The sky was overcast and the air was cool, but that didn’t stop any of the people who wanted to remember and honor the pets they miss so much. Each person at the ‘Remembering Our Pets’ ceremony at the Dane County Humane Society on Sunday afternoon was there to reflect on what their pet meant to them and to share the serious as well as the funny stories that made their pet special to them. There is something in the sharing of stories that helps the process of grief to move on from that piecing jab in your heart every time you think of the death of your wonderful pet to a calm gratefulness for having shared your life with such an incredible creature.
The Dane County Humane Society along with Dr. Katie Hilst, Memorial Pet Services, Gunderson Funeral Home and “Your Pet Wants To Talk” were sponsors of the ‘Remembering Your Pet’ ceremony this year. The event took place on September 8th which also just happened to be National Pet Memorial Day.
Part of the ceremony included placing rocks in the rock garden for each pet lost. There were also seed packets available for pet owners to take home with them. These packets could be planted in a garden next Spring in honor of a pet. And pictures with written tributes to pets were hung in a display to give voice to each animal’s special quality. There are those who might say that all of this “stuff” is unnecessary…”your pet died, get over it already! ” I think we might find that the person who criticizes this kind of ceremony and symbolism might also be the one who’s hurting the most and also needs the most understanding. Remembering and grieving and then moving on is important when saying good-bye to a good friend, even an animal friend. When we give our hearts in a promise of love, companionship and care, it doesn’t matter if we give it to a critter with two legs or four.
Blessings to you and your furry friends.