June 3, 2004, VANCOUVER – June 7 is “World Pet Memorial Day” and The Humane Society of Canada (HSC) is encouraging everyone who has known the joy of a pet to honour their “best friend’s” memory on this special day.


“Pets are a big part of many people’s lives providing love, companionship and many other benefits to their human guardians,” says Al Hickey, HSC Western Regional Director.

“Because our animal companions play such important roles in our lives, it is important to pay tribute to their lives,” continues Hickey. “Paying tribute to our pets can be very comforting – especially for children who may be having difficulty coping with the loss of a cherished animal companion.”

HSC Executive Director Michael O’Sullivan, who shares his home with several canine and feline family members, knows the importance of memorializing pets.

“The bond that we share with our pets is so strong that the grief we experience with their passing can be very intense and it is important to learn how to deal with this grief. Paying tribute to a beloved pet can be an important part of the mourning process that helps us to begin healing,” states O’Sullivan.

“Recalling some of the things that our animal companions did or what they mean to us can be effective in helping us come to terms with our loss,” suggests O’Sullivan. “To help people cope with the loss of their pet The Humane Society of Canada has established a “Book of Remembrance” section on their site at www.humanesociety.com. Sharing thoughts of a special pet can be important in coming to terms with the loss of an animal companion and it can help others who may be going through a similar experience,” states O’Sullivan.

There are many ways to pay tribute to a beloved pet. A few are listed below.

Ways to Memorialize an Animal Companion

  • Write about how wonderful your pet is in The HSC “Book of Remembrance”.
  • Plant a tree or bush in memory of your pet.
  • If you are ready, adopt an animal in need from a shelter or pound.
  • Have a ceremony with family and friends where people talk about the deceased pet’s life.
  • Children can draw pictures or write a story about their “best friend.”
  • Make a photo album of your pet.
  • Make a remembrance box containing special items of your pet, like his/her collar.
  • Place a framed photo of your animal companion in a place of prominence.
  • Honour your pet’s memory by helping out at an animal shelter or making a donation to a humane society in memory of your animal companion.
  • Educate others about the joys of sharing your life with a pet – especially a pet in need.
  • Support organizations that help pets.

CONTACT: Michael O'Sullivan by toll free 1-800-641-KIND or Michael on his cell phone (416) 876-9685 or at www.humanesociety.com via twitter at www.twitter.com/HSCanada and on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Humane-Society-of-Canada/211468055538280

[For more than 17 years, Al Hickey was the Chief Executive of the BC SPCA and before that headed up the Alberta and BC Chambers of Commerce, and was the Executive Director of the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Vancouver. He has been The HSC Western Regional Director for over 12 years. He has 4 children and 6 grandchildren. For his lifetime of achievement dedicated to helping people, animals and the environment, we have bestowed upon him our prestigious Heroes for Animals Award, shared by only a handful of people and organizations.

A father with two children, and a houseful of dogs and cats, Michael O'Sullivan has worked across Canada and in over 110 countries during the last 40 years helping people, animals and nature.]

The Humane Society of Canada (HSC) works to protect dogs, cats, horses, birds, rabbits and small animals, livestock, lab animals, wildlife and the environment. We carry out hands on programs to help animals and nature, mount rescue operations, expose cruelty through hard hitting undercover investigations, work to pass laws to protect animals, use a multidisciplinary approach, support animal shelters and wildlife rehabilitation centres, and spread the word about how to help animals and nature through humane education.

The only organization of its kind, seven days a week, The Humane Society of Canada (HSC) works across the street, across Canada and around the world helping people, animals and the environment.

The Humane Society of Canada (HSC) depends entirely on donations to support our programs to help animals and the environment. All donations are gratefully acknowledged with a receipt for income tax purposes. If you would like to support our educational campaigns that protect animals and the environment please make a donation here. Because when it comes to fighting cruelty and violence, we don’t give up. Ever.