I am going to go against the grain hee, but I too have many elderly pets, and was really worried about how I would cope with mine and my child's grief when they died, without the relentles questions from my child as well.
I bought goodbye mog when dd was 3.5, and read it a few times to myself to desensitise myself. It is actually such a lovely book, and got dd and I talking about our pets abd how we'll miss them when they die, but that they will always be watching us.
Dd will now comment when she sees the sun's rays that somebody's pet has died and is going to the sun where it will be very happy.
She will not fully understand it but will start her gently into understanding death. my ds is 3 and have always been open about death and he understands death is another word for gone. Not a everyday word but he knows when something is dead it doesnt come back. Better to learn this from a book/ road kill/ nature programs than when a love one dies and the child has no idea this happens or expects them to come back
I just don't see the point unless ask. It's not a nice subject. I think we view young children as being like adults and having the same thinking which they don't. I remember being about 7-8 and dad talking about funerals and what he wanted, it made me so distressed and upset. He was healthy at the time but 2 years later he died of cancer. It's wire a big topic for anyone let alone a very young child.
I think Goodbye Mog is a beautifully written book but there's no doubt about it - it can certainly prompt the waterworks. I sobbed, I mean really sobbed when I first read it, and then sobbed again when I only skimmed through it at a Judith Kerr exhibition. Being a lifelong cat lover and owner may have something to do with it I suppose !
Personally, if your child has had to deal with the death of a pet, I think it's a good, straightforward and sensitive book to share with them ... my daughter has experienced two of our cats dying and can still get very upset about it, but far better I think to tackle the subject head on - even through tears - than pretend it doesn't exist or is something taboo. If you have pets which are likely to die in the near(ish) future then Goodbye Mog could maybe prompt a talk about dying which might help prepare them for the fact pets aren't around forever ... though if it doesn't prompt questions from the child, I wouldn't be inclined to force the issue if they treat it more matter of factly.
I would get it and stash it. I was caught out a bit when a friend died, and I had to explain what had happened and faced all the "But where IS she?" questions. A book would have been really helpful! I think I managed to explain things ok, DD seems perfectly happy with my attempt but something like Mog would have been great.