Blue Cross Pet Loss Support Service

The loss of a pet is always a difficult and emotional time. Losing a guide dog has an additional impact due to the emotional and practical role they play in your everyday life. We've partnered with Blue Cross, an organisation dedicated to providing compassionate support through their Pet Loss Support Service.

On this page

What is the Blue Cross Pet Loss Support Service?

Blue Cross is a trusted and respected charity with a history of supporting pet owners since 1994. Their Pet Loss Support Service provides emotional support and guidance to those grieving a much-loved animal companion. This is in addition to the support provided internally by Guide Dogs through Guide Line.

Who you’ll be speaking with

The volunteer listeners have extensive experience dealing with animal loss and undergo 14 weeks of intensive training. As part of their training, Blue Cross volunteer listeners complete a Guide Dogs-approved module covering the special relationship between our guide dog owners, staff, volunteers, and their dogs.

We’ve worked very closely with the Pet Loss Support Service trainers to ensure that the volunteers have an in-depth understanding of these unique relationships, so they can offer appropriate and relevant support for anyone dealing with the loss of their guide dog.

What support can Blue Cross provide to guide dog owners?

Our partnership ensures that guide dog owners have access to specialised services provided by Blue Cross. The support service isn't just there should your dog pass away; they can offer support for other types of loss or grief you might be experiencing as part of your journey.

Transitioning from a guide dog partnership

Whether your guide dog is retiring, or you're transitioning to a new partnership, it's natural to feel a mix of emotions. Blue Cross is there to offer guidance and support during this time, helping you deal with the changes and emotions that come with the end of a guide dog partnership.

Coping with the death of your guide dog

The end of your guide dog's life is incredibly challenging for any owner. Blue Cross recognises the bond you share with your guide dog and offers support to help you cope with the difficult decisions, emotions, and practical aspects of saying goodbye. Their aim is to help make this time more manageable for you.

Exploring options for rehoming

Deciding on whether or not you plan on rehoming your guide dog involves careful consideration. Blue Cross can support you through this process, offering insights, resources, and a listening ear during this significant life change.

Navigating different stages of grief

Grief is deeply personal, and everyone experiences it differently. The stages of grief can be complex, and Blue Cross understands the importance of having someone to talk to during this time. The Pet Loss Support Service provides a compassionate ear and practical advice to support you through each stage.

Supporting your family or children with the loss of your guide dog

Blue Cross can also help your family members with the loss of your guide dog. For children, losing an animal can often be their first experience of death. Blue Cross understands the importance of helping them through this time as the way in which children, young people, and those around them deal with pet loss can shape how they cope with other losses later in their life.

How to contact Blue Cross

Blue Cross understands the importance of accessible support. You can reach out to their team in whichever way works best for you:

  • Phone: Call 0800 096 6606 if you'd like to talk.
  • Online chat: Visit the Pet Loss Support page and click the chat icon in the bottom right-hand corner of your screen to speak online.
  • Online form: Complete their confidential form, and they’ll respond via email within 48 hours.
  • Email: Email, and they'll respond within 48 hours.

Blue Cross Pet Loss Support Service also have a dedicated email address for young people, including children with buddy dogs:

How to access out-of-hours support

Blue Cross is committed to being there for you, and their trained Pet Loss Support team is available from 8.30am to 8.30pm. However, if you need to speak to someone outside these hours, the Samaritans can be called on 116 123.

What to do if you need additional support

We understand that everyone deals with grief and loss differently. If you need more support, consider speaking to a counsellor or support group who can offer additional help for coping and moving forward.

Get in touch

Call our Guide Line to speak to an expert who can provide information and advice - we're here to help. We're open 9am-5pm, Monday to Friday (except bank holidays).

0800 781 1444