December 2, 2021

Losing a Beloved Pet

I am sad to write that last weekend, we made the painful decision to put down our sweet little Siamese cat, Gracie. She was almost seventeen. She had kidney problems that we knew about from when we adopted her from the OHS seven years ago, but in the end, it was a relatively rare condition in her salivary glands that made the decision to put her out of her pain clear to us. It was time. But that didn’t make it easy.

Gracie the cat collage

I have a lingering sadness at losing Gracie, but I know I’ll get by and one day the pain will give way to fond, bittersweet memories. The people around me know and understand, and that helps. I also know that isn’t what happens for everyone. Sometimes, some people just don’t get by and the pain doesn’t fade. Some people don’t have the support of people who understand around them. Sometimes the loss of a pet meshes with other losses, and it’s unbearable.

I am so pleased that the organization that I love is here for those people at those times. In 2016, the OHS launched a pet loss support group for people who are struggling. In the coming months, we will expand the service, taking over another online group and adding an in-person option. Losing a pet is a sad and sometimes lonely experience. Knowing I work for an organization that cares enough to help people through that helps me with my own loss.

Rest in peace Gracie. We love you and we miss you.

Bruce Roney
President & CEO