The history of pets is intimately linked to the process of domestication of animals. The dog is probably the first domesticated species and the first pet. There is indirect evidence that the dog may have been domesticated and kept as a pet since the Paleolithic era
A dog or cat is no longer considered a “mere” domestic animal but a full member of the family and a being who develops emotional interactions. He becomes neither a second degree character but a leading actor who brings company, fun and joy to our lives. Its importance is all the more felt, especially when it accompanies you continuously, day and night, and is totally dependent on you as well to eat as to do his needs.
A pet can add structure to your day, keep you active and social, help you overcome life’s setbacks and challenges, and even give you a sense or purpose. Thus, when a beloved animal dies, it is normal to feel a painful feeling of grief and loss.
In a study published in the Journal of Mental Health Counseling and conducted in the United States, Canada and Great Britain on more than one hundred people, showed that there was a statistically significant difference between the place given to pets and members of the family. And therefore, to the pain that results.
However, it is shocking to hear that the loss of an animal causes more harm than that of a human being. And yet, it’s true! The great Anatole France said, “Until someone has loved an animal, a part of his soul remains awake. And after awakening this part of the heart, the wound that comes from the loss is very deep.
Thus, the human being projects his own image on his pet. Our thoughts, emotions and ideas are referred to these creatures: We see ourselves in them. There is a common belief that owners look like their animals company : it is not in the absolute wrong idea, but a figure of speech indicating that our pets are our personal items that are modeled according to our behavior and in general of our personality.
Another reason for this attachment is related to the period spent with these animals. Indeed, cats and dogs, which represent the vast majority of these beings, have a lifespan of between 10 and 20 years. A time that many humans have never shared with one person on a daily and uninterrupted basis!
According to the leading expert on the role of companion animals in society and professor of sociology at the University of Colorado, Leslie Irvine , “It is no longer surprising to feel deep sorrow after the loss of a pet because in the United States at least, they are increasingly considered members of the family. In a study conducted by professors Elizabeth Clancy and Andrew Rowan, 68% of Americans own a pet, a 12% increase since pet ownership surveys began in 1988. Knowing that this phenomenon was already booming in this period.
However, it is important to remember that whatever the circumstances of the loss of a cat or dog, grief remains a personal feeling that should not cause regret or shame. It is a process that must be taken while giving yourself time to mourn.