When Our Pets Cross The Rainbow Bridge

Losing a beloved pet

Memorization and cremation for pets are booming in Australia and all around the world, with an array of pet loss products and services to farewell and honor our beloved companion animals. The ongoing trend is here to stay and become a permanent practice in Australia because pets are considered more and more a member of the family. Pet owners certainly develop a very deep emotional connection with their pets and even after their passing, they want them to be treated in a very special way and show them for the last time how much they cherish and love them.

Nowadays, you can get any of your beloved furry friends cremated, from your cheeky mice to your graceful stallion. However, it is usually man’s best friend the dog, or fish’s worst enemy the cat. Be sure to explore our entire collection of Cremation Urns for Ashes.

Our pets have become increasingly important to us

Ours is a pet-loving culture. Nothing compares to the joy of coming home to a loyal companion. The unconditional love of a pet can do more than keep you company. Pets may also decrease stress, improve heart health, and even help children with their emotional and  social skills. When we interact with dogs, for
example, our oxytocin levels shoot up. Since this is the hormone largely responsible for social bonding, this hormonal “love injection” boosts our psychological well-being.

Most pet owners know how wonderful owning an animal can be; they understand companionship and how beautiful bonds can be formed between animals and humans. More and more often, animals are included in family events and become important to all members of the family, and caring for a pet can provide a sense of purpose and fulfillment and lessen feelings of loneliness. This can be particularly significant in single-parent families, where a pet can be an important companion to children. Also, children with pets may have higher levels of empathy and self-esteem compared to those who do not have pets. 

How pets helped our mental health during lockdown

Pet owners overwhelmingly believe that their animals have boosted their well-being during the pandemic. Recent research suggests that older people who walked their dogs experienced fewer symptoms of loneliness than those who didn’t walk their dogs and a potential way to reduce escalating psychological
stress during lockdown periods was having a pet, according to the results of a new study.

But it wasn’t just dog owners who expressed the emotional benefits of owning a pet during the pandemic. Cat owners, too, said having a pet made lockdown more bearable, and reduced loneliness. During the pandemic pet owners also found that pets, apart from bringing huge benefits like companionship, are also very tactile, especially in times of social distancing when we couldn’t hug another person, but we could with our animals.

How to Grieve the Death of a Pet

It’s natural to feel devastated by feelings of grief and sadness when a beloved pet dies, because losing someone you love can feel devastating, and the same goes for the death of a cat, dog, or other types of pets. Many of us share an intense love and bond with our animal companions. For us, a pet is not “just a dog” or “just a cat,” but rather a beloved member of our family, bringing companionship, fun, and joy to our lives. We love our pets and consider them members of our family.

Some people often celebrate their pets’ birthdays, confide in their animals and carry pictures of them in their wallets. So when a beloved pet dies, it’s not unusual to feel overwhelmed by the intensity of your sorrow. Since we all feel and process grief in our own way, there’s no clear answer to how long these feelings will last for you.

Nadja Geipert, a marriage and family therapist at LA Family Therapy in Los Angeles, created her own pet grief toolbox to help clients. She says “There are things you feel about this cat, this dog, this bird, that no one else feels, which is true for all grief. Your relationship is unique, and your pet is completely irreplaceable in its unique qualities.” then “ Grieving it’s going to take as long as it’s going to take.”

Here’s how to support yourself as you move through the stages of grief.

  1. Shock
    This first stage is inevitable, and it’s going to happen as you and your family are reeling after the loss of a beloved pet. During this time, be kind to yourself while you let the shock sink in — just as you would with any other loss in your life. Know that it can take a few days or weeks to comprehend what really happened before another stronger emotion starts to take over.
  2. Anger
    Loss sets in and you can’t believe this really happened to you. You may be angry at the unfairness of it all, or you may be mad at how it happened — the car that came out of nowhere, the disease that took your dog’s life in a few short months.
  3. Denial
    Denial may come in the form of thinking that you’re totally fine or even by putting a Band-Aid on the wound with a new pet. It’s normal to move forward and consider a new pet after a loss, especially as an animal lover, but experts caution against the thinking that a new pet will fix the hole in your heart.
  4. Guilt
    Anger at yourself over a pet’s death may look and feel like guilt, but guilt is a separate stage in itself, perhaps because it’s so easy to wallow in. Your mind may be filled with regret and “what ifs” night after night as you lie awake and wonder what you could have done differently to change the outcome of this loss.
  5. Depression
    Depression may be the most difficult stage of all since it can feel like you’re never going to climb out of the hole you’ve been living in the past few months. Rev. Terri Daniel, a hospice chaplain and grief counselor who specializes in animal loss, says that this painful stage is the perfect time to truly open up and process the death of your pet.
  6. Resolution
    Here’s the good news: As cliché as it sounds, when you honor your loss and let yourself really feel your feelings, you will come to the end of your bereavement journey. No longer grieving doesn’t mean you no longer love your pet — it just means that you allowed yourself to grow and heal, proving that something beautiful can come out of loss. Dr. Tessina says, “Any time we love, whether it’s a life partner, a dear friend, a child, a sibling, a parent, or a beloved pet, we are risking the loss of that love and a broken heart. The promise of happiness is strong enough that the risk is worth it.”

