For those of you who have lost a dog/cat and had another dog/cat still at home:

How did you help them process that the other pet wasn’t coming home?

  • Did you remove from sight all of the other pet’s things right away?
  • Did you show them/let them smell the other pet’s collar?
  • Did you show them/let them smell the other pet’s ashes?
  • Did you cry in front of them? Someone pointed out to me that it may be more confusing to Noodle if we are acting like everything is okay in front of him and crying elsewhere.

Any help from those experienced in this area would be appreciated.

About noodle4president

I was a discarded, lost little stray without a house or a family...until my mom found me. Now, I am the happiest, most loved dog in the whole world!

26 responses »

  1. I sadly have no clue what’s the best, but I’m sure our Chipy knew it as my dad came home without Frosty from the vet. And sadly that was the day she refused to eat and to drink and 4 weeks later we had to go through the same… I wish I could be there to cry with you or to give you a hug, that are situations what hurt so much….

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Mrs P says:

    Old Dog somehow knew that Old Cat had passed, we let him watch as we put Old Cats thing away, we cried in front of him, months later it was Old Dogs turn to go….I still cry over them even though Neurotic Cat and K9 have since join our home, I hope you find your way through this major crisis xx

    Liked by 1 person

  3. maabbott3 says:

    We have had experience with both dogs and cats. Each time we let the others see us cry and we all comforted each other. We have a pet tree in our timber that we bury our pets under. When we brought our dog Murphy home to be buried she was wrapped up and we let Abby dog sniff her and Pete and Lucy kitties did as well. The other times we just went ahead and buried them as it was later in the day and it was easier to do while it was still daylight. Either way for the remaining pets it didn’t seem to make a difference in the grieving process. I didn’t get a sense that they felt closure being able to sniff or not sniff.

    Maybe selfishly we did move from sight the pets belongings that same day but that for our comfort as opposed to the rest of the pets comforts.

    The loss of a pet is such an incredibly difficult event. We just did a lot of loving and hugging and reassuring both to the remaining pets and Greg and I. In time it got better, we never forget the pets that died but eventually the pain gives way to the happier memories of each and every one of them. Our pets have all been such an important part of our lives and all have done their part in adding to the memories to our family.

    I am still praying for peace and comfort for you all. Please give Noodle a snuggle from me.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. colinandray says:

    I would suggest that you put yourself in Noodles situation and then ask yourself how you would like things to be handled. The following are some thoughts:

    He has to be confronted with the inevitable so do whatever you can to remove “traces” of Khia. Khia scents could well be telling him that he’ll be back soon. Sentimentality aside, he must move on.

    He needs to know that while the “gang dynamics” have changed, there are still some constants. You still love him.

    From what I have learned about Noodle, I would expect that he will get back on track as fast as you can let him (i.e life must go on) however, there are plenty of dogs around who would just love to live with you!

    Finally, we all progress through the mourning process at our own pace and I see no reason to assume that dogs are much different. Time will heal. Just do what you can and be patient.


    Liked by 1 person

  5. My brother’s border collie recently passed away, and my boxer, Boomer, was able to sniff his body right afterward. However, he still – for DAYS – would run to Pele’s hiding spot under the porch when he went outside, looking for him. Eventually, he stopped looking, but he insists on sleeping at the foot of my parents’ bed now.

    I brought Sammie home with me at Easter, and I think their play and interactions were good for Boomer – especially now that he’s the only dog in the house.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. raisingdaisy says:

    We’ve never had more than one pet at a time, except when we had guinea pigs. They were kept in separate cages next to each other, but when the timid piggy passed, the stronger piggy didn’t seem phased. I’m sure guinea pig reactions are much different than dogs’ reactions though. Wish I could be of help, but I know that others who have had a similar experience in this wonderfully supportive pet blogging community will give you some valuable insights. ~~still hurting for you~~

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Fozziemum says:

    Sweetie the cats here have had saw the body of Simba who had been shot..she did not go out of the house in the yard until we moved here..i think becuase the memory was gone..we lost our last dog when we only had one dog..but i dread with the boys here what will happen..i think cry and show emotion and be guided by Noodles actions..walks and sniffs and trying to get back into a routine..the routine is usually kaput when this happens and sometimes that can be the problem..i wish i had advice for you that would really all individuals it is hard to say..we send our love and hope that soon some sort of normal can be to all Bev xxx

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Genis LeyNel says:

