Funeral home allows dog to say her final goodbye

When 13-year-old German shepherd, Sadie couldn’t figure out why her lifelong companion had not been home for ten days, the dog refused to eat properly or sleep alone.  She watched for her human from the window and waited at the door. How would her family explain to Sadie that the man who meant so much to her would never return home again? When the woman’s husband passed away unexpectedly from a heart attack, the entire family was devastated – including Sadie.

“When he had passed away at home their dog Sadie would not leave his side. After the death, she showed signs of depression, would not eat and waited for him to come home everyday. The wife believed that Sadie could also benefit from saying goodbye and getting closure herself, and she was right!,” the funeral home posted on their Facebook page.

When Elements Cremation, Pre-planning & Burial posted the touching photo of Sadie accompanying the widow entering the chapel and approaching the casket, Sadie was able to experience her loss and understand. Studies have shown the grief response in dogs can be lessened if the animal has a chance to view their deceased companion’s body. The idea of closure helped Sadie understand that her beloved companion was not coming back.

“After 10 days of not eating and 10lbs of weight loss, the moment Sadie walked in her home again after the service she ate her first meal. Amazing! A heart wrenching, yet beautiful story.”

It is well-known that dogs form strong emotional bonds and suffer grief when a loved one dies or moves away. Many animal behavior experts have cited dogs whining, whimpering, getting clingy or demanding of a lot of attention. Some, much like Sadie, stop eating as they grieve the loss. One of the most common behaviors seen in dogs is when they continually check the places where their companion rested or slept.

It has not been proven that dogs, much like children under the age of four, understand the concept of death as a final separation, but instead feel the loss of companionship, affection and love.

Many thanks to Elements Cremation, Pre-planning & Burial for posting this heart wrenching, yet compassionate story. If only more funeral homes could respect a pet’s right to grieve and to say goodbye.

Why we love our dogs…

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12 replies
  1. pennysdachshunds says:

    OMG!!! what a tear jerking story!!! I know from having my hip shattered a year ago and my husband taking me to the hospital where I was for almost 6 weeks … we have several little dachshunds, BUT I have one that was & IS my shadow… he would not eat had to be dragged inside and was downright despondent …. My husband asked if he could bring the little guy up and he took me out to visit in a wheel chair… WOW !!! the visits became weekly and when I got home the response was strange … The other’s sat on the porch in total silence for several seconds like they could not believe it was me… the total rebellion!!! How wonder it was… when either of our time comes the other will do what this lovely “dog mom” did and have closure… bless Sadie and her “Mom” may they both ease the loss for the other in this difficult time… The funeral home is ONE IN A MILLION!!!

  2. Pamela Bolton says:

    Many thanks to the funeral home for allowing”the other family member” to say goodbye. Thanks for letting your heart rule. Peace now Sadie, he’s waiting and watching over all of you.

  3. Julia says:

    Sadie will see her Daddy again soon. She has been diagnosed with bone cancer. No treatment. She’s ok for now. Managing with pain meds. We expect in the next few months things will escalate. Her partner, Polar is almost 16. I expect him to go soon too. One will not do well without the other. Then I’ll truly be alone.????

    • Pamela Garlisch says:

      You will never be alone, they will all be with you just in another form. Keep your heart and your mind open and you will be aware of them. I’m so sorry for your loss.

    • pennysdachshunds says:

      My heart and thoughts are with you tonight reading this… perhaps you could find a little older dog in need of a caring person to share all the love you have in your heart!

  4. Red says:

    How sad…. my neighbor lost her husband recently, and now her pet. Her little dog literally grieved herself to death. It was so sad to see.

  5. susispot says:

    Hey! Who’s paying the bill should be able to able to say, ” Our dog will be saying goodbye”. The funeral home should never deny an animal a minute or two.


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