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Recently, we asked our readers by poll what they thought about let owners that wanted their pets euthanized when they died (such as to be buried with them).
To take our poll and see the summary of results – go to What do you think about people that want their pets euthanized when they die?
Here are some comments from our pet lovers about this controversial issue:
My dog and I had a special bond and she fretted terribly if we were separated refusing food and water until I was home again. Had she outlived me I would have had her put to sleep and buried with me. from past experience she would not have settled with any one else. Posted by Maureen
There are times – such as when there is no one left to take care of the animal – when it is better to have them euthanized than sent to a shelter. Animals know loss and then need someone they know around to help them through it. If there are no other family members or friends who know the animal, it would be very difficult for the animal to be in a shelter with little to no individualized attention. Also, unless the animal is young, the odds of adoption are not great. The poor animal would wind up euthanized anyway, and in distress while it waits.
I do not believe that those pet owners who think their animals should be euthanized for purely selfish reasons are right, but I do not think this issue is "black and white", either. Posted by Parker
Are these pet owners crazy? Nobody wants their kids euthanized when they die. Pets are not kids but are just like kids. I totally agree with Chris on euthanizing relatives who throw out the cat. Don't assume the pets will be miserable when you die. Don't underestimate them. They may be just fine without you even if they miss you. Give them a chance to have a happy life. I agree with Jim on these pet owners being narcissistic. These pet owners need to be smarter. Posted by Manami
How about euthanizing the human when the pet passes? Posted by Amy
Don't be selfish, provide for your pet! my kids would miss me to bits too if i died, but they could go on to find happiness with someone else. im not gonna take THEM with me. im not so egotistical i believe im the only one to provide, love and happiness to my pets. they can be happy elsewhere, in a VERY rare senerio they might pass on from heartache, but would be so rare id rather give them a chance at happiness first without me. but then i value there life as much as a persons. there not a belonging to come with me and my rings. Posted by tombraider000
The owner should have it set up in the will to ensure the pet will live out a happy, healthy life after he/she passes. The veterinarian may be of help – mine works with adopting out homeless/orphaned pets – including placement at nokill shelters if they are 'too old' so the pet may live out its days. Posted by Carol
I don't think one should ever take an innocent life. If the owner can think ahead to provide for the euthanization of their healthy pet, then they can think ahead to provide a different home for their healthy
pet when they are no longer around. I know it may take a while for the pet to adjust, but if placed with someone kind and gentle, I think that it much better. Posted by Charlene
Why would an owner want a pet to lose there life at a time when it isn't time. Humanity has a choice on their destiny whether a owner have there pet euthanized does not mean that animal will spend eternity with their owner. It kind of remind me of the movie "The Wizard of Oz" the scare crow needed a brain. Posted by dvanilla
WHAT is WRONG with people? Why are they so selfish as to kill their dog (or cat or whatever) when it is healthy just so that it can be buried with them? It is always me, me, me. What about the companion animal? There is a very good chance that MOST animals WILL sucessfully bond with someone else. A person would be so selfish, ignorant, unthinking or unfeeling that he/she would deny the animal the chance at happiness and a long life with a beloved companion? The only time such a thing should be considered is if you KNOW for SURE there is no other option. Your first choice should be family or friends. You could plan for the situation in your will. If after the death of the human the animal is one that will definetly not be with anyone else, refuses food and drink, and is totaly inconsolable THEN it would be humane to euthanize the animal and bury it with the owner. Besides, what if you live 20 years after you had the animal killed? What a waste of years of companionship with a devoted animal. What a waste of an animal's life. I, myself, have adopted both cats and dogs that other people either abandoned or gave up for whatever reasons and in all cases we all bonded quite well. Posted by Martha
