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Thread: When a child's pet dies...

  1. #1
    Elite Member MohandasKGanja's Avatar
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    Default When a child's pet dies...

    This morning, my daughter noticed her pet parakeet of two years was looking really sick. Which was totally unexpected. The bird was sitting at the bottom of the cage. It's feathers were fluffed out and it wouldn't jump on her finger. After a while my daughter came downstairs, pretty despondent, but composed, and I saw her off at the bus stop. When I got back inside, I checked on the bird and it had passed away.

    It's a bummer. She was devoted to it, and never missed feeding it or giving it water or cleaning out its cage. Really cared for it. I thought we'd have this pet for several more years.

    My wife and I are going to be waiting for her at the bus stop today so we can break the news to her when we get her back to the house. I know the wrong thing to do is to try to reassure her by saying that we will replace this pet with another one. I guess it will just take time.

  2. #2
    Elite Member gas_chick's Avatar
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    Sorry Mohandas it sucks to have to tell your kid when a pet dies. Hopefully you will do better than me who usually is boo hooing and can't get it out. I'm awful.
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  3. #3
    Elite Member MohandasKGanja's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gas_chick View Post
    Sorry Mohandas it sucks to have to tell your kid when a pet dies. Hopefully you will do better than me who usually is boo hooing and can't get it out. I'm awful.
    Thanks. We just broke it to her. She was/is devastated. She is a great kid and did all the right things caring for it.

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    Elite Member greysfang's Avatar
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    It depends on the kid. We just lost our dog back in August, and its the only dog my youngest has known (we still have two cats) and he has been harassing me regularly about getting a new dog. I'm the one who isn't ready to replace her yet.
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    Elite Member McJag's Avatar
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    Our beloved parakeet died and my whole family was heartsick. We buried him in the backyard in a beautiful wooden box with his favorite toy.
    Skip ahead at least 14 years and the telephone crew was burying cables in the yard. They rang the doorbell and gave my Mother the wooden box with Binky inside. Mother said they were trying not to laugh. We had to rebury Binky, but this time he left us smiling. The box was so gorgeous I'll bet they expected some real treasure-not a birdy skeleton!
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    Elite Member Laurent's Avatar
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    I'm sorry, Mohandas. I remember how devastated I was when my first pet - a cocker spaniel named Jennie - died. I was crushed, but my parents didn't rush to replace her. They chatted with me about her every day for weeks while I cried and asked the same questions over and over. After a few months, when I felt better, we talked about maybe adopting another dog, but I didn't feel ready. Like Greys said, I'm sure it depends on the kid. Your daughter will probably guide you with what she wants when she starts talking about another pet.
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    Elite Member Honeythorn's Avatar
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    I'm sorry for your daughter's loss. Sucks hard when a child loses a beloved pet. I am hardcore dreading it when it's time for my son's kitteh Jinx to punch his time card and go to that great litterbox in the sky. My son is 6 and Mr. Jinx just turned 4 and super healthy, so there is plenty of years in him.

    I agree with the other posters in saying your daughter will let you know when she is ready for another pet.
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    Elite Member MohandasKGanja's Avatar
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    I didn't get a chance to follow up because of the server issue, but it was traumatizing to watch her go through it. She kept asking why we were both at the bus stop to see them -- which is very rare. Then, when we got to the house, she asked if her parakeet had died. We said yes, and she burst into tears. We just held her while she held the bird. She kept crying "Oh my God" over and over. It was really hard watching her go over her first experience with absolutely heartrending loss.

    At one point, I had gone back into our bedroom, and I heard my daughter shout "F*ck!!!!!" at the top of her lungs. When I saw my wife a couple of minutes later, I asked what that was all about and she said our daughter had asked if she could say a really bad word. The funny part is that she called her best friend a few minutes later to tell her what happened and our daughter screamed "F*ck!!!" into the phone again. My wife rushed over and gently told her she didn't have open-ended permision to shout curse words, and what if her friend had had her on speakerphone. Her friend came over with her saxophone to try to play "Amazing Grace", but the friend has a long way to go with her sax skills, .

    When we buried the bird, my daughter put her favorite food, favorite toy, a rosary, and a flashlight in there.

    Even yesterday, when she got off the bus, she was crying, ran to our backyard and stood over the grave. She is getting better, though. I think her friends are even more helpful than her parents in putting things in perspective.

  9. #9
    Elite Member KrisNine's Avatar
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    Aww, Mo. That is such a sad and sweet experience. I'm sorry for your daughters loss. I remember my gerbil died when I was about 7 or 8. I was so heartbroken.
    MohandasKGanja likes this.

  10. #10
    Elite Member Air Quotes's Avatar
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    The part about the flashlight just killed me.
    MohandasKGanja and dexter7 like this.
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