Updated: Sep 23, 2021
When you lose a dear pet, it can be hard to focus on anything other than how you will miss them. Unfortunately, there are other things to think about, like their final arrangements. With most pet owners choosing crem
ation, many are left wondering what to look for when choosing a pet cremation service. And with so many providers out there, it can be tough to know which is the right one for you. How can you be sure to choose the one that will give your family pet the attention and respect they deserve?
Should you find yourself in this situation, your first call should be to your trusted veterinarian. He or she can explain the protocol for preserving your pet until you can make whatever arrangements you choose. In the case of a cat or dog, you may need to transport them to the vet’s office and move forward from there. Some vets will handle the arrangements for you. However, if you want to be more selective, or have special preferences, you’ll want to reach out to a pet cremation service yourself. When you do, here are the things to look for:
8 Things to look for when choosing a pet cremation service
1. Respectful handling of remains
You want a pet cremation service that shows respect for your pet’s remains. Whether you need them to transport a dog, cat or something larger, like a horse, you want your pet treated with dignity. Ask how they will handle transportation. For example, you would want your adored horse transported without unnecessary tugging, and placed in an enclosed trailer that’s large enough to accommodate a horse of any size.
2. A choice of communal or private cremation
Most pet cremation companies offer communal pet cremations, where more than one animal is cremated together in one session. In this process, your pet’s ashes and other pet’s ashes will be comingled – meaning they will not be able to give you your pet’s ashes. However, if you want a private pet cremation, you will need to find a company that will cremate one pet at a time. Your choice at this point is important, as it will affect how you memorialize your pet. If you want to have only your pet’s ashes returned to you, you would need to choose a private cremation.
3. Proper tracking of your pet’s cremation
Should you choose a private cremation over a communal one, you’ll want to be assured that the company has carefully handled and tracked your pet’s ashes. Because should you decide to have them made into a cherished keepsake, placed in a decorative urn , or simply scattered or buried, you want to know that the ashes you receive are only your pet’s. some companies even allow owners to attend the cremation, staying with their pet through the entire process.
4. High standard of cleanliness
You want a cremation service that maintains a high standard of cleanliness. So, make a visit if you can, and look to see that both public and private areas of the building are clean and tidy. Frankly, it’s a reflection of the company as a whole – not only the quality of their services but how they will manage your pet’s remains throughout the process. If they have respect for their facility, they will most likely have respect for you and your pet.
5. Resources for bereavement support
At this trying time, you may need a little shoring up. Check to see if your cremation service offers any bereavement support resources. Most are prepared to provide you with information about support groups in the area. Moving on from the loss of a much-loved pet is not easy. That’s why talking about your feelings with someone who can offer coping skills can help.
A couple excellent places to start are Rainbows Bridge https://rainbowsbridge.com/Grief_Support_Center/Grief_Support_Home.htm and The Grief Recovery Method https://www.griefrecoverymethod.com/our-programs/pet-loss-support-groups .
6. Private viewings
A private viewing is simply some time alone with your departed pet before the cremation process. It’s an opportunity to say goodbye and move closer to closure. Most pet cremation companies offer this. Just as with the loss of a person who is close to you, time to say goodbye can help you move through the grieving process.
7. Additional memorials and keepsakes
Often, pet owners want to remember and celebrate their pet’s life with a memorial or keepsake. It’s a lasting reminder of their significance in your life and keeps them close to you. From urns and plaques, to jewelry and keychains, it’s a way to keep your pet always with you.
8. Fair prices
The price of cremation should not deter you from giving your cherished cat, dog , or even horse, the sendoff of your choice. Call a few pet cremation services and ask about prices and packages. This will help you determine what a fair price is for the service you want. Of course, if a company charges too much or too little, it’s probably a good idea to pass them by. And, it’s wise to stay comfortably within your budget. You don’t want to be grieving and strapped with bills.
Lastly, when looking for a pet cremation service, be sure to choose one with plenty of experience. During this difficult time, you want to work with people who know what they are doing, and can knowledgably guide you. More often than not, you can find information on their website, as well as reviews online. If, for whatever reason you can’t find the information you need, ask them directly. Don’t be shy. You’ll want to know things like how many years they’ve been in business and what kind of training they have.
These are all valuabel things to keep in mind when faced with choosing a pet cremation service. They will help you to make the best decisions for you, your pet and your budget.