Losing a pet is like losing a beloved member of the family. After your pet dies, you might struggle with how to grieve their passing. Unlike a human loved one, there may not be an elaborate burial or funeral to help with your feelings of closure.
Jump ahead to these sections:
- What’s an Online Pet Memorial?
- Step 1: Gather Your Digital Materials
- Step 2: Choose an Online Memorial Tool
- Step 3: Sign Up and Build Your Page
- Step 4: Add Additional Media
- Step 5: Share Your Page
With the rise of online memorial sites, more pet owners are honoring their furry loved ones with an online pet memorial. This can help offer a safe, secure space for sharing your pet’s life, legacy, and memory.
Having a digital place to honor your pet can be a powerful form of remembrance in the face of grief. Whether you’re struggling to move on after the loss of a pet or you’re just looking to honor your beloved friend’s time on earth, here’s how to create an online pet memorial. These step-by-step tips will take you through the full process from start to finish.
What’s an Online Pet Memorial?
An online pet memorial isn’t much different from an online memorial you’d use for any other loved one. This is an online webpage that’s dedicated to honoring the life and legacy of your pet. While each page is different, digital pet memorial pages typically have some of the following:
- Your pet’s name and age
- An introduction to your pet’s personality and what they meant to you
- Photos of your pet
- A space to share prayers, songs, or other passages
- A comment section for loved ones to share their own thoughts or condolences
These pet memorials can be on a personal website, social media page, or on a dedicated pet memorial website. There are many online memorial builders that are free or inexpensive that simplify this process, and they’re also easy to share with loved ones.
Why create an online pet memorial?
Why is this such a powerful form of remembrance? People choose to honor their pets in a variety of different ways. One person might hold a funeral while another might keep their pet’s urn close at home. There’s no “right” or “wrong” way to grieve.
That being said, there are many advantages to creating an online pet memorial compared to other types of memorials or remembrance events:
- Share the news: One of the most difficult parts of losing a loved one is sharing the news of this passing. This is even true for our beloved pets. It’s tiring to share the same information about the loss of a pet over and over, so a digital memorial is a great way to do this without the emotional exhaustion.
- Support: A digital pet memorial is also the perfect place to receive support and well-wishes from loved ones. This is a secure space to share memories, kind wishes, and prayers.
- Virtual access: Because an online memorial is accessible from anywhere, you’re not limited to sharing this page with only those physically near you. Sharing your online pet memorial with friends and family from afar can be therapeutic.
- Grief and healing: Lastly, many people find that creating a long-lasting memorial plays a strong role in the healing process. Grief is complicated, and a memorial could help you find peace after losing a beloved pet.
Now that you recognize why an online pet memorial can be such a great tool after losing an important pet, let’s discuss how to get started. You’ll be surprised by just how simple this process can be.
Step 1: Gather Your Digital Materials
First, you’ll need to gather your digital media and materials. Your pet’s memorial page will need a few things to honor his or her memory. You can choose to include as little or as much as you like. Most include some combination of the following:
- Your pet’s basic information (name, age, birthdate)
- A short bio about your pet and what he or she meant to you
- Photos and videos
- Poems, prayers, or songs
Having these prepared will help you choose the best online memorial service based on your needs. Remember, there are no rules to remembrance so choose what’s meaningful to you.
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Step 2: Choose an Online Memorial Tool
Creating an online memorial is fairly easy, with some tools and services even specializing in pet memorials. These range in price from free to a small flat-fee or subscription, so there’s something no matter what your financial situation is.
- Critters: Created by Virtual Memorials, this is a simple place to create powerful memorials specifically for pets of all shapes and sizes. It’s possible to add a guestbook, bio, photo album, and slideshow to each memorial. With every full-featured membership purchased, Critters makes a donation to the Humane Society. It’s free to create a basic memorial.
- Rainbow Bridge: Many pet owners are familiar with the idea of the rainbow bridge that connects pets in the afterlife with their owners. The official Rainbow Bridge website offers a memorial tool at $25 per year to create your own rainbow bridge in honor of your pet, and each fee is equal to a shelter donation.
- I Loved My Pet: They offer a basic, free tool for creating a pet memorial. After three months, you’ll need to pay a fee to keep your memorial online, and all profits are donated to pet charities.
- Just Over the Rainbow Bridge: This tool allows pet owners to create an interactive pet memorial page with a memorial that mirrors the famous rainbow bridge. The basic membership is a flat fee of $25.
- Pets Remembrance: Finally, Pets Remembrance has basic, free pet memorials to share your love for your furry friend no matter what the future brings.
Each service above has its own pros and cons, so decide for yourself which is best for your needs. There’s no such thing as one-size-fits-all, and you might need to check out multiple options before making a final decision.
Step 3: Sign Up and Build Your Page
Once you’ve signed up and paid any (optional) fees, it’s time to start building your page. This can often be the most challenging part. How do you sum up in just a few sentences (or paragraphs) just how much your pet meant to you?
To guide the process, consider these questions:
- When did you get your pet?
- How was your pet in their youth (puppy, kitten, etc) vs. as an adult?
- What did your pet do that made you smile?
- What were your pet’s favorite activities?
- What foods did your pet love the best?
- How will you remember your pet?
From here, create a short biography explaining your pet and their legacy. This is similar to a eulogy, but you don’t need to follow any specific format or restrictions. Simply write what your pet meant to you, how you’ll miss them, and how you plan to remember them.
Take your time with this process. It’s perfectly normal and okay if you cry, grieve, or struggle with this process. This is how you heal, and you’re creating something worthwhile to last a lifetime.
Step 4: Add Additional Media
Next, it’s time to add media elements. Again, you can add as much or as little as you’d like. This is the perfect place to share different photos of your pet over his or her life. Try to capture as many of your favorite memories as you can.
Creating a slideshow or album with memorial slideshow songs can also be a powerful tribute. These videos and slideshows are what you’ll want to look back on in years to come, so add whatever you want to keep your pet’s memory alive and well.
Step 5: Share Your Page
Last but not least, make sure to share your memorial. While you’re always allowed to keep it private and just for yourself, there are a lot of great reasons to share. Not only does this inform friends and family of your pet’s passing, but it can also offer a new avenue for support.
Welcome your friends and family to share the memorial page themselves. Most online pet memorials have a space for leaving comments, prayers, and memories. Ask those who knew your pet to share their favorite memory or story.
While we often focus on the overarching impact of a pet’s life, it’s these small moments that really add up. Having your loved ones share what your pet meant to them as well as their favorite memories rounds this tribute out even further. When you look back on this in the future, you’ll smile at these happy moments.
Honor Your Pet’s Memorial Digitally
An online pet memorial might sound simple, but it’s a profound way to make sure your pet is remembered for years to come. This is something you can create yourself for a beloved pet, and it also makes the perfect remembrance gift for a loved one who lost a furry friend.
Whether you said goodbye to your dog, cat, bird, horse, fish, or another animal friend, honor their memory. Pets play an important role in our lives. Though they’re only around for a short while, their impact truly lasts a lifetime. Creating an online pet memorial can be a great way to show what they meant to you.