Do animals leave the body before dying?

Do animals leave the body before dying? Where do animals go when they die? Watch the video below, read the article below or scroll down for the complete video transcript.

by Danielle MacKinnon

If you’re looking for relief or understanding around the grief of losing your pet, my What Your Pet Wants You To Know When They Die Video Manual can give you some much needed information and inspiration!

The Animal Communicator Experience

I’ve been a professional animal communicator for twenty years (not sure what that is? Read What is Animal Communication). In that time, I’ve worked psychically with thousands of people and their beloved pets in all phases of the dying process: from getting ready to cross over to firmly on the Other Side. Right now, you may be wondering, “I think my dog is dying” or “I’m worried my cat is dying and I don’t want her to suffer.” Perhaps you’re thinking about what your beloved pet just went through and hoping they didn’t suffer.

When you’re in that worried, concerned state about the animal in your life, it can be hard to think straight. When you let your fears run rampant, it becomes really hard to go through the dying process with your pet.

On the bright side, through my work as an animal communicator, I’ve learned that the dying process is actually very well planned out and there isn’t as much suffering as you might think.

I’m going to share with you a little bit about what the animals have psychically shared with me about their dying process.

where do animals go when they die

When Does the Soul Leave the Body: The Dying Process Steps

Step 1: Animal Soul Decisions

Animals choose how, when, why, and where as well as WHO will (or won’t) be with them when they cross over. At the deepest level (the soul level) there’s an incredible spirituality to each individual crossing over. Want more videos to help you cope with the grief around losing your pet? Get my free What Your Pet Wants You To Know When They Die Video Manual
The reality is: everything is really already figured out before the crossing even begins!

Step 2: Begin the Separation of Spirit and Body

You’ll find this step comforting if you’re wondering when does the soul leave the body. Regardless of HOW the animal is going to cross over, before passing, the animal starts leaving their body prior to the actual moment of death. It doesn’t matter if the crossing occurs through an “accident,” euthanasia, or a natural passing: the spirit gets a head start. Animals show me psychic pictures to illustrate how their body and spirit are separating and these visuals help the animal’s humans too.

The spirit’s head start means the more disconnected the animal’s spirit is from their body, the less they “feel” through their passing.  The spirit is distracted with the separation process between the physical body and the spirit , so there is less connection to the physical body experience.

Step 3: The Energy Surge

It’s a big job for an animal to crossing to the other side and it requires a lot of energy to complete. The last step in the process of the animal soul leaving the body comes through this energy surge. Sometimes, (although not always) the animal spirit needs a bigger push to finally leave the body.  That surge can come through an obvious source – like getting run over by a car but it can come through other places as well.

  • A physical experience like a seizure
  • Euthanasia (the drug itself)
  • The seeming “fighting” that can sometimes happen during euthanasia
  • The “I’m suddenly totally fine” thing that happens with some animals just before they die

That final energy surge, in whatever form it comes, acts as the last push to separate the animals physical body and spirit.

Animal Souls Leaving the Body

For me, knowing that animals aren’t quite all the way when they are about to pass over has been very comforting. In my work I see so much trauma and pain with animals and their humans. It helps to know that they aren’t experiencing their passing the way I have feared they were.

Hopefully it’s helping you too. Want more videos to help you cope with the grief around losing your pet? Get my free What Your Pet Wants You To Know When They Die Video Manual


Today we’re going to talk about what happens to the soul of an animal or your beloved pet when that pet dies.

Hi, my name is Danielle Mackinnon, I’m an animal communicator, that means animal psychic. This means that I talk to animals that have crossed over as well as animals that are here psychically connecting in with them using my intuition as my everyday job. I am going share with you what the animals have shared with me about what really happens to the soul of an animal when that animal dies.

How Do I Know What Happens to the Animal Soul?

First of all, everything that I’m sharing with you is from the point of view of the animal in my intuitive connections with the animal. This isn’t something I heard somewhere. It isn’t something I read in a book. It isn’t something that some teacher taught me. It’s what the animals have shown me again and again in my connections with them. I can’t give you physical “proof” because I have not died and come back to tell you what it’s all like, I can only tell you what the animals tell me.

The Dying Process

The first thing that you need to know about the soul of an animal is that even when the animal is in their body, during their lifetime, they are very connected to their soul. Their soul comes with them when they embody into this lifetime. When they’ve completed their journey here, (meaning they have completed teaching whatever they came here to teach in their animal bodies) they decide that it’s time to cross over. Yes they decide this! Want more videos to help you cope with the grief around losing your pet? Get my free What Your Pet Wants You To Know When They Die Video Manual

The Decision

When they decide that they’re going to cross over, there’s a whole process that happens because the spirit and the soul need to disconnect from the body.  Yes, animal souls leave the body or at least start the process before the actual crossing over happens. Here’s how that physical process occurs. In this physical process we’ve got an animal body and then we’ve got the soul and the spirit enmeshed together.  What has to happen is those two need to disconnect so that the physical body can die and the soul and the spirit can continue on as they’re going to continue on.

So what actually starts happening is we’ve got this physical body and the spirit/soul starts to back out of the bum of the animal in order to start releasing from the physical body.  When I connect with an animal that is getting ready to cross over, I can see an outline of the spirit part way in the body (depending on how far along in the crossing over process the animal is).

So, funny-enough, the spirit backs out of the bum. You can kind of see this as it goes all the way along. Even right before the animal actually crosses over, you could see often psychically see a little bit of that energy still in the physical body using intuition.

The Push: How the Animal Leaves Their Body Once and For All

Once that spirit actually releases from the body, sometimes this comes with a big energy push. Euthanasia is an example.  If you’re getting help from the vet, some animals go through a big resistance.  They’ll start freaking out and going crazy.  That is the energetic push that is sometimes needed to get the spirit right out of the body. Once the spirit actually does detach from the body, the body can finally, fully die. The spirit is still there, the soul is still there, it’s all intact, but detached.

How Animals Share Their Crossing Over with Animal Communicators

What’s really cool about what happens to the animal soul is what animals show me about the afterward. They often share psychic visuals of looking down from above on the moment of their passing.  Maybe I see a person from above, with this kind of hair, a sofa… I’ll describe the scene accurately because the animal had that separation and awareness.


You probably started reading this because you were worried, “I think my dog is dying” or “I’m freak out about the dying process for my beloved pet.” And when you’re wondering what happens when the animal leaves their body, it can feel scary. Hopefully this article is helping you fee closer to your pet that is on the Other Side. We are still connected to our animals once they cross over. They’re still watching over us. They’re still aware of us, they’re even right in the moment of crossing seeing what’s going on.

Want more videos to help you cope with the grief around losing your pet? Get my free What Your Pet Wants You To Know When They Die Video Manual

89 replies
  1. Robin
    Robin says:

    We have had cats in our lives nearly as long as I remember. I have been visited by my cats who have passed on. Do you ever see movement out of the corner of your eye, and for a split second you think you see them? You look, and they vanish? That’s them, I’m sure of it. It’s happened to me 5 or 6 times with various cats over the years. Some, but not all. We had to say goodbye to our beautiful Bella this past Sunday. We do believe she chose the day, as we were all there, though not by her side. I was reading online when she popped in my head, and I knew I had to go and find her. She had just passed, as she was old and frail, and I know that was her wee soul saying goodbye to me. So often we fluff things off, but if we are in tune with the world around us, we can experience all measures of things, including being touched by souls.

  2. Robyn
    Robyn says:

    I volunteer with a pet rescue organization. Sometimes we have feral cats who end up in dangerous situations, not always surviving the experience. Even though these are not “pets” we do care about them. I wonder about their death experience and who would greet them in heaven – other cats they knew? Rescuers who have crossed over?