I worked at a shelter and have seen animals that could be very happily placed in another home. Healthy, friendly, etc. In these cases, putting them down would not be the best thing to do. But I also saw people voluntarily surrender animals for adoption that couldn't adapt to the separation. Some would snap as soon as their owners walked out the door, violently going after everyone when they had been calm before. Others settled into a depressed stupor, refusing food and water, not responding to others. There were some everywhere between these extremes and the happy animals. We tried HARD to save them, taking time to try and make friends with the aggressive ones, bringing the depressed ones home with us to try and force feed them, hug them, show them other people could love them. Sometimes it worked, other times we failed, and they suffered. In those cases, these animals, whose owners were still alive somewhere, but no longer WANTED them, had to be put to sleep. Another cat was a very old guy, whose owner had died. Her family came to her house to claim her belongings, and the neighbors watched in horror as they tossed the indoor cat out the door and into the snow without a thought. He was half blind and arthritic, and had never gone out except in the arms of the old lady who had loved him. The family didn't even bother a glance at him. The neighbors were all unable to take him in to their homes, but took turns feeding him for a week or so until one brought him to us, knowing we'd likely have to euthanize him due to his age. But he was a sweet old man, they couldn't bear to watch him freeze to death alone outside. He tugged at our hearts too and lived out another month and a half living in our medical suite as the 'shelter vet's cat', being given beds, any type of food he wanted, and TONS of love and kisses. He was very happy and loved, but in the end, just weeks later, buddy's body shut down and we had to let him go. Had his owner left instructions for his care, even euthanasia, it would've spared the poor guy the grief, pain and confusion that he suffered for the time he was left to fend for himself outside before coming to us. It was his time, and euthanasia would not have been a bad alternative. I am just glad we were able to give him a happy last few weeks and remind him that he was very loved.
Here is the page for our Bud-man, who I think really is a case where instructions for the animal need to be in the will, and where euthanasia would have been an acceptable option. He's back with his owner now, we were glad to have known him, even if sorry about the circumstances. http://www.catster.com/dogs/518655.
Its a situation that really needs to be handled on a case by case basis. Sometimes a pet who is left behind has a bright future ahead of them in life, and should be allowed to pursue that. Other times their future died with their owner, and letting them join them is what is best. Posted by Beth on
I feel this is not a black and white decision. It all depends on the age, health and personality of the animal, availability of friends or relatives to step in and take responsibility for the animal to either take them as their pet or to make sure the pet is responsibly placed in a good home. Sometimes there is no one that can take on that responsibility. I would rather see the pet euthanized than left to be mistreated – traumatized by being sent to a shelter to wait for "maybe" a new home. Unfortunately there are too many unhappy endings with the over population of pets that have been abandoned. Posted by Marlyn Chadderton
My Rottwieller is almost 11 yrs old,is on medication for epilepsy,had is back leg smashed in 3 places and has nerve damage to a front leg so is on Power Meg to keep him mobile as long as possible. Now if i were to die before him i would want him euthanized to be cremated with me as i have no one that would take him and would not let him go to a shelter,as i am on the board of a nokill shelter and know that an older dog with health problems would not get adopted easily if ever. Posted by wanda
I think it is wrong if the pet is healthy and happy with no issues, like health issues, advanced age or aggressive issues. Advanced age is okay if someone in the family is willing to take care of the pet for the rest of its days. However, to euthanize a healthy pet because you are dying or have died is selfish. Its selfish to think that only YOU can bond with this pet. I've rehomed many pets over the years and yes while the pet goes through a few days to a week of missing their old life, if they have a new owner who cares for them the pet will bond with that person also. So give the pets a chance at life. They deserve it. Posted by Melainie
In the case of the relatives throwing the cat out, I think the ideal solution would have been to euthanize the relatives.
