Pet Loss Library

« Return to Pet Loss Library

Terrible Loss

by Karin Baltzell, Ph.d

Hi Karin.

I'm sitting here at work waiting for a call from the vet about my cat, Kitty's results. I came across your website just now and had to write. She's 17 1/2 years old, and has been my "baby" all that time. I'm not able to have children of my own, so she has filled that void in my life. I can't stand the thought of her leaving. Although she seems happy and content on the outside, she has been diagnosed with a possibly fatal disease. I'm afraid she doesn't have much time left. My husband and I are so torn up. My heart is aching so bad. I know it's going to get worse when we have to deal with putting her down. Is there anything I can do (or you can say) that will help with this terrible loss?

Dear Reader,

I am so sorry to hear about your cat, Kitty. A week has gone by since you wrote your letter. Has anything changed with your situation?

Your question, about is there anything you can do (or I can say) to help you with your loss is a wonderful one. I wish there was something I could do besides offer you sympathy, but you will, indeed, feel pain and grief over your loss. It is the price we pay for loving someone or an animal so completely.

However, I can give you words of comfort. Others tell us over and over how time does help to heal, but remember...TIME is the element. Allow yourself to feel the loss, to grieve, to talk with others about it (you might visit our chat room) and talk to your husband.

Sometimes people have put together a little Memorial Corner in their house, or near a picture of their lost animal. It seems this helps to feel connected to the one that is gone. Whatever you find yourself doing, try to focus on the love you feel for Kitty and that by putting your animal out of pain you have done (will do) a very loving thing.


Karin is a staff writer and editor for Beyond Indigo. She holds her Ph.D in Psychology.

“Dr. Yetter’s professional & compassionate care enabled us to have Lady as a member of our family for over 17 years. Through his knowledge, extensive research, and willingness to reach out, he provided Lady with a long quality life in spite of numerous health issues. We are eternally grateful.”

— Diane & Terry Svob

“Dr. Yetter and the staff at Prairie Ridge have given excellent care to my family of pets for about 20 years. I always feel comfortable asking questions and knowing I will get complete, caring answers. Dr. Yetter researches to find the best treatment options. My cats and dog are family to me, and we trust Prairie Ridge Veterinary Clinic.”

—Janis Blout

“We are so grateful for the hard work and extra research Dr. Yetter did for our Tansy-cat to find out why she wasn’t eating. If there is a time when your most precious friend is ill and you need to trust someone to care for them, Dr. Yetter is definitely that person! He went above and beyond to do everything he could to save our beautiful Tansy.”

— Tom & Bev Berberett

“My pets have been patients of Dr. Yetter and his great staff for many years, and I have always been grateful for their efficiency and helpfulness. Having good care right here in Havana is a big plus!”

— Jan McFarlin

“I began to bring in my labs into PRVC when I started working there, and was happy to have such a caring and knowledgeable doctor to take care of two of my best friends. It always amazes me just how much care goes into each and every animal, let alone the perseverance of Dr. Yetter and staff (I should call them family) in working out how to treat each and every problem.”

— Chris Johnson