Pets in Heaven.com began life in August 2005 when Ian Robinson decided that he had had enough of working in the human funeral business. Seeing at close hand how deeply affected owners were on the deaths of their cats and dogs, Ian decided he would offer a service where he took their beloved animal companions on their final journey. He also brings back the ashes and spends time with the grieving owners becoming good friends with them.

Ian and Alyssa and the customised hearseIan, and his beautiful daughter, Alyssa, live in the Melbourne area of Australia and this is a new concept in animal care in that area.  Ian’s own dog, Tyson had to be put to sleep in December 2003 and knowing the cold sterility of the veterinary consultation room made him realise that there had to be a more dignified and professional way to say a final farewell to one’s pets. 

He thought of ways he could implement of what he’d previous done for human funerals into the pet side of things and from then on Pets In Heaven was finally started in August 2005 after spending a lot of time researching, sourcing and visiting veterinary practices asking lots of questions.

Having been in the human funeral business for 15 years and dealing with bereaved families he said that you tend to harden up and try not to become affected by the grieving process and you learn to switch off from the families. But from the moment he began collecting ‘fur babies’ he noticed immediately a huge difference with the level of grief felt by most families when a beloved pet dies which isn’t present when humans pass away. 

Knowing that a cat or dog spends all its time loving its human owner, when the time comes to say goodbye to that pet, Ian says that 8 out of 10 pets that he collects there will be a tear in his eye. Our pets are so precious to us, he says, that they are a deep part of our every day life, a deep part of ourselves and a deep part at keeping families together. In short, they are angels sent from heaven above to keep us humans in line.

Ian has customised a hearse which is tastefully decorated and which carries the deceased pet’s remains to the crematorium. Most people are very surprised when they see it but it makes the occasion feel very special and that their pet is having the send-off that it truly deserves.

Each year Ian and Alyssa have a marquee at a ‘Pets Day Out’ expo which attracts tens of thousands of visitors attending with their pets, many of whom find their way into the marquee to discuss funeral arrangements with Ian. Past clients often pop in to speak to him and many of them have written warm and heart-felt testimonials on Ian’s website, accompanied by pictures of their cats and dogs, many of which brought a tear to my eye as I read them.

If you live in the Melbourne area then check out Ian’s website:

www.petsinheaven.com.au and if you visit him, tell him you heard about his service via The Daily Mews website!

A Cats Purr

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