Posted by Chris
I volunteer for the Cats Protection here in the UK and a large proportion of the cats brought into the shelter are old or ill. They are usually abandoned on the pretext of a change of living accommodation or other weak excuses. Some of these cats do take a long time to settle down, sometimes we're talking months not weeks, but I'm pleased to say that we ALWAYS home the cats and never euthanize, there is always a kind person out there somewhere to give these cats a loving home. Of course all pet owners should make arrangements for their pets in their wills and the RSPCA and other charities in the UK will contract with you to take your pet if it outlives you. I appreciate in rare cases an animal can be so devastated by an owners death it doesn't survive but I think they all deserve the chance to live out their lives. If you really love your pet surely you would want it to live. Posted by Elaine
I feel that it all depends on the situation. If the animal is young and healthy, they would probably adjust to living with someone else. However, if the animal is elderly and does not adjust to change very well, I don't have a problem with having them euthanized. That way, the human and the pet can go to the Rainbow Bridge together!!! Frankly, the big male cat that I currently share my life with is very, very spoiled and I really don't think anyone could handle him but me. He would be miserable. Posted by millie
I want my Pets to live a long and healthy life. I think they should be given this opportunity. Another way to look at this would be– if your pets dies, would you like to be Euthanized so you can be buried with them?
I have cats and if I die I want my Friends and Family to take care of them. I am providing for this. Posted by Val
I believe my little chihuahua, Tico, could not survive without me. They say chihuahuas are one person dogs, and she is definitely mine. She is okay with certain people only if I am home and in the same room. I was gone for 4 days and my niece, who Tico knows well, barked constantly, growled, and would not come out of the bedroom, even for her stepdaughter, 7, who Tico really likes. I do not want her to have to live without me; it would be too traumatic for her and the people watching her. Posted by Jeanie
I think if the pet is healthy it would be a crime to have him/her needlessly euthanized. I have seven dogs and oh what a crowed grave it would be since the smallest one is 50#. I know many years (60+) ago it used to be the practice for the elderly to have their pet put to sleep and then placed in their arms in the casket but fortunately this went by the wayside. In the end, no matter what my opinion is, people will do what they "feel is right". Posted by Charlene
The only time the animal should be euthanized is if the animal is very elderly and ill. Otherwise, the animal should not have his/her life taken away because his owner dies. The responsible owner that loves the pet will make arrangements for care of the animal. My eldest dog is 10 yrs old, and is very bonded to me, but I would NOT want her to lose her life because I had the misfortune to die before she did. Posted by barbara
NO ONE, NO ONE, NO ONE, could or would do what we do for our dogs. Several times a day costly meds, weekly baths, thousands of dollars of surgery, vet rechecks every 6 weeks, they will only drink spring water, accidents in the house, not to mention the regular daily walks, cushy beds all over the house, special food and so on and so on. We can't even find a kennel that will treat them the way we do, never mind a permanent home…. If I was assured someone would do all this, I would leave them to their care, but truly, who would? Posted by norma
I feel that if there is no one to care for the pet, or if the pet gets extremely upset when seperated I think it is humane. If it is aimed at the person's desire then it is wrong… Posted by LOMA
If the animal is healthy then to euthanize it is to committ murder. plain and simple. You don't have the right to take another creature's life away from it especially one that trusted and loved you. Posted by Jenifer on March 24th 2010, 5:59pm
Sorry, it's a selfish act to euthanize a pet that still has life to live and love to give. Yes, they will miss you, but like all of us, they can go on living. Are you going to be "euthanized" if your pet dies first? Didn't think so. Posted by Patti
I CANT BELIEVE THAT ANYONE WOULD BE SO HEARTLESS TO KILL YOUR PET FOR YOUR OWN SELFISH NEEDS. IT MAKES ME SICK TO THINK THAT ANY HUMANBEING COULD BE SO CRUEL. ARE THEY GOING TO EUTHANIZE THERE FAMILY (PARENTS, CHILDREN, SPOUSE) TOO WHEN THEY DIE, AND STICK THEM IN THE GROUND NEXT TO THEM. THEY WILL BE DEPRESSED AS MUCH AS YOUR PET. YOU SEE HOW STUPID IT SOUNDS. IT SHOULD BE AGAINST THE LAW. HOW COULD A VET DOC EVEN AGREE TO SUCH A THING. HOW CAN HE SLEEP AT NIGHT??? ITS MURDER Posted by ILENE
I think it is wrong to have your animal put to sleep, just because you have died. The only scenario that I could condone it is if the animal was old and/or ill too. The thought that some old person may have a young animal and then have it put down just so it can be buried with them beggars belief. Posted by Gaynor
I think it is up to the owner or pet parent. I see cases of senior dogs going to the local shelter because the owner has died. These dogs often spend a significant amount of time at the shelter before/if they are adopted. To me this is not a kindness. My husband and I have to Jack Russell Terriers who are extremtly attached to us and one another. Our female has special medical needs that many people would not want to commit to. Our families know that if something tragic and unforseen were to happen to us we want our dogs put to sleep.
