The dog provides companionship and like any other pet plays an important role in many people's lives. It has been scientifically proven that dogs can decrease levels of loneliness and depression, encourage exercise, improve your health and most important give humans a sense of purpose. They are part of our families but at some point we must say goodbye to them due to disease or old age. Many dog owners choose to bury their dogs in the backyard and the reason why they're doing it is to stay close to them. However, there are some risks about this people don't know and there are other options that can be very useful.
Is it illegal to bury your dog in the backyard?
Backyard burial looks like the easiest way to take care of your dog's remains. It is a place that can be easily visited and tended. Unfortunately, it can be very dangerous for other pets, wildlife and even people. Most pets are put to sleep by euthanasia, a drug known as pentobarbital which can stay up in a buried body of a dog up to a year and any other animal who may get in touch with remains probably will be poisoned. If your dog dies of a disease that can be spread to other pets or people, there is also a great chance of contagion.
Deeper graves are less dangerous for wildlife because they are further from the surface but it's not the best solution neither. If you are about to dig deeper your need to be careful about utility lines in your backyard.
The important question you need to ask yourself is are you gonna live in this house for the rest of your life? What if you decide to sell your house? Are you ready to leave the grave of your pet?
Laws about pet burials are different from region to region. Most of them don't make any difference between smaller pets like a dog or larger animals such as horses. In Los Angeles, California state for example law said that animals can't be buried in the City except in a cemetery.
Instead of all mentioned, one safer option is pet crematoriums. Costs are directed with the size of a dog but this way there are no risks of contamination or disease. Ashes then can be buried in your backyard or any other memorial place. Another solution could be donating the dog's body to science for veterinary training and research and with that help hundreds of pets. Our dogs are in fact perfect ''models'' of diseases in both pets and people and with a scientist studying their body's we can develop new treatments. If you are interested in donating your dog's body, your veterinarian can point you to any veterinary schools who would gladly accept it. Actually, most scientists recommend donating your dog's body.
Although losing your best friend in a dog could be a heartbreaking experience there are many ways to create a nice legacy that can help both pets and people.