A special day to honor the lives and loss of companion animals



KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – In an effort to help pet owners celebrate the lives of their companion animals, both living and dead, Veterinary Social Work (VSW) at the University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine is offering its seventh annual Pet Memorial Day, Sunday, Sept. 8, 2013. The event, which is free and open to the public, allows people to reflect on the impact pets have on their lives. The national Pet Memorial Day is held each year on the second Sunday in September.

Sarina Lyall, VSW social worker, says the opportunity to gather with others who have also experienced the loss of an animal can be therapeutic. “People should realize they don’t have to grieve alone. They can share stories of beloved animals and know they are supported through their loss.” Lyall says the event is an opportunity to find new ways to memorialize their pets.

Participants are invited to take part in a special memorial art project that will be displayed at the veterinary college. Attendees are welcome to bring stories, poems and copies of pictures to share in remembrance of their pets.  As part of a PAWt-luck dinner, participants are invited to bring a human-friendly food item to share that reminds them of their animal.

The event will be held at Hollingsworth Auditorium on the UT agricultural campus from 1 p.m. until 5 p.m.  Light refreshments will be served.

Call 865-755-8839 or email vetsocialwork@utk.edu for more information. To ensure enough art supplies are available, please R.S.V.P. by Thursday, Sept. 5.

One of 28 veterinary colleges in the United States, the UT College of Veterinary Medicine educates students in the art and science of veterinary medicine and related biomedical sciences, promotes scientific research and enhances human and animal well-being.

In addition to the programs of the College of Veterinary Medicine, the UT Institute of Agriculture also provides instruction, research and public service through the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, the UT AgResearch system of 10 research and education centers and UT Extension offices in every county in the state.

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Sandra Harbison, Media Relations, College of Veterinary Medicine, 865-974-7377, sharbiso@utk.edu