Whole-Family Cemeteries allow full body burials of a pet’s remains in the family cemetery plot. In various cultures throughout history, humans have buried beloved animals in family burial plots. We seek to:
- change U.S. state cemetery laws in order to allow for the full-body burial of pets remains in family cemetery plots.
- encourage and support efforts internationally to establish green whole-family cemeteries.
In the U.S., while pets can be buried in family plots in many states, this practice is currently prohibited in Georgia, New York, Oregon, Virginia and Washington (we are investigating other state laws for a complete listing).
Write to your legislators in GA, NY, OR or WA requesting to repeal these laws, and let us know their response.
- Find your GA legislator by name or zip code
- Find your NY legislator by name or zip code
- Find your OR legislator by zip code
- Find your WA legislator by name or zip code
Note: policies of individual cemeteries vary greatly. Even in those states where pets may be buried in family plots, a particular cemetery may prohibit it. However, others would gladly accommodate such a request, as seen among many green cemeteries.
Virginia General Assembly HB 588, introduced in 2014. Read our blog.
Washington State Legislature SB 5063, introduced in 2009, voted down. http://apps.leg.wa.gov/billinfo/summary.aspx?year=2009&bill=5063
Commentary by cemetery professionals here
For information to ensure ongoing care of your companion animal in the event that you die before your pet, visit our page on Pet Trusts.
updated June 3, 2014