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Pet Loss: When Is The Right Time To Get A New Pet?

Grieving the loss of a pet can be a long, difficult process. The pain can be too much to bear and might leave you thinking you will not go through with this again.

After time, you may start to wonder when is the right time to get a new pet?

While there are no right or wrong answers, there are a few things you should consider to figure out when that right time is.

Pet Loss: When Is The Right Time To Get A New Pet?

Allow Time For Grieving

You cannot expect to move on happily with a new pet without allowing yourself time to grieve the loss of your old one.

There is no time limit to when this process will end; everyone grieves differently.

It may take you a few months to a year to become ready to search for a new pet.

No new pet can replace your old one, and that’s not the goal of finding a new pet, but you should have room in your heart that is open to loving someone new.

The last thing you should do is rush the decision and let yourself or others pressure you into getting a new pet.

Sometimes people think the best way to grieve the loss of a pet is to quickly find a new one.

It may be helpful in your grieving process to set up a pet memorial for your fur friend after their passing until you feel ready to start thinking of finding a new pet.

Pet memorials can be customizable and hold your pet’s ashes or contain their accessories such as leashes or favorite toys, even pictures that you have of your pet.

Most pet owners are choosing to house their pet’s ashes instead of burying their pet as a way to keep their memory alive in their home.

You could have a pet memorial to continue the legacy of your pet while you discuss with your family the opportunity of finding a new pet, and your family can weigh in on the decision of what to put in the pet memorial.

Consult With Your Family

If you live with others, they should be considered in this new decision, especially if you have small kids or someone who had a strong bond with the pet that passed.

It can be difficult for them to picture a life without their furry friend and they may even think that the new pet is a replacement to the one they’ve lost.

Because of this, it is important that you check in with your family members first to see how they are handling the loss before you discuss the idea of getting a new pet.

One thing you can do for your pet to remember and celebrate their life and special place in your heart

The important takeaway is to always consider your family’s thoughts and feelings in the grieving process and the consideration of searching for a new pet before you bring one home.

Large white dogs in kennels waiting to be adopted

How To Choose Your New Pet

When you and your family decide to look for a new pet, you should carefully consider the kind of new pet you want to bring home.

Here are a few things to take into consideration when looking for your new furry friend.

Large white dog shaking woman's hand


Are you going to get another animal of the same breed, or do you want to explore other options?

Some people find comfort in sticking to the same breed since they know what to expect and may appreciate the similarity.

Some pet owners like to choose the same breed of animal as their past one to feel connected to their previous pet.

If you start looking for a new breed, you should research as much as you can about that breed to know what to expect regarding possible health conditions, energy level, and behaviors.

You should also consider the age you are looking for and time you have to commit to training a young animal if you opt for a baby.

Woman and white husky dog sitting on mountain top looking out

Change Of Lifestyle

Each pet you own proposes a learning curve for each owner.

Maybe you learned that your lifestyle should change to benefit the health of your pet.

For instance, you now know you need to incorporate more time of the day to give your pet more chances to stay active and healthy outside or more time playing.

Now that you know what to change, you can feel more prepared to bring the new pet home.

Other Pets

If you have other pets in the house, you should consider their temperament and the kind of energy level they mesh with, plus how well they take to new animals.

It may take your other pets some time to open up and accept the new animal, so you should plan to introduce your pets and break the ice with the new arrival.

It could be that your living pets start to miss the one that passed and is feeling lonely.

Finding a new pet could benefit your current pets as well!

Happy Labrador Retriever with little boy and family

The Last Thing To Keep In Mind

The most important thing to keep in mind when you are searching for a new pet is to not expect them to be similar to the one you lost.

That is one of the reasons why you should give yourself ample time to grieve.

If you get a younger animal that needs to be trained, do not let these difficult years throw you off since you were used to the calm nature of your previous pet.

The new pet you find will not act or behave like the one you lost, and you shouldn’t expect them to.

It could cause resentment on your end, and you can become upset if they don’t behave like your previous one.

Patience and gentle reflection can help you and your family heal from the pain of losing a pet.

Then, when the time is right for you, you’ll be able to share your love with a new, well-chosen animal companion.


Sunday 29th of October 2023

Had to put my sister's cat down while I was pet sitting! Kidney failure; not unexpected and I'm glad I was sitting as she could've been suffering alone waiting for someone to show up. Still so tough


Tuesday 20th of December 2022

My poor niece just lost her 5 year old Corgi, Violet, to ITP. She definitely paid for everything humanly possible to be done to save her. Really tragic, especially at such a young age


Monday 5th of December 2022

I'm down to 3 cats - all seniors (well one is a super senior).


Thursday 9th of December 2021

These are some great ideas to consider when you are considering what to do after you have lost a pet.

Debbie P

Tuesday 7th of December 2021

Thanks for doing an article on this subject matter.

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