Planning for Pet Care When Owners Die

(photo of Murjan)

All too often, when pet owners die, their pets end up trotting over the rainbow bridge behind them. Not by desire but because kin and neighbors turn the pets into kill shelters, and, indeed, like many other older animals, they are euthanized.

It is important, therefore, that people include their pets in their post-mortem plans (wills, trusts, powers of attorney, or simple agreements with family members) and make sure their kin are ready to follow through. Following through does not include dumping pets at shelters that will kill them. No-kill shelters can be an option, but not IMHO the best one. Imagine being caged for most of your life.

My daughter has promised to take my cats. She has several cats of her own and takes good care of them. I can rest easy that my cats will have a good home when I can no longer give them one.

We have a cat angel in our town. She brings in the street cats and finds homes for them. It is amazing how many people will adopt a neighbor's cat after a neighbor dies if they realize what the alternatives are (or are not). If my daughter had not agreed to accept my cats, I would have turned to any number of friends or neighbors with confidence.

Just urging that people think of this ahead of time for the sake of their pets. It tends to be something that remains under the radar even when taking care of the other aspects of death such as funeral arrangements and wills.


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