Do kitties grieve?

@sbeauty (5870)
United States
March 7, 2009 6:51am CST
About a month ago our oldest cat had to be put to sleep. Since that time one of our other cats (we have two now) cries loudly all day long. I know he and Sebastian were close, but I thought he'd get over missing him soon. He hasn't seemed to, though. Do animals go thru a grieving process similar to people? I'd love to hear your thoughts.
3 responses
@mcat19 (1357)
• United States
8 Mar 09
They absolutely grieve just as we do. Give your grieving kitty lots of love and attention. Feed him his favorite foods. Talk to him, explain that his good friend is not coming back and that you love him and will take care of him. Tell him that you are sad, too and miss his friend. In time, he may enjoy another cat companion. Only you will know when the time is right.
@sbeauty (5870)
• United States
10 Mar 09
Thanks for your suggestions. We do still have two kitties, but they were never friends like Quincy and Sebastian were. I'm hoping that given enough time Quincy will come to accept Dooey as his friend and stop crying. It has been over a month now, and he still sounds so mournful. Of course, he's a very high-strung cat anyway, and everything seems to upset him. We do what we can to help, but we just can't bring Sebastian back. We have Sebastian's ashes in an urn. I wonder if it would help Quincy to let him sniff that. I've been hesitant to try.
@mcat19 (1357)
• United States
10 Mar 09
It won't help to let him sniff the ashes. Ashes smell pretty much like ashes. He won't make the association. Just love him to pieces, assure him that he will be OK and tell him how you feel, too. He needs to know that his friend is not coming back. Cats understand more than we think. I explain things to my cats all the time.
@Asylum (48058)
• Manchester, England
22 Nov 12
I would imagine that most creatures react in this way to some extent. Life may be different in the wild because the circumstances make survival the one driving concern, but if living in a less hostile environment then the option of behaving and feeling in a more emotional way becomes available. The sudden change created by the absence of someone or some creature that we are accustomed to is certain to be noticed and the loss is just as certain to be felt. Animals grow attachments to others in much the same way that we do, so the result is almost inevitable.
@DavidReedy (2411)
• United States
29 Aug 09
I wonder... Animals surprise us regularly with their compassion and their showings of emotion--exhibiting traits that some insist only humans can... Maybe it is "mourning", maybe it isn't--maybe said animal is/was looking for the missing one... But, I for one, am a believer--Love and awareness are more than just human traits.