Funeral homes offer services for family pets

Published 6:00 am Sunday, June 5, 2016

By Ana Martinez

The loss of a beloved family pet can be life shattering, but there is a service in Lafayette County that helps people cope a little better.

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When losing a pet, there are several options for disposing of its body. Among the most popular are burial and cremation, and the second is a service that is becoming rapidly more popular in Lafayette county.

Coleman and Waller, two funeral homes in the Oxford area, help make the loss of a pet less overwhelming by cremating or burying your faithful friend.

Staff members of Waller and Coleman will remove your pet from its place of death, whether it’s at the veterinary clinic or at your house, before transporting it to the funeral home. From there, customers are given the option to either bury or cremate their pet.

“We have two types of cremation that we do,” said Bob Rosson the manager of Waller Funeral Home and Cremation Service. “We have private cremation and communal. Private is where we cremate one pet at a time and the owner gets the cremains back. Communal cremation is where we cremate more than one pet at a time and the owner does not get the cremains back.”

Those that choose to have their pet privately cremated will get their pets ashes in either a metal urn from Coleman or a wooden urn from Waller. From there it is up to the owners to decide to keep the ashes or scatter them. If an owner decides to have their pet communally cremated, Coleman and Waller will take the ashes to one of their set destinations and scatter the ashes there.

“The most popular and most often chosen means of disposition for pets is cremation,” said Glenn Coleman, the co-owner and funeral director/embalmer of Coleman Funeral Home. “We do have pet burial but the vast majority is cremation. I think it’s because a lot of times people like to take their pet’s ashes with them if they move or something like that. There are various reasons people like cremation versus burial as far as pets go.”

Price points go up and down based on the weight of the pet.

Sally Kate Walker, a staff member of Waller Funeral Home and Cremation Service, believes that cremation is a new and distinct service available to pet owners in Lafayette County, because not many people want to bury their animal. This is especially true for those living in apartment complexes, beginner homes, or those that plan to move within the next couple of years.

“I would say that 90 percent of people are just really happy with this,” said Walker. “It’s gone over very well. People have appreciated it and received it well. We haven’t advertised it much, it’s just been word of mouth.”