Anyone who has a dog knows how this can become a family member, a loved one for whom we’d do anything.
For this reason, when our dog dies, the pain is enormous, whether it occurs after a long illness or suddenly.
Some might say “It’s just a dog” meaning that losing a dog is not comparable to losing a loved one. But is it really like that? Anyone with a dog will say no. The pain is the same. Now a scientific study confirms it.
According to science, in fact, the death of a dog is not only comparable to that of a family member but can also be more difficult to overcome.
Why? When we lose a family member we can share the pain with other people who experience the same feelings, we can resort to therapies. Furthermore, we are not criticized for that pain. It is considered normal.
When our dog dies, instead, we expect that we overcome that mourning quickly, that we simply go on with our lives, that we immediately return to work. That pain, therefore, is not really lived and processed and consequently it is more difficult for us to manage and metabolize.
Psychologist Julie Axelrod states that losing one’s dog means losing part of our life, of our routine. Thus an enormous void is created.
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