My best furry friend and my only baby passed on May 17, aged 17 years 5 months and 2 days. Her friends and family said goodbye to her last Sunday. May her little bubli-soul travel to exciting places and continue spreading bublibiciousness in the universe.
Planning a pet memorial service was something I've done for the very first time. I knew I wanted to do this for her, as she deserved to be treated as any other human being. She impacted my life more than any other person and gave me unlimited amount of unconditional true love.
Planning a memorial service for your dearest pet might be difficult at times. Be prepared to cry during a lot of tasks. Picking up the remains was one of the hardest things I've done in my whole life. Moving them into a different box was not any easier. Goign over hundreds of photos and videos was both calming and hurting. But I do want to be enveloped in memories of my baby, and mourning is just a normal part of life.
There aren't many resources about this kind of event online, so I researched a human memorial service instead and adapted it to Fluffiatko. I wanted to create a space that oozes peace and memories of Fluffy. If you are planning an at home service for your loved one, creating a picture collage is a great (and very inexpensive) way to engage the guests in a conversation about the person that we lost.
Getting an antique box for the remains adds a touch of timelessness and makes the remains looks special, which aligns with how we feel about the departed one.
When organizing the memorial service at home, it's not necessary to rent chairs for everyone. Just use what you already have. The service shall not be too long to require that everyone gets a seat. However, everyone shall have easy access to a box of tissues. Remember, the more they loved the pet, the more they will grieve. A lot of tears is a good sign, it's a sign that your pet touched lots of lives.
Surround the space with as many memories of the loved one as you can. I put two black and white photos of sleeping Fluffiatko right on top of the couch. The will eventually hang in our bedroom and will give us bublibiciousness while we sleep.
A proper memorial service shall be followed by a reception, or at least some kind of refreshments. If held in church, the grieving family often arranges a simple snack and drinks table right outside of the church doors. However, when you are hosting a memorial service at your home, you can spend some extra time and prepare a beautiful spread of appetizers. Your guests will be enjoying the treats and staying around for a bit longer, remembering the departed loved one for a little longer.
Invite all doggy friends of your deceased pet, and make sure to prepare some treats for them too. I baked a batch of beef and vegetable pupcakes (recipe). The six doggies that were present had a mini-competion in pupcake eating. George (a Shih-tzu friend of Fluffy) won.
Use all your fancy serverware, and make every dish easy to eat while standing. For instance, I made a pull-apart honeycomb cake which does not require a knife to serve.
Anett brought her little Bunny and Brian brought Lucy. Tessa and Dan brought Ada, Dawn and Pierre brought George, and JR and Steven brought their two pugs Otis and Zoie.
Zoie traveled in style.
After everyone left, Brian and Lucy got a little rowdy. But hey, a memorial service is all about puppy love!
.... and about remembering the amazing person Fluffy was, the million ways she touched our lives, and the major hole she left in our hearts.