Following the passing of your pet, if you choose cremation, you want it to run as smoothly as possible. There are many different crematoria that will offer you services, should you wish to have this service. Below we will discuss different factors to take into consideration when planning which crematorium to select when making this decision. 

Location is key

Most people do not want to travel far to a crematorium. Your local veterinary practice may have links with a specific crematorium, meaning they will offer transport from the vets to the crematorium. Some crematoria can arrange the transport with you too. This is very helpful as you will not have to take part in the event. Transporting an animal who has already passed away can be very challenging. As well as the emotional aspect, the body may start to decay in a warm car and smell. If the euthanasia has only very recently been performed, your pet may still produce urine and faeces as the muscles relax. This can be quite scary and may make a mess.

Pricing may be important to you

Investigate the price differences of options and specifically the size and breed of your pet, as these factors may make a difference. Individual cremations usually cost more than communal cremations (where pets are cremated with others); but to have your pet’s ashes returned, you’d need to choose the individual option. Whilst enquiring about this, you should research the different keepsakes that the crematorium has to offer. This includes items such as jewellery, keepsake books, paw prints, caskets, baskets and memorial messages amongst other things. There may be certain items that you see which you would really love personalised. You can make the cremation as personalised as you like. This is your final send off and it should be exactly as you desire. 

Some locations even offer pet funerals. This means your pet will get a personalised service including readings and blessings should you wish. You can meet the team organising the funeral beforehand to ensure you understand and like the service they offer and select which members you would like to be directly involved prior to agreeing to it. 

Find out what further support they offer to you following the cremation. Are there any helplines that could benefit you should you begin to grieve and need a chat after the cremation?

Reading reviews from clients who have experienced cremations with different companies is invaluable

People who have most recently experienced similar loss to you are most likely to empathise with the way you are feeling and understand the service and level of care you are wanting to receive. You can gain information through making conversation with people, contacting your local veterinary practice regarding their experiences or reading reviews online. By speaking to the crematorium directly, you will learn about their manners and how efficient and responsive they are. Just one conversation may be enough to help rule in, or out, a crematorium based on their level of customer service.

Learn what the waiting time is for ashes, as well as the wait time for cremation

Following euthanasia, your veterinary practice can hold your pet in a cold room, helping to keep the body in good condition. This is important if you are planning to have your pet cremated on a set date. If you would like the cremation on the same day as the euthanasia, it is worth planning this in advance, if possible. We understand that sometimes euthanasia is not a planned procedure and if this is the case, please make the crematorium aware. Most places can return the ashes back to you within 2 weeks, but this time does vary, so find out definitive answers by calling your local crematorium. 

Choosing a crematorium is a difficult decision to make, especially at a time when you are highly emotional. If you know the time is coming, researching in advance is a good idea. Take your time. 

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