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Replacing a Pet

Losing a pet can be very traumatic. It's one of the facts of life (and of owning pets). Most people need to pass through a period of sorrow before they can contemplate acquiring a new animal. In the early stages, many bereaved owners feel that they will never have another pet because they cannot bear the thought of suffering such a loss again. For many, these feelings fade with time and they do, eventually, seek a replacement.

Before doing this, however, it is important to come to terms with the death of the original pet. Otherwise you may have difficulty in accepting a new one into your life. For this reason, it is unwise for friends or relatives to present a grieving owner with a new animal without their prior consent.

For some people, life without a pet can be intolerable, and they need to find a replacement for their dead pet within days of their loss. They may feel that this will help them to cope with their grief. If you feel this way, this is a perfectly acceptable course of action and you are in no way betraying the memory of your dead pet.

If you decide to replace your pet, consider your present circumstances; they may have changed since you acquired your previous pet. A different breed, or even a different species may now be more appropriate. You should also decide whether you would be able to cope with the training and exercise required by a young animal or if an adult would be more suitable.

Finally, remember that the newcomer is an individual with his own personality. It will take time for a new relationship to build up and at first, it may be difficult to avoid making comparisons with the dead pet. With time, however, this newcomer, with his unique character, will find a place in your heart that is just as precious as the one your previous pet has.

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