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Seeking Professional Help: When and How to Find a Pet Grief Counselor

The loss of a beloved pet can be a profoundly emotional and challenging experience. For many, pets are not just animals; they are cherished members of the family. When grieving the loss of a pet becomes overwhelming and affects your daily life, seeking professional help in the form of a pet grief counselor can be a valuable step toward healing. In this article, we'll explore when and how to find a pet grief counselor, and we'll provide contact information for counselors in both Canada and the United States.

When to Seek a Pet Grief Counselor

There are certain situations and factors that may specifically warrant seeking the assistance of a pet grief counselor. One such circumstance is experiencing a traumatic loss, such as a sudden accident or the unexpected death of a pet. Traumatic losses can often lead to more complex and intense grief reactions. Additionally, if you were particularly dependent on your pet for emotional support, companionship, or as a service animal, the loss can be especially challenging to navigate.

 

Other points to consider include multiple losses in a short period, unresolved grief from past pet losses, or if you're finding it challenging to manage daily life due to the overwhelming grief. In these situations, a pet grief counselor can offer specialized guidance and support tailored to your unique needs, helping you process your emotions and move towards healing.

Intense and Prolonged Grief

If your grief over the loss of your pet is intense, prolonged, or interferes with your ability to function in daily life, it may be time to seek professional help.

Preexisting Mental Health Challenges

If you have preexisting mental health challenges such as depression or anxiety, the loss of a pet can exacerbate these conditions. Professional guidance can be beneficial.

Isolation and Withdrawal

Feeling isolated from friends and family, or withdrawing from social activities, can be signs that your grief needs professional support.

Complicated Grief

Some individuals may experience complicated grief, which can include feelings of guilt, anger, or difficulty accepting the loss. A counselor can assist in processing these complex emotions.

Contact Information for Pet Grief Counselors:

Please note that this list provides contact information for pet grief counselors in both Canada and the United States.

These listings are provided for information only and they are not recommendations or endorsements. Please contact these professionals directly for more information about their services, availability, and to discuss your specific needs related to pet grief counseling.

Canada:

ALBERTA:

  1. Calgary: Joanna Card, Registered Psychologist
    Address: Suite 200, 2003-14th St NW, Calgary, AB, T2M 3N4
    Phone: 403-554-6305
    Email: joannacard@shaw.ca
    Website: Joanna Card Counselling

  2. Calgary: Alex Guidotti
    Location: Calgary, Alberta T2X3T8
    Email: forzapsychology@gmail.com
    Website: Forza Psychology

  3. Calgary: Straja Linder King, Spiritual Directions Centre
    Address: 1407 10th St. SW, Calgary AB T2N 1B9
    Phone: 403.383-0070, 403.210-2802
    Email: strajalk@me.com
    Website: Strawberry Moon Counselling

  4. Gwynne: Lyndell Drever, Sacred Hearts
    Location: Online/phone counseling
    Phone: (780) 608-6337
    Email: lyndell@dreverag.com
    Facebook: Sacred Hearts

  5. Strathmore: Caroline Tarkowski
    Location: Strathmore, AB T1P 1S7
    Phone: (403) 629-5191
    Email: instilledchangecounselling@gmail.com
    Website: Instilled Change Counselling
    Note: Offers virtual individual and group counseling to anyone who has experienced pet loss.

BRITISH COLUMBIA:

  1. Langley: Laurel Horn, MA, RCC
    Location: Langley, BC
    Phone: 604-802-6959
    Email: lhorn@telus.net
    Website: Daybreak Counselling
    Note: Offers support, counseling, and seminars.

  2. North Vancouver: Helen Whitehead Counselling
    Address: 224 Esplanade West North Vancouver, BC, Canada
    Email: info@helenwhitehead.ca
    Website: Helen Whitehead Counselling

  3. Vancouver: Melanie Yearow, RPC, Melanie Yearow Counselling Services
    Address: #200-1892 West Broadway, Vancouver, BC
    Phone: 604-730-5002
    Email: melanieyearow@gmail.com
    Website: Melanie Yearow Counselling Services
    Note: Offers phone & Skype counseling.

