• Penn Vieau


Updated: Sep 15, 2018

The death of a beloved pet can be extremely challenging. Pets leave a permanent mark on our hearts and often fill an empty void, we never knew existed. I know this first hand. My wife, Katherine and I lost our cherished cat Jack this past week to a long-term battle with cancer. Our lives will change, and I am sure all of you can relate in one way or another.

When Katherine and I first had the conversation of adding a cat to our home, I must admit – I was not in favor; probably even protested a bit, thinking of the responsibilities that would come with having a pet. Yet, taking that leap made our house a home as well as provided joy a million times over.

I am a speaker, coach and leadership expert. I spend most of my days communicating with others. I travel the United States sharing with others how to live a positive life. Sometimes, some of the best reminders are right in front of us. Over the past week I have taken the time to reflect upon our years with Jack – Here’s what I have learned from him:

1. Be open to change

2. Be quick to forgive

3. Always be curious

4. Be affectionate and kind

5. Live life with determination and strength

I firmly believe animals do communicate. This happens through appearance, posture, gesture audibly and inaudibly. We may not always understand what they are saying – but in their own way they are attempting to connect with us. And it is way more interesting than I ever imagined.

Life is a constant state of flux for us and we never know when things are going to change. Sometimes life can seem so unpredictable and unfair that we find ourselves wondering if anyone is really in control? Rest assured that someone is in control. When you are at your lowest, when you fell alone and broken, remember that God is aware of your situation. He says, “I will never leave you.” From within, we can find the strength to move forward and focus on what we can control- our reaction to this situation. As Katherine and I deal with the loss of Jack, we are giving ourselves permission to miss him, yet trying to focus on the positive memories we will always have of him.

Learn from Jack. Today is a new day.


Penn Vieau  |  Leadership Expert - Speaker - Life Changing Coach  |  Madison, WI  |  |