Pet Loss

Marta, On the Loss of Your Dog

~by Seana Hutchinson

A friend of mine was struggling with having to put down her beloved family dog, Jack. These were my words of comfort to her in the hope that she could find peace in her heart with letting Jack return to the One that created him.

Dear Marta,

I can completely relate to what you have gone through in the loss of your dog, Jack, and what you are experiencing. I have had to do the “humane” thing many times in my life. No matter how many times I’ve had to do it, the experience never gets any easier as each pet I have had has a very special place in my heart. One thing I can guarantee, as I have seen it in their eyes time and time again, is that they know they are being called home. And the truly amazing thing is I’ve never seen any fear in their eyes. I absolutely believe they know from where they come and where they are about to return. If only we had that recollection, can you imagine how less scary our own death would be?! Another thing I am sure of is that Jack would not want you to feel awful for having to put him down. In my experience, I have always let my pets live for as long as they wanted to fight. But should the pain become to much, it is our obligation to these incredible companions who have so loved us unconditionally, without reserve all of these years, to let them return in a humane way to the One that blessed our lives with their presence in the first place. I am ever grateful for any stray cat that lands at my door and the little puppy eyes that capture my heart at the Humane Society. They are God’s gifts to us in that they are an expression of His unconditional love, and we learn to love more purely and completely through them. I pray that you find peace in your heart. But please know, you did all you can do. And the greatest gift you could have ever given Jack was having as much love and strength as you did as his family to stand next to him, holding him, and loving him as he breathed his last breath in this world and passed over to the greater eternal.

Love, peace, and prayers,


Director of Communications for Catholic Stewards of Creation; Bachelors in Theology, Catholic Writer, Full-time Wife and Mom


A Letter to Laurie

~by Susi Pittman

I received an email from one of our readers who had lost a beloved pet. Her poignancy and gentleness of heart touched me deeply. This was my emailed response:

Laurie: FIRST, I am so sorry for this late reply. I don’t know why I didn’t receive an email alert on this. So, I will open with “peace be with you!”

Thank you for the kind words on my book. I can only offer your gratitude to my “Co-Author” who certainly puts the power in the words that I write.

I can absolutely feel your pain. I can empathize and unite with you in your suffering. Having lost so many family animal members in my life, I have found that there is only ONE thing that you can submit to in dealing with sorrow…..”Lord not my will, but Thy will be done.”

All of creation, the natural non-human realm and our pets are given to us as gifts. They belong to God….He chooses to share them with us, to love us through them and to bless our lives with them. But, we have to be willing to allow God to be God. When prayers are not answered, TRUST GOD! There is a reason!! When it is time for a beloved pet to “go home,” TRUST GOD. He has a place prepared for them….especially for them. And the joy of knowing they no longer suffer should be our own joy. Who would want suffering for anyone they loved? The reunion that will come when we are once again reunited with our family members, human and non-human will be beyond words. “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard what God has promised to those who love HIM.”

All animals love their Creator first….they love man second. They respond to God always in all ways.

A quote from ST. THOMAS AQUINAS: “Therefore if we speak of the ultimate end of man with respect to the thing which is the end, then all other things share in the ultimate end of man, because God is the ultimate end of man and of all other things.”

Another quote from the great Theologian John Scotus Eriugena: “Christ wears ‘two shoes’ in the world: scripture and nature. Both are necessary to understand the Lord, and at no stage can creation be seen as a separation of things from God.”

And a final quote from Saint Maximillian Kolbe: “Our Father in heaven is the first beginning and final end of everything.”

You need not be troubled about the death of your beloved pet. Your beloved cat IS with its beloved Creator. She awaits her earthly beloved. All things in her life and death worked according to the will of God. You were a great blessing and family to her while she was on earth.

A little boy who lost his pet dog put it so succinctly when he told his parents why he wasn’t surprised that dogs lived such short lives, he said…”They don’t have to learn how to love, they already knew how.”

From the mouth of babes comes great truths.

Our pets do reflect the LOVE of a great Father, who loves all He has created. They come to us hard-wired to love.

We rejoice in their presence and we must rejoice that God loves them so much as to prepare a place for all. Animals are lucky…God has created and prepared for them. It is HUMANKIND that chooses not to love God. It is HUMANKIND that chooses to do evil.

Thank God that He reclaims the love He has sent forth.

In my Douay Rheims Bible we read: “What now is has already been; what is to be, already is; and God restores what would otherwise be displaced.”-Ecclesiastes 3:15

The FOOTNOTE in the Bible says: GOD RESTORES; the meaning is probably that God allows no part of His creation to drop out of existence.

This is what the Catholic Church has always taught.

This is what we believe.

God is love and gives us an eternity with Him and all that we have loved.

Peace Laurie +


Susi Pittman is founder of and Owner-President of Twin Oaks Publishing; she is author of Animals in Heaven? Catholics Want to Know!; an advocate for the Florida Catholic Conference; a member of the St. Joseph’s Catholic Council of Women in Jacksonville, Florida; an Associate of the Sisters of St. Joseph, St. Augustine;a member of the Florida Publishers Association, Independent Book Publishers Association, the National Association of Professional Women, the ASPCA, the Humane Society of the United States and the National Audubon society.

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