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(bluntness alert)
Passed Over is used in the main to communicate or imply that the animal or person has "passed from this earthly state " to some other "state" unknown or not quite nailed down (understood) by humans. We instinctly know that there's a being (us) somehow "in there" and "it" goes somewhere - or something like that.
But -

The term "Passed Over" is actually a euphemism.
Euphemism: The act or an example of substituting a mild, indirect, or vague term for one considered harsh, blunt, or offensive: Example: "having an affair" (a euphemisn for adultery).

To pass over, per actual definition, is "to die".

Why is this important to point out?

There are two occurrences covered here. One is a constant: death is death. The body dies, the being leaves the dying or dead body.
Then there is what then ensues (follows). Folks sometimes call that, or the combination of the two (dies and then XYZ occurs) as "passing over". This is not the case.
Different folks expect or anticipate a variety of "outcomes" for their pets (let alone themselves and other humans and animals). They need to know what occurs and what does not occur. What I can provide for them is what their animal says has occurred for them. Truth is a key factor in closure, but even if this were not so, it still needs to be communicated. I find it extremely difficult to alter, temper, tone down, soften, change your pet's communications, and it is not my place to do so. Whatever he says is what he says. His concepts are as they are. He is as he is. He's doing how he's doing. He's doing what he's doing.
Most of the time it's fine and/or will be fine as soon as there's some interchange between you two. He loves you, misses you, misses being able to jump up and lick your face, smell the outside air, bark at the cats...
But -
Depending on your ideas of things, your religious, philosophical or general upbringing, you may have a different expectation of what you "should" hear. He says he is in your bedroom hanging out by the closet door and he's calm and fine and he likes to "cuddle", emotionally, with you as you sleep. Nothing wrong with that! but...you expected him to be romping with Sparky in the clouds because that's what you concluded is more correct, is what folks told you would happen, an internet site about passed over pets said would happen, is easier to confront because you've had attention on Sparky since Sparky passed 10 years ago, etc.
You wish to feel assured that he is in Jesus' hands.
You wish to know that he will have the appropriate Karmic reincarnation.
He is with your departed father, a former pet, etc.
He is at "The Rainbow Bridge".
I am factually not concerned if what HE tells us does not conform with what you think should occur or what it should be referred to as.
Since I deal in truth and truth only, I go by what he says and how he describes things as much as possible. The rest is speculation, conclusions and the like. He says what he says.
Terminology can be confining, confusing and mis-leading. I will not tell you that your dog is with Jesus if he has not said so, and what if I did because I felt or assumed this to be the case (or misinterpreted something your animal pet said about feeling elated or feeling blessed) and just worded his concepts that way, saying he was with Jesus instead of saying what HE told me.....? and if I did so, what if you do not believe in Jesus? Yikes! That'd make things worse still for you, and would not be simply telling you what he said, which is my job and responsibility as a Communicator.
This has NOTHING TO DO WITH my beliefs or non-beliefs. If anyone's offended - um, tough. RE-READ what I wrote. I didn't say anything offensive. What I said is, I'm a Communicator and your pet told me that he's hanging out by the pond in the back yard looking at the fish. So that's what I told you that he told me. I did you a service by not entering Julie-ology into it, this-religion-speak into it, some-other-interpretation into it.
I don't know what you "expect" to hear and I don't pander to anyone. What your bay-bee says is what he or she says!
You wanted the straight skinny, didn't you?!?
As a Communicator, I will not tell you that your cat's "next correct lifetime" is to be a cow because Karmia teachings say so. Your cat may wish to find a farm cat in Ohio and be one of those kittens. Or be a marine animal i the South Seas. Or hang out indefinitely in the basement of your house with some other passed over animal who still hangs out there (his new horsey friend! type of thing). Or go find a pet cemetery somewhere and hang out there, trying to feel like a "ghost". Maybe your kitty's in Heaven or at Rainbow Bridge. Maybe not. Just depends on what he tells me, his perception and / or interpretation of things, and the most accurate Human English Wordings that reflects his concepts.
Whatever concept he's into, that's what I'm going to pass along. You are welcome to discuss it with him, of course. But just know that I'm a straight shooter when it comes to his comm.
It's a strong point of integrity with me, to pass along their concepts as purely "from the source" as possibly, and I can't stress this enough.
So - back to....
The DEFINITION OF PASSED OVER is "died". Let's start with this one thing, just for now.
Please refer to an actual standard English dictionary, nothing slanted, alternative, spiritual and the like.
A term has a definition and that's what the definition IS.
Here's one example you can find online: http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/pass%20over  (I just went to dictionary.com and typed in  passed over  in their search engine box). See definition 35: "To die". This is the simplicity of it.
There are definitions which have to do with changing states of affairs (such as #43 to undergo transition or conversion: gas to liquid, for example) which people use to communicate what they have concluded occurred with their pet when it died. It passed over or passed on (died), then, it is now just a being. Well, this is true, the animal being is still the animal being, that has not changed, the body has died, he's a spirit, it has ceased to be animated and it has perished. Some go on to say that pet has "gone into the spirit world". This is basically a pretty good way of wording it as it is not too limiting as a specific location or type of reincarnation. Therefore the usage of that definition has stuck with many folks, even though the definition has to do with material things such as chemicals. Remember, his body is a material thing. IT will change its form (decompose). It is not him, though; he does not change his "form" in that respect (chemically and so on). One's the being, one's the material body.
So once again, it's best to keep with the simple definition as it is the one that fits: Passed Over means died. What then occurs is a matter of discovery and discussion, not one definition fits all. What occurs with your pet is what occurs with him and also what he SAYS has occurred (good, bad, wrong, right, logical or illogical, agreeable or not). And that's all you will hear from Aunt Julie as we talk with him:  what he relates about things.
A bit of alteration of what occurred: My dog Rover passed over into a cat's body. More correct: My dog Rover passed over. Then he decided to take over a cat's body nex and is now a cat. (or) He's now going to be a cat. (Whatever.)
Two steps in the sequence: passing over / passed over, then next whatever he's going to do.
Terminology has gotten confused, muddled and inconsistent over time. I do not wish to fall into that trap.
If something is a particular way, that's how it is, it doesn't "vary" with each occurrence. Each time someone's pet dies, he, the being, leaves that dead body. That's a constant. He passed out of it (different definition, #21 on that page: to discharge or void from the body, as excrement or a kidney stone - hey, they may not be the most pleasant example, but it's still an accurate usage of this definition of the word) however he passed out of it: through the forehead, the side, whatever. Often described as passing out (of it) smoothy, drifting out (especially if prior to body's death), etc.
He is now "passed over".