    Pets understand more than we sometimes credit them for. Noodle (and don’t forget Jamison too) will feel the loss, but lots of love and attention will get them through this trying period. With regard to pet parents: when we lost our Tina under the same circumstances, I cried for days on end, until one night when I had the sweetest dream about her – I actually saw her running and jumping with joy the way she used to when she was young and healthy, no more pain, no more illness. After three years I’m still holding on to that dream. Hester (Genis’s mom) Love from Genis and myself.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I have never had more than one pet at a time. But I would imagine in Noodle’s position, I’d want to return to the new-normal routine as soon as possible. Pets (and most people) rely on routine to help them move past unthinkable events and circumstances. From the country song: “…when you’re going through hell, keep on moving, and you might get out before the devil even knows you’re there…” Prayers and happy healing thoughts are coming your way. xo

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Princess Leah says:

    My peeps have only ever had one pup at a time so can’t offer you advice on this butts they do want me to send you lots of luffs and hugs and to let you know they are thinkings of you
    Loves and licky kisses
    Princess Leah xxx

    Liked by 1 person

  11. When HMC’s sister died, I let HMC (our cat) and our dog sniff her body. Of course, HMC was thrilled because this meant he was the top cat. (Cats are weird!) When HMC passed, he was wrapped up very well by the vet, but we still let our dog sniff the pouch he was in. We didn’t do any cleaning up of toys or anything like that.

    When our dog’s constant companion Ginger died (she was my parents’ dog), she did not get a chance to say “goodbye” – Ginger was a big dog, and my parents had her cremated. Our dog has always gone to my parents’ house during the week for “doggie daycare.” What I did do was not disturb our dog’s routine – she still went to my parents’ house every day.

    I don’t know what the best way is for an animal to grieve. I think that for dogs, I agree with Genevieve – you have to rely on routine. Just keep doing what you’re doing. However, I would say do not NOT grieve in front of Noodle. Don’t get rid of the other dog’s things, but perhaps put them “away” in a different place.

    I will tell you – my husband and I were the ones who took Ginger to be put to sleep, because my parents were away. This was about 3 years ago. I still have the washcloth used to cool her down (it was July when this happened) – I can’t bear to throw it away.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Frankie and Ernie says:

    Just as with PEEPS…. WE all grieve differently and may need to try Several of those thingys…

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Lexi’s Mom here. When I lost my first schnauzer, my other dog was relieved to be out from under her paw, so no help there. You have already gotten such good advice here.

    No matter how you try to hide it, Noodle is going to feel your emotions. A lot of crying may upset him more, but don’t try to fake how you feel. It won’t work.

    Yes, routine is good. Dogs seem to live for routine. Can you either add a new routine (a daily walk, for instance) or alter existing ones to help stop the expectation of Khia joining? (For example, smoking and drinking or having morning coffee often go hand in hand – hope that makes sense.)

    Also, teaching him new things and giving him new things to do will re-direct both your minds. Is there an agility class nearby? A freestyle class? How about a good citizen’s class? Or pick a new “trick” to teach each week if you can’t or don’t want to join a class.

    Hope of help. We think about you and pray for you often throughout each day.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. stella rose says:

    When Stella Rose lost her brother she did grieve. I took her to his grave and let her walk all around, we kept some of his toys for her also. Stella and I would get up early in the morning and just sit outside on the porch together in the quiet while I drank my coffee…sometimes she would get me up really early, I cried a lot and I did cry around her. We did bring home a new pup not to long afterwards. It helped Stella and us. AS Frankie and Ernie’s momma said everyone and everydog does grieve differently and for different lengths of time….hugs a bunch stella rose’s momma

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Nylabluesmum says:

    Definitely let Noodle sniff everything that was Mya’s & Khia’s. Definitely let him see their ashboxes. definitely cry in front o fhim & htell him you love him. Our 4 leggeds are far smarter than some people realize. Noodle knows his girls are gone; he needs to grieve also.
    I think when you are ready to pick up the girls toys & beds that is the right time.
    Even tho Siddhartha Henry did not ‘know’ his ‘Aunties’ I told him about them & showed him the ash boxes. He rubs them daily as if to say “Hello” & in remebrance. He is not a chinner or a rubber by nature. He rubs me also. So he must know there is a link between those 2 ashboxes & myself.
    Oh I think you might want to keep a blanket of Khia’s (unwashed) & put it in Noodle’s bed or whereever he likes to lie down. Having a blanket & maybe a stuffie of the girl’s will help ease his sadness also.
    (((hugs))) Sherri-Ellen & Siddhartha Henry ❤ ❤ ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Niko and Rocky had been best friends for 10 years when Niko passed. Rocky had severe separation anxiety, so I knew that losing his best friend was going to be very hard for him. When we came home from the vet, I was absolute mess. I could not stop crying. I didn’t hide it from Rocky. I let him see me and let him comfort me while I hugged him. I let him smell Niko’s collar, though I don’t think he fully understood what that meant. I never took away any of Niko’s things and I let him sniff Niko’s ashes when I brought them home. While I tried to not be in hysterics, I let Rocky see that I was sad. But I also made an effort to get out and do things with him. I tried, in some way, to keep him engaged and maybe a little distracted. It worked for a while. But, eventually, Rocky started showing signs of depression. He went on doggie Prozac for a little while – mostly to help him get over his separation anxiety and not having his best buddy with him when I was at work. After a few months, we weaned him off the medication and he was fine. He needed some time to grieve, as I did, and to adjust to a new way of life. Dogs are amazingly resilient. Above all else, trust your instinct. You know Noodles better than anyone. You know what is best for him – even if it’s very overwhelming right now. Love and hugs to you!