  3. Mia Evans
    Mia Evans says:

    Thanks for pointing out that the animal sounds would leave the body before the crossing over happens. It’s comforting to know that there are moments when they will still be around, especially when we need to be prepared for the passing of our dog. Its age is quite old by now, and we plan to choose pet cremation services when that day comes.

  4. Nelson
    Nelson says:

    I am familiar with many of the things discussed here as I know a prominent psychic and her protege. But psychic doesn’t mean pet psychic. I am devastated as many are when their furry friend passes away. I spent four years and two months caring for a liver shunt dog that was destined for the shelter and death. We became very close. He was humanlike in that he slept with his head on my pillow. He would sleep at my back. After he died, he visited me the next day by giving off his smell briefly. I am pretty distraught and have thought about just giving up on life to be reunited with him. I have a hard time eating and my stomach is in knots. I miss him so much that I find myself pretending that he’s there and petting the air. I want to know if he truly is there or not. I need to know how he is doing. I am like a parent to this dog and I am having a hard time coping. If someone out there in the universe can help me, I would be forever grateful.

    • Safa Khot
      Safa Khot says:

      Same feeling I’m going through right now because my pet rabbit 🐇 passed away who was with me for almost 05 years

    • Aliya G
      Aliya G says:

      I feel you so much, it’s only day 2 since I held my 14 year old dying cat in my arms and buried him, & I told him I’ll be ok and he can go and he had a surge threw up dark blood and coughed last breath, but I’m not ok at all, I lost interest in everything & just can’t stop crying all day all nights, can’t even enjoy eating because I have to pretend I share a piece with my cat… he came into my dream the second night not the night he died when I waited for that but it’s still not enough I wish I held his dead body a little longer… this is heartbreaking, but soothing to know what they go through in this process

      • Josh
        Josh says:

        I’m so sorry for what you’re going through. I also lost my beloved cat a few days ago and have been doing the same things as you. I think it’s all normal and part of the grief process. I lit a candle for him last night and also felt like he was right next to me and I was petting him. I also have been smelling all the places he used to lay.

        • Stacy
          Stacy says:

          Same. My Jax passed yesterday laying in front of the glass sliding door in the sun and didn’t find him until I walked in the room a half an hour later from getting home from work and he was stiff. Devastated, I feel empty and like a piece of my soul is missing so I am doing the same things. Sorry for your loss. I didn’t know my cats real age because I found him as a stray and the vet said he was two years. He had to have been 10 and not 8, he seemed so healthy idk why he had to leave. This web page helps. I hope it’s all right because I want Jax to have the best life, and I hope he is free and happy. I miss him so much, wish I could’ve said goodbye.

    • Julie
      Julie says:

      Nelson, I completely understand what you are feeling. I wish I could say it will get better, but sadly, I don’t think it will.
      My dog died 4-1/2 years ago; my stomach is still in knots; I still think of him (and cry) nearly every day: and occasionally I too think about ending this life on the off chance that I will see him again when I die. I am not 100% sure I’ll see him when I die,, but I am 100% sure I won’t see him here.
      Maybe though, the answer is to consider who you are. You are a person who adopted – and loved – a special needs dog. Most people wouldn’t do that. If not for you, your sweet dog would not have known that kind of love. How sad would that have been? And he, no doubt, would have been put down. You are a special person with a rare quality. There are very few people who would adopt a special needs dog. And many of those that do, do it for appearances only. To create an illusion that they are something they are not. They never bond with the dog – it’s merely a prop in their fake life. But you are obviously the real deal. The “owner” every dog in the rescue is praying for, but few will ever know. And even fewer special needs dogs.
      Not trying to make you feel obligated to rescue another dog, but to offer something else to think about. Maybe the love you have for your dog can be an inspiration for you to rescue another loveable dog that everyone else wants to throw out. There will never be another dog like your other dog, but other dogs will have other traits that you’ll love. After you get another dog, It might take awhile for you to see those traits, so please give it time. I think our memories of our other dog can make it so we don’t readily feel or see the new dog at first. We aren’t as open to them. And of course it will take some time to love them as deeply as we loved our other dog. So try not to compare. And don’t sell yourself short and think you aren’t capable of loving another dog. Give it time. Time for you and the dog to bond to each other. It will happen. You’ll always miss your boy. As I still miss mine. But eventually it won’t hurt as bad.

  5. Jonathan
    Jonathan says:

    I cant bear to look at the beautiful animals in the countryside because I know that they are all here to be killed for food and maybe they dont know it.I also see the lorries full of sheep all crammed in on the way to be killed.This is traumatic for me to see and spoils my day when witnessing this.Ive stopped eating meat 8 years ago for this reason.Can you give any answers on this complex subject ?

  6. Mandy
    Mandy says:

    I found this article because my dog is in end stage liver failure and I have seen the light disappearing from his eyes. I love him more than I can say. We have been trying everything to help him be as happy and comfortable as he can be at this incredibly hard time. I woke the other night because I had this overwhelming vision of him standing up at the foot of my bed and happily looking to me before walking into light. It felt so real, but I was half asleep. It’s been several days since then and he seems like a different boy. Tired and lacking many of his signature characteristics. I see a glint of him here or there, especially on hikes in the woods. I know his time is growing short now and I don’t want him to suffer. But I have this weird feeling that a large portion of his spirit is already gone. Just a small bit of him is still in there. I’m not sure how soon before death a dog can start leaving, but I think he knows I can’t handle this. And he is leaving very slow to help me cope. I feel like I am losing bits of him every day. My heart is breaking.. but I know he a soulate. I could see him having the wisdom to do this for me.. he is selfless and always has been. I just thought I was being nuts about it. You know?

  7. Hannah
    Hannah says:

    My 6 year old cat died suddenly in a matter of seconds and before she passed she got up and looked at me and collapsed would that be seen as them looking for comfort from us or them trying to comfort us or them saying goodbye I because it was so sudden I’m struggling to get past that moment and guilt that I reacted with panic not comfort.

  8. Geraldine Fournier
    Geraldine Fournier says:

    If cremation is the chosen method, should you wait 24 hours to allow the spirit and soul to fully transition?

    • Danielle MacKinnon
      Danielle MacKinnon says:

      Hi Geraldine – I’ve never encountered an animal asking for this. From my experience, once they die, they leave the body. No waiting period on the animal’s part is needed. On the human’s part though, maybe some time is needed. Just to adjust. I hope that helps.

      • Jade
        Jade says:

        Is there any way for a reading I had a pet gone yesterday and I literally can’t breathe the pain is so bad I feel as I can’t go on

  9. Lisa
    Lisa says:

    My dog of 17 years passed away a few weeks ago. I wasn’t able to be with him however, about 4 hours before he died I imagined him in his bed (which is where he naturally took his last breath) and I ‘saw’ him sit I and look at me with wide eyes, stared at me, then laid back down. My ears were ringing and I felt a sense of peace come over me…and him. I have NO doubt that his spirit was leaving his body at that point and made that connection with me…and everything you’ve written in this article seems to confirm that, and gives me so much comfort!

    • Danielle MacKinnon
      Danielle MacKinnon says:

      I’m glad to hear that the article gave you some comfort. I’m so sorry for your loss. Sending you my love <3

  10. Carol
    Carol says:

    My soulmate, Kylee, passed early this morning. She had CHF and had an attack that left her needing oxygen and hospitalization. I made the difficult decision to let her go. She actually confirmed my decision because she stopped looking at me and started looking at my friend instead. This is a dog that would never take her eyes off of me. She went quickly. Was her soul and spirit beginning to leave and was her looking away proof of that? I’m incredibly heartbroken and pray she will come to me in my dreams.

