I started FloridaPets.net back in October of 2001. As you can imagine, I hear from readers a lot. Perhaps their animal has been featured through the years on FloridaPets.net as a Pet of the Week, or as a reader's submission in our monthly eZine, the NewsPetter. Or perhaps something I've said on the site or in the newsletter has resonated with them and we connect and, from time to time, exchange email correspondence and photos of our "kids."
Probably the hardest thing for me about having a pet-related Web site and hearing from all our nice readers is when they write to tell me they've lost a companion animal. Our readers don't think of themselves as "owning" an animal, rather they'll chuckle and tell you how that pet "owns" them. FloridaPets.net is a Web site for people who think of their pet as part of the family and that's the sort of people who read it. So when a pet dies, they've lost a member of the family. It's a big deal as well it should be.
My heart breaks when one of our readers writes to tell me their pet is gone. But I, like so many pet people, have enormous faith that we'll see our beloved companions again one day at Rainbow Bridge. If you haven't heard about this, please check out the link - you'll never be the same once you're read about Rainbow Bridge.
If you've lost a pet and feel sad - yes, it's perfectly OK to be really, really sad when you lose a pet - here are a few other sources that might provide you with comfort and support:
The Association for Pet Loss and Bereavement
University of Florida Pet Grief Support Hotline