Agua, RJ’s red bird is dead. It died the other day and Bendita was chirping the whole day. May be birds are grieving too. (click here for Agua and Bendita’s story). We don’t know what happened but looks like Agua is already sick when hubby bought it. I am glad I was able to prepare RJ this time about the possible things that may happen to her pets. I saw RJ’s reaction when her first pet Nemo (a fish) died. It was quite traumatic for her because she was there when Nemo was gasping for air. She was crying and yelling “Mama, Mama, help Nemo!” But how? As much as I want to save Nemo, I can’t do anything. I have learned my lessons that is why the first day we had Agua and Bendita, I discussed with RJ the possible things that could happen including death. She is turning 8 this July so somehow she understands the nature and consequences of death.
Discussing their pets death with our kids sounds morbid but that is the right thing to do. For most kids, pets are more than just animals-they are their bestfriends. Unfortunately, the joy or owning a pet goes with the heartbreak of losing one because of accidents, old age or illness. It is impossible to shelter our kids from losing a pet but helping them to understand death and preparing them could help them take their pets’ death lightly and cope with the pain sooner. Explain the cycle of life in a level that your kids can understand. Explain that death is a natural part of life. Answer any questions that your children might have about what happened depending on their age and maturity level. Most importantly, be at their side while they are grieving and explain to them that the pain will go away eventually but their pets memories will remain.