Companion Animal Loss: A Disenfranchised Form of Grief and Why It's Relevant to Social Work


Social Work

Date of Paper/Work


Degree Name

Master of Social Work (M.S.W.)

Type of Paper/Work

Clinical research paper


Felicia Sy


Thirty participants of the Companion Animal Love, Loss, and Memories (CALLM) group held at The University of Minnesota Veterinary Medical Center evaluated this program in order to find out if a mutual aid support group is beneficial for pet loss survivors. Demographics of participants were examined, as well as how efficient the CALLM group was at meeting its five main objectives which are: a.) Normalize feelings b.) Improve understanding on the grief process c.) Improve knowledge of useful coping mechanisms d.) Encourage therapeutic storytelling of one's companion animal and e.)Provide resources and referrals as needed. Results were that the majority of pet loss survivors found CALLM to be beneficial. Respondents also validated that CALLM made them feel less alone in their grief, which is important for a disenfranchised population.


companion animals, pets, death, grief

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.