Do pets grieve? Absolutely! I am experiencing this now with our cats, Macho and Jesi, and our dog, Abigail (Abi). We lost our beloved goldendoodle, Jak, suddenly last month. The first couple of days, they seemed fine. They probably thought he was at the groomer or visiting grandma. By the third night, however, Jesi started pacing and “crying out” to him at night. You see, she used to snuggle next to him every night. Then, a few days later, Macho started wailing, too. Every night since then, for a few minutes to half an hour, they cry out for him. About a week later, Abi started walking around the house looking for Jak. She would stand in one spot and stare at the door or at his bed. Lately she has been sleeping on top of his favorite toy. We have not seen her do this in the past.
Before we adopted Jak, we had a cocker spaniel named Brandy. He passed away when he was almost 15 years old. Our vet said that Macho may grieve…and he did! He lay on the bed upstairs in the spare room and didn’t eat for several days. He would drink water and use the litter box, but he was anti-social, and would wail and pace at night.
I recently read an article titled “When Animals Mourn” that was published in Scientific America, July 2013, Vol 309, No. 1. Check it out if you can.