When the family structure is disrupted by the death of a cat, life changes for the surviving pets. In some cases, animals react much as humans do. They might cry, loose their appetite oversleep, or become withdrawn and sullen. More than ever, these depressed pets need you to help them through this period of loss.
Look for changes in the surviving pet's behavior right after the death of your cat. Loss of appetite, housetraining mistakes, disobedience, and even running away are all possible. Plus, the sudden change in the pet hierarchy can add to the pet's confusion.
If your surviving pet seems to be grieving, chances are that this behavior will lessen with time - the great healer. Try to help this process along by offering the cat extra attention, new toys, or even a nice treat once or twice a day.
Do not go right out and get a new cat, since it would be a stranger and a territorial invader in the surviving pet's eyes. Instead, renew your relationship with this pet, and let time take care of the rest.
Excerpted from The K.I.S.S. Guide to Cat Care by Steve Duno
Copyright 2001 by Steve Duno.
Excerpted by permission of Dorling Kindersley Publishing Inc.
All rights reserved.
No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.