Posted by Lisa
I think that ALL animals/pets have a soul. Have you ever just looked into their eyes? There's a soul in there. Maybe they can't communicate like you or I can, BUT they do have feelings. I'm not talking feelings like humans, but in their own way they are in there. How else can you explain that our pets know when we're feeling sad, happy or depressed?
I've had Leukemia for the past 6 1/2 years and let me tell you this, if it weren't for my orange tabby "Billi" I don't think I would've made it through the rough spots. He laid there next to me on the bathroom floor when I couldn't leave that spot due to being sick from the chemo. He would lick my face as if to say "It'll be alright".
I DO NOT see where people get off playing God. They do not have the right to take the life of a healthy active animal, who has lots of life left in them. How would they feel if their family, whom they've loved and cared for and been there for just decided one day that they were no longer needed OR wanted, so they just had them killed off.
I feel that in this day & age we've come to think of everything as disposable. If we allow our animal, who should be considered as part of our families to be killed just to bury them with another family member then whats to stop us in the future from having Dad killed and buried with Mom or vice a versa.Think about it!!!
I am TOTALLY frustrated and at wits end about this issue. Maybe I'm too much of an animal lover but I feel if we decide to raise an animal as a pet then we dang well better treat them like we would want to be treated. With love, kindness and our basic needs met.Our pets do not care what we look like, how much money we have, what body size or shape we have. All they ask of us is that they have food, water, shelter and loves. Thats all. It's not much. They will always be there for us if we do these few little things.Thank you for letting me rave about this matter, but I LOVE animals and we should ALL give them the same love they give us in return. Sincerely-Debbie
I've had pets (mostly cats) my entire life of 63 years. There is no way that I would have any of my cats put to sleep because I was dying. Like someone else commented. Now is the time to make plans in case something were to happen to me. I love my cats too much to think that they should die because I died. What a sad world we live in when people think this is the right thing to do.
Posted by Gloria
I think that it is very selfish of the owner to even suggest anything remote to having a healthy animal put to sleep because of their own selfishness to have them buried with them. That to me is thinking more of yourself and not loving your animal as much as you think in your warped mind that you do! Posted by Carla
When I was younger (in my 30's), I had three dogs. I am an only child and my parents would not have wanted to take my dogs if something happened to me. I had no relatives in America, all overseas. I had my will specifying that if I were to die, my dogs would be euthanized and buried with me. I did not want to think about what would happen to them if I were not around (even thought I would not know it), but it made me feel better knowing that they would not be given to someone who did not care for them the way I did or treat them the way I did, or that they would be separated from each other. Posted by Denise
I think euthanizing your pet when you die is one of the most disgusting things I have ever heard of. I know that all our pets that have loved us would be able to live happily with someone else that would treat them with love and care. Personally, I think it is narcissistic BS to say that your pet loves only you so much that it would never be able to live and be happy with a new loving, caring human companion. Would YOU like to be euthanized when your loving mate dies? Of course not. Neither would you pet if it understood what you were about to do to it… DISGUSTING.
