Pets don’t need funerals

Paying thousands of dollars on pet funerals is foolish.

Having lost four pets, I know it is difficult and painful, but there is no reason to spend large amounts of money, a tasteful backyard burial is all that is required. That’s how it used to be. So how did pet funerals begin? It’s all part of the fur baby craze.

Dogs, for example, went from being working animals to being stuffed into purses and paraded down the street in strollers around 2011. Dogs too big for purses are dressed up with jackets and accessories. Animals are treated like children. Ridiculous. But explainable.

Dogs affect us through hormones. When a human looks into the eyes of their dog, a hormone is released. It is called oxytocin, sometimes known as the love hormone,. This same hormone is released when a mother looks at their child as well, thus the confusion.

No matter how we feel about them, animals are animals and children are children. Yes, we love pets, but a pet is not a baby.

If your baby died, would it really be the same as losing, say, a parrot? No. It would not.

People are willing to spend a lot of money on their pets. According to Statistics Canada, we went from annually spending an average of $124.50 on pets in 2008, to spending an average of $590 by 2015.

Pet funerals are a cash grab. The pet funeral homes and services know people are willing to spend extravagant amounts of money on their pet, even if the pet is dead.

They use our love for our pets to get our hard-earned money.

A pet casket can cost up to $616.93 on Amazon. An urn can cost up to $182.25, and an ashes keepsake can cost up to $193.51. A casket and burial can cost $1,116.93 for a small pet and $1,236.93 for a large pet, or more. A private cremation with a service and ash keepsake can cost $743.51 for a small pet, and $768.51 for large pets, or more.

Do we really need to spend so much to show our love? What is wrong with a small, sentimental backyard burial? Burials behind the garden, marked by transplanted wildflowers are tasteful. The pet is close and the process, dignified.

Spending thousands will not bring your pet back, but it will empty your bank account.

A burial, at least, is needed to bring closure after any pet death but there is no need to spend thousands on a lavish pet funeral.

Yes, the burial should be respectful. Yes, the pet, be it dog, cat, fish, bird or rodent, will be missed and is irreplaceable. No two animals are the same. No, they will not mind if you spend $0 on their funeral. All a pet needs is love.

Stop this nonsense and go back to treating beloved pets as what they truly are. Pets.