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National Pet Memorial Day - It Doesn’t Have To Be Sad

pet health pet memorials


Every year, on the second Sunday of September, National Pet Memorial Day is a way to remember all the beautiful, happy ways our pets have changed our lives for the better.

We learn so much from them. We learn how to care for others. We learn how important it is to take a break for play. Some of us even learn what unconditional love feels like.

They enrich our lives in countless ways. How many everyday smiles can we attribute to the hilarious antics of our fur-babies?

And they make us healthier. Spending time in snuggle mode, going for walks, having a companion to share our time with, these are all activities that reduce blood pressure, increase the presence of good chemicals in our bodies, and make mentally strong and happy.

Plus, they’ve made us smarter. Taking breaks throughout the day to get a cuteness fix actually increases our IQ.

For National Pet Memorial Day, let’s remember the good life our cat- and canine-companions offer us, and be thankful for the moments we enjoy with them.

History of National Pet Memorial Day

This special day was brought about by the International Association of Pet Cemeteries and Crematories more than 40 years ago. It’s meant to be a way to honor pets, both alive and those who have passed. And it’s a way to recognize the important and often overlooked roles our beloved pets have in our lives.

How to Observe National Pet Memorial Day

This is a day to recognize pets from our past and celebrate those presently in our lives.

  • Post a picture to social media using #NationalPetMemorialDay and #VetOrganics to celebrate and memorialize your fur-babies.
  • If you have lots of pictures, make a scrapbook or a photo album of your favorite moments.
  • Play a little longer or share an extra long walk with your dog or feline friend.
  • Plant a tree in honor of your companion who has crossed the rainbow.  
  • Revisit their favorite things. Many dog and cat guardians have saved a few favorite toys in a special place to revisit their old memories and get some emotional relief.
  • Contribute to an organization that supports animals in a special way. There are many charities and rescues who support homeless pets, pet safety, and more.
  • If you are crafty, make a few dog toys out for a local shelter, or buy supplies to donate. Call them first to see what they might need most.
  • Send a card or a happy message and loving memory to a friend or family member who lost a pet.

There is no wrong way to celebrate the wonderful memories and experiences we’ve had with a fur-baby who has moved on. And this is a great opportunity to reflect on the ways we can appreciate those fur-babies who are still with us. So, take a moment to think and take action to show love for the animals who enrich our lives.

And, if you are grieving the loss of a pet, consider these suggestions about dealing with grief and loss, End-Of-Life Care: Dealing With Grief after the loss of a beloved pet.

Michelle Lievense

Michelle is a writer and ghostwriter, specializing in wellness, sustainability, and global social change. She is particularly fond of serving ethical organizations who contribute to a better life for people and animals through humane and environmentally responsible missions. At Vet Organics, Michelle uses her time as a vet tech, her academic studies in animal science and behavior, and nearly a decade working on a ranch teaching animal husbandry to write on a variety of cat and canine health topics. When she isn't writing, Michelle can be found hiking in the mountains of Colorado with her dogs or snuggled up with a good book and her cats.

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*Results may vary based on factors such as age, size and physical condition of your pet.