A poadcast on the loss of the animal. France inter - Living with animals

There is an excellent program on Sunday afternoon on France Inter: live with the beasts. This program is devoted to animals.

I would like to advise you the poadcast in connection with this blog about the mourning of theanimal :


Here is the text that we can listen to around the 24th minute.

"When the dog or the cat dies, from disease, old age, by euthanasia or accidentally what happens in the heart, in the life of the members of the family, as in the heart of a lonely master or mistress is terrible, for a void was created where there was the warm fullness of a presence.

Areas of the house, armchairs that the cat or dog loved are now disused. Certain hours of the day that of the mash, that of outings become cruelly available.

We do not know whether to throw away or keep the leash, collar, basket. We are deprived of the responsibility that we owe to him. We are completely disoriented. We feel like an amputee. When our animal has just died we have experienced a sensation of sensory deprivation. We hear: no longer bark or growl, meow or purr. We no longer perceive this special quality of silence. The soothing silence of animals that have no other function today, if we put hunting dogs aside, no other function than to be there with us, to accompany us and perhaps strangely to bring us assistance in our lives more or less difficult, more or less happy. But above all what we will miss, and we cry about it, is no longer being able to caress, scratch, hug and experience this well-being of touch. This innocence of touch. This tenderness that we can experience with a small child certainly but which lasts if possible then it lasts throughout the life of a cat or a dog. And then the death of the animal is the end of the game, of the bond, what remains in us from childhood or adolescence and that even if we are no longer young.


This brutal pain, this sudden loneliness, can we describe it as mourning? It is not insulting the human beings we have lost to suffer in some way the same way. We can only talk about this pain to those who are closest to us. You have to keep it quiet from others, otherwise you may appear indecent or asocial. Because no ritual comes to help those who mourn a loved animal.

Among the Romans, they shaved their eyebrows to indicate that they had lost their animal. A 19th century writer had masses said for his dog. And we know the famous "ring" animal cemetery which dates from 1899 with these monuments of the "Père Lachaise" genre which make us a little uneasy. All of its rites seem laughable to us. Today you bury your animal in your garden if you have one and eventually let the children put a cross or some souvenirs on the small tumulus. Or if you are a city dweller, you entrust it to an organization that will burn your body on a stake. But these poor gesture leaves unsatisfied. You feel guilty of a kind of impiety towards a being who loved you unconditionally, especially dogs. I speak especially of dogs when I speak of this unconditionality of death towards a being that we loved who loved you, and that we continue to hide this break without a word to say it.


There are those who suffer so much who immediately deny and replace the missing animal with a puppy or kitten of the same breed or appearance. And we know that one day or another of the foresighted masters will have done what it takes in time for the beloved beast to be cloned and thus reproduced identically. These people who are quick to replace bear witness to what does not know that an animal and especially a dog or cat is a singular, irreplaceable individual whose death must be endured and to whom one must offer a work of mourning to pay him the debt of which the long existence has contracted towards his brief existence.

Nevertheless, this real mourning, not socially accepted, has aroused: certainties and questions:

- Certainty is the consoling belief that certain have in reincarnation. The soul of the animal, whose only body is dead, comes to inhabit another body, coming from another or the same species.

- The questioning is the hope that there must be a survival for animals that cannot have disappeared like this forever. But the difficulty is that we must believe in immortality and the resurrection, which consists, for Christians, of daring to claim a less restrictive immortality that would include animals.

There are people I am at whose business it is about temperament of education and reasoning. For which eternal life and redemption say little and for this this mystical consolation remains, despite generosity, meaningless."


France inter, living with the beasts, emmission of October 2, 2011