Pet Grief Education Series

Pet Grief

People facing the loss of an animal have many questions about the grief process, but often have a tough time finding a safe and supportive place to explore them.

The NC State Client Counseling and Grief Support Service is now offering grief education seminars for clients and community members facing the loss of an animal. These seminars are offered in blocks of four, with each session focusing on a specific topic. You may register for single session or an entire block. Register online now.

These sessions are scheduled on a rolling basis throughout the year and are offered free of charge. Each session is 60 minutes in length and includes light refreshments.

  • Individuals, couples and family members are welcome to attend. Please register each person individually (space is limited!) and keep in mind that the material being covered is not suitable for young children.
  • Please leave animals at home.
  • All sessions will meet on the campus at NC State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine’s Research Building, Room 101
  • All sessions begin promptly at 6:30pm
  • While these sessions are interactive and educational, they are not meant to serve as a support group or as professional education. Please contact the facilitator for information on additional counseling and educational services.
Fall Session: October 17-December 5, Thursday evenings, 6:30-7:30pm
Fall Session Dates Session Topic & Description
October 17th Session 1: Preparing for the End of Life: Quality of Life, Quality of Death and Anticipatory Grief
This session is designed to help people explore end of life issues for a beloved animal. Multiple topics will be reviewed in order that attendees can plan what they want for their animal, and their relationship with their animal, as that animal’s life comes to a close.
October 24th Session 2: Understanding Animal Loss and Grief
It is not uncommon for people to report that the loss of an animal feels different, and often more painful than, other losses. This session will explore common facets of grief following animal loss and will review helpful tips for coping with grief.
November 14th Session 3: The Dark Emotions of Grief: Guilt, Regret, and Anger
The “dark emotions” of guilt, regret, and anger are often focal after the loss of an animal. This session will explore the messages behind these emotions and methods of working with them productively.
November 21st Session 4: Maintaining a Connection: The Importance of Ritual for Grief and Healing
A key component of the grief process is redefining the relationship with the deceased. We also know that finding a way to maintain a connection with those we’ve lost builds resilience. This session will explore how grievers can re-orient to a world changed by loss and find comfort in a continued relationship with the animal who has died.
December 5 New! Session 5: Animal Loss and the Holidays: Balancing Grief and Celebration
It’s tough to participate in seasonal celebrations when you’re nursing a broken heart. This session explores how grievers can make space for sadness, self-care, and gratitude during a season dominated by spiritual, social, and familial rituals and obligations.
*Register online here

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NCSU Veterinary Health Complex
1052 William Moore Dr.
Raleigh, NC 27607