Pet Loss Therapy: Understanding Its Role

Pet loss therapy…

Did you know that scientific research finds that pet loss not only rivals that of human death grief, but that the dynamics of being a pet parent often mimic those of being parent to a child?


Losing a pet is often an emotionally-overwhelming experience and can lead to deep pain and lasting “scar tissue.”

This means that in addition to seeking emotional support from family and friends, it’s typically best you also seek professional pet loss therapy.
Below, you’ll find a brief recap of the how’s and why’s of pet loss therapy.

What is Pet Loss Therapy?

Pet loss therapy is a type of counseling that helps someone cope with the deep grief and emotional distress associated with pet loss. Yes, it can be difficult to find real, authentic, professional “pet loss therapy,” as very few American psychologist and therapists excel in the modality. But one thing you’ll want to look for is someone that specializes in the area of grief, and someone that focuses on a narrative & expressive arts approach, as these are far and away the most effective means to healing death grief.

How Can Pet Loss Therapy Help You?

Simply put, pet loss therapy can help you “complete” your grief—a tricky thing to do on your own. And it’s paramount we do this with all grief, as we don’t want those latent issues arising somewhere down the road and causing us additional distress.

Are There Different Types of Pet Loss Therapy?

While there are several therapeutic approaches non-specialized professionals may take—such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), acceptance & commitment therapy (ACT), and dialectical behavior therapy (DBT)—a narrative and expressive arts approach is the only pet loss therapy modality proven to actually heal grief, as well as offer long-term relief.

What Does Great Pet Loss Therapy Look Like?

It should involve things like meaning reconstruction, loss characterization, memory reconsolidation, continuing bond expression, timeline construction, ritualization, and memorialization. It should always be humanistic in approach, non-blaming, and client-centric.

Find professional pet loss therapy here.

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