A lasting tribute: Five ways to personalize your furry friend’s pet cremation in Singapore


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A lasting tribute: Five ways to personalize your furry friend’s pet cremation in Singapore


The world over, the notion of pet owners being pet parents or pet family is growing ever more prevalent as Gen Z become the heads of households and start adopting pets as their own.

I personally adopted two cats and as I witnessed them growing up and developing their own personalities, I always wondered how societies during the past thirty years could have viewed animals as objects. No way. Pets are friends and they have their own discrete characteristics. No pet is the same as another, which explains the wonder of keeping pets and companion animals, and why having just two pets is not enough.

However, recognizing the uniqueness and depth of feeling in each animal makes pet death so much harder to bear. I have seen how my own peers grieved the loss of a pet and dread the day when I have to say goodbye to my own fur-babies. 

I also recognize that it can be therapeutic and helpful to honour the memory of one’s pet after his death, and to do this, we can create personalized rituals surrounding the pet cremation. As an asides, why do I mention pet cremation in particular? It is because, in Singapore, we have specific and strict rules on how to dispose of a pet’s body. While a small pet’s body can be thrown in the trash, larger pets must be cremated as a commercial crematorium for pets.

So, how can we turn the process of pet cremation in Singapore into a deeply personal and healing ritual?

You can customize the cremation service. Many pet crematoriums allow for you to arrange a memorial service that reflects your pet’s unique personality and to remember the good times that they had with your family. 

Bring your pet’s favourite toys to the cremation service

At Pets Afterlife, you would be able to do this if you book a private cremation, as the bereaved are not able to attend a communal cremation service. At a private cremation, Pets Afterlife provides a serene and soothingly lit hall for the pre-cremation viewing of the pet. They can arrange flowers around the pet’s body. You can personalize the viewing of the pet by bringing the pet’s favourite toys and arranging them around the pet’s body for awhile before taking them away when the body is to be cremated. This can be a therapeutic and healing gesture as you can think of it as a definite way to mark the last time the toys were touched by the pet. 

Bring photos and videos of your pet to the cremation service

Use the pre-cremation viewing session as a chance to show a video and photographs of the happiest and most joyful moments together with your pet. This will allow you to reminisce about the life and personality of your pet with your family and friends. 

Turn the cremation service into an event where you invite your friends

A third way to have a personalized pet cremation is to host a quiet coffee session at the pet crematorium during the viewing session. This will allow you to invite your close friends and family to view the pet and provide emotional support to you on the occasion of the death of your fur-child. Some ideas for the gathering would include telling stories about the life the pet, sharing funny anecdotes, and reading poems about the pet. Storytelling is an act of remembrance as it has the power to transform sad occasions into a chance to remember special things and feel happy about them again.

After the cremation service, visit your pet’s favourite places

Most of our pets will have had a favourite place, whether in the house or in a park. So, after the pet cremation, heavy emotions will definitely be running high, and what better way to be fully aware of them and to release them, than to go to that favourite place and think of the times your pet was there? Of course, it will make the pet’s absence so painful and so obvious, but there is really no way to deal with grief except to face it fully.

Go to Pulau Semakau to personally scatter the ashes of your pet

After a pet cremation in Singapore, you have the option of allowing the crematorium to release the ashes of your pet on your behalf. But it is also possible to attend the scattering of the ashes, and this could also be a way to personalize and memorialize the occasion of your pet’s death. In Singapore, the ashes of cremated pets can be taken home and stored by the pet parent, the other alternative is sea scattering in a peaceful stretch of the sea 2.8 kilometres south of Pulau Semakau.

Make the sea scattering a beautiful event

Sea scattering can be transformed into a beautiful and serene ritual by doing the following: First, check when your pet crematorium charters a boat to Pulau Semakau to perform the sea scattering, and then see if its possible for you to go along with them to scatter the pet’s ashes. Second, buy some flowers in a colour that reminds you of your pet’s personality and bring the flowers and the ashes to the sea scattering. Finally, mingle the flowers and ashes together as you scatter them into the waters and envision your pet, free and happy, in the great blue beyond.

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