In this short guide, we will answer the following question: Should I let my other dog see my dead dog? We will discuss how to take care of yourself and your other pet when you’ve lost a dog.
Should I let my other dog see my dead dog?
Whether you should let your other dog see your dead dog is a controversial topic that many disagree upon. Whether or not dogs have feelings has always been a subject of debate between lovers and non-lovers of animals. Many people wonder if death affects dogs, whether of a pet or a relative.
Does death affect dogs? There are not many detours that can be taken on this issue. We have all seen dogs that for years are waiting for their owners or some that have had depression when a pet that lived with them has died.
This happens because dogs are routine animals, they need to live in a community and do not usually cope well with changes. An unexpected change can alter the sense of security that the animal had, and this can turn his life around that he is not prepared to take.
This does not mean that all dogs have the same attitude towards death, but as a general rule, it can happen that way. These are the symptoms that will make you see that your dog has been affected by the death of your other pet:
- He doesn’t want to eat
- He doesn’t want to leave the house
- He prefers not to play
- He spends the day sleeping or lethargic
- He ignores your calls
- He is not excited by his toys
- He is constantly looking for ‘something’ around the house
- He cries for no reason.
If you notice the above-mentioned symptoms in your dog, it is certain that the death of the other pet, or a family member, has affected him more than you thought. These could lead to depression, so you have to act before it happens.
How to help a dog struggling with the death of another
Before taking your dog to the vet, there are several things you can try at home to try to alleviate his pain.
- Let him see the body: Studies have shown that seeing the dead body of the other pet can help the dog overcome death. Do you remember Hachiko? He waited years for his owner because he simply did not know what had happened. Allowing him to see the body will be like closing a chapter.
- Give it time: We all have our particular way of reacting to adversity, and your dog was not going to be less. Although we understand that you do not like to see him sad, do not burden him by wanting to pamper him or by playing with him. Let him assimilate everything that has happened; when he’s ready he’ll let you know.
- Follow your routine: Sticking with the same daily routine of walks, games, and exercises will help you and your other dog to continue leading a normal life and forget about it. Even if your dog won’t feel like going out, you will have to. If necessary you can take it in your arms. Little by little it will be less difficult to convince him.
- Be careful if you bring another pet: It is possible that you will want to bring a new pet home, but be careful! Both of you must be prepared for it because if your dog had a very close bond with the previous one and not enough time has passed, it is possible that he is threatened or that he thinks he is coming to usurp his place.
If you see that with these tips your dog’s mood does not improve, possibly it is because it is one of those dogs that are affected by a death in an intense way. In these cases, it is best to receive medical and psychological help.
Tips to overcome the death of your pet
Below we will give you some tips to overcome the death of your pet since it will be a difficult time for the whole family.
Grief is a highly individual experience. Some people find that grief after the loss of a pet comes in stages, where they experience different feelings such as denial, anger, guilt, depression, and finally acceptance and resolution. Others find that their pain is more cyclical, coming in waves or a series of ups and downs. The lows are likely to be deeper and longer at first and then gradually get shorter and less intense as time goes on.
Remember that the grieving process occurs only gradually. It cannot be forced or rushed, and there is no “normal” schedule for grief. Some people begin to feel better within weeks or months, even years.
Feeling sad, shocked, or lonely is a normal reaction to the loss of a beloved pet. Exhibiting these feelings does not mean that you are weak or that your feelings are somehow out of place. It simply means that you are mourning the loss of an animal that you loved, so you should not feel ashamed.
Trying to ignore your pain or keep it from coming to the surface will only make it worse in the long run. For real healing, you need to face your pain and actively deal with it. By expressing it, you may need less time to get over it than if you withhold or “repress” your feelings. Write about your feelings and talk about them with other people who empathize with your loss.
Sadness and pain are normal and natural responses to death. Like grief for our friends and loved ones, grief for our animal companions can only be treated over time, but there are healthy ways to deal with grief.
Here are some suggestions:
Don’t let anyone tell you how to feel. Your pain is yours and no one else can tell you when it is time to “move on” or “get over it.” Allow yourself to feel what you feel without shame or judgment. It’s okay to be sad, cry, and not cry. It’s also okay to laugh, find moments of joy, and let go when you’re ready.
Talk to others who have lost pets. Consult forums and social networks of animal shelters. If your own friends and family don’t empathize with the loss of your animal, find someone who will. Oftentimes, another person who has also experienced the loss of a beloved pet can better understand what you are going through.
Create a legacy. Plant a tree in memory of your pet, compose a photo album and share the memories you enjoyed with your animal, you can create a legacy to celebrate life in the company of your animal with you.
Beware, the stress of losing a pet can quickly deplete your energy and emotional reserves. Taking care of your physical and emotional needs will help you get through this difficult time.
If you have other pets, maintaining your normal routine will help. Pets that survive may also experience loss when an animal they lived with dies, they may be distressed by your grief. Maintaining your daily routines, or even increasing exercise and play times, will not only benefit any animals you still have, but it can also help elevate your mood and outlook.
Seek professional help if you need it. If your pain is persistent and interferes with your ability to function, your doctor and a mental health professional can test you for depression. There is no shame in that.
Tips for seniors mourning the death of their beloved dog
As we age, we experience an increasing number of major life changes, including the loss of dear friends, family, and pets. The death of a pet can affect older people even more than younger adults who can take advantage of the comfort of a close family or be distracted by the routine of work. your pet was probably the only companion, and caring for the animal gave you a sense of purpose and self-worth.
Stay connected with friends: Pets, especially dogs, can help seniors meet new people, regularly connect with friends and neighbors while on a walk or in the park with the dog. Having lost your pet, it is important now that you do not spend day after day alone. Regular close contact can help you avoid depression and stay positive. Call an old friend for lunch and join a group activity.
Increase your vitality with exercise: Pets help many older adults stay active, which can boost your immune system and boost your energy. It is important to maintain your activity levels after the loss of the pet. Consult your doctor before starting an exercise program and then find an activity that you enjoy.
Exercising in a group, playing a sport like tennis and golf, exercising, or a swimming class can also help you connect with others.
Although it seems impossible, try to find new meaning and joy in life. Taking care of a pet previously occupied your time and increased your morale and optimism. Try to take advantage of that time by volunteering, picking up a long-neglected hobby, teaching classes, helping friends, rescue groups, or homeless shelters take care of your animals, and even getting another pet when the time is right.
The bottom line
Letting your other dog see your dead dog will help bring closure. Dogs are routine animals, they need to live in a community and do not usually cope well with changes. An unexpected change can alter the sense of security that the animal had, and this can turn his life around that he is not prepared to take.
Losing a pet is a hard time, both for humans and pets, so make sure you take good care of yourself and the other dog. Maintaining a routine is what best helps in these cases.
If you have any questions or if you want to share your story, please let us know.
FAQ on Should I let my other dog see my dead dog?
Can dogs sense their death?
In most cases, when it’s due to natural causes, dogs can sense their death. It is believed that dogs have some sort of sixth sense that lets them know their time is ending.
Why do dogs isolate themselves when dying?
Dogs isolate themselves when dying because they are weaker and cannot defend themselves against possible dangers. They also want to rest and spend time in a quiet and calm place.
Do dogs know you love them?
Yes, dogs know we love them. Dogs and humans can create a really special relationship and this is proven by the fact that our oxytocin levels go up high when we play or even when we just stare at our dog!
Can a dog wake up after euthanasia?
No, a dog cannot wake up after euthanasia. However, it makes it more peaceful and it makes it possible for you to hold your pet at the final moment.