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Posts: 2
Paco my female chihuahua mix passed away a few evenings ago. She was closest to me. We have another dog, Mandy. Mandy has been closer to someone I live with. Paco couldn’t get enough ear scratches and belly rubs. Mandy often would get up and move if someone petted her too much.

We are all grieving, including Mandy. Mandy is becoming more receptive to being petted. Maybe she thought she couldn’t compete with Paco for attention? Paco really ate it up when she was being petted. Mandy has a more stand-off personality.

I don’t want Mandy to feel like a consolation prize. I don’t want to use Mandy to replace Paco. Mandy is a wonderful dog in her own right. I love them both. I’ve just been inseparable from Paco. I’ve had both dogs for more than aeveral years. For the last two years Paco and I have rarely been separated for more than a few hours at a time.

What do you think Mandy needs? I almost feel guilty for paying more attention to Mandy now that my Paco has graduated from the flesh.

Loosing Paco was my greatest fear. I honestly didn’t think I could live through it. But my survival instinct has kicked in. I’m trying to practice all of my coping skills not to succumb to a depression I wouldn’t be able to get out of. Paco has seen me through the tough times and I’ve gone too far to go back. Doing something drastic would dishonor her legacy. Going on a witch hunt for the dog who murdered her would just mask my grief with anger and hinder my healing process. I

What does my surviving dog need? Would Paco feel that it’s Mandy’s turn to shine? They loved each other deeply. Mandy is looking for Paco. Mandy’s grieving too. The last thing I want to do is replace Paco with Mandy. But Mandy deserves love and I have always loved her—just not a fraction of how I love Paco.

Please help. Any advice, words of wisdom and personal experience would be so important to me. I can’t think. I can barely walk. What should I do about Mandy, the surviving dog?

Posts: 18
I'm so sorry for your loss.

I don't know if I have any good advice for you, but I'm going through something similar.  My surviving dog is considerably older than the one who died and all I can do is worry that she will get sick and die too.

I am sure Paco would not begrudge Mandy the attention you are giving her.  He loved you both and would want you both to comfort each other and help each other through the grief.  Mandy being more affectionate now doesn't surprise me.  Take your cue from her and let her help you - dogs know what we need!

Posts: 2
Thanks for responding. It gives me comfort. I know how it feels worrying about the surviving pet dieing. Mandy is and Paco was a senior dog. I’m glad Mandy is eating and not lethargic. However, I feel guilty for not crying hysterically all day and being able to eat. I’m so sad and I miss her so much, but I’ll get through this. Loosing Paco was my greatest fear and before this happened I thought I coul live without her. I have a lot of support that I built over the last 7 years. Seven years ago I was so broken that I couldn’t even bond with Paco. The world is a better place because Paco was in it. My housemate and I have even suspected when Paco was healthy that she was an Angel Dog. I guess shecouldn’t have stayed in that form forever because of the nature of mortality. I hope she’s dancing in the afterlife. Whatever that looks like. I can still feel her with me. Our love can’t be severed by death. I’m so lucky to have bonded with Paco. For two years we hadn’ t spent more than four hours apart at a time.I want to tell the world about Paco. She has left a legacy.
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