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World Pet Memorial Day 2023: When It Is & How It Is Celebrated

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By Nicole Cosgrove

bernese mountain dog

To many pet lovers, cats and dogs are considered part of the family. This is perhaps why their death can cause a lot of grief and devastation.

If your pet has recently passed away, you can honor their memory by celebrating World Pet Memorial Day every second Sunday of September. It was created by the American Veterinary Medical Association to honor and remember pets that have passed on.1

In this article, we will discuss several ideas you can adopt as you celebrate this day.

The 7 Ways You Can Celebrate World Pet Memorial Day

You can celebrate and honor the memory of your pet in many ways, but most importantly in the best way you see fit. It doesn’t necessarily have to involve making a grand gesture, especially if you don’t like public displays of emotions.

Whether you want to honor your pet’s memory by doing something life-changing like tattooing your pet or simply lighting a candle for your pet, there is no wrong or right way of celebrating the life of your departed pet.

Here are a few ideas that you can do to remember your pet this World Pet Memorial Day.

1. Share a Special Video or Picture on Social Media

One of the simplest things you can do to honor your pet is to share pictures and videos of your time together with your pet on social media using the hashtag #worlpdetmemorialday. In today’s social media and IOT age, anything posted online lasts forever. Any memories you posted about your pet several years ago, will be there today and for many years to come.

Therefore, you can celebrate the life of your pet as you encourage other pet owners who have lost their pets to open up about the experience and celebrate the lives of their pets by participating in Memorial Day.

Simply scroll through all the posts you have made with your pet and look for a special moment that fills your heart with joy and love. It doesn’t matter whether it is a video or photo, provided it allows you to remember your pet fondly.

2. Honor Your Pet By Going for a Walk

A favorite pastime activity for most dog owners is going for occasional walks. So, if you have lost a dog, one of the best ways to honor its memory is to go for a walk.

Maybe your dog had a favorite hiking area or trail that they liked walking on. Your dog could also have loved taking a trip to the local pet store or simply playing in the dog park. Whichever the case, ensure that you pick a place your dog enjoyed visiting.

3. Donate to a Charitable Organization

There is nothing as fulfilling as honoring your pet’s memory by donating to a charitable organization that deals with pet welfare. Such organizations provide shelter, rescue and relief, community medicine, general animal care, and the enforcement of provincial animal welfare legislation.

This could be the SPCA, your local pet center, the Humane Society, or any other charitable organization that may be dear to your heart. You can also go to your local pet store and offer a cash gift. You can offer the store clerk some amount of money for them to carry forward to the next person purchasing at the store. The unsuspected reaction of people realizing that their purchase has already been paid for will be simply priceless.

cats in animal shelter
Image Credit: Yulia Grigoryeva, Shutterstock

4. Start a DIY Craft Project With Your Pets Belongings

If you enjoy crafting, you can do something special for your departed pet using items that once belonged to them. This could be a chew toy, collar, food bowl, or even your pet’s name tag. You can craft anything from such items, and if they belonged to your pet is a reminder that they are meaningful to you.

For instance, you can use their feeding bowl to plant flowers, use their name tags to make bracelets, or simply wrap your pet’s collar on a candle and then light it on Worlds Pet Memorial Day.

5. Make a Scrapbook

If you feel overwhelmed with sad emotions on Pet Memorial Day, you can spend the day creating a scrapbook. This will have all your pet’s favorite memories. You can use adoption papers or your pet’s birth certificate. You can also print some photos of your pet to add to your scrapbook. This simple but effective healing process is cheap and therapeutic.

Just make sure the pages remind you of your pet. After making your scrapbook, you can also make a short video of you revisiting the memories on each page and send it to your close friends and family.

6. Plant a Tree

Another great way of remembering your departed pet is planting a tree in your yard. A tree is convenient memorabilia because whenever you see the tree, you will be reminded about your pet and how the tree was grown in its honor.

If your yard space is limited for tree planting, you can opt for perennials such as blueberry and raspberry bushes. Any harvest you make from such plants will be in your pet’s honor.

If you are renting an apartment, you can plant indoor plants such as a potted citrus tree. It will not only give you fond memories of your pet but will also brighten up your indoor space and give you delicious lemons or tangerines.

7. Volunteer at an Animal Shelter

If you are not busy on World Pet Memorial Day, you can honor your pet by volunteering at your local animal shelter. Usually, animal shelters are understaffed and need help with their various daily activities such as bathing animals, cleaning kennels, feeding the animals, and doing pet laundry.

Volunteering at a shelter will also give you a chance to interact and play with different animals.

While being close to other pets after losing your own is understandably difficult, it is an overly therapeutic endeavor that will help with the grieving and healing process.

Just don’t try to compare the animals in the shelter with your departed pet. Instead, offer them unconditional love and help them find a loving home.

dog in shelter
Image Credit: hedgehog94, Shutterstock


World Pet Memorial Day allows us to mourn our beloved pets and honor their memories. Getting involved in the celebrations also allows owners of departed pets to experience acceptance and resolution.

As you celebrate this year’s Memorial Day, remember to talk about your feelings. The ideas outlined above will make a huge difference in your mental well-being after losing a pet. However, if you feel overwhelmed by emotion during this day, consider seeking professional help.

See also: What Is Tortoiseshell Cat Appreciation Day?

Featured Image Credit: AnnCatrin Uppfeldt, Pixabay

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