Pet Bereavement Counselors:
There are literally hundreds of people who are now counseling in pet bereavement, and it is not possible for the APLB to register them all. Some hesitate to be listed in any directory, others are first discovering the benefits of this wonderful service, and many more are still unknown to us. We welcome all new applicants to contact us directly by mail or online at firstname.lastname@example.org. This listing is arranged according to geographical location. We are pleased that every counselor registered here is a member of the APLB.
Suzan Fawcett, Ph.D. (Abd)
109 Niagara Street
Hamilton, Ontario L8L 6A6
In the spring of 2006, I established a service called Final Journey. This service helps prepare for honouring the loss of our pets. My focus is creation of a ceremony to celebrate their companionship and love. I have completed the pet bereavement internship with Dr. Sife through the Association for Pet Loss and Bereavement. This experience has reinforced my belief in the need to understand that the loss of animal companions is as devastating as the loss of human companions — and sometimes even worse.
As a lifelong animal guardian I have experienced the loss of many companion animals over the years. I know that pain of this loss is not dulled with repetition. However, with time, talking and tears our bereavement becomes a part of the history we share with each of our wonderful companions. In my role as the Director of Final Journey, I have learned that compassion and care help in the transition from sorrow to acceptance. An important thing to remember is that we will never forget the loyalty and love of our pets, or the time we shared together.
Steven Potje, B. Admin, BSW- Honours, O.A.S.W
I am a member of the Ontario Association of Social Workers. I have been working with adults in the human service arena (primarily in adult mental health) for the past 19 years.
As a pet owner and pet lover who has experienced a number of profound pet losses, I began to develop an interest in the area of pet bereavement and consequently completed my pet loss counsellor training with the APLB. I am also a volunteer assistant host with the APLB Pet Loss Support Chatroom.
My goal is to always move a bereaved person from profound grief to memorial, tribute, and resolution. Subsidies are available for low income clients. I am available to speak with anyone concerning counselling needs.
Bereavement Support & Education-Ottawa
4 Nobleton Avenue
Ottawa, Ontario K1G 6A6
Phone: (613) 858-3113
I am a graduate of The Death & Grief Studies Certification Program from The Center For Loss & Life Transition in Fort Collins, Colorado. I have also recently completed The APLB Certification Program in Pet Loss. I have been a grief educator for the last 5 years. Our company offers grief support groups in and around the Ottawa area. In addition to groups, we offer one-to-one grief counselling sessions. I am also a member of the after-care program with Tubman Funeral Homes in Ottawa, offering workshops in grief education and pet loss.
I believe it is critical that pet loss be acknowledged as a major area of grief and bereavement. While it is not possible to compare any grief with another, losing a pet is a significant loss to any responsible pet owner. These grievers must have access to the necessary counselling to guide them through their journey of loss. There needs to be a safe environment available where grievers can tell their stories without being judged.
Kara Burrow, BA — Honours, P.G.C.E.
Grief Recovery and Pet Loss Support
I am a Grief Recovery Edu-Therapy™ Specialist with the Grief Institute of Canada and I have also completed the APLB Certification Program in Pet Loss. In 2005 I gave up classroom teaching to combine my passion for working with children and helping animals. I founded Bella Misty Meadows, a not-for-profit animal sanctuary, where I paired unwanted and rescued animals with children and adults who were experiencing their own struggles. Today we are a fully functional Animal Assisted Learning Facility, specializing in helping those who have suffered the loss of a loved one, both human and animal.
Over the years we have welcomed many wonderful, deserving animals to Bella Misty Meadows and we have also said goodbye to just as many. Experiencing the loss of each of these good friends has taken its toll, but I have also found ways to process and understand the losses and this has inspired and trained me to help others. I offer private education based sessions either with or without the animals, as well as support groups where you can meet with fellow grievers who understand how you feel.