    • Danielle MacKinnon
      Danielle MacKinnon says:

      How incredible that you were able to trust that sign. They do begin to leave the body before they actually cross over – however, it looks more like she was giving you the “sign.” Sending you my love <3

  11. Joan
    Joan says:

    A note from Singapore. My bestie and soulmate, Shiro – Samoyed golden, 8 years n 9 months passed away yesterday afternoon and I was so devasted. She was eating as usual except her pee was irregular for the past few weeks which I thought was UTI as she recovered for a while. However, she started not to eat a few days ago. I felt a sense of great guilt that I should have brought her to see a vet earlier. I was feeling empty and cried non-stop from yesterday till this morning. My 7th-year-old daughter was crying as well and she might not understand the concept of death. I am trying to handle her emotions while trying to cope with mine. While I was grieving and searching for answers to my guilt, I stumbled into your website and it really helped me to understand her passing. Thank you so much Danielle!

    • Danielle MacKinnon
      Danielle MacKinnon says:

      Hi Joan in Singapore. I’m so sorry for your loss of Shiro. Sending you my love and please give my love to your daughter as well. I’m so glad to know that my website is helping you both. <3

  12. Deanna
    Deanna says:

    Thank you Danielle, for the reassurance. I’m still grieving the loss of my 3 yr old cat Harley. He was hit we think by one of our neighbors as she was rushing to work. ( she seems clueless) He was still alive when I found him a couple hrs later, but an emergency trip to the vet revealed a severely broken pelvis, and both back legs. I was given the option of several surgeries, weeks of rehab, a huge expense, (thousands) and no guarantees that any of this would make him able to walk or even use his kitty litter without my help. I didn’t want to make him spend the rest of his life (10-15 yrs?) like that so I took the option to euthanize him. You mentioned in one of your videos that some animals are more connected to us than others. Although I very much love, and have loved every animal I’ve had in my life whether a few hours, days, or yrs. He was a little more special to me, as HE rescued me! He showed up as an 8 week old stray kitten in my backyard the same weekend one of my older girls was leaving this world. He was a big help through the grieving for her. He was a gift! He appeared a week before Halloween 2017, and left a week before Halloween 2020. Yes, coincidentally! I’m so grateful to have been the person he chose to hold him his first time, and his last! But I can’t help but ask why he chose to leave so young? Did I not learn the lesson he was here to teach me? Or had I, and his journey with me was finished? Why so soon? I also found it troubling that even though his spirit would have at this point be leaving his body a head of time, when the vet tech rolled him on his side for the injections, he let out a cry of pain, which was heartbreaking! Another strange thing that happened well before all of this was the appearance of another similar colored ginger cat long haired too. May have been a long lost brother from the litter. He hung around for a couple months before I lost Harley, and a few days after, then he too disappeared. It’s as if HE was on a mission as well. I know this post is long and full of questions. I’m hoping some answers will be helpful in finding peace with the loss of this special boy.

  13. Fuschia
    Fuschia says:

    Thank you so much for your insight and words of comfort.
    My own cats are both fine at the moment and I treasure every day with them. I know they will travel onwards when they are ready according to their plan. As Seth says “they have things to do” that gives me joy and comfort because their spiritual development is assured

    What is really upsetting me is hearing about the dog and cat meat trade and the horrible suffering that these poor animals go through. I asked archangel Michael for help and he directed me to you. I also got an image of a pair of wings with a sphere (earth?) in the middle – I can’t get over the horror and agony that these animals feel. I am praying that their spirits leave their bodies before the pain and it is only the body that is suffering All of our pets know they are loved but these animals die in loneliness And agony
    Is there any comfort to be had? Are the animals loved now and safe? Do they choose this awful path and why? I’m praying that humans rise in consciousness as we can’t carry on like this. X

  14. Wei
    Wei says:

    “…animals choose how, when, why, and where – as well as WHO will (or won’t) be there with them when they cross over,…” – finding it hard to understand that my merely 5.5 month old, seemingly happy kitten would choose such a distressful way to go so soon. Before he went, he was in such pain that he was pitifully meowing for help and trying to crawl to me. There are so many reasons as to why I’m utterly devastated but this is one of the worst sources of my grief and pain. Please do explain. I’m hoping some level of understanding may help me through my grief. I’m in rescue, all on my own, as there is virtually no support where I am and have lost too many, that it’s now truly difficult to accept and comprehend all of them. I don’t even feel like I can continue with my rescue efforts. Thanks.

    • Rain
      Rain says:

      Wei, I’m so very sorry for your loss. I lost my youngest son (who happened to have 4 legs and paws) in 2016, and I still cry every time I think of him – which is a lot. So I can empathize with how you feel, and my heart breaks for you. As far as why your little one would have chosen to pass away the way he did, I certainly don’t claim to have all the answers, but I do believe that there is a much bigger picture than the one we each see in our day-to-day lives. Before we are born (and after we die), we have a clear view of that bigger picture. We see how a death in a certain way will help a person be more loving, more compassionate, or perhaps even more forgiving. My baby was sick for a few days prior to his passing. I fully believe that he knew I would not be able to handle it if it was sudden, so those few days prevented that from happening. Don’t get me wrong. It was still nearly unbearable, but at least I wasn’t completely caught off guard. Maybe your kitten went through a sick period for the same or similar reason. I don’t have an answer as to why he would have chosen to be in pain. Maybe it was so that you would ask the questions you’re asking now. These questions are prompting you to dig deeper into life, death, and God. We may not know the answers now but I have no doubt we will see clearly after we pass on, then it will all make sense. Sending love and prayers to you as you grieve for your precious family member.

  15. Darlie aka Beautiful Darling
    Darlie aka Beautiful Darling says:

    Sorry bad typos in my last message. I meant to say we now have our kitty’s ashes home with us.

  16. Darlie aka Beautiful Darling
    Darlie aka Beautiful Darling says:

    Danielle I am grieving so badly for my beloved cat. I’m racked with guilt and cannot stop crying. I miss her dearly, so does my teenage daughter. Our gentle kind kitty found us when she was only a 1.5 years old. We loved her everyday up until her death. She was our only pet and had so much love from us and returned it tenfold back to us. She died three days ago at the age of ten years old. Over a week and a half we noticed her tummy got a lot bigger (she wasn’t pregnant she was neutered) then we also noticed her spine muscle mass was waning. Over a period of a week and half she become lethargic and didn’t want to play with her favourite toys but she still ate (she loved her food!) She still came for cuddles, she was super affectionate and saw me through some very difficult times. Were are preparing to move home into the countryside my daughter, myself and our beloved kitty but it was not to be because she isn’t coming with us as she passed. My ‘senses’ knew something was looming, the night before she died, as usual, she followed me upstairs to go to sleep (she always chose to sleep under my bed on her blanket but would always relax with me before I turned off the light) this night we went into my bedroom and she jumped onto my bed and froze. I sat on my bed and the most grotesque deathly smell loomed on a section of my bed. My cat took one sniff and scarpered straight under my bed and I had no idea where it came from! Moments later the overwhelming smell totally vanished. It was very odd. It smelt of rotting flesh!

    The next day my kitty had her breakfast went outside on the decking and sunbathed for a bit then came back in the could barely breathe. Her mouth was open, her breathes were very shallow and deep and her eyes were glazed, she seemed as though she wasnt wholly present. I immediately called the vet and took her. The vet took blood tests and examined her while we waited in the car (due to covid19) I felt guilty not being able to be with her. She was always nervous with anyone else except my daughter and I. The blood test came back normal, her heart was normal beats, her kidney was fine but she had fluid built up in her tummy and on her chest (lungs). The vet gave her a steriod injection and a 10 day course of tablets to reduce fluid. They basically would make her drink and wee more.

