(text-only version)

Offering a "cybershoulder"
for grieving pet owners

On Monday, January 1, 1996, Tribble "Tribby-Dog" Cohn, a grumpy 18-pound longhair tabby cat lost a short, but hard-fought battle against the odds. He was deeply loved, and will be greatly missed. For the past 13 years, he was a good friend. Perhaps the best friend anyone could ever hope to have.

Never having lost a creature to death, the feelings we felt in the days and weeks following Tribble's passing could only be described as pure grief. It's the kind of grief non animal-lovers could never understand, and one that many people in today's society refuse to even acknowledge

These are but a few of the reasons we have created this homepage. It is called Lightning Strike because we hope it provides "lightning-fast" assistance and support for the grieving owners of dead, dying, sick and missing animals that walk, crawl, fly, hop, and swim our great earth. We're here to provide a "cybershoulder," a non-judgemental forum for the exchange of ideas, thoughts, and feelings you're experiencing right now...as well as provide alternative resources that people-in-need can turn to for further comfort. We know Tribble would have wanted it that way.

Thank you for caring so much about your pets.

MD Cohn

What do you do when a good friend dies?

What do you do when a good friend dies?
Do you lash out in anger and curse at the sky.
Or grasp hard denial, the means of the weak,
In an effort to kindle the comfort you seek.

What do you do when a good friend dies?
Once life's breath, so precious, gives the chest final rise.
In haste you take blame, no other at fault,
You kneel upturned earth and deem all happiness to halt.

What do you do when a good friend dies?
When with him the times, both good and bad, lie.
Do you cast aside the past, for memories hurt much too much,
Or struggle and fight for that last lingering touch.

What do you do when a good friend dies?
When all of the tears have all but been cried.
No matter how much, no matter how hard you try,
The only thing to do is say farewell.

©1996 MD Cohn

Nothing is stronger or
more rewarding than the
unconditional love between
an animal and its "foster" parent.

When you lose a loved one, the best thing you can do is seek out others who can empathize with your grief. As such, the remainder of this website contains links to other pages and sites that can help you make it through these troubled times. The true beauty of the Web is its vast resources, and Lightning Strike is the perfect place to get the comfort you need right away.

Lightning Strike's
Bolts from the Blue

Point and click your way to better understanding and comfort
for the great loss you feel right now...

alt.support.grief.pet-loss newsgroup

Hard to believe, but when we looked for a support group in the news group hierarchies during January 1996, there were none to be found. So we turned our grief into positive energy and, with the help of several kind souls, managed to create a newsgroup exclusively for grieving pet owners. Here you will find postings from people who feel just as you do...add your own postings, or just read what others have to say. There's no pressure to be anybody but yourself here.

**Note: here is the newsgroup FAQ. If asgp-l doesn't appear on your news server, ask your provider to add it.**

If you still do not have access...

Using your web browser, you can read archived messages from the alt.support.grief.pet-loss newsgroup at no charge via Google or read current messages and post your own via InterBulletin...

READ ARCHIVED MESSAGES from the newsgroup (Google)

Send Pet-Loss Sympathy Cards via e-mail

Over the past years, more and more people have been writing to us, asking where they can find cyberspace-based "greeting" cards that deal specifically with the topic of pet loss. Here are a few sites that offer a nice assortment of create 'n' send cards at no charge.

American Greetings Pet Lover's Cards

Hallmark Sympathy E-Cards

Pet e-Sympathy Cards

Blue Mountain Pet Cards

Post a special message
about your beloved pet to the

Lightning Strike Pet-Loss Support Forum

Tell us a story about your special friend, write a beautiful poem, or simply ask for help and advice from others who feel the same way you do right now. The Lightning Strike Pet-Loss Support Board is your open forum to discuss your thoughts, feelings, hopes, and fears with other pet lovers around the world. Click on the link above to post your message or to read messages posted by others...and stop by every now and then to read the newest messages or to reply to those that capture your heart.

Get the resources
you need to cope...
order pet-loss books
from our extensive
on-line listing

The Bereavement Page

This wonderful page, titled "On the Death of a Beloved Cat" was created by Dave Ratcliffe, the kind soul who helped us in every possible way he could to get the alt.support.grief.pet-loss newsgroup up and running.

The Monday Pet Candle Ceremony

The Petloss.com page includes directions for a special Monday evening candlelight service you can hold in your own home to remember your pet, and the millions of others around the world. You'll find the official times listed here, links to add your beloved pets' names to the Rainbow Bridge list, and more.

The Virtual Pet Cemetery

Immortalize your pet in cyberspace by requesting a plot at The Virtual Pet Cemetery, a wonderful idea brought to you by the kind folks at Lavamind Software. Write a eulogy for your best friend, send it to the Virtual Pet Cemetery and in a few weeks or so, your words from the heart will appear for all to see...and for you to cherish. Pictures in electronic format are also accepted. (Download the page and print it to keep memories for years to come.) Note: One eulogy for a cherished pet goldfish is sure to bring a tear to your eye.

Iowa State University
Pet Loss Support Hotline

Staffed primarily by Iowa State University veterinary students and local volunteers, the ISU Pet Loss Support Hotline provides a source of emotional support for those who have lost a beloved pet or are anticipating the loss of a pet. The trained staff provides an impartial, non-judgmental forum for you to discuss your feelings and concerns and are willing to help you through this difficult time. The phone number is also toll-free, thanks to funding by a corporate sponsor and through the generous support of private contributions.

Ten Tips on Coping with the Loss of a Pet

Moira Anderson, author of the award-winning book Coping with Sorrow on the Loss of Your Pet, offers her own comprehensive guide to pet-loss, as well as other insights and related links on her Pet Loss Grief Resource Page. Information about her wonderful writings is also available here.

The Death of the Family Pet

Provided as a public service by the International Association of Pet Cemeteries, Death of the Family Pet takes you step by step through the five stages of pet-loss grief, "Denial, Bargaining, Anger, Grief, and Resolution. " The page also helps owners come to grips with the tough decision of euthanasia, and discusses the various ways to give your beloved pet a proper and dignified final good-bye.

NetVet's Electronic Zoo

An excellent site for the animal lover, Net Vet's Electronic Zoo includes information databases on pet health,plus links to other related sites.

Phone Numbers for Pet Lovers

Get the information and support you need with a few clicks of the mouse. These excellent reference guides feature phone numbers.

Bereavement Self-Help Resources Guide
Dr. Grohol's Mental Health Page

These two huge sites offer factual information concerning the many types of bereavement, as well as links for additional venues of support.

Site Awards

Lightning Strike is proud to have received the following acknowledgments...

Lyco's Top 5% of All Websites
Yahoo! Internet Life: Touched By The Net - May 1999
Acme Pet Cool Pet Site of the Day 
Bacon's Favorites 
Post Mortem Page's Four Tombstone Award 
Mental Health Net's Badge of Excellence 
Bobby's Four Star Approval for Disability Access 
Cool Dog Site of the Day
Elissa's Big Heart Award
Nalle's Rainbow Award

Send comments, questions, ideas, and link suggestions.Contact us here.

Animal lovers have visited since 2/29/96

This site was last updated on 8/10/09  ©1996- MD Cohn
Text-only coding (thankfully!) assisted by Diane Blackman, author of the homepage Dog-Play