SAN ANTONIO -

Losing a beloved animal can be as emotionally stressful as the death of a family member. There is a way pet lovers in San Antonio are learning to grieve together and heal without their friend.

Julie Wiley founded the S.A.P.P.Y pet loss group in honor of Wiley's 14-year-old chihuahua that passed away. "I really feel that you're going to see your pet again in heaven. I have that hope," said Wiley.

Wiley said the idea is that we all have mementos from our dead pets. The one thing we want to get rid of though is the grief, and the group can show pet lovers how.

Robin Benbrook recently lost her dog of 17 years. "She was my constant companion, she was my very best friend. She was just a part of my heart," Benbrook said.

Going on with a part of your heart gone takes tools and that is what's offered in the group.

"Write a poem, keep a journal, go online and start a website in honor of your pet. There are so many ways you can honor your pet and celebrate the life they had here with you," Wiley said.

The loss and grief support group meets every fourth Tuesday at the English Tea Shoppe on Bandera Road. They also hold a Christmas time candlelight service.