How to celebrate your pet’s life

Celebrating your pets’ life can be an important part of the healing process and helps keep the special love you shared with them, alive. Here are some ideas for tributes and activities that can provide peace and solace.

  • Invite your family and friends to attend a Ceremony on a boat on which you are allowed to gently release your pet’s ashes in the water, with a bio water urn.
  • Host a special memorial service on the boat, to add a touch of brightness to the day. Your pet’s life celebration on the water will bring a breath of fresh air to the ceremony.
  • Honor your pet and celebrate the years together by planting a bios urn with the ashes, to grow a special living memorial to keep memories alive for years to come.
  • Hold a planting ceremony for your pet sharing food, stories, laughter, and photographs or videos of your pet’s wonderful life with you.
  • Through time, offer your family and friends fruits and flowers from your pet’s tree.
  • Create a memory book or scrapbook with your favorite photos and memorabilia.
  • Make a donation to a pet rescue group, shelter, or non-profit animal protection whose mission you support.
  • Create a memorial page on social media where you can showcase your fur-friend’s photos for friends and family to view.

Honor a pet that has passed away by planting a tree from the ashes

In 1997 the first prototype for the Bios Urn® was created and in 2001 it was launched on the market. That makes the Bios Urn® the world’s first 100% biodegradable urn and also the world’s first urn which introduced the idea of planting a tree with the remains obtained after human and pet cremation.

The idea of pet burial went to the next stage and the concept of “creating life after life” became a reality.

After the pet cremation using a Bios Urn, it is now possible to plant a tree from the ashes with compatible seedlings to grow in a selected planting location. Some pet owners choose to grow Australian Natives, filling the yard with flowers and birds, others fruit trees or even rose bushes: choices are unlimited. If renting they may even choose to grow a seedling in a pot plant, allowing them to take their special plant wherever they move. Pet owners may also grow a tree in selected pet cemeteries, burying their dog or cat in a dedicated space.

This revolutionary idea has become so successful that other companies were “inspired” and developed products almost identical to the Bios Urn. To market their products successfully, those companies have started claiming that since ashes can kill plant roots, the Bios Urn is not a product to be recommended. Of course, those companies forget to mention that thanks to the Bios Urn patented design, roots can safely grow without any possibility of being killed by the ashes. In fact, the Bios Urn has two separate sections, a bottom section for the ashes and the top section where the seedling can be planted, and the patented design allows the seedling to grow separated from the ashes. Once the Bios Urn starts the decomposing process, the tree roots are already strong enough to contact the ashes and grow through the Bios Urn into a magnificent tree. Thanks to the Bios Urn, hundreds of thousands of trees have been planted worldwide, since 2001.

Read our Customers’ Testimonials here.

Eco Water Urns for sea burial

We form bonds with pets or other animals that are as important and fulfilling as any other relationship in life. This also means that when a pet dies, the grief we experience can be immense and overwhelming and can mirror the grief experienced when we lose a close friend or family member. When our dog, cat or any other beloved animal passes away, we know we have to find a way to learn how to overcome the death of our pet, and a gentle and eco-friendly way to honor and celebrate our pet’s life may be a good start.

As pet owners, we feel we have to go the extra mile for any pet’s final journey and we trust that offering our Bio Water Urns handcrafted with love, can represent a meaningful last tribute to a special furry companion. There are several reasons for using an Eco Water Urn, including the love of the sea, nautical experiences, conservation of land space, environmentally friendly interment, spiritual associations with the ocean and its life chain, affordability, and uniqueness. When you cast your loved pet’s ashes into the sea, you’re not saying just one thing. You’re letting go, but you’re also creating a special place of memory.

You’re allowing your pets to return to the earth and also celebrating their freedom. Like completing the circle of life, and expressing and processing grief at the same time.