Joe Jonas and Sophie Turner recently lost one of their adorable dogs, Waldo Picasso, when he was hit by a car in New York City. According to Cosmopolitan, they were so shocked and upset that they immediately sought help from a therapist, and it took them two days before they were able to report the incident to the authorities.
It's entirely understandable that Jonas and Turner needed to sit down with someone and talk about they felt. The death of a pet is undeniably sad, but generally speaking, it's seen in our culture as something that people should be able to get over fairly easily, with comparisons often drawn with the "bigger deal" of losing a human loved one.
"So often, when an animal companion dies and the human partner is bereft, well-meaning people say things such as: 'it’s only a dog,' 'come on, get over it,' 'you can always get another one,' 'they’re better off,' 'be strong,' 'you’re crying too much,' 'get a life.' And so the grief-stricken suffer again. The loss of their pet, their animal companion, is deep and profound," pet loss counselor Kaleel Sakakeeny recently told People. "And these kinds of comments “disenfranchise” their grief, their loss, denying the person the validity of their grief."
"But grief is grief. Loss is loss. The misconception is that the relationship between a person and an animal can’t carry the same value as the relationship between a person and a person. Another big misconception then is that the love between a person and an animal is, at best, cute and fun, but nothing compared to the love between people."
Sakakeeny advises people who are grieving the loss of a pet to try not to avoid those feelings, as this will help them move forward. "Memorialize your pet," he says. "Expect the pain and grief to ebb and flow and catch you by surprise for years to come. When you’re ready, bring another animal home. There are so many beauties looking for a forever home."
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