Ask the Animal Communicator: Heartache of Losing a Pet

Shannon Cutts
by Shannon Cutts

In most cases, our precious pets will pass before we do. And yet when that time finally arrives, the worry and pain and grief can feel unbearable. This is true for pet parents of any age but especially when a child has a close bond with that animal. What do you do when you feel like you just can’t go on without your special animal in your life? And how do you help a young person cope with pet death? You ask the animal communicator, of course!


Dear Shannon,


Our senior dog, Oscar, is nearing the end of his long life with our family – 14 years since he came to us as a tiny 8-week-old puppy! This is painful enough for my husband and myself, but I fear it will be even more so for our kids. They have never known life without Oscar. My 13-year-old son in particular is very bonded to Oscar because we originally got Oscar as a therapy dog for him. He gets angry any time we try to talk with him about Oscar’s death and insists he can’t live without Oscar in his life. I feel Oscar will be ready to go any day now and I am so afraid our son will never forgive us for helping him pass.


Please help,


Sara from Oscar’s already-grieving human family

Shannon’s reply:

Hi Sara,

My heart is with you and your family. Pet death is perhaps the number one reason pet parents reach out to an animal communicator for guidance. We want to hear what our animal wants and needs at this sensitive, emotional and sometimes scary time in our shared life together. And we also need our pet’s wisdom and love to help us through the experience of losing them.

This is especially true when young hearts are involved. Animals and children love in the same pure, intense, focused way. There is no gray area to a pet’s or a child’s love, which is why pet death often hits young people especially hard.

So what can we do to help your family and particularly your son through Oscar’s transition?

In my experience, the hands-down best way to have a family conversation about a pet’s death process is to allow the pet to do most of the talking. How can you accomplish this? Animal communication allows you and your family to talk back and forth with Oscar in real time. And since it sounds like Oscar’s passing is imminent, you will want to do this quickly.

Having an animal communication session also gives you the chance to ask Oscar what he wants and needs at this time in his life. You can ask him what his wishes are, including whether he will need assistance passing and whether he prefers to have this at a veterinary clinic or with in-home pet hospice. You can ask questions about the type of pet memorial Oscar would like.  

Most importantly for your son’s grief process, you can also ask Oscar if he has any special messages for each member of your family. You can even talk to Oscar about whether he wants to come back to you in a new body through pet reincarnation.

Sara, I truly hope these ideas are helpful and supportive at this difficult time in your family’s life.

From my heart,


Shannon Cutts
Shannon Cutts

Shannon Cutts is an intuitive animal communicator and Reiki master practitioner with Animal Love Languages. Shannon works through the universal love language of all species to connect with her pet clients – deep listening. Deep listening activates empathy, allowing Shannon to literally feel what an animal is feeling, listen in to their thoughts, experience what they are experiencing and then relay all of that information to the pet parent. Visit Shannon at

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