What's next?

That, to you, will often be whatever you decide it's "supposed to be". For him, it'll be what actually occurred, occurs and what he makes occur. For me, it's just whatever he tells me is going on,which is what I'll pass along to you.

Moving on. A lof of the time it's roped, based, seedly heavily in you.You ARE still part of the equation! and a huge factor. He is like an emotional tuning fork, you resonate grief, he resonates grief. He feels better now that the pain is gone (or that he realizes that the pain is gone - sometimes there's a lag), you feel better. It IS a huge emotional roller-coaster, you can feel great and cry and feel horrible and then better and then numb and this can go on and on (and contrary to what "helpful" folks tell you, there is no wrong or right time, steps and sequences, etc. You get through it and heal in your own good time and in your own fashion. What makes you feel better - and triggers upset - is uniquely your own.)
A lot of clients instinctively fear that their "not being able to let go" affects the animal being. It's true! The pet can't "move on". "Move on"is as vague as "pass over" but also far more accurate and certainly not a euphemism. If you are having a hard time, they tend to not just bolt, regardless of any big plans they might have (I'm going to be a human and join the Red Cross when I grow up!) At times, when they DO move on, we don't always know where they're going or what they're up to because they wish it that way and often for no particular reason voiced.  
I have found from comm with them that when they move on, it's pretty much always preceded by a decision to do so. That is, they and you feel a closure or some things are sorted out or they've decided it's now time to XYZ and this has been communicated about with you and you both feel good about it, as good as can be expected (which is sometimes quite nice feeling!) and you say your Good-Byes and that's that.
(Don't worry - all of this occurs and the communication unfolds in a natural way about things between you and your pet. I'm just giving some sketchy outlines of some ways that these things have gone, it's not like there's some pre-ordained way it will go and you have no input or chance to voice anything! It's been real rare that the animal makes some quick decision such as I want to move along NOW and do Purpose ABC!... but even so, there is time for Good-Byes.)
Now, beings instinctively know that we get used to having a body and that whole "package" existence and we relate to ourselves as that whole identity: I am "Julie Rich" but who will I be after the body named Julie Rich dies? Who is "you" looking at your body's face in the mirror in the morning?
This is the being we are talking to when doing a Pet Communication Consult, either "dead" or "alive".
So once again, when your pet dies, your pet has, bluntly, died, or has euphemistically "passed over". After that, we find out when we're in comm with him or her (the being).
I specialize in Passing Over and Passed Over Pets. It's easy and smooth (despite the upsetting nature of it - even to me). Perhaps it's because I just let it be as it is, and communicate what they say is occurring and how they are doing, and I don't change it into something that I figure might be the correct sounding scenario.
You can ask me if he's playing with Sparky. Sometimes he is. Sometimes he has no idea who or what Sparky is - even if they knew each other! (Memories are a funny thing sometimes.) You can always remind him and see if he'd like to "look Sparky up". Sparky may be somewhere else now, being another pet or ?? but you can always ask your newly passed over Rover about things and see where it leads you.
Sometimes they're literally in some fun, sunny spot they've picked and they're playing games, "on stage", top hat and tails and running a "show", with kitties and bunnies in the audience. Who am I to say this is not so? I love it! and I pass it along...IF they tell me this is what they're doing.

