Is This Evidence of a Dog Mourning the Loss of a Friend?

Is This Evidence of a Dog Mourning the Loss of a Friend?
Melissa Knowles

There's been a lot of evidence lately of animals in mourning. It could be due to the loss of a fellow pet or owner, but whatever the case more and more people are realizing that dogs can possess human emotions. There's the pit bull who refused to leave the side of his fallen comrade on the streets of Phoenix. The female pit bull appeared to have been struck by a car. Her male companion stayed by her side for more than 14 hours.

There was also Bella the dog who seemed to mourn the loss of Beavis the beaver. The two were adopted by the same family. They ate together, slept together and played together. When Beavis passed away, Bella stayed by Beavis's side for hours, as she mourned the loss.

Today's story hits extremely close to home. Earlier this summer, my family and I lost our dear companion and beloved pet Buffy. Buffy was a Yorkshire terrier who weighed about four pounds on a good day. She could be incredibly feisty and demanding when it came to getting things done her way. If she were not snuggled up in your lap or right near you, you could find her in a pile of warm laundry fresh from the dryer or atop the highest pillow on the sofa.

She gave my family years of unconditional love and countless kisses, and she will always be missed. Our remaining dog, Bo, is still with us. Bo is a Jack Russell terrier, and his boundless energy is what has kept us smiling in the saddest moments since losing our sweet Buffy girl. At times we've noticed that Bo also seems particularly sad or less playful, and we suspect that he misses his playmate, Buffy, too. He's even gone days without eating.

Anyone who has lost a pet knows that it can be a devastating experience. Though grief is sometime thought of as only a human emotion, there is evidence to the contrary. A video uploaded to YouTube last weekend shows a dog who sympathetically buries a puppy. The dog carefully covers the deceased pup's body with dirt for several minutes, and then walks away.

Not a lot of details about the video are available, only that it was published on June 23, 2013. The video, whose title is written in Farsi (translated as "Provoking the Dog"), has been viewed more than 12,000 times so far. One commenter summed up what many of us feel after watching the heart-wrenching video: "Dogs are amazing animals."

We could not agree more.

[Related: The Phenomenon of Grieving Dogs: The Ultimate Loyalty]

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