For most of us, pets are more than just guests in our homes; they are real members of our families. As much as our pets impact our lives with their own, though, an inevitable fact of that life is that we will have to face the death of our feline or canine family at one time or another.
Along with emotional challenges that loss brings, comes a question many might not be prepared to ponder, that is, what to do with the pet’s remains, this may be difficult to consider, especially in the throes of grief, which is why you may want to look at some choices before your pet passes.
One of the most common ways to deal with your lost pet’s remains is a home pet burial. For many, this option offers the opportunity to memorialize our pets, and to keep them in our world even when they are no longer part of our daily lives. If this choice seems right for you, there are still some important factors to consider.
Make sure to bury your pet deep enough that it will not be unearthed later by erosion or other animals. Stay away from the water table, as well, and out of places where the remains might create a health hazard. Many public places actually prohibit burials, so you should check with your local authorities. A pet cemetery might be a consideration in this case, if you rent, or if you are likely to move away from a property.
Cremation is an option that has gained popularity in recent years. Cremated remains can be kept in an urn or scattered in a symbolic way around one of your pet’s favourite places to play or go for walks. Additionally, cremated remains can be carried in a locket, incorporated into commemorative glass tiles, and even turned into gemstones.
Some people may be interested in more extreme alternatives, like taxidermy or freezing. Having your pet available to sit at your bedside for eternity may be an appealing, albeit unusual, idea to some. And, with advances in genetic engineering, cloning of pets has even succeeded in limited laboratory testing.
As diverse as our lives with our pets can be, so are the ways in which we can deal with their mortal remains. By making the decision that’s right for you while they’re still alive, you insure their memory will be better preserved after they pass.