Occasionally a pet owner feels fine wtih things but then after talking with others, reading their emails and their offered sympathies and web sites and the like, the owner gets a bit shook up and starts to worry now that their passed over pet isn't doing Whatever. They were fine on what their pet said about being with them and enveloping them with love and warmth and staying with them and being pleased with the "ceremony" (etc) now, suddenly, this is not good enough for the owner who is now borderline superstitiously horrified that something is "missing".
The owner will email me (sometimes borderline franticly) and ask me.... "Has he passed over??!!" The confusion on the line has shaken them up and there is now confusion. It is understandable! These are horrible times! and you want to know that there is a true and correct peace and outcome for your most beloved of friends. So do I, so does everyone. Our beloved animal companions are, well, there actually ARE no words.
But is he passed over? REMEMBER that that happened when he passed - when he died. Just stop and take an assessment of what you are asking.
What you are really asking me is if he has done or achieved whatever you imagine he is supposed to do or achieve, or someone fed to you as "how it's supposed to be" about he was supposed to now be doing, so that you feel good about his "situation". He can be truly happy, just fine, out of pain, feeling free, hanging out by you, and the like, but you still are worried he has not reunited with earlier passed-over Fluffy, your grandpa Jake and your childhood hamster you never got over accidentally riding your wagon over and have always wanted to make happy in "the afterlife". You're concerned your newly passed over beloved pet isn't pigeonholed into the "correct" setting now and this is horrifying and traumatic for you. You forget and/or are no longer satisfied with the fact that your passed over bay-bee says he's fine! and sends emotions which are calm.
I can only give you comm from them and tell you how they are doing. I cannot and will not make up scenarios which do not exist and I also will not refer to his situation as something which is only a euphamistic moniker (name). This is just me traffiking in truth, being honest, not betraying their comm (as when misrepresented, they get upset, as we all do), and avoids possible confusion and/or disappointment up the line. You need to accept the fact that if he says he's fine, he's fine. They're compassionate but they're also not into "lying". If they're fine, they're fine. This does NOT mean they can't get upset and griefy at the drop of a hat, same as you. This does not mean that they never cared in the first place. It's just a matter of Now Is Now, with a lil' bit of "It felt great to talk about it finally!" mixed in.
Sounds weird, and it's the rare pet owner who will not accept their pet's comm, but it can occur.

Enjoy the comm with your passed over pet. Your upset about things is genuine, deep and normal. Know on their behalf, however, that the factual worst of things IS over: the ailing, the dying (or sudden occurrence which brought on death), the death. They have passed over and there is only discovery for you and your animal friend from this point on. You will be as bereaved for as long as you will be. This is a personal thing and no one can judge it and you are not to judge yourself on it. Just experience it and get through it. PERHAPS some good, honed, accurate and caring comm from your passed over bay-bee will be of some great assistance to you, and them in their emotions, state of mind and future endeavors.

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