Remembering Fido – Dogster

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Every dog owner will someday experience a time of sorrow that, hopefully, occurs after years of joy with our beloved dogs. While nothing can speed up the healing process — which, indeed, is a process, not something one magically “gets over” after a certain amount of time — many have found memorializing their dog to be comforting. There is absolutely no single, right way to do this, reminds Reverend Kaleel Sakakeeny, an animal chaplain and credentialed pet loss and grief counselor in Boston. “Each of us mourns and memorializes in his or her own way depending on so many factors from faith, religion, intensity of the human-animal bond, stage of life the pet parent is in, how the pet passed, etc.” Again, take your time and do what feels right to you. “And it definitely is a process — and not one that is always linear. It’s critical for the healing process to move from grief to mourning, which is externalizing/memorializing the pain and sadness so we can begin to move forward. NEVER to move on; to move forward,” adds Rev. Kaleel, who is also a professional life coach.
  1. Incorporate ashes

Over the years it has become more common to keep the ashes of a beloved pet, as well as using some of the ashes to create different memorial items. “Urns and urn jewelry seem to be what most people think about,” says Coleen Ellis, a pet loss author, consultant and speaker who oversees Two Hearts Pet Loss Center in Texas, but options don’t end there. “Outside rock urns, mixing ashes with Let Your Love Grow to create a very nutrient-rich product for flowers and trees, portraits painted using the pet’s ashes or even shooting the pet’s ashes into space or turning the pet’s ashes into a coral reef for the ocean are some beautiful and creative ideas.” Rev. Kaleel offers a caveat to consider. “I advise not to spread all the ashes because we move, change locations and don’t want all the pet’s ashes somewhere else. People have been grateful for this guidance. We need to keep the ashes with us, some of them anyway, and having spread ashes far and wide can leave us bereft.”
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PetBar Pendant (hollowed pendant that holds cremains); remembarcollection.com
  1. Craft a jewel

There are many different ways jewelry can include part of your pet. Options can include turning the ashes into a diamond, creating jewelry with the pet’s nose or paw print on it or wearing a locket with your dog’s photo or a tuft of fur, perhaps even engraved with his name or initial.
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Teeny Tiny Paw Necklace; pawsomecouture.com
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