Posted by Jim
PS.. For those of you who think your so good to your pet, I'm betting there are others that can love your pet even more than you did because they would not want to KILL/MURDER their pet when they die. Your a disgusting bunch of despicable people that should not be allowed the good company of a pet. For this very reason I prefer to go to dog heaven that to where the majority of such humans will be. Posted by JIM
I think that having your pet uthanized when you die just to be with you is the epitomy of selfishness. I agree with the comments that stated provisions for placing the pet should be made if there is time. If there is no time, a provision for a pets can be made in a will along with a stipend. In my version of heaven, all my cats I've ever had will come to me, but I want it to be in their own time – not mine. Posted by Janet
Until I read some of the comments, I would've said a clear-cut, emphatic NO! But now I think of even my own cat. She refuses to get along with other animals, and barely gets along with humans. She now loves me, but it took some work. Since I adopted her from the Shelter, I know next to nothing about her, except they warned me that she couldnt be adopted by a family with other pets, as she had been returned a few times already (she is my only one). I am gone to work two days a week, and she barely tolerates the person I have come over to feed her. I cant imagine what Ill do with her when I am gone. Posted by john
I am going to have my 2 cats put down to IF I die before they do. They would not survive with another family they are right now 13 years old. And to put them with the humane society In a cage until If they got adopted would kill them. And I personally thing the Humane society would put them down because of there age.
They have known NO one else but me. Posted by windyblue
Any pet owner that is so self-centered and ego-centric so as to think that their pet would not survive as a healthy pet in some other loving home is sick and in dire need of psychotherapy. Pets love us and yes we love them but come on people don't be so stupid and backward about it. Like the Ancient Egyptians Pharoahs are you really going to take your most cherished possessions on the long voyage to the afterlife? Posted by james
My cat has been with me for 12 yrs.. I know that he would not make it with nobody else, he is like
my shadow and everywhere I go in the apt. he follows. I do not believe in putting them down however,
but would make arrangements and set aside money so when he dies he can be buried in the same spot.
I know it would not be long before we would be together again. Posted by connie
I do not think it wrong to euthanize a cat if its owner passes away, BUT only if the cat is elderly. Lots of times relatives tell you not to worry because they will take care of your pet(s) if you pass away. I have three cats, and each of my three children each has a cat…do you really think any one of them is going to take on an additional three cats? My cats are very close in age to each other and VERY attached to each other. I doubt one could survive without the other. When I pass away, I want my cats to be kept together & I feel if they are older than 10 or 12 yrs., I'd want them buried with me. I love my cats dearly. Posted by Helen on March 25th 2010, 2:35pm
This is stupid. I love my cats. And because I love them I would want them to live a long full life, if they were to outlive me. Why would I ruin and knowingly shorten the life of something that I loved dearly? Sane people wouldnt. Another reason it doesn't make sense… You are dead. I hate to be so blunt about it, but you are dead. You aren't going to run around in the grave with your pet, you aren't going to be loving or hugging, or spending time with your pet after you are dead. real life isn't like All dogs go to heaven. Our human…physical bodies are gone. Don't screw with your pets too. Posted by Christina
It depends on the age and health issues of the dog. The dog will be pinning over the owner. Remember the story of Lassie.
