Editor's note: Part of the compassionate human-animal bond is the understanding of grief. The following excerpt is from a piece recently seen at Way Cool Dogs and with the author's kind permission we have republished it here.

A dog's grief
By Nancy Houser, July 10, 2009

Grief is a normal reaction regarding the loss of someone we love.  A dog’s grief is no different when they lose a dear canine comrade due to an accident, old age or sickness.

When our Popcorn recently passed away, her sidekick–Trixie–quit eating and now refuses to come back inside the house. Instead, she has chosen an old dog house far back in the yard where she has chosen to stay all the time. Obviously very upset and lethargic, she has chosen to handle her grief in her own way by retreating from the world.

Trixie is getting closer and closer to 20 years of age, and is a medium-sized Pomeranian. We had rescued her from a kennel several years back, a dog who was used to spending her entire days in her kennel and had been used seriously for breeding through her life in several kennels. When we brought her here, we left her kennel door open to begin her new life as an elderly retiree’. Very skittery and afraid of anyone, we could not pet her or communicate with her until our Cairn Terrier, ol’ Popcorn stepped in the picture. Continue reading...

And a story from the 20's set in Japan that exemplifies the human-animal bond and a nation's reverence for loyalty - Hachiko.