Is It Legal to Bury Your Dog or Cat in Your Backyard?

Family pets for most people are no different than any other member of the family. You spend time with them, feed them, groom them, and play with them. So when a pet passes away, you are saddened at the loss of a family member. It is understandable to grieve yet it is still important to decide what to do with the remains. If you choose to bury your pet in the backyard there is a few things to consider.

Is Burying Your Dog Legal?

Laws will be different depending on where you live. It will probably be specific to the county in fact. You will probably have to ask local authorities if it is ok and you will probably be told “no” or “I do not know.” And these answers will be just “on the safe side” with no real proof to back it up. So what do you do?

The best bet is to use some common sense. To dodge any real problems with burying your pet it would be best if you owned your property or at the very least asked the owner if it is ok. The next thing to consider is where you live and where to place the remains. Obviously a sentimental place is preferred, but you also need to be sure that you can dig deep enough that animals will not be attracted and start snooping around or digging. Speaking of which, you will also want to be aware of what is underground as well. If at all possible, check to see if there is any water lines, power lines, or phone lines. A decaying body can potentially lead to diseases which can enter water.

You will also want to mark the area in which you buried your pet. This is to prevent the area from being dug up for any reason at all. And the last thing to really consider is what kind of box you will be putting your pet in. It would be suggested to put them in a plastic bag and this will break down. But if all else fails, ask to see what kind of materials can be buried and then bury your pet in that.

Is it Legal to Bury Your Pet?

In short, this is not to say whether or not it is legal to bury your pet, but to let you know that it is difficult to get a straight answer. Even if you were told no, who is going to check? The laws on this are probably very relaxed and would take a lot of effort on the laws part to make it an issue. You are much better off using the suggestions above to see if burying your pet in your backyard will work for you. Your other options would be to cremate your pet and have their ashes spread or put in an urn. The price for this is in the ballpark of $350 or you can have them buried in a cemetery for up to $1,000.