Coming to Terms with The Loss of a Pet

For the parents of pets, the loss of a beloved companion animal is emotionally devastating. Here is a brief but well-edited list of books that offer a touch of solace when it isn’t “just a pet.”


Crossing the Rubicon: Celebrating the Human-Animal Bond in Life and Death

by Julie Kaufman

When my beloved dog, an 11-year cancer survivor on all-natural remedies, died in my arms at the age of 19, few pet-loss books spoke to the depth of my pain. This book was one of the few that did. I found its descriptive collection of stories, situations, and ritual gathered from other grieving pet parents incredibly validating.


Letters To Strongheart

by J. Allen Boone

This is J. Allen Boone's timeless, poetic, and insightful journal which documents his inner journey while outwardly, he travels and observes the world after the passing of his movie-star dog, Strongheart. It left me feeling comforted, introspective, and no longer so alone. A beautiful and wise book — and one I have given as a gift to many.


Three Cats, Two Dogs: One Journey Through Multiple Pet Loss

by David Congalton

Full of dramatic and unusual circumstances surrounding pet-loss that most will never go through, but still worth the read for several gems that are woven within this candid account of heartache and healing.


Bones Would Rain from the Sky: Deepening Our Relationships with Dogs

by Suzanne Clothier

Although not specifically a pet-loss book, I found great comfort in this read as it gave me a way to be with my grief without plunging me face-first into it. In my opinion, no one should ever even think about living with a dog before reading this book. It will get you into your dog's head.


The Healing Art of Pet Parenthood

by Nadine M. Rosin

Flashlight Worthy says:
We're approached almost every day by authors asking if we'd include their book on a list. We always cite our editorial integrity and say no... but we do invite them to write a book list of their own.

Of course we don't allow them to list their own book — those same pesky editorial standards — but we do mention it in the author's byline and biography.

Every now and again though, an author's book is just an absolutely perfect fit for their list AND the book seems to be exceptionally, exceptionally good. This is one of those cases, and therefore, unbeknownst to Nadine, I've added her book to this list. I encourage you to check it out.


Dog Heaven

by Cynthia Rylant

Flashlight Worthy says:
Finally we have a children's book that was highly recommended by a half-dozen people as soon as we published this list. And they recommended it for adults as well as kids.

While we don't base our recommendations on Amazon reviews we certainly take them into account... and this book had 172 reviews with 93% of them being for a full 5 stars. With reviews like that, and the endorsement of so many of our readers, we feel extremely comfortable guiding you to this book.

Eric says:

This book tells us where all the good dogs go — a comforting place called "Dog Heaven," filled with yummy treats, delicious meals, lots of snuggling and petting, and plenty of room to run.