  4. Vancouver Island: Juli Wild
    Email: info@wildflowerhealing.com
    Website: Wildflower Healing
    Note: Offers phone & Skype counseling.

NOVA SCOTIA:

  1. Dartmouth: Nancy Blair, Nancy Blair Counseling
    Location: Dartmouth, Nova Scotia
    Phone: (902) 223-3151
    Email: nancyblaircounselling@gmail.com
    Website: Nancy Blair Counseling

ONTARIO:

  1. Ridgeway: Chantale Denis, New Beginning Counselling Services
    Address: 355 Ridge Road N, Ridgeway, Ontario, Canada
    Phone: 289-214-1574
    Email: newbeginning.counselling@gmail.com
    Website: A New Beginning Counselling

  2. Natasha Tutt (she/her), MSW, RSW
    Email: natashatuttmsw@gmail.com
    Phone: (647) 707-7877
    Website: Natasha Tutt MSW

United States

Florida:

 

Dr. Bennett, Licensed Psychologist Ariel Counseling & Consultation

Dr. Chris Norman, RN, BA, BEd, MEd, PsyD PAWS 4 GRIEF

Rachel Shirley, Certified Professional Coach, Certified Pet Loss and Grief Companion

Colorado:

 

Beth Gustin, MA, NCC, LPC, EMDR Certified, CGCS Transitioning Through Change, PLLC

Bernadette Pivarunas, PhD Radical Healing

Ohio:

 

Brenda Brown, MA, FT Grief About Pets

Virginia:

 

Craig Wilt, MA, MEd, CT, CBT, PLGS-APLB Hospice of the Piedmont

Leslie Greenberg, Ph.D. in Psychology Richmond Neuropsychology

Connecticut:

 

Christiana Treglia, APLB Certified 2012 Cornell University Veterinary Specialist

Pennsylvania:

 

Deborah Massey, LSCW, CAS

DONNA CARLSON, Certified Equine Gestalt and Grief Coach Donna Carlson Coaching

Texas:

 

Dr. Christine Henry, Ph.D., NCC Therapy For Pet People

New York:

 

Janet Zimmerman, LCSW-R

Day Cummings, Licensed Clinical Social Worker / RN Circle of Daughters, Inc.

  • Address: 5138 South Park Ave, Unit S 8, New York, 14075

  • Office Phone: (716) 507-6281

  • Email: Momsspirit@aol.com

  • Home Phone: (716) 507-6281

Arizona: Gretchen Bickert, APLB Certified, AHG Certified

  • Address: Arizona, 85201

  • Mobile Phone: (602) 570-3375

  • Home Phone: (602) 570-3375

  • Email: ursus88@gmail.com

California:

Julie Austin, Psy.D.

Jennifer Breslow, LCAT, LPAT, ATR-BC Art Therapy & Psychotherapy in NYC

Maryland:

 

Robyn Zeiger, Ph.D., LCPC, LPC

  • Address: Robyn Zeiger, Ph.D., Pet Loss Counselors / Specialists, 10300 Sweetbriar Parkway, Silver Spring, Maryland, 20903

  • Office Phone: (301) 445-7333

  • Email: drrobynzeiger@aol.com

  • Website: drrobynzeiger.com

  • Fax: (301) 445-5046

Alaska:

 

Shannon Basner, ACCBC from IAABC, Pet Loss & Bereavement Counselor, Cat advoCATe

Missouri:

 

Michelle Filippi-Robb, Licensed Professional Counselor

Illinois:

 

Linda Harper, Ph.D. clinical psychologist

Minnesota:

 

Lisa Havelin, MA, LMFT

Tennessee:

 

Michele Burgner, MSSW, LCSW

  • Address: Michele E. Burgner, MSSW, LCSW, 2200 21st Avenue South, Suite 229, Nashville, Tennessee, 37212

  • Phone: (615) 969-3664

  • Email: michele@micheleburgner.com

New Jersey:

 

Nancy Saxton-Lopez, LCSW, DCSW, VSW

  • Address: Nancy Saxton-Lopez/The Pet Loss Companion, 85 Hopper Avenue, Waldwick, New Jersey, 07463

  • Phone: (201) 638-7404

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