|Pet taxidermy is increasingly popular
What do animal lovers do when they
lose a beloved pet. Inside Out investigates ways of coping with the
pain of pet bereavement.
What does a pet owner do you when their beloved animal
It's something which will affect most of us at some time,
and often when it happens it takes us completely by surprise.
While some owners bury their pet in their back garden,
there are others who either want to keep a constant reminder by having
their animals stuffed.
Thanks to new technology, you can even freeze your pet
and bring it back to life many years in the future.
- a proper burial can help ease the pain
Pet bereavement has become big business in the UK with
owners now wanting a dignified end for their beloved animal.
Sophie Harwood from Grantham is one of the UK's leading pet bereavement
She's well aware of the stress caused by the loss of
a treasured furry friend.
"After the loss of a pet many owners can be overwhelmed
with a feeling of sadness and loneliness. Indeed some people need a genuine
shoulder to cry on," she says.
Owners have a strong emotional and social relationship
with a pet, and the death of an animal can elicit strong feelings that
often parallel the grief from the loss of a human companion.
|A friend for
life - pets provide unconditional love and are good for our health
Up to 75% of owners experience difficulties of disruptions
in their lives after pets die.
The grieving process is just the same as for humans with
a mix of feelings starting with shock and
denial, and moving on to emotional pain and eventual acceptance.
The Blue Cross, Britain's pet charity, runs the Pet Bereavement
Support Service and telephone helpline (0800 096 6606).
It provides advice and counselling through Telephone Befrienders who are
trained to deal with pet bereavement problems.
Today you can say goodbye to your loving companion by
hiring a pet funeral director to provide a complete package for the pet's
Lincolnshire Pet Crematorium is one funeral service offering
an alternative to the 'mass cremation' offered by vets.
can be done with dignity at a pet crematorium
They will arrange the collection and cremation of your pet and guarantee
that he or she will receive individual attention throughout.
If you want to go a step further, there's even a range
of biodegradable and double-walled casket pet coffins.
Arrangements can also be made for burial at home, flowers
and floral tributes, funeral cars and hearses.
For those who want to preserve their pet's memory further,
there's always taxidermy.
Emily Mayer is one of only a few people in the UK offering
pet owners a taxidermy service.
She says: "I've been asked to work on dogs the service
from working dogs to much smaller creatures like rats."
With prices starting from around £2000, taxidermy isn't a cheap
Frozen in time
But Inside Out has found another extreme way of preserving
your animal which may even see it being brought back to life.
friend - this pet rat is immortalised by a taxidermist
The American company the Cryonics Institute (CI) offers
its members the opportunity to suspend their pets in liquid nitrogen.
Owners can then try to bring them back for a second lease
of life in the future.
Cryonic suspension can be performed on animals quite
There's also less bureaucratic snags regarding autopsy,
burial, and euthanasia than with humans.
It's a complicated and expensive procedure, and prices
The full cost of storage for a cat, or animal of similar
size, at the Cryonics Institute is $5,800.
For larger animals, the cost is roughly proportional
to that for a human patient, depending on size.
Whether it will catch on in the UK is anyone's guess,
but it could ease the pain of losing a beloved pet.