What do pet ashes look like and what can I do with them?

Pet ashes – I have the ashes of my cats – are a fine light-grey powder. I suspect that sometimes in some small crematoriums some bones may be present in the ashes. But the powder is very fine which makes them easy to dislodge and create dust. I had my cats cremated individually and their ashes where given to me in a plastic bag inside a nice box. The quantity was quite small.

Scattering pet ashes UK
Pet ashes are a ligh-grey. Photos in public domain. Collage: PoC.

If you have an individual cremation the logical thing to do with the ashes is to keep them in a special urn with the ashes of your other cats. This, I feel, is the best thing to do with your cat’s ashes because it means that you can be close to your cat on her passing even though it is an entirely emotional closeness because in reality there is no DNA left in ashes. There is no presence of her left in this life except in your head as a memory, a very important memory. This allows your cat to live on in your mind.

There are businesses which convert pet ashes into jewellery. Or you can simply scatter the ashes over a place which was a favourite for your cat. Or you could scatter the ashes over a place which is your favourite. Or you could plant a tree and place the ashes at the base of the tree.

Or you could bury the ashes in your garden and put a head stone at that spot. This is less appropriate in my opinion because if you move home you lose the ashes of your cat unless you dig them up.

Some pet crematoriums – perhaps most pet crematoriums – have grounds where you can scatter the ashes or bury them. I can’t see the point of this. It is much better to take them home and keep them. They are sterile. They present no health issues at all. There’s not much of them and therefore they don’t take up much space. There is no obstacle to taking ashes home and keeping them safely in an urn which you can look at from time to time and remember your beloved companion.

Some squeamish people might dislike this. I accept that but I believe they are wrong.

When you look at the urn you briefly remember parts of her life. It hurts a bit but it is comforting. And if you believe in the afterlife you can tell her that you will see her again when you pass over the rainbow bridge as she did all those years ago.

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