    When the three of us returned home, she was breathing normal but very very weak, her back legs were very wobbly and she slept and looked exhausted. She was very restless, she was so exhausted but kept moving from her bed in lounge to her blanket in the bedroom then outside in the garden having to keep pausing after a few steps (I think to catch her breath? Or she was in pain?) Eventually she managed to get to the end of the garden and peered at the fence. I knew she was thinking of getting over it to disappear to die so I scooped her up gently and brought her in the house. She then laid away from us in the lounge and her breathing become very bad again. Her mouth was open and those shallow long breathes were very noticeable and her eyes looked empty. I called the vet again, it was an emergency vet as the daytime vet wasnt there who treated her. When we got to the vets her breathing calmed again and she was breathing through her nose not her mouth. The vet looked her while we again had to wait in the car. He called me and scared me with over inflated prices for care for her, “Her heartbeat is irregular”….i reply, ” That could be done to the steroids though. Her heartbeat was normal before other vet gave her steroids”…he says, “Well its irregular now. She got worse. I don’t want to send her home breathing like this and to keep her here overnight on ventilation will cost you £1500. Then I’ll want to do a x-ray to see what’s going on inside her” so I reply, “£1500! For overnight ventilation, seriously? And we know what’s wrong with her she has fluid in her tummy and in her lungs”…. He says, ” I suggest you euthanise her. She’s in pain. It’s what I would do”

    We took her back into our car and my daughter and I stroked her and she was very calm, her breathing seemed normal but my daughter said it wasnt. Her chest is breathing heavy breaths and we should do right by her. Reluctantly we agreed to have her euthanised and the vet allowed me into the room to be with her. My daughter didn’t want to witness her passing. Again our kitty was very very calm. The vet said she didn’t even flinch as he put in the catheter. I stroked her and told her we loved her and we will miss her. She tucked her head in towards her belly and died.

    The vet left the room to sort out prices for cremation. He was quite abrupt. But he was gone at least 10 minutes and it gave me time with her. I keot stroking her and just as vet left the room, I see her take her final breath. It seemed final and cried. I haven’t stopped crying since. That night I decided I did not want that creation that vet arranged. I found a pet crematorium near to where I live and they were so tender. I told them I want her individually cremated. I collected my kitty from the vets and took her to the new place and talked to her the whole journey there, whilst crying again. When we reached there, they had a goodbye room. I spent more time with her (10 mins or so) and decided to keep her ashes and have them put inside a sleeping wooden cat urn and that way she can still come with us to our new home in the country as we planned before.

    Part of me feels guilty thinking if I gave the tablets a chance to work she might still be with us? What if I didn’t listen to that vet that seemed to just want money? What if I made a terrible decision and she would still be with us? I’m having so many beautiful memories of her funny little ways and it makes my cry and then im riddled with guilt and that makes me cry.

    Please someone give me some advice.

    The night she died, I cried in my bed, I couldn’t sleep but I tried I was exhausted too. I lay bellyside down on my bed crying in my pillow and I heard a faint scratch at my bedroom door (same as the scratch she did with her paw to open the slightly ajar door) then I felt my hair being nuzzled and it soothed me so much.

    The next day my daughter said that around the same time just after I went to bed she heard the microchipped catflap go. I then told her what I experienced. We don’t know if she was coming or going in through the catflsp but she was our only pet and only she could come in or out the microchipped catflap.

    • Katy
      Katy says:

      I just had to say goodbye to my 14 year old beautiful dachshund. She was sick and I didn’t understand the magnitude. She was sick at least once a month with upset stomach. I thought it was just the same thing happening until she went limp and cold ..she wasn’t there in her eyes anymore…it was like her spirit was leaving already when I picked her up for the last time off the floor. I was in the same situation as you- I took her to the ER..the vet didn’t even come and y’all to me for an hour I was sitting in a room alone wondering what was happening..they were so “busy” and pushy….she passed away there after I left her to stay overnight- they were pushing euthanasia bc they were so busy…I couldn’t make a decision…I couldn’t say yes …I question if I made the right decisions…..the trauma of that whole experience I’m really struggling with. I can relate…and this all happening during COVID…my husband couldn’t help me with any decisions- I was alone in it at the vet. But – her spirit was leaving before we ever left the house…I could tell In her eyes. I find comfort knowing that possibly the last thing she hopefully remembers was me holding her..bc she couldn’t hold her head up anymore. Her pupils were so tiny and she just wasn’t there anymore. I’m sad she died alone…but then I have to remind myself that I don’t think she was alone- like Danielle says…they are separating their spirit from the body…and I have to choose to believe this..because that’s exactly what I felt and experienced with my baby in her final hours. I think her body was holding on but her spirit was leaving. I got to tell her I loved her. I told her to wait for me. Gosh I’m sorry ..I’m making this about my experience…just know I can relate and I’m so sorry. It’s so traumatic when our pets leave us being sick…

      • Darlie aka Beautiful Darling
        Darlie aka Beautiful Darling says:

        I’m so sorry you too went through the heartache and the very difficult decision you did. I know have our kitty’s home with us and since I have my separation anxiety has calmed down a fair bit.

        The grief is so hard to manage but I feel allowing your emotions to be free to feel what they need to is healthy. We loved and nurtured our pets and offered the best we thought was right by them. Even if our guilt and regret overcomes us.

        In my heart I look forward to reuniting with her when it’s my time to cross over.

    • Katy
      Katy says:

      My dog also had fluid or “gas” around her abdomen cavity…the vet said it was sepsis…sounds like we had a similar experience…I’m happy to talk to you through email if you need someone.

    • Rain
      Rain says:

      Darlie, I read your story and cried with you. It sounds like you gave your baby a wonderful, loving life. The alternative – had you not taken her in – could have resulted in a much different path for her. On the day my little Yorkie passed, I almost took him to the emergency vet clinic but didn’t. For quite a while I had the same question you’re asking yourself: what if? I’ve since come to believe that he would have passed whether he was home or at the vet’s office. They had already decided the ‘when’. The only thing we can possibly affect is the ‘where’. Perhaps if you hadn’t made the decision you made, she would have suffered for hours and hours before passing. No doubt, that would have crushed you every time you thought about it. You would be asking yourself ‘why didn’t I help her to go peacefully at the vet’s office’? It’s so hard to see sometimes, but I know in my heart there is a Perfect plan. Although we may not see it clearly now, someday we will. I can’t express how sorry I am for the pain you and your daughter are going through. It’s been a couple of months since you posted this, so I hope and pray you are at least starting to heal just a bit. We will never, ever forget them nor will we ever stop missing them. But hopefully as time goes on you will be able to offset some of the grief with gratitude that not only was she in your life but that she taught you so much. You can also feel good knowing that through you and your daughter, she got to experience what being loved unconditionally felt like. Someday you will be together again. I have no doubt about that. Until then, may the beautiful memories and love she gave you soothe the overwhelming pain of grief.

    • Rain
      Rain says:

      Darlie, I read your story and cried with you. It sounds like you gave your baby a wonderful, loving life. The alternative – had you not taken her in – could have resulted in a much different path for her. On the day my little Yorkie passed, I almost took him to the emergency vet clinic but didn’t. For quite a while I had the same question you’re asking yourself: what if? I’ve since come to believe that he would have passed whether he was home or at the vet’s office. They had already decided the ‘when’. The only thing we can possibly affect is the ‘where’. Perhaps if you hadn’t made the decision you made, she would have suffered for hours and hours before passing. No doubt, that would have crushed you every time you thought about it. You would be asking yourself ‘why didn’t I help her to go peacefully at the vet’s office’? It’s so hard to see sometimes, but I know in my heart there is a Perfect plan. Although we may not see it clearly now, someday we will. I can’t express how sorry I am for the pain you and your daughter are going through. It’s been a couple of months since you posted this, so I hope and pray you are at least starting to heal just a bit. We will never, ever forget them nor will we ever stop missing them. But hopefully as time goes on you will be able to offset some of the grief with gratitude that not only was she in your life but that she taught you so much. You can also feel good knowing that through you and your daughter, she got to experience what being loved unconditionally felt like. Someday you will be together again. I have no doubt about that. Until then, may the beautiful memories and love she gave you soothe the overwhelming pain of grief.

