It is very difficult for some people to manage grief since it comes in many different forms and circumstances. Sorrow can leave people feeling lonely, depressed, fatigued and sad. This feeling can be palpable when you have lost a loved one or experienced some other type of loss. The grieving process takes time and feels different for different people. While counseling and support groups are helpful in these circumstances, pets also work great during the grieving period. While dogs excel as companion animals for emotional support, cats are also emotionally tuned in and sensitive so to help human companions cope with grief.
How Cats help Humans Cope With Grief?
1. Cats are Excellent Companions for Mental Health
On the whole, cats are great companions for mental health. Cats have a way of improving mental health when you are experiencing grief. They have a way of relieving your calm feelings of anxiety, stress alongside improving overall happiness. They manage to do this by offering a positive and consistent symbiotic relationship. Pets aid our happiness by increasing serotonin, dopamine, oxytocin and endorphin levels in our brain. These feelings are extremely important while dealing with grief.
2. Finding Comfort in Cat Company
The process of bereavement is different for different people. While some prefer solitude, there are others who find comfort in company. Moreover, steps in the grieving process to keep changing from time to time. The best thing about the companionship of a cat is the absence of expectation. Human companionship during times of grief can be overwhelming in the process. Unlike humans, pet companionship does not expect that you say a certain thing or act in a certain way as social interactions between humans demand. Support offered by pets does not require the same expectations as humans do.
3. Independent Nature of Cats
The independent nature of cats makes them an ideal companion during grief. Dogs are amazing and very loving but require a lot more from the owner when compared to cats. Especially during grief, it would be nice to gain companionship of a pet which does not require constant attention. During this period normal day-to-day responsibilities can feel cumbersome and overwhelming. You don’t have to take a cat out for a walk or throw a ball. Cats are content with their bowl filled and curling up or snuggling with you on the couch.
4. Cats are Very Sensitive to Your Emotions
Look into your cat’s eye to see emotions. They are astoundingly tuned into emotions around them and are sensitive to owner’s emotions. Their emotional intelligence is similar to dogs but they act differently based upon subtle changes in your behavior. Sleeping can be problematic for many people during the period of grief. Feeling the purrs of a content and sleeping cat can be very helpful for people experiencing issues with sleep. The purring sound of a cat can reduce stress, repose anxiety, and lower blood pressure and help cope with sleep issues associated with grief.
5. Cats are Cautious and Move at Your Pace
The problem-solving capacity of cats is excellent. They are extremely cautious in new situations but adapt well to challenges. Your cat will adapt and quickly learn to move at your pace and temperament during times of grief. Cats would exercise caution following routine change but will come around and feel comfortable in time. Unlike dogs, cats are great at playtime by themselves and may not require as much participation. There are stages to grief and as you overcome to become normal your cat will change pace like you do. A purr and a head nudge can go a long way while you are coping with grief.
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