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Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day 2024: When It Is & How It Is Celebrated

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By Nicole Cosgrove

Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day

Whether you lost your pet recently or long ago, their memory is sure to linger in your mind. This is why Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day was created by Deborah Barnes to give pet owners a chance to commemorate departed pets through sharing pictures, videos and sweet stories of the pets. Since its launch, it has become a nationally acknowledged holiday celebrated on the 28th of August, the Day Mr. Jazz, Barnes’ cat passed away.

In this article, we look at how Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day is celebrated and highlight some ideas on how you can commemorate the loss of your furry friends.

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A Brief History of the Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day

Deborah Barnes, an author and a blogger, originally dedicated August 28th as a day to allow pet owners to share memories of their pets, whether cats, dogs, or even snakes after they have passed on. A little-known fact about Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day is that it is based on a Poem, titled “Rainbow Bridge”.

According to the poem, our beloved pets wait at the Rainbow Bridge before going to heaven. The bridge is surrounded by hills and meadows where the pets can run around and play before the transition. Here, pets are happy and restored from old age and illnesses; however, they experience a lot of longing as they wait to be reunited with their owners in death and cross the bridge together to the other side.

Barnes chose the 28th of August because it is the date her cat, Mr. Jazz, passed away in 2013. After the cat’s death, she felt compelled to share her feelings and experiences of the loss on her blog titled, Zee & Zoey’s Cat Chronicles.

The blog received some overwhelmingly positive feedback which showed her she wasn’t alone in her feelings of grief and despair. This prompted her to write a bookPurr Prints of the Heart: A Cat’s Tale of Life, Death, and Beyond. The book outlined the story of her grief and loss through the eyes of her late cat.

Many of her readers could relate to the story, with many of them claiming that the book helped them to process the grief of losing their pets. This is what sparked the idea of creating a platform, which people who have lost their pets would use as an outlet.

Hence, the Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day was created, complete with an event page on Facebook.

The platform allowed people who had lost their pets to remember them fondly by posting a picture, writing a poem, and even sharing a memory or a story. She hoped that this day would not be a day of sadness, but rather a day of celebration that is held annually.

How to Celebrate the Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day

Pets provide their owner’s companionship, unconditional love, and emotional support. Therefore, it is okay to grieve for them after they have passed on.

There are many ways that you can celebrate the Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day. Below are some unique suggestions.

  • Order a customized stuffed animal replica of your departed pet
  • Send off your pet’s remains with fireworks
  • Knit yarn from your pet’s fur
  • Send your pet’s remains into space
  • Get a tattoo of your pet

If you enjoy crafting, you can custom make a personal memorial or memento of your departed pet for Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day. A few DIY ideas that can uplift your spirits include:

  • Make a planter by customizing your pet’s feeding and watering bowl.
  • Create felted beads using your pet’s fur.
  • You can also commemorate your dead pet by making a bracelet from its collar.
  • Making a shadowbox is another creative way of ensuring that your pet’s memories are preserved for posterity.
  • You can relieve all the wonderful memories you made with your pet by collecting, selecting, and arranging photos and images into a collage.
  • If you are into sewing, you can make a patchwork throw or kilt using fabric from your pet’s favorite blanket, bed, and even the soft toy varieties.

hepper single cat paw dividerConclusion

The Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day is celebrated on August 28th every year and is a day dedicated to commemorating the passing of our beloved pets. Pet owners and lovers celebrate this day by sharing pictures, videos, stories, and special messages about their departed pets. Since pets are usually considered members of our families, it is only right that we grieve them after they have passed on.

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Featured Photo Credit: Elena Nechiporenko, Shutterstock

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