  17. martie
    martie says:

    My beautiful Jessica crossed the rainbow bridge 3years ago today and my heart is till battling to accept this. how do i get over her death. i found another Lilly also yorkie and shes like Jess’s double yet so different. will i ever see Jess in my after life?

  18. Jenny M
    Jenny M says:

    Thank you Danielle. Your article has been so comforting, as I’m grieving over the loss of our beautiful dog just over a week ago. He was a gentle giant with soft eyes and a sweet personality. In a way, he seemed too good for this world and I always had the feeling that he wouldn’t have a long life, though I hoped and prayed that I was wrong. Until three weeks before he died, he seemed strong and healthy. Then we noticed he was having trouble emptying his bladder, and a scan showed an enormous cyst obstructing his urine flow. He was miserable and in pain, so we consented to him having the cyst surgically removed and he was neutered at the same time to stop it returning. We lovingly nursed him and thought he was starting to recover, but a few days later he went downhill fast. Then we received the devastating news that lab results showed he had an aggressive cancer, but chemo and other meds would prolong his life by a few more weeks. We declined, as it would only prolong his suffering and the light had already gone from his eyes. He stopped eating and drinking even when we tried to hand feed him his favourite food, and we knew for certain that it was time to let him go. We requested home euthanasia, and that very same day the vet came to our home and put him to sleep. Our beautiful boy’s ending was so peaceful and dignified, and beautiful in its own way. This was the only thing that gave us comfort during this distressing time. Just as the vet drove away with our dog’s precious body, a vivid rainbow formed in the sky and we took this to be a sign that he had gone safely to Rainbow Bridge. Our biggest regret, and the one that causes most pain, is the unnecessary major surgery we put him through in the belief that he would be cured. But there was no way of knowing at the time (even the surgeon was shocked by the lab results which came in a week later) that it was the wrong decision. The cancer had been missed. But no-one was to blame, and I am forever grateful that the vet came to our home so quickly, and helped him cross over with peace and dignity. He was put to sleep on his favourite bed while we stroked him and talked gently to him, reassuring him that he would be ok. It helps to know that our sweet boy may have orchestrated his illness and the circumstances before and during his passing. This is enormously comforting. My heart goes out to who have shared their story. Losing our pets, especially in tragic circumstances, can be unbearably painful. Love and light to you all. xxx


    Thank you Danielle. I just lost my Rat and now i could connect all the dots from last 5 days! Thank you.

    With love from India!

  20. Ivory
    Ivory says:

    Hello, it’s been over 3 years since my 6 year old doggie passed away from cancer. One day we noticed a bump in his throat and his breathing rapidly so we took him to the vet to get checked out. When he was diagnosed with cancer he passed away 5 days later. I have so much guilt and regrets, I wish I had put him down once I found out he had the worst most terrible stage 4 kind of cancer, but I didn’t. I didn’t even know dogs could get cancer, I didn’t know what to do and I’m ashamed. He was throwing up blood he was breathing so fast I shouldn’t have been so stubborn but I couldn’t imagine life without him so I tried saving him. The day before he passed away I bought Cbd for cancer dogs hoping it would atleast calm his breathing I hate myself for it… but I knew if I didnt have tried anything to save him, I would of regretted it the most. On the 4th day I came home from work and I was laying with him and I decided I need to let him go and the next morning was when I was going to the vet to let him go, but before I could of done that, my dog started dying. He was breathing so fast like an asthma attack that I started to freak out I hate myself for it. I called every dog hospital and no one could help me, one man even laughed at me. I just wanted my dog to die peacefully and not the way he did. I dont know if he suffered the way I think he did, I hope he didn’t. I hope he didn’t feel much or anything at all. But I will never know and It replays in my head all the time. A big part of me feels like that’s how he chose to die, like he made his own path for his end. If I got him euthanized they would of just took him and that’s it. But because he died in my backyard, my dad came home and wrapped him in white silk with his blue pillow and carried him for the last time just like the way he brought him in. It was crazy, it’s like he knew i was leaving to get him euthanized. I didn’t have a car so i had to go to the doctors office to see which options were best. I don’t know why i couldn’t just have called i was so messy. But i knew i needed to see and talk to the doctor physically because it was very serious to me.
    We dropped him off at a shelter since the government said it would of tooken 24 hours to get him. Fuck that. I hope my dog isn’t mad at me. I hope he forgives me for not spending enough time with him. I hope he’s happy. Reading your article gave me a little bit of peace so thank you. If tears could of saved him, he would have lived forever.

  21. Kelly
    Kelly says:

    So interesting! Last week we said goodbye to our 29year old horse. He’d been unwell for some time but things shifted. As he became more unwell, it happened that we lost our phone and internet services…. in fact all communication. It may be coincidental, but he had such a spirit. Our home seemed stuck/in limbo for nearly two weeks. When we finally had him euthanised (which was super tough), things were restored in all kinds of ways . It could be my imagination….

  22. Sundus
    Sundus says:

    Hi !
    I had a pug and he dies today !
    He raised his tail while taking his last breath
    Can you please tell me if it meant something !

  23. Sharon
    Sharon says:

    Hi, I wanted to tell our story.
    I married a man who had horses, and he had to hide his two favorite horses from his soon to be ex, because she was a real piece of work. He hid them at a friend’s horse farm in another state.
    The one horse stayed there, he was a stud and could do some good there. Thunder came with us. He was a beautiful 12 year old Clydesdale.
    Thunder picked up the mites that cause scratches, an infection in their feather area, or at least it ended up that way, it could have been avoided but care was not given. By the time we got him back, his scratches had him swollen so bad his lower limbs looked like pineapples. He had gotten the infection in his lymph nodes too and we worked and worked on him to get rid of it. We shaved, washed and medicated his legs. We gave antibiotics twice a day. I’m sure there were other things the veterinarian did, but after a while, a couple years, he was just miserable. He was barely raising his head and was just droopy. His fight had left.
    So my husband, made the hard decision, and we decided to assist in his death. (I hate even saying that).
    We obtained a burial place from the barn owner, and took the long walk back to the woods, where the rancher had dug a large hole for his burial plot.
    We all stood around him, and I was at his head. I held his head still while the vet put the needle in, and he pushed the meds fast, and it was sort of slow motion, but he went pretty quick. As his last breath was leaving his body, I must have breathed in, because I felt it, sort of, and then I turned around and looked over my left shoulder, and he was standing over there, in spirit form, looking at us like what’s going on? And then he walked off, never to be seen again.
    He fell to his knees and we said our last goodbyes.
    Then we made our long, quiet walk back to the barn, and into our car. It was a final farewell to the barn, since we had no more horses, and I think very depressing as well. We have since recovered, but I will never forget the spirit of that gental giant after he had gone through me.

