Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Loss of a Pet” as Want to Read:
The Loss of a Pet
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Loss of a Pet

3.81  ·  Rating Details ·  116 Ratings  ·  27 Reviews
Understanding helps heal the hurt when you lose a pet

A cherished pet gives you boundless, unconditional love and occupies a special place in your routine, your home, and your heart. When your pet dies, that warm, special place becomes a sad, empty space. This book helps you understand:
* The grieving process, including typical stages of grief and techniques for coping
* Grie
Paperback, 276 pages
Published September 1st 2005 by Howell Book House (first published January 1st 1993)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Loss of a Pet, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Loss of a Pet

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Feb 08, 2012 Kim rated it really liked it
I really was completely lost when my dearest Hannah passed away last summer. She was 11 1/2 years old and we had been companions since she was 10 weeks old. For the whole of her life we had only been apart for maybe 2 weeks in total. My life, my habits were totally wrapped up in Hannah - for good and for bad. When she succumbed to congestive heart failure much sooner than I thought she would leave me, I was devastated emotionally and spiritually. I didn't just lose a pet - I lost my whole way of ...more
Jul 02, 2013 Julie rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This is my second time reading this book, and as I read, I remembered how unhelpful it was for me in 2004. Nine years later, I'll modify that opinion by saying that chapter 17, "Some Practical Suggestions in Review", was helpful, although perhaps not worth the price of the book. Specifically, suggestion 2 got me choked up:

"2. Write a letter or will from your pet to yourself. Keep this as a permanent memory. You may be amazed at how much this reveals to you about yourself. Years later this will b
Mar 17, 2012 Melanie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm actually reading this now for a second time, after recently losing my cat to cancer. I've felt blindsided by the overwhelming flood of emotions I've been experiencing, and the wisdom in this book has helped me deal with the terrible feelings of loss, grief, and depression.
I recently lost my 12 year-old cat to cancer, and while I agree with others that this book is pretty dry and clinical (and possibly a bit outdated, as the edition I read is 23 years old now), it does have some good points and suggestions. For example: "It's not too late to say something to your deceased pet. Over a period of time, make a list of all the loving memories you have of your pet. Constantly amend this list. Then write a letter to your pet, remembering all these intimate smiles and ...more
Dec 19, 2014 Elizabeth rated it it was ok
I don't usually rate books that I haven't finished reading. This one, though, I will not finish, but I still have something to say about it. This is pitched at people who have lost pets, but it reads as if for psychiatrists who are puzzled by the grief of their patients over the loss of a pet. The main text of the book is rather dry and clinical (and I have a much higher than average appreciation of academic detachment), really not much that one can't pick up from reading advice columns in the ...more
May 02, 2011 Dawn rated it really liked it
Shelves: bereavement
This book has been a huge help to me as I mourn the loss of my cat due to cancer. It helped me to understand the grieving process and the stages of grief and loss. I have been having a particularly hard time dealing with the guilt of not catching her illness sooner, and this book has a chapter on guilt that helped me a lot. The author is a pet bereavement counselor. I recommend it for anyone who is dealing with the loss of a pet, or for anyone who has pets. I think reading it before illness ...more
Jul 10, 2011 Kristin rated it it was ok
Really hope he gets to the point -- dealing with loss of a pet-- soon. So far it's all platitudes and really rather patronizing.

I had to finally stop reading. There should be a better resource for people facing the death of a pet than this. Disappointed.
Rosemary Sullivan
Sep 19, 2015 Rosemary Sullivan rated it really liked it
Shelves: self-help
In some ways "The Loss of a Pet: A Guide To Coping With The Grieving Process When A Pet Dies," by Wallace Sife, helped me live through my grief and in other ways it caused me even more anxiety. Mr. Sife, a psychotherapist who founded the Association for Pet Loss and Bereavement and was inspired to write about pet loss after the untimely death of his miniature Dachshund, Edel Meister, obviously deeply loves animals. As such, he is writing from the point of view that many people don't take the ...more
Ian Carpenter
Apr 07, 2014 Ian Carpenter rated it liked it
I am super grateful for this book and want to take nothing from it's great usefulness of anyone grieving a pet. My partner and I needed this deeply. Just be warned it is endlessly, relentlessly repetitious. Sife himself practically points that out in his repeated "As I've said before"'s that dot every chapter for material that he's repeated mere paragraphs before.

The section on Religion and the Death of Pets is exceptional.

I'd recommend Going Home: Finding Peace when Pets Die by Jon Katz. But i
Mar 27, 2013 Lindsay rated it it was amazing
This little book was such a help to me. I feel comforted when I have the right words to express my feelings and that is what this book did for me; supplied me with the vocabulary to understand what I'm going through. I lost my Q two weeks ago and I still miss her terribly. He discusses how to deal with children in these circumstances and specifically addresses euthanasia. It's only 160 pages and he uses specific case studies to illustrate his points. I hope he can help you in your time of ...more
A thorough book on many elements of the grieving process for pets. It normalizes what you are feeling and gives advice on how to best handle the grieving process. The book even has sections on how to talk with children about the loss of a pet, and grieving when a pet is stolen or runs away. Also recommends reliable resources for those who can benefit from additional support.
Jan 22, 2012 Susie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiftyfiftyme
Didn't change my perspective on the grief I am experiencing, but it did reinforce the validity of some of the choices I've made since (ie, to take time off work) which is helpful.

Not sure much can help when you miss someone this much.
Nov 01, 2011 Kate rated it really liked it
Shelves: nf
Comforting reading about the stages of grief as they relate to pet bereavement. Oddly sweet photos of pet memorials of various kinds scattered through the text. Neither overly glurgey nor clinical, and religiously neutral without being dismissive of religion.
This was a very objective book. It would probably work great for someone who is researching the loss of a pet, especially if your looking for a case studies. But for those who have lost a pet, it just does not really connect.
Jan 22, 2012 Addicted2Jeter is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
Note: Trying to read this book before my dog dies but it's hard to get through so I'll read a very little at a time at random times whenever I can.
Jan 22, 2012 Regan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pretty clinical book that basically says you need to feel what you're feeling through the grief of losing a pet.
Aug 29, 2016 Gina rated it it was amazing
Shelves: animals, non-fiction
This book truly helped me when my pet cat of 20 years died. It validated my emotions and gave me permission to grieve. I recommend it to anyone going through bereavement of a cherished animal.
Feb 27, 2016 Sumos_Mom rated it it was ok
Kind of clinical and dry, but reinforced what's discussed in the APLB online moderated chats, which I found very helpful.
Dec 19, 2014 Michele rated it it was amazing
Essential reading for anyone who has lost a pet, has a pet with terminal illness or who works with grief counseling.
Laurie rated it liked it
Mar 07, 2011
Aug 04, 2015 Karen rated it it was ok
I found this book strange and stilted.
Babyd rated it it was amazing
Jun 13, 2011
Ana Karla
Ana Karla rated it it was amazing
Jul 27, 2016
Catherine rated it it was ok
Aug 31, 2016
Colleen Busche
Colleen Busche rated it liked it
Oct 07, 2016
SmokeRising rated it it was amazing
Jul 23, 2016
Jessica Tomlinson
Jessica Tomlinson rated it liked it
Sep 30, 2012
Lorraine C
Lorraine C rated it liked it
Jan 05, 2015
Diane rated it really liked it
Jan 04, 2012
« previous 1 3 4 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Share This Book