Posted by Maria
This question JUST SAVED MY CAT'S LIFE!! In fact I just phoned my sister to revise/update my wishes . My sisters always knew I wanted one of them to take my cat should I die.However– that topic had been discussed years ago when I had a healthy cat.(That cat has since passed on).SITUATIONS CHANGE and the cat I have now is not healthy with MANY medical problems requiring ALOT of care.My family don't know how to medically care for him,or what his special needs are.SO—I will teach and show my sister what I do for my cat and she will give it her "very best shot " to keep and care for him should it ever be necessary.She now knows too that if she feels she no longer can meet his needs and his quality of life is poor—to put him down and I would be OK with that.I would provide $$$ also. This is LOVE and it goes both ways between sisters.Best of all I know my sister will love my cat too.My cat is a pure bred persian with papers .I had first kitten choice out of 2 persian litters from a very reputable breeder and I chose him.None of the other kittens or at any other time has this breeder had a kitten with any health problems.I feel this cat was meant to be mine and I know if he'd ended up with anybody else–he'd be dead. He is 2 years old now.I wouldn't have traded him in for another one even though the breeder did offer.In spite of all his different problems,none of them are fatal. I can't believe I forgot to arrange care on a pet that gives me so much love and joy.He is worth my trouble. Posted by Diane on March 26th 2010, 5:51am
This is the craziest thing I have heard of in a long time. To have a pet put to death for selfish reasons is inexcusable. This practice is the height of ego. Posted by Mark
I have been a funeral director for 47 years, I have had this request many times, but have never experienced it being done. I have buried pet cremated remains many times with their owner. I am a dog lover and have two Maltese, whom I love very much. Responsible people make plans for their pets in case of their death the same as other concerns. I recently had to place my wife in a Alzheimer's facility and our male Maltese almost went nuts the first three days she was gone. He was in her lap constantly when she was home. He is fine now and loves my grandchildren. They are getting old (ll yrs old) and I have make provisions for them both should I die first, if not, I want their ashes buried with me.They have given me more joy and anything else in my life. Posted by Harold
I agree with "tombraider" and the others who said that people should give companion animals a chance at a new life (THEIR lives). Make sure they are provided for, and that someone else will care for and advocate for them in the event you can't. Their lives are not ours to snuff out. Posted by Molly
If there is someone to take care of the pet after the person dies, then definitely not. However, if the pet will be homeless and possibly euthanized anyway, then it does make sense. My first response is no way, but when I think about it a little more, in some cases it would make sense. Posted by Kim
My 3 T cup Yorkies would not want to live out their days in a no kill shelter. They sleep and travel with me and depend on me for everything. To put them in a shelter or in a strange home would be cruel. Better for me to take them and hug them while they are given something to put them to sleep. Dogs do not reason–they do not know that they will not wake up and they do not fear death –all they know is that they are getting a shot (no different from a vaccine) and they just do not wake up. It is much harder on the person that loves them. I will have them put with me if I die before they do and feel that I have done the right thing. I have seen too many very loved pets left behind and even with a will they are still unhappy and suffer from the loss of the people that loved them more that their caretaker and also some of the caregivers do not ever treat them like they were accustomed to being treated. Sorry but going with me is best for mine. Posted by Glenda
I have 2 dogs. One which is Annie quits eating and drinking while I'm gone on trips that I can't take her on with me and won't stay at anybody's home either. And that is with a person that treats hers just like I treat mine furbabies. If she is going to outlive me…yes I will have her "put to sleep" with me and be with me forever. Now the other one Jasmine could and would go to someone else as she can handle it. I truly believe it depends on the animal for this kind of choice you make. I think this is a case of gray not black and white. And it is out of love for the furbaby on being cruel or heartless. Posted by Vicky
There are many different dog "personalities." As a responsible owner, you should know a bit about your breed's temperment. Some breeds can never make the transition and establish a bond to a new owner. How selfish is it to insist that a dog stays alive simply because you seem to believe that your idea of what is "right" is right in reality. It may be far more humane for the companion to simply go to sleep and trust that the animal had a wonderful life. Quality vs. quantity. Posted by Sophie
Please people…. you wouldn't put your child to sleep to be buried with you, would you? Same thing here… it is the human that has the problem letting go. Sure our close fur babies would miss us and grieve but with a another good home they can continue to enjoy THEIR life. It is wrong on so many levels to be so SELFISH as to euthanize a healthy pet when they can continue to bring someone else joy and experience the continued love of a human. Think it over and quite thinking about yourself! Posted by Janie