    • Christina
      Christina says:

      Hi, I would like to share my story as well. I was on a 4-day business trip and came back on a Saturday night. I was so happy to see my cat, Lola, who I’m extremely connected to. She’s my best friend and I felt bad leaving her for 4 days at home with my boyfriend. He threw a BBQ and had some friends over that night to celebrate a new job. My cat was hanging around all of us the whole night outside, and seemed to be very calm around the rambunctious boys. If he has his friends over, she usually hangs out at a good distance, so it was a little unusual. A raccoon came to her food bowl and I shooed it away. My cat does not feel threatened by raccoons and usually hangs out next to them in the yard. She didn’t want to come inside that night, so we left her outside, as usual. The last encounter I had with her is her looking straight in my eyes and giving me a soft meow. I woke up in the morning to find her dead in a yard across the street. She was missing all of her insides, no blood, and only her outside remained. This was the most tragic experience I’ve ever encountered. I couldn’t understand what happened, as she usually gets along with all animals and humans. I blamed myself for shooing the raccoon away, thinking I pissed it off and that initiated it to eat her. I even thought it could have been a messed up person who did it, because it was so brutal. I still don’t know what happened, or why. It just seems so unthinkable. But looking back, and discovering that animals know when they are going to pass 24-48 hours before, I had to accept that she chose this and she was trying to say goodbye. I have her spirit with me now, and know she’s not in any pain anymore. I choose to celebrate the life we shared, the memories, and that she is eternally present and with me in spirit form. Thank you for this article. It gave me hope that Lola didn’t suffer and endure the pain of her violent passing.

  24. Nancy
    Nancy says:

    I euthanized my boy on 5/1/17. It’s been extremely hard for me. We were soul mates. I’m not sure what was wrong with him. One day I came home and he couldn’t get up. His back legs were paralyzed. I let him rest and the next day he was better. I took him to a chiropractor and he was getting better. But, he was having problems fully emptying his bladder. I had to help him. I took him to the vet and they didn’t have any answers for me. For months I tried to help him. He had more and more trouble walking. Eventually his back legs were paralyzed. A few months later so were his front legs. I took him to the vet twice to euthanize him and I couldn’t do it. He had a strong will to live. Finally, my daughter was getting married out of state and I made the decision to do it. I didn’t have anyone that could watch him. My biggest problem is that I had a vet come to my house so he wouldn’t have to make the trip to the vet in the car. When he got there my boy was so upset. He was very anxious. He would calm down a little when the vet left the room. He came back into the room to get things started. I walked out of the room to sign the paperwork and make the payment. My boy was yelping for me. I came back in and talked to him and told him that we were going to help him. That he wouldn’t be in pain anymore. He just looked at me and listened. I told him everything was ok. The dr gave him the first sedative and he fought it for a few seconds. Then he just stared at me. At this point he was calm. I told him he was ok and I was ok, everything was ok. The vet gave him the final injection immediately. I talked to him while I was waiting for it to be over. His stare never changed. When vet said he was gone, I kissed him goodbye and laid his head down. I started to cry and told him i was so sorry. The vet then covered him up and took him. I didn’t spend any time with him after he was gone. I knew it was going to be hard, i was trying to be strong for him. I didn’t want him to be upset, or scared. My biggest problem is, I don’t know why he seemed so afraid. He always liked people, everyone. I never saw him like that in his life. I keep thinking that it wasn’t the right time. That he wasn’t ready to go. I keep thinking that I should have taken him with me, or found a vet to care for him while I was gone. I just can’t get over this feeling. It’s almost a year. Do you know why he would have been so upset?

  25. Susan
    Susan says:

    I’m so glad to hear this. When it was time to say goodbye to my Bugsy he went out kicking and screening. They had to hold him down. It was an aweful experience. My vet said it was because he had dementia. All my other animals went peacefully but not Bugsy. Made me rethink if I did the right thing. Still painful to remember the experience.

  26. Kathryn
    Kathryn says:

    When my dog got sick, the vet told me the dog would let me know when it was time to help her. I asked how? When the time came, the light left my dog’s eyes. They sparkled, always. Suddenly they were just dark. She did let me know. This information is a comfort to me that I knew what she communicated

  27. Martha Parks
    Martha Parks says:

    My dog, 13 year old Blue Heeler, Taz, who was blind but seemingly otherwise healthy died this past week. He was at the vet’s getting a dental which went well but as they were waking him up, he suddenly died. They tried to revive him for over 30 minutes but he was gone. My question is did he choose to exit this life while under sedation and pain free? I am so worried that I missed something, that he felt abandoned when I left, that he was scared. I have lost other animals but his was so very unexpected it has left me devastated. Can you help me understand? Thank you.

  28. Augusta Vigil
    Augusta Vigil says:

    Please help me understand. If an animal chooses their death and who is present, Why would ours do it so tragic? Upon returning home 2 days ago our 4 yr old Poodle Manilla jumped out of the car, my daughter and I seen headlights coming. My daughter tried to stop the vehicle he hit our dog (she witnessed everything) I ran from the passenger side and our dog was disfigured trying to walk to us, she picked up while I was going to drive. About 50 feet away she said “She’s dead” I floored the gas pedal and took Manilla in my arms I felt her chest pop so I assumed she was alive. The vet said she was gone. I can’t figure why is would be so tragic. Our other 2 dogs were present as well.

  29. Carolyn
    Carolyn says:

    Hi Danielle,
    I was wondering if sick pets have the ability or have a way of telling their owners that they want to die, to end their suffering? I think I made a huge mistake today by having a 4 month kitten euthenized on the advice of a vet. I picked her up off the streets (I’m in Asia) and I noticed she had difficulty breathing to the point she was gasping for air through her mouth. Based on an x ray the vet suspected that the kitten had a trauma which resulted in displaced intestines pressing on her lungs, which made it very difficult for her to breathe. The vet said that eventually she might get pneumonia and die. She had never seen a kitten in a similar condition survive. Although she was 4 months, her body size was that of a 2 month kitten. She barely ate and would stay in the corner most of the time. Despite these deteriorating signs, she would accept offers of food. She still had the appetite to eat but could not because, I suspect, she was in pain when she swallowed. Thus she barely ate when accepting food, but she would ask for food while I ate. I only had this kitten for a few days, but I’m heartbroken and regret that the time for euthenizing her was not right. She still wanted to live, even though she was suffering and was in pain. When I called her to me, she would come. She was showing signs that she wanted to live despite the suffering. My question is, do pets become so overwhelmed by their pain and suffering that they are driven to want to die? Do they have the ability to know that they want to die, like humans, do end the suffering? Do you know if they are capable of this type of awareness?

    Thank you.

    I’m trying to make sense of all this, I’d appreciate a response.


    • Danielle MacKinnon
      Danielle MacKinnon says:

      Hi Carolyn,
      First, let me say I’m so sorry for your loss. It doesn’t matter how long you’ve known an animal, it’s always a hard when one crosses to the other side. Animals can certainly tell us when they’re ready to pass – and it often has nothing to do with age. In my experience, talking with animals, their passing is never an accident and it’s never not supposed to have happened. Trust that you did the right thing and know your kitten is safe, happy, and at peace now. ~Danielle

  30. Sherry ZWICK
    Sherry ZWICK says:

    THANK YOU. I still struggle with highway deaths, cruelty and dead animals found on my property. Say nothing of the squirrels and birds my Christopher hunts, kills and eats. (This one is getting easier for some reason)

  31. Deni
    Deni says:

    We have lost our chihuahua 6 months baby dog two days ago in a very terrible way trying to put a strap on him, something went wrong and by mistake my husband pulled him harder with the strap, the dog strangled and died for seconds. It happened in front of my daughter, and we were shocked I didn’t know what is happening, couldn’t realize it, took her in side the room not to see him. We are feeling very bad now, missing him so much. Specially me, I got very depressed, can’t handle the pain from his absence.
    Can’t forgive my husband, because he killed him by mistake. Don’t know what to do, how to get over this.
    Please help me?

