Thursday, February 19, 2009

Pet Funeral

One of my pushy fans reminded me that I never posted the pet funeral pictures. Did I say pushy? I meant adoring. Did I say fans? Well, that's what I pay all five of them for...

In case you are a sixth random soul who stumbled on this blog, my two dogs died within three weeks of each other in October. They were 15 and 16 and in love until the day they died. The 16 year old stopped eating after the other one died, and died of heartbreak. We also had the ashes of the cats on the front porch for a couple of years because I could not bear to bury them and they loved the porch in life. My husband laid down the law: give all pets a proper burial or no other animals enter the domicile.

I do funerals for a living, so this became a BIG event. First we have the prep which took all afternoon. We had balloons to fill for the balloon release, cookies to bake for the reception, four graves to dig...As you can see, I did none of these things. Let me also point out that my pushy/adoring fans can see my beautiful, renovated kitchen if they look past my beautiful, baking cousin. I would also like to note that one of the many benefits of having one's own personal funeral director is that he will dig a grave for your pets.

I wrote the names and life dates for all of the pets on the sidewalk in front of the house and a nice epitaph.
This is the altar for the service with the ashes of our four pets and their photos. Each family member put something in the grave along with their ashes. I gave tearful but funny eulogies. And our sweet pet sitter said a few words.

Afterwards we lit candles and had the balloon release. Most everyone has lost a pet at some point, so the balloon release was for all of their beloved pets, too. We all said the names of our pets as we let the balloons go and said together, "We love you!"
Then the children enjoyed the family grief meal: ribs. They make a heart less healthy, but they can lift their share of mourning.

I must say that this greatly helped my grief. It was nice to be joined ny friends, neighbors, and family. And I feel like I was able to give my dear animals a loving sendoff as we had given them a loving home in life.

Oh, and yes. That is a Snow White costume.


Lizard Eater said...

Balloon release, cookies, ribs, and gravedigging?

I want to hire you to do MY funeral.

Preferably while I'm still alive. I mean, except for the grave digging part.

Unless that part is transferable.

Amy said...

I am the sixth to stumble. So glad I did. I love this. Sweet. Tender. Funny.

Robin Edgar said...

You wrote it down. I expect it worked out.

I especially liked -

May we become the people our pets believe we are.

ermaloff said...

My sweet Shannon died in November. We had several beers in her honor. She was such a love:

Glad your replacement dogs are there to keep you company!