

Once we moved to the countryside six years ago, we filled our house with more creatures and now we are at two dogs, two cats and five hens. They are all incredibly important to me and I can’t imagine walking into a house without them. No they don’t speak, but they bring so much to a conversation. Unwittingly they make us peel with laughter time and time again, and when they are ill, they don’t even realise that we go through double the pain they go through. People who don’t own pets, often don’t realise that losing them is an incredibly hard, unacknowledged ordeal. Well, fellow animal lovers, I do realise.

Two weeks ago, Fred’s (pictured above) best friend Dillon, a beautiful golden retriever, ran out into the garden barking his head off at a fox. When he didn’t come to the back door after 10 minutes or so, like he usually does, his owners went to the garden calling his name. There, at the end of the garden was Dillon. He had suffered a freak, massive heart attack and had died instantly. He was only nine years old or so, and there was no reason he should die young, it was just a tragic occurrence. His owners were bereft, and I felt a sense of loss for them because he was their only pet and he was wonderful. I can completely sympathise with how they feel – a pain that you feel every day because that life is no longer with you, a life that needed you just as much as you needed them.

So, to all pet owners out there who have ever lost a beloved animal, never feel ashamed to mourn the loss of the creatures that bring us such happiness on a daily basis. They deserve to be missed and celebrated, so never feel that you don’t have reason to grieve because trust me, I do and I will in the future – and it is 100 per cent deserved.