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Losing a pet is a difficult aspect of life and one that every pet owner has to face at some point. One of the best ways to get through something so terrible while focusing on the memories shared with a pet is through a pet memorial service. Because a pet is usually considered a part of the family, planning a memorial service is the perfect way to share the memories you created throughout the years with other family members and friends. Here are some tips on planning the perfect pet memorial service:

  • Decide where to host the service: This is the type of service that most people would have in their home. However, you can host a pet memorial service wherever you choose. If you've chosen a pet urn for your pet, an in-home service make sense. If you're having a pet grave marker made for your pet to be placed in your yard, a private ceremony in your yard is appropriate. Some other good ideas include a park (or dog park even), lakeside or a riverbank, or a community garden. The service doesn't have to be huge; it can consist of family and friends who knew both you and your pet. If you are holding the service in an outdoor location, invite attendees to bring their pets along, as well.
  • Put together a slide show or photo album of your pet's best photos: Include baby photos, profile pictures and other photos of your pet playing, sleeping, cuddling and more. These photos will not only serve as a positive reminder of the time you shared, but also showcase your memories to other people.
  • Offer pet-inspired treats: Centre the entire event around your pet. Serve bone shaped sandwiches or paw shaped cookies. Put together a trail mix similar to bird seed. Be as creative as possible with food and really get into the theme of the service.
  • Ask attendees to share stories of memories with their pets (living or deceased): Let your guests get in front of the group and share a favourite story about a beloved animal. It could be a pet from childhood or a current pet; the only rule is to keep stories short enough to allow everyone an opportunity to tell their tale. Stories can be funny or sad or heroic; whatever the person speaking wants to say to communicate the impact the pet has had on that person's life. This kind of kindred support will be invaluable as you go through the process of healing.


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While some people won't understand the concept of the pet memorial service, others will and support you in your endeavour to memorialize your beloved pet in the manner that you see fit. This formal marking of your pet's passing will can help you and your family members to move on to the next stage in your grieving process. It can also be very instrumental in helping children to understand the reality of what has happened to their pet.


About the Author:

Colleen Mihelich: Owner, Peternity ... honouring your pet for eternity


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