Everyone cares for their beloved pets in individual ways. My dogs are always happier with me than with anyone else. Even when leaving them with close friends when travelling, they are stressed until I return. It would break my heart thinking I might be forced to leave my pets behind to be cared for by someone else if I felt they should be with me, even in the end. If I had a puppy, not yet formed a bond or relationship with, then I would absolutly want my puppy to have a life opportunity with someone else. I believe it really depends on the individiual situation and circumstances. Posted by Teri
The old man shold be kicked in the balls before being buried! A life is a life, no matter if it is a dog or human! Maybe in his next life he will come back as a dog and the same thing will happen to him! Posted by Harry
There are some situation were I think it's okay-but the owner should try to see if there will be anybody out there that they can trust will take good care of their pets before they pass on. Otherwise, even if the pet is healthy, if they are also old and just going on their last few days, than yes, it's okay to put them down. Posted by Vanessa
Don't kill the dog. I've adopted a dog under these circumstances and we both are very happy about it. Previous owner wanted life for mr sassy. I've love him in a manner his ex owner would approve of. Theirs enough dog lovers and rescues to cover them. Posted by brian
I agree with the folks that would have their pet go with them. Pookee, my collie/golden retriever mix wouldn't eat and paced the whole time I was on vacation. I was on the phone every day to check on her and even had someone staying at our house with her. When I got home, I held her for almost an hour while she whined and cried. Never again would I go anywhere without her. At age 13, she had a cancerous inoperable tumor and she had to be put down. I was holding her and talking to her until she passed and for a time after she was gone. She has been cremated and I still haven't buried her ashes. My daughter has been instructed to release her ashes, along with mine, in a safe, private place. If you have someone who will care for your pet and love them and your pet is happy with them, then by all means, leave your pet behind. But if you have a relationship like Pookee had with me and you know the dog will suffer after your passing, then let your souls pass together. Posted by Lyn
I can not believe anyone would consider such a thing! Animals do not have the ability to make choices. As owners, we have a responsibility to them! I look at my dogs and treat them like they are my children. So, with that being said, I would never wish my healthy child to be buried with me for my own selfish reasons! Come on! Buy a burial plot next to yours, if you can do that for animals, and let the dog live! Another option. Get cremated and when it is your animals time to go, cremate them as well. Then simply mix the ashes together! You should never take a life because of selfishness! Are we not supose to protect our animals? I just think it is strange! Posted by
There aren't enough homes for every pet. I can see somebody doing this if they believe the chances for a successful adoption are low. I cannot see it just because they are being sentimental and want to be buried with a pet. Posted by Chris
Rehoming a pet whose person/people have died, can be challenging, especially in the case of an older pet. However, this can be made easier by leaving enough money to support the actual cost of the pet's needs–good food, heartworm & flea meds, vet care. For a large dog, this may be $2,000/year, depending on the pet's needs.
Therefore, if you want an older pet to have the best chance of finding a home (even among relatives), arrange in your will to leave a fairly substantial bequest for care. Then let family, friends and vet know about the bequest.
The amount should cover all costs and ideally be disbursed on a yearly basis. For that you will need someone willing to act as the pet's guardian–who may be different from the caretaker. You'll also need an attorney to draw this up. However, it's possible to do this, in a way that's legally binding. I know because we've done it. Posted by JM
My Wife and I made the decision to end the life of our first adopted "Son" Zipper, after a 7 month fight with severe seizures that were increasing in their resistance to medication. In those 7 months, we had to increase his medication 4 times. At this rate, he had maybe 2 years of this ugly, violent torture on his body and mind. They say (Vets) that they are pretty much oblivious afterwards to what just happened, and to be honest, they do seem to be. However, Cluster Seizures are a whole different matter. Anyhow, my point is this, I (we) had absolutely no right to make that decision for Zipper! He should have had the same right as my wife and I have, and would give children of our own. That is the commitment that should be given to all life that share their's along with ours that give their anmatched love and loyalty, along with a fierce bravery that can only come from a friend or family member we can only dream of! Any choice (with the exception of obvious matters of pain and certain death) is WRONG! If you truly love your "adoptions" as we do, you will never be able to live another day without wanting to have that day, and that choice, back! I hope to suffer each and every day, for the rest of my life, as a memory of the day I treated my "Son" like he was expendable, unappreciated, and a lesser member of our family! I will die with that memory strong within me. We now have 3 more adoptions that are enjoying the guilt that burns inside of me and practically have free reign on what they can do and get away with. That is our story and the reason for our answer!
