So You Want to Bury Your Cat When She Dies

Here are some thoughts about burying your cat when she passes on. It might be worth mentioning that in the UK you can’t set up a pet cemetery without getting permission from Defra. Also you can bury horses on your land in England but in Scotland and Wales they have to be pets.

Cat Graves

Two useful tags. Click either to see the articles:- Toxic to cats | Dangers to cats

You need to remind yourself that you intend to stay at the property for a very long time. Perhaps the biggest drawback to burying your cat in your garden is that it is very difficult, practically and emotionally, to exhume the remains of your cat to take with you if and when you decide to move. I believe this first point is the most important.

Also you’ll need to be a long leaseholder or freeholder of the property. In other words you have to own the property including the garden where your cat is to be buried. I am not sure it is sensible to bury your cat in what apartment owners refer to as “common parts” which includes communal gardens. In blocks of flats (condominiums) there are often gardens where any of the apartment dwellers can walk and rest or play. You have little control over what happens and therefore I’d say it was unsuitable to bury your cat in apartment communal gardens unless they are extensive and a quiet corner can be found. There is also the potential for alterations to communal gardens which might conflict with a pet grave.

This sounds cruel but the body should not be “hazardous waste” if it is to be buried. I don’t know what qualifies as hazardous waste. Employing common sense principles it probably means a disease or poison which could be transmitted long after the cat is buried.

Your cat should not be buried too near the house or anywhere near a watercourse as this could contaminate the water. How you figure out where a watercourse is will be up to you 🙂 .

An essential aspect of burying your cat is to make sure the grave is deep enough. Three feet of earth is considered okay. Don’t be skimpy on this as it will be distressing to have to rebury your cat if she has been dug up by a fox. It may be wise to put some stones or bricks on top for the first few months. Foxes have a habit of digging up the bodies of buried pets.

Suitable roses to plant as a memorial and to mark the spot might be: Faithful Friend, Rosa “Absent Friends”, Perfect Pet and Rosa “Sweet Memories”. Alternatively a marker/memorial might be a rosemary bush as this herb is associated with remembrance. Another alternative would be a small tree such as a crab apple tree (Malus), pear or rowan (mountain-ashe). A grave stone is also suitable, of course. A Peter Close sculpture is a fine memorial marker. The two photos feature his work.

What’s your preference? To bury or to cremate? Most people cremate their pet. However, there is something old-fashioned and natural about burying a dear companion who has passed on and gone to a better place.

5 thoughts on “So You Want to Bury Your Cat When She Dies”

  1. I own my home, but I won’t always. When I go I want my pets with me, not end up in a landfill or under an apartment building. I’ve had them all cremated and put in cedar boxes with name plates, pawprint in clay, pictures, and I’ll prepare an individual container for those and a memorial essay of each. I’ll arrange to have them all buried with me. I don’t believe in an afterlife, but the thought that what remains of us will stay together this way comforts me now.

  2. When we did bury our cats, it was deep (at least a meter if not more) and in a place unlikely to be disturbed. However, there was a recent trio of cats we have opted to cremate and scatter together under a tree planting.

  3. We are fortunate to live on family property. The thought of seeing our cats in an advanced stage of decomposition is a scary one for us. All animal lovers wish to remember their pets in a more dignified state of rest.

  4. I have a place on my friends property in the country that has let me bury my colony cats there but my personal cats I have cremated.


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