Questions to Ask Your Cremation Provider

2 Comments Posted by admin in Uncategorized on Saturday, April 20th, 2013.

The majority of families we work with come to us filled with anxiety and fear.  They have just lost a special member of their family and don’t know what to expect next.  Just as we pre-plan for our human companions, I highly encourage pet parents to do the same.  Educate yourself in advance.  By doing so, you are able to make clear decisions without any surprises. Here are some important questions to ask your cremation provider.

Do you allow visitors?

Any reputable crematory will have an open door policy.  They should encourage their families to visit and ask questions.  Transparency is an absolute must in our profession.  Whether a family has one question, or 100 questions, the process should be explained until the family is satisfied with the answers.

What are the services provided?

Be sure to ask the crematory what services they provide and ask for details.

~Private vs Partitioned vs Communal Cremation.

~What checks and balances do they offer to ensure families are receiving their pets.

~What does each package include and pricing.

~How long will it take to receive your pet.

Can I witness the cremation?

Again, any reputable crematory will allow you to visit with your pet prior to the cremation and witness the pet being placed in the cremation chamber per your request.

What kind of certifications does the crematory (and its employees) have?

As with any profession, a reputable crematory will seek out certifications and continuing education for its staff members.  By undergoing training, the crematory is displaying their commitment to achieving best practices in their profession.

What happens to pets that are communally cremated?  Where are the cremated remains scattered?

A crematory should be able to give you specific answers with regards to location.

How long will it take before I get my pet back?

The timeline can vary from same day service (in person) to one week.  This depends on where and when the crematory received your pet.  (Drop off vs veterinary hospital).  Anything beyond this time frame should be a significant red flag.  If a custom urn was ordered there may be a delay.  However, even in this situation, the pet can be returned in a standard urn while awaiting the order to arrive.

 How long does the cremation take?

The cremation process varies depending of the size of the pet.  The process can take anywhere from 1 hour to several hours for larger pets.  Again, if you are told anything other than this, this should be a red flag.

 Do you have any other memorialization items?

Many crematories will have a standard package.  There should also be additional urns, jewelry and memorialization items offered in order to uniquely honor your pet.  The opportunities to memorialize your pet are endless.  Be sure to ask!

Our next post will spotlight our Facility Manager Mike Galanos.  Stay tuned!



2 Comments for Questions to Ask Your Cremation Provider

Linda | July 20, 2013 at 9:31 am

Hi, Vivianne,

Our cat, Willie Auyang (we call him Fritzy), passed away last night (7/19/13) at California Veterinary Specialists. We have chosen Peaceful Paws for the cremation, cedar run, and paw prints. Please note that Fritzy’s birthday is actually 8/23/2007. There may have been a mix-up in the paperwork that we overlooked, but 8/23/2007 is the correct birthday.

Thank you for taking care of our boy, who left us too soon.

Please give us a call if you have any questions regarding Fritzy…

In tears,

Andy & Linda Auyang
909-596-1096 (home)
909-720-0371 (Linda cell)

John Novak | September 4, 2013 at 4:48 pm

Thank you for this information. It is very helpful.

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