Pets are one of life’s great joys, but dealing with the loss of one can be difficult.
If you're a pet owner, the comic you're about to read about a dog thanking its owner before being put down may give you the feels.
Did you cry a little? If so, that's OK.
Losing a pet can be as hard as losing a friend or a family member.
When Mark Glavin of Übertool first published this comic in 2014, he didn’t expect it to have such an emotional impact on his readers.
"It seems every 6-8 [months] it comes back to life and finds new readers," Glavin wrote in an email. "What never ceases to amaze me is the comments people post when they see it. Some are recalling memories, some are heartbreaking. A lot address their pet directly, 'I miss you...' and such."
Grieving for a pet can be a long, difficult process, but comforting a friend during this time can bring its own challenges. According to a study at the Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Israel, a pet's death is often dismissed and not "fully recognized as a significant loss, especially among those who do not own pets."
This sometimes leaves grieving pet owners without strong social support.
Glavin was inspired to write the comic after reading a pet owner's vet experience on Reddit.
“The person was commenting about how he had to put his dog down and that he received a sympathy card from the veterinarian, which said to always remember that he had been responsible for giving his pet a great life,” Glavin wrote.
Just like that sympathy card, Glavin's comic has brought emotional relief for pet owners everywhere who have lost their best friend. He is touched by how people have connected with the comic and continue to share it.
“I like that it has given people some comfort, if only just a little. So hopefully it will continue to do that for more people in the future.”