It is just a dog

Everyone knows someone who has shed a tear for a pet. It is no mystery how much a loss of a dear friend or family member can affect a person, but what about a pet? For some it is entirely inconceivable to imagine someone crying over an animal when in some cases it is the other way around; some can´t imagine a person unable to show sadness for the loss of their furry friend.

According to a study made by the FEDIAF in 2012 45% of  the homes in Rumania have a pet,  there is one pet in 1 of 4 homes in Spain and adding all of the countries is Europe there is a domestic animal in 33 out of a 100 homes.  In another study made in Mexico that appeared in the newspaper La Crónica in 2015 out of 100 homes you will find a pet in 70 of them. According to statistics in some countries more than half and in others a little less knows what it is like to live with an animal. Following this line then at least half of them must know what it is like to come home one day and not seeing your pet. So if there is a moment when at least all these people cry over a pet then why do some still question the reason behind the mourning?

There is no specific answer, but one that may do is because they never have a pet they could bond with the way others do. The other half ( in some countries) doesn’t know what is like when your dog, cat, parrot, or other animal becomes your best friend and the reason you wake up happy each morning. Living with animals usually has great benefits like providing a more healthy life style. In some cases animals are trained to help with people that suffer from depression or other mental and physical illness.  Dogs are the only ones that will love you more than they love themselves and this goes with other pets.

dog-faints
An excited schnauzer seeing her owner after a long time.

Losing your companion may be one of the worst things to happen and then others may ask why you are crying over an animal which makes the matters worse. They tell you to get over it “it is just a dog”.  In my personal experience, I was at a psychology class and they paired us up to talk about what was bothering us.  When my turn to speak came I talk about how sad I was that my dog was diagnosed with the big c and I couldn’t be there for him. I wasn’t in the middle of the sentence when the other person turned around and told the teacher if it was really important to listen to my story since it was just a dog. The words of the teacher were gold: “If it is important enough for someone to talk about it then it is important to listen to it. You don’t get to decided what is and what is not important for the person. Maybe for her the dog is more important than her best friend or even a family member. It is not what blood relationship they have but the bond that matters. So yes, it is important.”

Losing a loved one is hard enough and dealing with people that don’t understand is even harder. The only advice I can give is ignore them and know your pain is valid and for those that don’t understand the relationship a person can have with their pet is okay to not comprehend, but is not okay to shame them because “it is just a dog”.

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