  32. Michael Cap
    Michael Cap says:

    This was the case with my German Shepherd. We had to rush him to the University of Auburn Teaching School of Veterinarian Medicine this past Sunday (03/12/17) week ago. He had a nose bleed and we told the doctors that money was not an issue and to do whatever it took to help him. My wife and I were planning a trip to see him Thursday morning (4 days later) but he went into cardiac arrest on Wednesday evening after two transfusions, bone marrow biopsy, several x-rays and being placed on a steroid. I remember one of the veterinarians there told me on Wednesday morning that he seemed more lethargic than he had ever been since his arrival but his vitals were good and he took the second transfusion well so his blood cell count was strong. Another odd occurrence that same day is that he ‘visited’ my wife early on Wednesday morning very briefly in her sleep (my wife is extremely sensitive to loved ones that have crossed over) and I also felt his presence that same morning when he was still ‘alive’ at the University. Looking back by wife said ‘ that was my sign, that his soul had left Wednesday morning well before his death Wednesday evening’. We were devastated…he came to ‘visit’ her early Saturday morning in a ‘dream’ because we were grieving so badly. He told her things that only him and I shared from a previous experience together two weeks prior….I guess i will stop the story here so as not to sound too bat s**t crazy….that is a story for another day, I suppose.

  33. Bobby McKnight
    Bobby McKnight says:

    Hello Danielle,
    yes, l have writen to you some time ago. When my Am Staff passed over..l had rescued her from California, an only had her only 22 , we were inseparable she was the apple of my eye an l was all hers. It was on Jan 25th that l took her to the vets to be put my surprise the vet did an xray on the terminal bone cancer tumor on her foot…and called me to come in right away..her foot was broken. She couldnt have the heart to tell me. Cause we both knew Gracie an I that if she ever broke her foot l would gave to put her down. Their was nothing more to do. That morning before l took her to the vet with my dear friend who Gracie adored. He was lying on the couch.. Gracie had jumped up on the couch led down near his feet and kicked his feet for a while. She really only did that to me. An she knew l loved then she jumped up into my bed that morning..l was in a semi fetal position sleeping on my side. Gracie slept with me every night. We always touched an she always moaned when l touched her..she loved her mama hard! when Gracie jumped up on the bed l was half asleep she curled up in a ball right in my chest. Luke she belonged their an moaned l put my arm around her an said..Awe look at you coming to give mum a love.. actually she was having her last complete closeness with me..l had no idea..when l brought her to the vet that it was the last day.. but she knew. She played it off real good in all with a broken foot…an how long did she have that..l cannot even think on that!. My precious Am Staff Gracie Mae..they love so hard!
    It’s been very hard losing’s rocked my entire world. But she comes to me in dreams. In certain songs that l live an haven’t heard for years. She comes throught!

  34. Heml
    Heml says:

    Good day Danielle!
    Thank you for sharing this. I picked up my dog in the field and he was dead. I carried him and cried like nobody’s business and then his heart started beating again. I then took him to the vet where he passed. Unsure what to take of this.
    Thank you!

  35. debra
    debra says:

    So comforted to hear this.I lost my boy in an accident and still feel sad about a euthanasia.I also worry about all the stray cats who are cold and hungry and the barbaric cruelty of animals today,such a comfort to understand this,thankyou danielle.As a beautiful thing that happend to us, my boy who was killed in a road accident,before he left the house it was strange because when we look back he had looked at me and jumped on to my lap,I immediately stroked him,then he moved across to my husband who just ignored him.”Stroke him!” I said,but he loved him greatly despite my telling him,and he stroked him too,my boy didn’t move until he was stroked,then he went to my son,who also stroked him.We were all sitting together and he literally went from one to the other,not moving until we stroked him,it was like he knew and was saying a last goodbye.

  36. Lisa Sargent
    Lisa Sargent says:

    I wonder if that is true for all of them? My Sophie was playing as usual the night before she died, running out from under the couch to fake attack me as she always did. The day she died (she was only two), my son had been home from the NICU for only 3 days (he had been there for 28 days because he was born 9 weeks early) and was lying in his bassinet in front of me and Sophie, who was sitting on my lap. At one point Sophie leaned forward to look at Harry. After a few minutes I gently brought her back to a sitting position and she came without a fuss. She had been with me during my bed rest and she exhibited all sorts of unusual behaviors. For example, she pushed books off my bed and then looked from me to my husband when we were having an argument. There were other things, but you don’t need to know all this to make my point, but when I think about that day, I also think about her behavior in the days before Harry’s birth. The day she died, my husband came home and I went to take a shower. When I got out of the shower I saw my other two cats in the second bath when I walked by and I said “where’s Sophie” because it seemed unusual for them to be in there. I came into the living room and saw her in the laundry basket and said “there you are!!”, but she didn’t respond which was so unlike her that I knew something was terribly wrong. She was gone. Just like that. She did nothing different before I showered. She was obviously ready to go. Her job was done. Did I just not notice? I can’t even imagine that. She was so full of life and we were so close. I knew from across the room that she was gone so I can’t imagine I wouldn’t have noticed her spirit was leaving. I still feel her loss deeply. It’s been 12 years.

  37. Beth Hofmann-Davies
    Beth Hofmann-Davies says:

    THANKYOU so much for this Danielle!!! And thank you to Colleen (your assistant?) for pointing me to it!!!💕

  38. Lee Wilkins
    Lee Wilkins says:

    When we had to cross our sheltie Gabby over last April first I just knew it was time. The had a very appointment that day anyway. I was giving her a bath so she would be pretty for the vet. She just looked at me with Sad eyes. He tumor was bigger then her poor little body. I finished giving her the bath and told my husband that it was time she wants to go. She sat on my lap on the way to the vet which she never does in the car. When we got there the vet agreeded with us. They took her to the back room to prepare her and put us in the Zen room. As we sat there I said I hope we are doing the right thing. With that my husband said there’s your sign on the floor was a beautiful rainbow prism. We held her in our arms and she kissed us. I knew she was happy with our decision. This thing that you wrote makes me feel better. I still miss her. Also I really enjoyed seeing you in Doylestown, PA.

  39. Neal
    Neal says:

    Yes, the connection to our physical bodies lessen as it slows down and weaken. As we near physical death we actually begin to live our true nature, that of spirit. The “dying” seem to exist in two worlds as they ready to shed their bodies. They see friends and family who have already passed as well as those of us who at their side. Once we pass, we remember that we were truly spiritual beings all along. I believe it’s the same for us and our animal companions.

  40. Ken
    Ken says:

    Danielle mentions that through this process animals feel less pain as they are dying, but why must animals or humans feel any pain at all when they are dying? Why can’t we all just drift off to sleep and not wake up? If it is true we all choose how we are going to die, why would anyone choose some of the horrible ways in which people die?

  41. Denise
    Denise says:

    I have always wondered about this, because I had read years ago that we also do the same before we die. Now knowing this helps me when I think of how cruel we are to animals. A couple of weeks ago a cat was beaten and put in a suitcase, then thrown into the river. Yep, the energy took a ding on that one — still bothers me! I still have a hard time wrapping my head around any animal allowing itself to be beaten like a piñata, tortured in a cage before it is butchered for meat, any of those scenarios. I am curious. When an animal has such a horrible ending, does that get carried into their next life?

  42. Janet
    Janet says:

    Before the two cats I have now, I had four furballs that I adopted from an older woman who became my friend and was a rescue worker. Each of the four cats had an amazing personality all their own. two were brother and sister, the others were from elsewhere. Together they were an amazing experienced, something that I treasured. And like any pet, when they get old and I mean like 15 yrs or more, things go wrong. My intention was always to feed, care and love them. mices to pieces. But I always feel guilty because I never have at the end of their lives the money for taking care of any health concerns that pops up. It is just too much for me to afford, so I feel intense emotional pain and sorrow for not keeping them alive, even though I know deep within my heart that it was their time to leave. I suppose I need to make it right with me, even though it was right with them. But two of my cats I can see in their eyes that they were not fully in their bodies. that spacey look. not fully focused.

