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Pet Angel Funerals: making the loss of a Pet easier

Easing the Pain of Farewelling your Furry Friend

For many, the grief of losing a beloved pet is akin to the loss of a close family member.

In days gone by, pet owners would either leave it to their vet to ‘thoughtfully’ dispose of their animal, or watch dad dig a makeshift grave in the backyard where the family would gather to say goodbye.

However, times and expectations have changed, leading to massive growth in the pet cremation industry as people now have a desire to keep their cherished furry friend with them forever in a dignified form.

“Be it a dog, cat, foal, alpaca or snake, the grieving process is the same,” said founder and director of Pet Angel Funerals Tom Jorgensen.

“South-east Queensland is home to 3.5 million people, and hundreds of thousands of those are pet owners who sadly lose their animals and want their much loved pet to be treated with grace, dignity and respect, just as we do our human family members when they pass.” 

Pet Angel Funerals, headquartered in Molendinar on the Gold Coast, has been supporting locals and vets since March 2015.

Tom said a specific, moving personal experience sparked his desire to start a pet cremation business.

“It all started when I was working on a building site next to a vet clinic and I saw a woman leave looking very distressed. She was holding a large plastic bag and I realised that she had just lost her dog – it was inside the bag,” said Tom, who had been in the building industry for more than 45 years before founding Pet Angel Funerals.

“I immediately knew there must be a better, more compassionate way to support people when they lost their pet. “I remembered the horrid experience I had when I lost my own dog Sophie and started researching. This is when I found out that so many pet cremation services existed that were operating in a very corporate, uncaring way.

“There was clearly a space for someone to do it in a more humane, caring way.”

While Pet Angel Funerals is already the largest pet cremation service on the Gold Coast after only five years of operation, the team aims to become the biggest service provider in south-east Queensland.

“We are currently cremating around 400 individual pets a month on the Gold Coast alone, but we certainly have the capacity to support more people,” he said. 

The Molendinar premises includes a specialist facility, a fleet of vehicles that help to deliver on the promise of guaranteed pick-up and delivery of pets that have passed away, handmade caskets and urns, and a special Remembrance Room designed for people to spend precious time with their pet before cremation occurs.

“We have first-class techniques for cremating animals. We understand that some companies use separators in their incinerators to be able to cremate up to six animals in one chamber,” he said.

“We don’t do that – we have chosen to use custom-made crematories from Lago in Florida that don’t create smoke, and each cremator has three individual chambers so that we can ensure that no ashes are mixed up at all.

“Sadly, we are not in a position to cremate larger animals such as horses, however we do take care of smaller-sized animals such as large dogs, foals, and have even cremated more exotic animals such as alpacas and snakes.”

Transparency is key to the company’s success.

“Something else that we take pride in is offering the opportunity for anyone to visit our premises at any time, unannounced, so that people can see how we operate day-to-day,” said Tom, who currently works alongside a team of seven staff. 

“If people want to be here when their pet is cremated, we ask them to come in early so that the crematory is cold and they can view their animal going inside its special chamber. The temperature inside the crematory can be between 1000 and 1200 degrees Celsius, which is why we only offer the opportunity to witness the first cremation of the day, should it be especially requested.”

For Tom, it is all about creating an experience for pet owners to ensure that the loss of a pet is handled in the most compassionate, personalised and pain-free way as possible.

“Nobody enjoys dealing with the loss of a pet, but if we can do anything to make the process easier for those who are grieving, then we know we have done our job right.
 “I understand that some backyard operations are up and running - places that you can’t even visit to see if your pet is being looked after and cremated appropriately,” he said.

“Those are the stories that really distress us because we believe that pets and their owners are owed a service that is completely transparent so that they can have faith that their pets are being cremated in an ethical way that sends them to their final resting place with grace and dignity.”

About Pet Angel Funerals

Pet Angel Funerals is a family-owned business dedicated to helping pet owners say goodbye to their beloved animals with grace and dignity. Founded in 2015, it is one of the largest and most-trusted pet cremation services in south-east Queensland, guaranteeing all cremations are personalised and individual. State-of-the-art crematories and custom-built facilities allow Pet Angel Funerals to focus on offering affordable and compassionate pet cremation services that aim to make the difficult grieving process as painless as possible. To find more information on how Pet Angel Funerals can be of support, visit www.petangel.com.au.

 MEDIA RELEASE, 24th June 2019
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