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How to Bury Your Pet Legally

The loss of a pet is often followed by substantial grief. While it is not uncommon to hear people downplay the loss of their pets, the truth of the matter is that the loss of a pet can affect us just as deeply as the loss of a family member or friend. Nothing can replace the barks, memories, and slobbery licks that we hold so dear to our hearts. Although loss is a thought that no pet owner wants to think of prematurely, the proprieties of pet burial are important to know. In this article, we will review the appropriate steps to take and how to bury your pet so that you can make your plans while complying with regulations. There are certain rules we all have to follow while preparing to memorialize our pets. In most cases, it is illegal to bury your pet in your own yard if you do not own the property yourself.

How Do I Know if I Am Burying My Pet Legally?

Most people are unaware that there are laws and limitations as to where you can bury the body of a pet. Most localities place restrictions on pet burial to protect the environment. If you rent your home and decide to bury your pet, you must make sure that you have the permission of the person who owns the property before doing so. If you own your own property, you may still want to consult your local authorities. Rural communities are usually less concerned with burial ceremonies and interment practices than suburban areas with limited land.

Your decision to bury your pet at home may also have something to do with the cause of death. Contagious diseases such as Rabies, for instance, may limit locale or legality. San Francisco prohibits the burial of any animal which dies from an infectious disease within 500 feet of any residence. Know before you start planning the memorial for your animal companion by consulting a local pet cemetery or the International Association of Pet Cemeteries.

Most regulations include the depth of the grave itself and what kind of container is used for interment. Plastic boxes are usually preferred over cardboard boxes due to environmental concerns with water and soil contamination as well as the spread of potential diseases. Depth is usually an issue because it is preferable that no one is likely to uncover the remains at any point in time on accident, which could cause emotional as well as liability issues.

Planning Your Pet’s Memorial

Now that you know how to bury your pet and have obtained permission in written form, it is time to start planning. Some of the most popular forms of final goodbyes include burial and cremation. Burial, as we discussed, should only be done on your own land or with the permission of the property owner. Most pet owners choose to bury their companions in plastic, cardboard, or wooden caskets. The grave should be in a location that is less likely to erode and is at least three feet deep. You can choose to mark your pet’s gravesite with a headstone or plaque.

Cremation involves the incineration of the body in a specially-designed furnace. This process reduces the remains to ashes and tiny bone fragments. Working with a pet crematory, you can custom order a special urn or tree seedlings to plant instead of performing a formal ceremony. Cremation allows you to perform an ash scattering ceremony in any of your pet’s favorite places or you can keep a little bit of the ashes on you at all times by wearing cremation jewelry.

Alternative Pet Memorials

As burial practices continue to change, it should come as no surprise that pet burial and memorial practices change too. There are now cloning services available for those who might prefer genetic preservation. There are even companies that will launch your pet’s ashes into orbit for a generous fee.

Regardless of which method you choose, your pet’s memorial should be safe and special. If you have any questions about this article or need help with the next step, please contact Legacy Headstones today for further assistance.