  43. Ellen
    Ellen says:

    This is very reassuring. I’ve had profound encounters around death with animals as a result of being an equine barn manager and steward to animal companions…

    While one of my cats was in the process of slowing dying at my house, I was taking care of some AMAZING draft horses at another location. I was weeping at the thought of having to take my cat to the vet to be euthanized as I was bathing a goofy, wise and wonderful 18 hand Clydesdale named Chase. Without prompting, he told me in a ‘matter of fact’ way that “death is a part of life.” From this comment, I realized that animals are SO in touch with the dying process because they are part of the natural world. Having the rest of the information from Danielle has made a big difference in how I grieve beloved animals crossing over.

    I’ll tell one more quick story that I love….. I had been taking care of a herd of horses as barn manager and they were such a delight; each one having their own stories of former careers and life experiences. One of the horses was a spectacular and elegant 17 hand Russian Trakehner named El Brus, named after the Russian mountain range from where he was born. He was retired from a highly successful career as a Grand Prix show jumper. He was very proud of his career and liked it when I told visitors to the barn all about his success. A couple of months after I left my position at the barn, I came back to visit. I went out to the pasture to give him hugs and scratches and he came up to me as I approached; we were dear friends. About three hours later I got a call from a friend who still worked at the farm who told me the vet had been called because El Brus had a severe colic and was going to be put down. I was stunned and tried to get there to say goodbye before the vet euthanized him. I lived 30 minutes away and when I arrived, it was too late. I went to his body and kissed him and laid with him, even though he wasn’t alive. I was grateful for the time alone with him, getting to touch him and talk to him before he was buried, although it was crushing that he was no longer living. As I made my way back to my car and walked through the front gate to leave, I felt his spirit running free and flying off into the air above me. HE DID WAIT FOR ME! His Spirit was with his body when I laid next to him. I felt SO honored that we left the farm together.

  44. Susan
    Susan says:

    What about when we have an animal euthanized? I found a cat lying in a street many years ago, and tried to help her, but she was very sick. I ended up leaving her at a vet to be put down. I feel guilty that I didn’t do enough to help her, even though everyone told me it was for the best, as she was so sick. Is this still something that was decided by the cat? How do I know I did the right thing for this cat? Thanks.

      • Susan
        Susan says:

        Thank you for the response, Danielle! I read Lana’s response and it was very helpful. I also enjoy reading your emails and am so thankful for the work you do!

  45. Linda
    Linda says:

    A couple of years ago I was on vacation & my wonderful neighbor was watching my cats, and one of them got sick, went to the vet & stayed there till I got back (long story made short). During the trip I could feel him at night & would tell him to please wait for me as I would be home in a couple of days. I picked him up the day I got home & the next day he acted better, but the next day I was in the bathroom & I could feel a shift in the whole house, I found him sitting in the powder room with some blood in his mouth, he passed that day. But I will never forget the feeling of his sprit coming & going in the house that day. So I’m a firm believer in the fact that their spirit leaves before the physical body does.

  46. Sheila
    Sheila says:

    Hearing this from a master is very comforting as I reflect back on two of my dogs who passed over several years ago. A few days before my ill lab Luci died she looked at me like she didn’t recognize me, almost looking through me. I’m looking forward to your energy webinar in April, thanks!

  47. Ginny White
    Ginny White says:

    This too has helped me as I am in the process of having a pet choose whether to leave or stay. She is my sweet guinea pig, Helen, and she’s very sick, although I am trying desperately to keep her here with me. I know she has already chosen her path, and I feel that her spirit is leaving.

    • Danielle MacKinnon
      Danielle MacKinnon says:

      Ginny, since you know this about her, now you have the option to make her last bit of time in her physical body full of love, rather than full of fear or worry. Sending you both love and light, Danielle

  48. Robin Shelton
    Robin Shelton says:

    I hope that’s exactly right, that animals begin their crossing over process that way. I have been learning a lot about the dog meat trade. And I hope that there is some way for these dogs and cats to be spared the terrible suffering inflicted on them.

  49. Cyndi
    Cyndi says:

    Thank you for this. I needed to hear this. With all these bad news that I’ve been hearing about the dog meat trade and how animals are tortured and killed… it’s really hard to see them suffer before they pass . Now with these kind of incidents, do animals still leave their body before tortured and killed or do they leave during the process of them being brutally murdered? This whole killing of animals have really affected me and I’m consumed by it a lot. I feel so bad for them

    • Janet
      Janet says:

      Honestly, I would not even want to touch upon that one bit. Danielle would have to respond upon that. I cannot imagine any animal being pulled so fast from such horrid treatment. I think of a human, being battered and beaten beyond recognition and they will still be in their bodies. I don’t see them not experiencing some of the beatings. But yes, I understand your compassion. it is horrible for all of them. stuffed in cages so jammed tight that they can’t even move a hair. Also, there is this horrible festival I just learned about in Mexico how they hang dogs and beat them like piñatas!! what the heck is wrong with people? or if you’d call them people. don’t these evil creatures have anything better to do with their time here?? like really.

    • Danielle MacKinnon
      Danielle MacKinnon says:

      In EVERY instance, animal’s spirits begin to leave their body before their passing. However, it really doesn’t make it easier on my heart and I cannot wait for the day when all animals receive unconditional love at all times.

    • Lana
      Lana says:

      I hope this is true for when we assist them in the process too. For such a difficult decision, one that I just recently had to make for my 14 year old English bulldog Elsie, there would certainly be some comfort in knowing she was not only expecting her passing but participating in the process as well by beginning to move on. I will take comfort on this issue any way it is offered. Thanks for the timely discussion.

      • Danielle MacKinnon
        Danielle MacKinnon says:

        Yes Lana. I’ve worked with many animals who asked for assistance in crossing over. Euthanasia seems to be one of many different ways that animals will choose and they have not demonstrated any fear of choosing this method.

        • Deniz
          Deniz says:

          I had to say goodbye to my pit bull Dylan 4 years ago on March 18th . He was almost 16…. I relive that moment over and over …. thinking I could have made the wrong decision . Glade to have come across your post and has put my mind at ease .

          • Jen Martinez
            Jen Martinez says:

            Hi Deniz. I am responding to your comment 5 years later but it spoke to me. We just lost our 16 year old Pit bull two days ago, on Father’s Day. Actually, it was at 12:35am Monday so technically not Father’s Day anymore. We had an appt to have her euthanized the next morning but she chose to go on her own beforehand. 16 is a really long life, especially for a Pit Bull. I know that our girl went on her own but please know that no matter what, you made the right decision. 16 is incredible and just as I know my girl Brooke is with me, Dylan is with you too.

      • Alma
        Alma says:

        Thanks Lana, this message was definitely meant for me to see as we recently made the decision to let our girl go. I felt as she said she was ready to cross over when I asked if she was ready to go, but the days to follow, the thought of our decision has tormented me and have asked myself if we did the right thing. I have to believe it was the right thing and that my baby girl is not going to suffer. We were Blessed my sweet girl shared her 13 1/2 years with us!
        Now, not only do I feel empty but I hurt for my boy who is her son and he is sad and looks for her. I thought dogs did not cry but yesterday I removed my girls bed out of our bedroom and put it in the family room. My boy laid by the bed and I went over to kiss him and his eyes looked watery, so I wiped it and my fingers had full blown tears. My heart aches for him! We are just trying to be there for him as much as we can and love on him, so that we all get through this together. 🐾🕊🐾🕊🐾🕊🐾🕊


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