Terrible Loss

Terrible Loss

by Karin Baltzell, Ph.d

Hi Karin.

I’m sitting here at work waiting for a call from the vet about my cat, Kitty’s results. I came across your website just now and had to write. She’s 17 1/2 years old, and has been my “baby” all that time. I’m not able to have children of my own, so she has filled that void in my life. I can’t stand the thought of her leaving. Although she seems happy and content on the outside, she has been diagnosed with a possibly fatal disease. I’m afraid she doesn’t have much time left. My husband and I are so torn up. My heart is aching so bad. I know it’s going to get worse when we have to deal with putting her down. Is there anything I can do (or you can say) that will help with this terrible loss?

Dear Reader,

I am so sorry to hear about your cat, Kitty. A week has gone by since you wrote your letter. Has anything changed with your situation?

Your question, about is there anything you can do (or I can say) to help you with your loss is a wonderful one. I wish there was something I could do besides offer you sympathy, but you will, indeed, feel pain and grief over your loss. It is the price we pay for loving someone or an animal so completely.

However, I can give you words of comfort. Others tell us over and over how time does help to heal, but remember…TIME is the element. Allow yourself to feel the loss, to grieve, to talk with others about it (you might visit our chat room) and talk to your husband.

Sometimes people have put together a little Memorial Corner in their house, or near a picture of their lost animal. It seems this helps to feel connected to the one that is gone. Whatever you find yourself doing, try to focus on the love you feel for Kitty and that by putting your animal out of pain you have done (will do) a very loving thing.


Karin is a staff writer and editor for Beyond Indigo. She holds her Ph.D in Psychology.