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  17. I cried in front of them and petted them. A lot. I think it helped both of us.

    Liked by 2 people

  18. corkscot says:

    Having gone through this too many times, I can tell you that pets, as do people, grieve on their own level. Sidney was miserable after Drew died .he refused to walk, eat, play, or do any normal things. He was only happy when another dog was present. After two months or his being unhappy, I adopted Shelby from rescue and Sidney was a new dog. He did not grieve when Tiffany died the year before Drew died. I keep all of the toys. They got to smell the dogs before their last trip to the vet. I think that they knew by their behavior that something was very wrong with them. I have the ashes in little boxes on my night table. None of the dogs have ever sniffed them I did nothing to hide my sadness. .

    Liked by 1 person

  19. I have lots several Siamese over the years. We always have two for just the reason that is being mentioned……companionship. Some cats have taken the loss of a mate/partner very hard….some show nothing. When our last cat died…..Kali was very, very close to this cat…like mother and daughter….Kali never seemed to miss her at all. I got another Siamese to keep Kali company and Kali hated her! I think Kali is one of those Siamese that would be quite happy by themselves. Usually these cats are very social but Kali was not….she liked to visit with peeps and cats and then leave. They are good friends now but it has been 6 years. I would say to try and read your pets take on the situation…is he lonely or does he want you for himself…not an easy task to diagnose. Make sure there is something that is just that pets….like a special toy. Kali did this with my walker and to this day Shoko will not touch it. First thing first….you all must grieve and then a thought of another pet is reasonable. Right now everything is topsy turvey for you and Noodle….give yourself time my friend.


    Liked by 1 person

  20. There is no right or wrong answer to your questions. You do what you feel is best. When I took Norman to be put to sleep and then to the crematorium no other animal went with. When I got home I didn’t show his ashes to any dog but when I was transferring him to a different container, Glory was the only one interested in sniffing the ashes. I don’t even think any of them missed Norman or really knew he was gone except maybe Gambler because Norman kept biting him. I think in your case it might be different with Noodle as now he is the only one left, his buddies are gone so he might act or feel differently. I suggest you go on more outings, more pets and make it all about him (which I’m sure you are already doing). He won’t have time to miss the others. One day when your up to it I’m sure you will get another companion for yourself and Noodle will be glad that you did. Thank you for stopping by and reading about Nellie and her ultrasound. I’ve been thinking of Khai that whole time and wondered if I was going to hear the same results on Nellie. Thankfully this time I did not. Your words meant a lot. Hang in there, hugs.

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  21. We all grieve differently, so there is no right or wrong here. When Whitley passed to the Bridge, Abby was still at home. Mom brought home Whitley’s carrier and let Abby sniff it, and when Whitley’s ashes came home, mom let Abby sniff those also. Mom showed Abby the cards she got when Whits passed and mom let Abby see her cry. We think Abby understood that the humans in her house were all very sad. Abby certainly looked all over for her friend. When Abby passed, there were no other furbabies at home and that was hard on mom. Just take your time and grieve as you must. Others understand the heart ache you are going through.

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  22. When Puck passed away, Sam was very attached to her and to this day tugs at his leash whenever he sees a Old English Sheepdog. That said, I tried to get his routine back on schedule as quick as possible. He seemed depressed–there was lots of searching for his BFF and a lot of heavy sighs. It took a few weeks but then he gradually came out of it. We spent a lot of time walking and interacting with other dogs along the way, something that we couldn’t do with Puck (she was way too protective). Sam knew I was grieving and would put his head on my knee as if to comfort me. We both helped each other along the way and I’m sure you’ll do the same with Noodle. Good luck, loads of healing puppy kisses. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  23. KB says:

    I didn’t come to know you until all this terrible stuff happened to you. Now I wish that I had some good advice. We always bring our other dogs in to see the body of the dog who has passed. It might help to let Noodle smell her ashes – but I don’t have experience with that. I always try to start some new special thing with the remaining dog(s) like special walks to new places or teaching them tricks that we haven’t done before. Anything to help them to know that I still love them and I’m still here for them, even if their dog-sibling isn’t.

    We’re sending lots of healing and soothing thoughts. I cannot imagine how hard these past months have been for you.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. I have no advice except to say be gentle on yourself.

    Liked by 1 person

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