Saying Goodbye Sympathy Book and Card Line



As many of you know who are familiar with my photography, two years ago we lost our beloved dog Charlie. While I had loved and lost dogs growing up, I hadn’t experienced the heartbreak of losing a dog as an adult. We adopted Charlie, a border collie/ greyhound mix, back in 1998 when I published my first book Why We Love Dogs. I took countless portraits of him over the twelve years that we had him. Nothing really prepares you for the loss of a family pet but the one thing I know from going through the experience, is that it helped me immensely to talk with other people who had shared the same loss.

At the time when we said goodbye to Charlie, Erica Salmon, my friend and writing partner on our book Dogma, was also mourning the loss of her bulldog Peaches who was 15 years old at the time. Erica and I both knew that we needed somewhere to put our grief and realized that there might be a way to alleviate or share in a loved one’s grief if there was a book about such loss. After many months of development the concept of Saying Goodbye was born. Our thinking was it would be a simple book of comforting words and black & white timeless portraits that people could give to friends and family when a pet passed. I know if someone had given me such a book, it would have brought me a great deal of comfort.

We found a great partner who shared our passion for this kind of project. For many years, I have worked closely with Sharper Cards in Calgary, Canada and they seemed like the perfect partner to bring our vision to reality. Sharper Cards and their US counterpart Smart Practice are due to release Saying Goodbye this January 2013. they will be offering the book as a part of their extensive vet network throughout the US and Canada. We also have a companion sympathy card line which you can view a few samples below:

The idea was to make the book available to anyone who wants to be able to share it with a friend, so please feel free to contact me directly ( if you would like to have access to the book. If you are a vet office or work in a vet office and you want to arrange for your office to carry the book, you can contact Sharper Cards directly at

The cover of Saying Goodbye features Zipper, a yellow lab, I photographed several years ago. Sadly, Zipper passed away this year, but I know that her owners find comfort in her lasting images and memories they have of her. Many of the dogs and cats featured in the book also have passed away and they are honored in the dedication page.

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4 Responses to “Saying Goodbye Sympathy Book and Card Line”

  1. Frances Gilmore Says:

    I think this is a wonderful thing you have done, my friend and I have been wanting to put this out for years so it is nice to see it out their.
    We have both lost pets very dear to us in the past because they are all like “family”, Keep up the good work!

    • kimlevinphotography Says:

      Hi Frances – thanks so much. That was our thought too. We both had lost our dogs and needed somewhere to put our grief. I too thought it hadn’t been done and was surprised. Ironically, when we approached traditional publishers (which I have worked with for 14 years and published 18 books), while everyone liked the book and felt there was a need for it, they didn’t want the task of marketing it. So we went to a company that I have had a relationship with for almost ten years and they were the perfect partner to do the book with. It isn’t necessarily selling in a traditional book store but you can get copies from me or directly from Smart Practice or Sharper Cards. Thanks for taking the time to write and read the piece. Best, Kim

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  3. Honoring Biscuit: Special Gifts | Biscuit's Space | The blog of Katherine Carver Photography Says:

    […] Levin sent us a very thoughtful card and one of her books, shown below on the left, entitled, Saying Goodbye: Remembering Your Pet’s Life.  Kim has also been gracious enough to share with me her story of her beloved Charlie.  Hearing […]

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