What our ailing animals really want

People want to know how to make their ailing animals more comfortable. As an animal lover, I am so happy to hear this question. Even though these folks are filled with grief of pending loss, they focus on their animal’s wellbeing.

Note: This blog is part of my revised book, Peace in Passing: Comfort for Loving Humans During Animal Transitions. It’s scheduled to be released October 7, 2021. I’m so excited to be sharing this with you!

Tender, focused physical touch

When I ask their ailing animals that question, the most frequent answer is a request for physical touch. Let me expand to say, they want tender, focused physical touch.

Touch your ailing animals purposefully

Think of yourself as a “therapy person” for your animal.

Touch them purposefully, with the idea of relieving stress they may have about how they’re feeling. And it will relieve stress they’re experiencing because of your sadness. Increased stress amplifies the experience of pain. Conversely, relieving their stress may decrease their physical experience of pain. There are many reports on stress and pain you can review to verify this.

Think about how they respond. Watch their reactions. Because you already know them, you will be able to tell what they enjoy and want more of.  Do that and more.

No multi-tasking

And as often as you can stand it, don’t multi-task when you’re doing this, human that you are. Let this time be just you and them. No streaming, chatting with another human on the phone, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, TikTok, et cetera. Be fully present, in love with who they are.

Do you need to change your routine a bit?

Change your daily routine if you need to. For animals who live in the house, start looking for them when you’re home. Seek them out. Spend time sitting next to them so some part of you is touching. Snuggle if they like that.

For ailing animals who live outside the home, see how you and other humans in your family can be with them more often. Let them show you what they’d like to do while you’re with them – how they’d like to spend their time with you. No matter what you do together, your focused presence is extremely comforting.

Tell your ailing animals you love them

Remember to tell them what you love about their amazing personality! How glad you are that they’re still with you. Thank their ailing bodies for housing their lovely spirit so you can enjoy another day with them.

Your focused touch comforts them (and you). It supports whatever life force energy they still have. It also supports the medical treatment you’re providing, because they’re feeling loved.

Do you need more support as your animal transitions?

Check out Perfect Endings & Transitions!


How are you comforting your ailing animals? I’d love to hear!

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