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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
My neighbor is having a memorial for her Husky that died a year ago and invited Molly and my family to meet at one of their outdoor hiking places. She did not get another dog and has no pets now. Is having a memorial weird? Or is this what people call humanizing your dog? I have no idea what day our previous dog Mandy died, I know the month and year and it is clearly etched in my brain, but I would not have an event over it. I do not want to go, I think its depressing and am concerned for my neighbor that she has not moved on.

I suppose there's all types of personalities and I must be the type to move forward, I don't like to dwell in the past. I remember my MIL requested that we go to church on the anniversary of her husband's death, so that his name could be called and he could be formally remembered. I told her I think about her husband all the time as he was a baker and I love to bake and even had his old mixer. He was not forgotten.
 

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To *me* it sounds odd but we all know everyone is different.

I like the thought of celebrating a life on a birthday, even when they leave our world.
 

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Your neighbor is grieving the loss of her dog. Without another dog, it leaves a terrible emptyness in the house, and frankly, it is harder to move on. I think the feeling is there that loving another dog will somehow be disloyal to the dead one. Or, as crushed as you feel, the idea of loving another dog, only to be crushed again is really hard.

I think that something you might do instead of going to this memorial is to tell your friend that you have another engagement that day (make one if you must), and send her a friendship card saying that you gave a donation in her dog's name to the local animal shelter. The donation does not need to be money, it can be bleach or dog food or old blankets, anything really.
 

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No, we don't.....but we don't do that for people either.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Your neighbor is grieving the loss of her dog. Without another dog, it leaves a terrible emptyness in the house, and frankly, it is harder to move on. I think the feeling is there that loving another dog will somehow be disloyal to the dead one. Or, as crushed as you feel, the idea of loving another dog, only to be crushed again is really hard.

I think that something you might do instead of going to this memorial is to tell your friend that you have another engagement that day (make one if you must), and send her a friendship card saying that you gave a donation in her dog's name to the local animal shelter. The donation does not need to be money, it can be bleach or dog food or old blankets, anything really.
Selzer, that's a nice idea about the donation. And thanks for your input. Once my neighbor's dog died (she had heart failure at 3 yrs old), my neighbor was seldom ever home. We didn't see her all summer. I was never sure if she was glad to be carefree or kept busy to avoid being sad. We sometimes did doggie things together, our dogs liked each other, and then both of them were out of our lives.
 

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I think it's a little odd but perhaps its something your neighbor needs to try and move past it?

I know on the one year anniversary of my grandpa's death this year, my grandma posted about how instead of staying at home being in tears and reading the FB messages my uncle, aunt and cousins were posting about how sad and upset they were, she was going to go shopping and have a good day because that would have driven my grandpa crazy. She misses him like crazy and is still adjusting. Going out and doing something he would have complained about helped her get through the day. I think it was actually associated with a positive memory to think how he'd gripe and complain about her out shopping lol.

Everyone grieves in different ways. Some are just stranger about it than others. I agree with the donation idea. I think your neighbor invited you to go because she may need that connection to get through the day more easily. You said your dog and her dog used to have play dates. Perhaps she wants to remember those?
 

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Was actually just thinking about this the other day. Luther was the first dog I had to euthanize, and July will be the 1 year anniversary of his death. I couldn't believe it had already been 10 months! (I'm tearing up just thinking about it) It probably doesn't help that his death wasn't the best, euthanized at 3.5 yrs of age due to aggression issues even though he was the sweetest most loving dog to me.

I don't think I'll have a memorial. It will probably be a bitter-sweet day and I'll probably be pretty depressed, to be honest. Maybe it's a little creepy to admit, but sometimes hugging the velvet bag with his ashes in it makes me feel better, like at least a part of him will always be with me. I'll probably just lay in bed watching TV and maybe give him a hug and tell him how much I miss him. Ask him for his forgiveness that I couldn't do more and I only did what I thought was best.

Geesh now I'm super sad... hopefully I'll just be stuck working a 12 hr shift that day so I won't have to think about it :(
 

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As far as your neighbor - I would reconsider going if I were you. Coming from someone that lost a dog young and doesn't necessarily have the "happy" memories associated with a senior dog that at least lived a long and fulfilling life, I can understand where your neighbor is coming from. Maybe she is still very lonely. It might be a depressing thought going on a hike that she loved with her dog, but imagine if you don't go and she goes alone? Maybe she's just looking to add some companionship, looking for a smile and some comfort? I think you could make it a completely different experience and day for her. And sometimes if you don't have friends that share the same passion for pets as you do, it can be hard to find that comforting soul that simply understands your pain. It sounds to me like you were her "dog" friend, that you hold a special connection with her lost dog.

We all grieve differently. To be honest I didn't read any of the posts before posting my own story, but now I guess I am definitely what you all would call "weird" in my grieving process. I lost my first dog in an extremely painful way. I chose to the end the life of a physically healthy, young dog that showed me only the greatest devotion and love. That had problems far beyond that, but it's hard to remember the bad when all you can think of is the good you lost.
 

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Each person would deal with it differently, myself got a tattoo of Diesel a few days after she passed as a "memorial" and I will definitely be thinking of her a lot on her 1 year anniversary :( So no I dont think its that far off Im sure a lot of people do it
 

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No, but I visit them on a regular bases. They are buried on our property and when they died I planted flowering plants on their graves. When they bloom I know a whole year has passed. So the weather determines when it is their Memorial Day. For my mutt it when the daffodils bloom and for my sight hound when the Irises bloom. It is always emotional to see these flowers appear but beautiful at the same time. I still miss them.
 

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Weird this thread popped up today - I dont have memorials for my pets, but I do celebrate their life on their birthday/day they passed. I do remember dates, only because they somehow are etched into my brain, since both my pets that I've had to put down recently (in the past two-three years) were terrible, and heart breaking. I dont think i'll ever forget it. I do have a little 'memorial' area on my shelf for Akira, her pretty copper urn, and a few pictures of her...and then her clay pawprint hanging up with her little tiny collars. But thats it. Maybe its weird, maybe not. But everyone deals with this stuff differently.

Wolfy dog, I love what you have done...that is so sad, yet a really great idea.
 

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I remember the dates that several was born on, but I try not to think too much about their deaths. It's very difficult not to remember though.
 

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That's a hard one. I'm the type of person to do something I might not want to do just out of trying to support a friend, but this is one of those things that would make me uncomfortable. If it's supposed to be a fun day; hiking, talking and laughing, and a good day for others to bring their dogs and have a play day, then I'd be more likely to go...but if everyone is supposed to be sullen and, for lack of a better phrase, mourning...I'd be more likely to send a nice card.

As for doing something on the anniversary of death...we usually don't do anything. We celebrate their lives on a daily basis; it's not uncommon for us to compare something one of the animals did to one of the ones that have passed.
 

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I think about them a lot, miss each and everyone like crazy, but have never considered any type of memorial service.
 

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My friend lost his dog a few years ago and we buried him on a beach and we renamed the beach 'buggie's' beach. We do go there some times to play with the dogs and enjoy the scenery and remember the greatness that was.

A litter of pups were born 2 days after buggie died and we got one each. My friend got his at 2 months and I needed to be talked(almost forced lol) into to it and got the pup at 6 months.

Some people do mourn too much though. Now I'd be looking out for new dogs asap lol.
 
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