Losing your beloved cat is a heartbreaking experience, and it is hard to see beyond the goodbyes. Deciding how to lay your pet to rest can be overwhelming when you are upset. It is sometimes easier to consider your options before your cat passes so that some of the decision-making burden is lifted when the time comes.
Many options are available for handling pet remains, including cremation and burial. Many veterinary clinics can handle the entire process of cremation for you from start to finish. Depending on which options you choose, private cremation could cost between $150 to $500, and pet burial could be considerably more expensive.
Many options are available for handling pet remains, including cremation and burial.
Many veterinary clinics can handle the entire process of cremation for you from start to finish.
Depending on which options you choose, private cremation could cost between $150 to $500, and pet burial could be considerably more expensive.
In the United States, cremation is a popular option, but understanding the pricing system can be a little confusing. Crematoriums might quote the cremation price separately from the cost of the urn. There might also be other hidden costs that you have not considered.
The cost of cat cremation in the United States is typically in the region of $100 to $200. But this is just for the private cremation itself, and the total cost might be more. Let’s consider what to expect with the cremation process and what additional fees and practicalities you should plan for.
Finding a Crematorium
Finding a crematorium can be relatively easy if your veterinary clinic has a preferred pet funeral home. If this is the case, they should be able to take care of all the admin, transportation, and cremation for a single fee.
They can also assist you with any questions or worries you might have, removing a lot of the stress. Alternatively, you can find a pet crematorium by searching online or through a recommendation from a friend. Your local animal shelter might also be able to advise you if you prefer to make the arrangements yourself.
The International Association of Pet Cemeteries and Crematoriums is a not-for-profit organization focused on improving industry standards worldwide. They provide an accreditation system and a database where you can search for a member crematorium near you.
Also Read: How To Cope With Losing A Cat
Choosing What Type of Cremation Suits You
There are several options for the care of your cat after they are deceased. Some people opt for a full funeral (yes, this is possible; just speak to your crematorium directly), but many prefer to have their cat cremated. Cremation options include group or private cremation when your pet’s cremated remains are returned.
Ashes can be returned in a sealed casket or small sculpture or in a container that can be used for burial or scattering at home. Each crematorium service has its own array of tasteful urns for you to choose from and to suit every circumstance.
You will need to consider whether you want to visit a headstone, keep your cat’s ashes somewhere safe and close to you, or scatter them in some of their favorite places. Another lovely option is to scatter them in a plant pot and grow a rose or a tree of remembrance.
Working Out the Hidden Extras
If your vet makes the arrangements for you, discuss the costs and any extras with them. If you are liaising directly with the crematorium, consider the following costs:
- Cost of private cremation
- Cost of pick up/transporting your pet to the crematorium
- Additional cost if you want to witness the cremation
- Cost of the urn or casket
- Cost of delivery back to you
- Extras (keepsakes, etc.)
With all these additional costs, private cremation could cost in the region of $150 to $500. It might be considerably more if you decide on a funeral and pet burial.
Sometimes, finding the funds for private cremation isn’t possible, or you might feel that keeping your pet’s ashes isn’t right for you. In that case, there is the option of a communal (group) cremation. The average cost of communal cremation is in the region of $30 to $100.
Following communal cremation, cremains might be scattered in a garden of remembrance at the crematorium, which can be visited by pet parents. Be sure to discuss this process with your individual crematorium and check if there are specific visiting times.
Individual cremation might also be offered where pets are cremated simultaneously but in a grid arrangement, and your cat’s ashes are returned to you. This might carry a slightly lower fee than private cremation where your pet would be cremated alone.
Most crematoriums will offer additional keepsakes that can be a unique reminder of your pet and bring comfort while you grieve. These include jewelry containing ashes, paw prints, candle holders, and fur clippings, to name but a few.
Many online services can help you with this in the future if you have your cat’s ashes returned to you. If you want a paw print of fur clipping, though, you will need to let the crematorium or your veterinarian know immediately.
Coping With Saying Goodbye
Grief does not only occur once your pet has passed. Anticipatory grief can begin before your pet has died and can be very intense and upsetting. This is particularly true if you have a planned euthanasia appointment booked for your cat due to their worsening quality of life. Focus on spending some special time with your cat before saying goodbye.
Letting your friends and family know that you need their understanding and support can help immensely during this difficult time. In addition, some people find comfort in planning ahead to remove the stress of the practicalities after their pet passes. Some veterinarians and crematoriums offer a farewell planning service that allows you the opportunity to discuss your wishes in advance.
Many crematoriums will also offer access to their grounds if you need somewhere quiet to remember your cat. They might provide a memorial service and pet tributes, such as statues and headstones, for individual pets, too. In addition, memorial books and online tributes can be a very moving way to remember that incredible bond you shared with your cat.
Grief can, at times, feel lonely and difficult to navigate. If you are struggling with the loss of your pet, there are online pet bereavement services that can support you. As the grief lifts, you might find solace in your pet’s peaceful passing and the many beautiful memories you had together.
Also Read: A-Z of Cat Facts and Statistics
Frequently Asked Questions
What does cat cremation cost in the UK?
UK prices will vary between pet crematorium services and veterinary clinics you use. Private cat cremations often cost £150 to £300 depending on the urn or casket selected. This cost might not include transportation and keepsakes if you make the arrangements yourself.
There may be options for ceremonies, cremation viewings, or burials, which will cost more. You should discuss these options with the crematorium directly. Communal cremation is likely to cost somewhere between £60 to £100.
How much ashes does a cat have?
If your cat is cremated, this will produce a small volume of ashes that might fit in a pouch that you can hold on the open palm of your hand. This is approximately two to three cups and fits nicely into a small pet urn or casket. Still, it can also be enough to scatter in multiple locations or to share among family members if you wish to do so.
How long does it take to cremate a cat?
Cremations can vary in time, and as a general rule, the larger the pet, the longer the cremation takes. Feline cremation generally takes 30 minutes to one hour, but might take more time in some cases. The cremation chamber must reach exceptionally high temperatures for a long time to be effective. If you wish to be present for your pet's cremation, discuss this with the crematorium to find out if it is an option.