The HABRI Foundation is calling for research proposals to investigate the health outcomes of pet ownership and/or animal-assisted activity or therapy, both for the people and the animals involved. To learn more, visit https://habri.org/grants/funding-opportunities/ close

 
You are here: Home / Presentations / Pet Loss and the Elderly / About

Pet Loss and the Elderly

View Link (HTM)

Licensed under

Category Presentations
Abstract

Companion animals are known to provide numerous psychosocial benefits to their owners. It is due to these prominent and positive contributions that individuals develop a deep attachment with their pet. Consequently pet owners experience intense grief reactions following the death of a cherished pet. While numerous studies have focused on the experiences for children and young adults, the experience of pet loss for the elderly remains relatively unexplored. An in-depth qualitative research design guided by a phenomenological framework was used to explore the experiences surrounding pet loss for the elderly. Data was collected though one-on-one semi-structured interviews with thirteen participants aged over 65 years who lost a pet in the last 24 months. Thematic analysis was utilised to identify themes in their transcripts. Themes that emerged included the human-animal bond, the importance and meaning of companion animals in the lives of the elderly, experiences of death, intensity and duration of grief, factors influencing grief reactions, coping strategies and social support. This study provides rich information to enable professionals to respond therapeutically to those bereaved and guide future research in exploring the devalued and misunderstood field of pet loss.

Submitter

Megan Kendall

Purdue University

Date 2012
Publisher Edith Cowan University
Format Presentation
URL http://ro.ecu.edu.au/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1021&context=spsyc_pres
Language English
Notes This presentation was found at Edith Cowan University Research Online: http://ro.ecu.edu.au/
Cite this work

Researchers should cite this work as follows:

Tags
  1. Animal roles
  2. Older adults
  3. Pet loss
  4. Pet ownership
  5. Pets and companion animals