Choosing to Cremate Your Pet

One of the most difficult times in a person's life is when a pet passes away.  Many pets are thought of as a member of the family.  They are adorable and loving.  They keep you company when you are lonely.  Pets can be a friend to you, and expect nothing in return except your love and attention.  This is why the death of a pet can be devastating. 

After the initial shock of the death of a pet, you must consider what to do next.  Many people opt to bury their pet in their own yard.  This is certainly a time honored tradition and there is nothing wrong with that decision.  However, what do you do if you are renting a home or live in an apartment building?  What if you do not want to bury the pet in a pet cemetery, but instead want to keep you pet close to you?

One convenient option is to have your pet cremated.  Many people never even consider this option.  Some people do not realize this option exists.  However, cremation in general is becoming a more practical option not only for pets, but for humans as well. 

Cremation is an economical way to take care of your pet's remains and keep your pet close at the same time.  If you are unable to handle keeping the remains in your home, you may want to consider scattering the ashes or burying the ashes somewhere close by.  It is really up to you. 

A Small Pet Urn

A Small Pet Urn

What Type of Pet Can be Cremated?

You may think that only cats and dogs can be cremated.  However, this is not the case.  People love many different types of pets, and pets come in all shapes and sizes.  You can cremate every type of pet, including small rodents on up to horses.  It is important when finding a crematory to specify the size of the pet.  If the crematory you contact cannot handle your pet, they can refer you to a different crematory.

Choosing a Crematory

This may be a surprise to some readers, but many crematories for pets exist.  A good strategy is to go online and search the web for pet crematories.  A simple search by entering the name of your state and the words "pet cremation" will bring up many options.

When deciding on a pet crematory, you should consider:

  • Price
  • Location
  • Types of services
  • Reputation

Many pet crematories will actually pick up your pet and bring back the remains at a later date.  This will, of course, cost extra.  Some pet crematories even offer funeral services and most will offer pet urns at an additional cost. 

What is the Cost?

The cost of pet cremation depends on the size of the pet.  For small pets, like rodents, birds, and lizards, the cost is about $50 - $100.  For larger pets, the cost can go up to about $300.  Some crematories come to your home to pick up the pet and their cost will be higher.  However, if you do not have a car or if you are too upset to drive, this could be your best option.

While making the arrangements for your pet, you may want to buy an urn if you are not planning on scattering the ashes.  The urns for small pets start at about $25 and go up in price depending on the size necessary to hold your pet's ashes.  Someone at the crematory will be happy to explain the sizes and prices.  Also, that person will usually be very sympathetic and understanding. 

Pet loss can be a difficult time for all members of the family.   If you are struggling with the loss of pet right now, please know you are not alone.  It is a sad time, but it does get better.