A parent needs to answer honestly and directly, assurr-ing him that he need not be overly concerned. Use your moral and religious beliefs. Do not generalize that old people just die. Ask your son what he is feeling inside and let him know he did not cause the death. A pet's death is often a child's first loss experience. Set the tone for honesty and allow him to express his feelings...emotions.
Encourage questions, and don't be embarrassed by his candid comments. Express what you are feeling in simple terms they will understand. Avoid euphemisms and statements such as, "Grandpa is in a deep sleep," or "was laid to rest." This is confusing to children. Be honest. "Grandpa died because his heart stopped beating." "Susie died because the seat belt was not used and her body was badly hurt in the car accident."