Pets are often credited with human characteristics that they actually don’t have. However, it is clear that they can grieve the loss of both a human and another animal in their life. Of course, they don’t do it the same way that we would, but there are definite signs you can see when your pet is experiencing a sense of loss.
Loss of Interest in Regular Activities
One of the signs of depression in humans is a loss of interest in activities that they previously enjoyed; this can also happen with pets. For example, if your dog is no longer eager to go running in the park or your cat will no longer play with her toys, this can be a sign of grieving. This is especially true if the animal previously enjoyed these activities in the company of a fellow cat or dog.
Try spending extra time with your pet, and maintain as normal and non-disruptive of a schedule as possible. This can help to bring her back to the way she was prior to the death, but will likely take some time.
Some dogs may howl or bark excessively as a sign of grief. While the animal may feel the need to express itself, be careful not to encourage these behaviors. Discover a way that clearly lets the animal know that this activity is wrong and unacceptable. If this is reinforced effectively enough, they will hopefully stop.
Constant Searching for the Missing Friend
The pet may have trouble processing the idea that their companion is dead. This can result in them constantly checking areas that the missing animal often enjoyed. There is no easy way to cure them of this behavior, except to hope that they eventually stop after realizing the animal is no longer coming back.