Having multiple dogs can mean twice the fun and joy, but if one of your dogs dies, you won’t be the only one who’s mourning. Your dog can experience grief, especially if he was raised with the dog that had passed away. When your dog loses a member of its pack, it can be difficult for her to handle. Here’s how to support your dog when she loses a friend to death.
Give your dog extra attention
If you know that your dog is about to lose her companion, prepare her as much as possible by spending lots of time alone with her. Let her get used to doing things without the other dog, give her extra cuddles and alone time with you. This will help develop a habit of being an only pet before she actually is one.
After the death of your other dog, it’s natural for your remaining dog to grieve. She may not want to eat or play her usual games with you. Give extra treats and try to stick to your normal routine. This will help ease your pet into the transition of being an only pet.
Keeping your dog active can be a good way to distract her from her grief. Walks can be very therapeutic for both of you, and playing games can help make things feel more ‘normal’ for your pet. Focusing on your remaining pet can be good for you, especially if you are experiencing grief. Pour your grief into loving your remaining pet and you’ll both heal more quickly.
Don’t rush into getting another dog
It may feel like the best thing to do, but avoid bringing a new dog into your home right away. You and your pet need time to grieve, plus your remaining dog may associate the loss of her friend with the arrival of the new dog. This will make it harder to blend your new family and may cause behavioural problems in both dogs.
Be patient and offer unlimited love. You both have lost a friend and it will take time to heal from the loss.
For more tips on helping your dog cope with the loss of a friend, visit Bark Busters and speak with a helpful member of staff about your pet’s needs.