Colleen, a Pet Loss Grief Recovery Specialist, has always had an affinity with animals; even from a young age, she was actively nurturing the many pets that were part of her rural background. Whether it was a cat, dog, baby racoon, or orphaned baby skunks, animals were always part of her family. However, it was the two mares that lived on the property next door that sparked her love of horses – which would become a lifelong passion.
Her second passion – connecting with people in an honest and genuine manner – has come to be a trademark. Her former employer, the President of a well-known Canadian software firm, had this to say about her:
“Colleen managed a large portfolio, yet was able to maintain a one to one connection with clients, who always spoke highly of her and her quality of work. She was very perceptive, able to analyze issues and develop and articulate solutions for clients. Colleen’s work was always underscored by her honesty, integrity and confidentiality.”
After a successful 23 year career in an executive senior management position, honing her “people” skills with both colleagues and clients, Colleen made a decision to pursue a different career path – one that would enable her to combine her two passions in a very unique manner and help others at the same time.Further research showed that pet loss bereavement support was not a new idea, but one that had been developed in the UK and the United States. While still a relatively new and emerging service within the last 20 years in both locations, it is virtually unknown in Canada. It is time to catch up.
Pet Bereavement Services has been established to offer assistance to grieving pet guardians as they work through the stages of grief unique to pet loss.
Colleen’s first client offered this comment:
”You are very sensitive with your approach around loss, and it is just right. You don’t push and you meet us where we are without sugar-coating. You address things head-on. You are authentic, and very “present” in the moment….”
Pet Bereavement Services can, in conjunction with your Veterinarian, discuss the diagnosis and options available to you. This may focus on life-extending measures, palliative care, or the decision to euthanize. Sometimes, clients need to step away from the clinical environment and engage with an objective third-party in order to put different options in perspective. At the centre of your decision must be your animal companion’s comfort and care. Also important are your circumstances – financial and otherwise. Pet Bereavement Services will provide you with some guidelines to consider when making this very difficult decision.
The death of an animal companion is heart-wrenching. To be by your animal’s side in the final moments is a beautiful parting gift. However, not all of us are able to take this step. Should you need assistance at this difficult time, to be with you as you say good-bye, or act as a surrogate, Pet Bereavement Services can provide comforting support to you.
It is not unusual for closely-bonded animal guardians to feel extreme emotions for a period of time after the euthanasia of an animal companion. The amount of time that it takes to process the pain and trauma of the loss varies dramatically from one person to the next. One-on-one visits, couple, or even family sessions can be arranged to help each person as they mourn a loss. Pet Loss Support Groups are also available