Pets are quite the therapists! They bond with their owners, forming deep emotional connections. If you have pets as part of your family – you are lucky. Like every other family member, these animals come into our world and make our lives worthwhile. There comes a day, however, when we must bid them farewell. This goodbye can be as emotionally devastating as losing a close family member. The process can be long and very lonely, as many don’t relate to a pet parent’s loss and grief. What adds to the melancholy is deciding how to proceed with the pet’s aftercare and what will become of their remains. Considering the lack of awareness about pet cremation services, many people take it upon themselves and do what seems feasible. They want to say goodbye to their animal companions properly. But the better way to go about this difficult process is to entrust it to a reliable pet aftercare service.
Ethical Afterlife Service For Pets
Many individuals strongly believe in the practice of backyard burials to stay connected to their animal companions even after they are gone. While this approach may seem respectful, it can become a public health and wildlife safety concern in the locality.
The legality of backyard burials depends on local ordinances; it is legal in rural areas but not in urban populations for multiple reasons. Many people do not have adequate awareness and knowledge about pet burials and do not bury deep enough into the soil, which is unsanitary and can become a potential hub for rodents, scavenging wildlife, and other pets living in the house and locality.
How about if you choose to move? Do you leave your pets behind? Also, some pets are put to sleep using a highly concentrated anesthetic agent, “pentobarbital,” to initiate euthanasia, a common way of “peaceful death” to free animals from unnecessary pain. Pentobarbital has a very long half-life and remains in the animal’s body for over a year, making it poisonous to any wildlife that comes into contact with its remains. An improper burial can expose the pet’s body to others in the house or a scavenging animal, causing euthanasia solution poisoning.
The Vision Behind Pet Passages
Pets are family; these deceased animals were once living beings and deserve as much respect as any other family members. It is extremely painful to leave a pet to the vet for disposal, not knowing how they will treat or dispose of it. Contrary to popular belief, most U.S. vets do not own their own cremators and use a third-party provider to cremate pets. Sadly, most of these vets have never visited the cremation provider where they refer their clients, and therefore, they have no idea of what goes on behind closed doors.
A similar sentiment was shared by Mike Harris when he lost his two best friends – his Rottweilers—Hannah and Luke – in 2008. Upon finding no one trustworthy enough for their end-of-life care, he developed his first animal aftercare company, Pets at Peace, by the Harris Funeral Home in 2009. In 2016, he created Pet Passages and franchised this company to provide dignified, respectful care to pet owners across the country.
Being a third-generation funeral director since 1994, he worked in his family’s funeral home business for 22 years until 2016, when he left to follow his passion with Pet Passages. Utilizing his extensive work experience in the pet aftercare profession, he brought a franchising module for his pet creation services. The motivation behind this innovation was the growing controversies around other pet cremation services and the increasing concern over service ethics. His franchise operation involves real-time identification and tracking of every pet they service. The staff are experienced, highly trained, courteous pet funeral directors. They provide every pet owner with ink paw and nose print impressions to memorialize their beloved pets. They also guarantee that a client’s pet’s cremated remains will be available for return within 72 hours.
Pet Passages ensures that they cater to their client’s requests in every way possible, including their wish to witness the cremation or see their pet one last time to offer a final goodbye.
Market Size of Pet Crematory Companies in the United States
The pet cremation services in America will generate around $660 million by 2022. The market size of this sector expanded by 7.1% annually from 2017 to 2022. These organizations help in memorial services and oversee the entire cremation process. As crematories acknowledge the importance of a pet’s place in the family, it will continue to benefit the industry, creating more jobs and comforting space for pet owners who need more to cope with loss and grief. Starting Pet Passages was not only a business move for Mike but a venture that would bring peace to people and give the respect pets deserve as they pass away to the afterlife. Expanding Pet Passages nationwide would not be possible without Mike’s passion. He had to find other business owners who shared his compassion and empathy for pets. This is why Pet Passages only grants a franchise after a rigorous vetting and training process.
Pet Passages’ franchise model that started in New York has now expanded to twelve states in the U.S., including Florida, South Carolina, Michigan, and Pennsylvania. In a recent interview, Mike said:
“I have been associated with the afterlife care profession since I was a child, and one thing that I have learned so far is that be it a person or a pet, if they have ever brought a smile to your face, they deserve to be laid to rest with the utmost respect, compassion, and dignity.”
Mike’s unwavering commitment has turned Pet Passages into a leading pet cremation service across the United States. Over the years, Pet Passages has emerged as a service that acknowledges a pet parent’s sentiments and the value their pet brought to their life. Each staff member at Pet Passages ensures that they help pet owners respectfully preserve these memories and stories. With Pet Passages widening its nationwide network, more pet owners can lay their beloved pets to rest with love, respect, and dignity.