(this was all just us and how we felt and feel, and had nothing to do with God and/or religion). Posted by Marcus
Are you kidding me? WHy would you kill your pet because you are dying? That is INSANE. Make arrangements to give the pet a good home or adopt it out. How selfish are humans that we think our pets want to die with us? That is just stupid.
I had to put down 2 great Labs who were very sick and it killed me. I like the last post by Amy. Who are we to decide unless a pet is really suffering? WHy should they suffer for us? Posted by tracy
With all do respect if there is nobody who is close enough to take the dog it makes sense,where would the dog end up and will the person love them as much as the owner. Me myself would only trust one other person with my dogs and if they were not around I would say sure. Posted by jonilee
First of all, how does a person know for sure the pet will be buried with him? I do not think the animal should be be put to sleep, because his owner passes away. That is very selfish of the owner to do that. Why cant the owner find a non kill shelter? Posted by Cynthia
Reading through the responses, this is a very emotional thing. Our pets are our families. Sometimes I feel my cats have adopted me. Recently I have a friend who had to have her dog put down. She was 15 and she had her since she was two. She was a wonderful doggie, and helped my friend through some tough times in her life. She made the comment that we spend more time with them than we do our kids, after all our kids grow up and leave, our pets are there till the end. And unlike kids, our pets never hurt us, never judge us and always give us love. I have 4 soon to be 5 cats and plan on making plans in my will for them. I know my family will go by my wishes and make sure they can live out their lives comfortably and cared for, no nothing will probably take my place for them but cats and dogs and adapt if given time. I read a lot of stories where people feel their pet would not get along with anyone else, and sorry to say that is not true. With time and love they will adapt. There are tons of stories out there where dogs and cats that were orphaned because an owner died or could not keep them and they went on to good homes, even the older cranky ones with time came around. I adopted a very frightened and scared cat last year. It took months for her to come around and yes I thought about giving up, but I didn't. Now she is my cuddle bug but still very shy and will not come out if people are over. Just because of this should I have her put down if I die? No, I would not. There are always exceptions to this, like elderly pets that would probably not live very long anyway but I believe those are rare. Go to any shelter and you're sure to find a senior pet that needs a home maybe for a few years or just a few months. Don't be so fast to judge that your pet cannot live without you. If I should go before my cats I can only hope they go to good and loving homes. I do know I will see them again!! Posted by Yvonne
TALK ABOUT SELFISH?!? – Melanie V – You say you've "re-homed" animals many times & it just takes them a few days to a week to adjust?! How SELFISH OF YOU to accept responsibility of a precious sensitive creature's life, only to uproot it's world again! And you've done this not once, but repeatedly? You don't deserve the honor of the company of animals!
I adore animals as much or more than anyone any of you will ever find. I feel that if a person actually chose to euthanize a HEALTHY pet without even TRYING to work out suitable living circumstances for it after their death, it would be despicable. THAT BEING SAID – I also feel the personality, adaptability, & ability to place every creature should be CAREFULLY CONSIDERED in this situation. Dogs often adapt much more easily than cats, who can be seriously traumatized just by MOVING – EVEN WITH THEIR OWN PEOPLE!! For us to assume that we KNOW what they do or do not suffer upon separation from the person who actually knew them best seems quite arrogant to me. Posted by Melanie
In many cultures, when the King died, his servants would be buried with him to serve him after death. This is no different. Posted by SalemCat