Questions And Answers
About Pet Urns, Cremation And Related Topics

Please submit any questions via e-mail to spiritremains@hotmail.com or fill out the feedback form.  If we have your e-mail address, we will notify you when the response has been posted to this page.   

Urn Questions Cremation Putting a pet to sleep

May I send you personal items to put on my custom urn?

Yes, we are happy to try to accommodate requests to put personal items on your urn. 


What if my pet has different features from the figurine in the photo?

If you send a photo of your pet, we will do our best to paint the figurine so that it more closely resembles your pet. 


How can I tell if the urn is large enough to hold my pet's ashes?

The dimensions of the urn when multiplied together will determine if the urn is large enough.  So if an urn's inside dimensions are 9" x 6" x 4", for example, the result from multiplication is 216. The 216 translates into the weight of the pet prior to cremation.  An urn 4" x 5" x 2" would hold a pet that weighed 40 pounds prior to cremation.  The dimensions of each urn can be found on the detail page for that urn right after the description of the urn's scenario.   


Where can I get a custom made figurine of my dog?

Go to the following link to see the marvelous work of Lucy Maloney, who will make a dog figurine to your specifications.  If you want, we can put the figurine on a custom urn by Spirit Remains.

Miniature dogs and cats by Lucy Maloney



How do I put my pet's remains in an urn?

Most remains come back to you in a sealed plastic bag.  You don't ever need to open the bag and handle the remains.  All you have to do is take the bag from whatever container it is in (if it came back in a container) and put the bag in the urn.  Urns from Spirit Remains come with fabric pouches with Velcro type closures, so you can put the plastic bag with the ashes in the fabric pouch. 


Do you have a Rainbow Bridge Urn?

We've just created our own version of the Rainbow Bridge urn and it's on currently on the The Story of Rainbow Bridge page.  You can also see samples of a dog, cat, and ferret urn by clicking on "View Product Images" from Rainbow Bridge Custom Urn page.


What is the Rainbow Bridge story?

When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge. There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together. There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable. 

All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor. Those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by. The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind. 

They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent. His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster. 

You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.   Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together....

Author unknown...



What types of places handle pet cremations?

Most veterinaries offer pet cremation, although not all veterinary offices actually do the cremating.  There are also pet specific cremation facilties - these places are where vets usually send the animals to be cremated.  Also, some large funeral homes will handle pet cremation.


What is a private cremation?

A private cremation is one in which the ashes are kept separate from the ashes of other animals; this is for people who want to have the ashes of their pet returned to them. In cases where people opt to not have the ashes returned, the cremation facility does not keep the ashes separate.   



How will I know when it's time to put my pet to sleep?

As a pet owner, you probably have a pretty good idea when your little buddy no longer enjoys life.  Things like loss of appetite, not wanting to participate in things he used to do, and sleeping more are indications that it may be time to let him go and end the suffering.  This is particularly true when you know the animal has a disease or serious illness.  All the people I've spoken with who have had to take this final step had the same doubts and questions: should I have waited longer, and did I wait too long. 

It's natural to want to keep them with us as long as we can, and that makes the decision more difficult.  It's very hard to let them go, because when we end their pain, our emotional pain and loss begin.  There may be times when our pet will "rally" and behave as he did when he was healthy; this can give us false hope and cause us to reconsider our decision.  Usually, this is just a short term improvement, though, and his condition will deteriorate. 

If you really have doubts or are unsure as to what to do, talk to your vet and see what he or she says.  Their experience and advice will be invaluable.  Just remember that you are doing this as a final act of love for your pet.  Forgive yourself, appreciate the effort it took, and know that you did the right thing.    

                                              "Help Me Make the Decision"
                                                                From: Newspaper-Dear Abby
                                                                    Unknown Author 
  

                                                       If it should be that I grow weak 
                                                       And pain should keep me from my sleep, 
                                                       Then you must do what must be done, 
                                                       For this last battle cannot be won.

                                                       You will be sad, I understand.
                                                       Don't let your grief then stay your hand.
                                                       For this day, more than all the rest,
                                                       Your love for me must stand the test. 

                                                       We've had so many happy years.
                                                       What is to come can hold no fears. 
                                                       You'd not want me to suffer so;
                                                       The time has come -- please let me go. 

                                                       Take me where my needs they'll tend,
                                                       And please stay with me till the end.
                                                       Hold me firm and speak to me, 
                                                       Until my eyes no longer see.

                                                       I know in time that you will see 
                                                       The kindness that you did for me. 
                                                       Although my tail its last has waved, 
                                                       From pain and suffering I've been saved.

                                                       Please do not grieve -- it must be you 
                                                       Who had this painful thing to do. 
                                                       We've been so close, we two, these years; 
                                                       Don't let your heart hold back its tears.
 
 


Why would the vet not let me see my pet put to sleep?

I don't know your particular case, but when one of my cats was put to sleep at home, my vet told me that I might not want to watch.  I believe he had to use an alternate method to put her to sleep which involved a needle in her heart rather than using the vein in her arm.  I think this was because he had difficulty finding the vein, but am not sure.  If you really want to know, you might just call and ask what the reason was.  It could also be that the vet wanted to spare you having a vivid visual image of the death as your last memory of your pet.      


Where are pets put to sleep?

Depending on the vet you use, you may be able to have your pet put to sleep at home.  We've had pets euthanized both at home and at the vet's office.  If you'd like to have your pet put to sleep in your home, ask your vet if that's possible.  Be aware that if it's done in your home, you may associate that part of your home with the death of the pet.  Also, when we had a dog or cat put to sleep in our home, we let the other animals come in afterwards to see and smell the body.  It was a good way to show them what had become of their companion.    


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