August 28th

Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day -

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The 28th of August is set aside as a day of reflection and celebration, marking the lives of our cherished animal companions who are no longer with us. This day of commemoration, known as Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day, draws its name from the poignant notion of the Rainbow Bridge, a mythical overpass said to lead our departed pets to a place of eternal peace and happiness.

People from various walks of life come together on this date, united in the common experience of having loved and lost a pet. It’s a time when pet owners can pause and recall the joy, comfort, and sometimes the amusing antics of their pets.

History of Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day

Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day draws its inspiration from a heartfelt piece of narrative poetry that emerged in the 1980s. Written by an anonymous author, the poem offers a consoling vision for bereaved pet owners. It describes a mythical overpass called the Rainbow Bridge where departed pets wait, eventually reuniting with their humans.

Deborah Barnes, a writer who documents her journeys with her pet cats in “The Chronicles of Zee & Zoey,” established this day of commemoration. The loss of her Ragdoll cat, Mr. Jazz, on August 28, 2013, spurred Barnes to create a day where all pet parents could find comfort and community in their shared experiences of loss and love.

The inaugural commemoration took place on August 28, 2015. The idea resonated with many, and as individuals embraced it through online platforms — from social media to personal blogs — it quickly garnered attention and participation from people globally.

This unique day offers those who have faced the loss of a pet an opportunity to collectively remember and celebrate these past companions. Customary activities include posting beloved photos, sharing poignant narratives, and exchanging support with others who understand the profound bond between humans and their pets.

Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day Timeline

Rise of Pet Keeping

Keeping pets, including cats, became more common among the middle class, signaling a more compassionate human-animal dynamic.

Creation of the Rainbow Bridge Poem

The prose poem 'The Rainbow Bridge' is written by an anonymous author.

Inception of Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day

Deborah Barnes, an author and blogger, designated August 28 as Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day in memory of her cat, Mr. Jazz.

Recognition and Observance

Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day continues to be observed by pet lovers around the world as a day to remember and celebrate the lives of their beloved pets who have passed over the Rainbow Bridge.

Ideas to Celebrate Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day

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Memorial Garden Ceremony

Create a serene space in your garden and invite friends and family to share stories and celebrate the lives of the pets they've lost. Plant a tree or flowers, light candles, and perhaps release eco-friendly balloons or lanterns into the sky.

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Online Tribute Gallery

Utilize social media or a dedicated website to create a virtual gallery where people can post photos, videos, and memories of their beloved pets. Invite others to share their tributes and commemorate the lives of the animals that have crossed the Rainbow Bridge.

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Fundraiser for Animal Welfare

Honor the memory of your pet by setting up a fundraiser for a local animal shelter or rescue organization. Promote it on social media and involve your community in supporting animals who are still with us but in need of help.

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Pet Memorial Service

Hold a non-denominational memorial service where people can come together to share readings, poems, and songs that express the love for the pets that have passed away. This could be at a local park, beach, or even a rented event space.

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Pet-Themed Movie Night

Gather your loved ones for a movie night featuring films about pets and their bonds with humans. This can be a comforting way to remember the emotional connection we share with our furry friends.

6 Interesting Facts About Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day


Origin of Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day

Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day is observed on August 28th every year. It was created by Deborah Barnes in honor of her beloved cat, Mr. Jazz, who passed away in 2013. The day honors and remembers all the pets that once filled our lives with joy and companionship but have since crossed the 'Rainbow Bridge'.


The Rainbow Bridge Poem

The concept of the 'Rainbow Bridge' originates from a prose poem written by an unknown author. It describes a peaceful and sunny meadow where beloved pets wait for their owners to join them, and together they cross a rainbow bridge into heaven. This imagery is a source of comfort to many pet owners dealing with the loss of their pets.


Ways of Remembrance

On Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day, pet owners celebrate the lives of their pets in various ways, such as sharing favorite memories online, creating photo albums or memory boxes, planting trees, donating to animal charities in their pet's name, or simply lighting a candle.


Inclusive Celebration

While Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day began with the remembrance of cats, it has grown to encompass all types of pets. Whether they were furry, feathered, scaled, or hoofed, this day is a time to remember the uniqueness each pet brought to their owners' lives.


Therapeutic Effects

Psychologists recognize that ceremonies or acts of remembrance like Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day can have therapeutic effects on individuals grieving the loss of a pet. This day provides an opportunity for closure and celebration of the life shared with a cherished animal companion.


Support from Pet Industry

Many pet-related businesses, veterinarians, and animal welfare organizations acknowledge and support Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day by providing resources for grieving pet owners or hosting events, highlighting the importance and legitimacy of pet grief.

Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day FAQs

Next Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day Dates

Year Date Day
2023 August 28th Monday
2024 August 28th Wednesday
2025 August 28th Thursday
2026 August 28th Friday
2027 August 28th Saturday
What is the pattern? Every August 28th

Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day Word Search

  • Rainbow
  • Bridge
  • Tribute
  • Love
  • Pets
  • Memories