Furry friends make an impact on our hearts no matter how short their lives are, so it’s only natural to want to memorialize our pets after they die. Losing a pet always leaves an emotional mark. Paying tribute to our favorite creatures with a creative memorial idea is the best way to keep them close.
Jump ahead to these sections:
- Dog, Cat, or Other Pet Memorial Gift Ideas
- Pet Memorial Jewelry Ideas
- Pet Memorial Keepsake Ideas
- Pet Memorial Ideas to Do With Pet Ashes
- Pet Memorial Ideas for the Garden
- DIY Pet Memorial Ideas
- Other Pet Memorial Ideas
In this guide, we’ll share unique pet memorial and remembrance ideas. Those we love never leave us, and that’s true for our pets as well. Whether you’ve lost a dog, cat, or another furry (or not so furry) friend, allow yourself to honor their time with one of these ideas below.
Dog, Cat, or Other Pet Memorial Gift Ideas
These pet sympathy gifts are perfect, whether you’ve personally lost a pet or you know someone who lost a pet. Knowing what to say when someone loses a pet isn’t always easy. Show support to yourself, your family, or another loved one with these ideas below.
1. A book on loss
Since pets are such a huge part of the family, it’s only natural to grapple with feelings of immense loss and sadness after the passing of a beloved furry friend. To help with this, gift yourself or a loved one a book about loss or grief.
There are pet loss books created specifically to help pet owners accept and overcome these feelings of grief. Sometimes it’s just important to know that you’re not alone.
2. Framed photo
Another way to keep the pet near to you or your loved one’s heart is with a framed photo. Frame a photo of the beloved pet in a nice frame or a pet-specific frame like this one. Hang the photo somewhere that’s seen regularly, like in the home’s entryway or a bedroom.
3. Pet loss card
It’s not always easy to find the right words to say. You want to express sympathy, but you’re not sure how. Using a card is a great way to borrow the “right” words in a time of crisis. Include pet loss quotes within your sympathy card as a way to show your support.
Ornaments on the Christmas tree are a way to save memories. Preserve the memory of your furry friend with a custom ornament in honor of the deceased pet. Each year you’ll be reminded of the pet when it’s time to decorate for the holiday.
5. Wind chime
A wind chime serves as a reminder that those we love are always around. Dogs, cats, and other pets return to nature when they’re laid to rest. Hearing the sound of the breeze ringing through a windchime lets us know we are still close to nature.
6. Stuffed animal
Finally, another touching way to honor the memory of a loved one’s pet is through a stuffed animal. Stuffed animals are a form of comfort, no matter how old we are. Gifting a stuffed animal that looks similar to the lost pet allows the individual to grieve with much-needed support.
Pet Memorial Jewelry Ideas
Jewelry is a way to express ourselves and show off what we love. Bring your beloved pet with you everywhere with one of these ideas below.
7. Memorial diamonds
Memorial and cremation jewelry allows you to keep your pet close. Other kinds of cremation jewelry, such as urn rings and necklaces, let you put your pet's ashes into a small vial, but memorial diamond services actually turn your pet's ashes into a lab-grown diamond.
For example, companies like Eterneva allow you to send in your pet's cremated remains and choose the color and cut of the diamond. From there, you can set the diamond on an existing necklace or new piece of jewelry.
Pet memorial bracelets are a subtle way to show your style and what’s important to you. There are a number of bracelets designed to help pet owners feel closer to their furry friends. Whether you choose a paw print or you engrave your pet’s name, this is a simple reminder of your four-legged pal.
Another way to wear your love for your pet is with a ring. Rings might be small, but you always feel their presence. There are a number of memorial rings that feature paws, pets' names, and other memorial tributes for lost pets.
There’s a lot of flexibility when it comes to memorial necklaces. You could choose a locket with a photo of your pet, a simple heart medallion, or even a dog tag. Either way, this is a powerful way to carry your pet’s memory with you.
If you don’t want to invest in a new piece of jewelry, a charm is another option. With a charm, you can easily add your pet’s memory to any existing piece of jewelry. Charms go with a number of things, from a charm bracelet to even earrings.
For a simple, understated reminder, opt for a keychain like this one. These are the most affordable option, and you can even have yours printed on a dog tag. Because there’s more space at your disposal, you have room to include wording, quotes, or other reminders of your special friend.
13. Gemstone jewelry
Finally, don’t feel limited to traditional symbols of pets. Paws, names, dates, and other symbols are all great reminders, but they’re not the only way to pay tribute to a lost pet. Think outside the box by using a stone jewel that reminds you of your pet.
For instance, quartz is a symbol of love. Think of what your pet meant to you and look for a stone that communicates this meaning.
Pet Memorial Keepsake Ideas
Keepsakes are things that remind you of something or someone. In this case, a pet memorial keepsake is a way to feel as though your pets are close even after they’ve passed on. These ideas below are simple ideas for keeping the memory of your beloved friend alive.
A painting of your pet is an easy way to honor their memory. If you have the skill, paint something yourself. This is a touching tribute, and your artistic talent only makes it more personal.
There are also a number of online sellers and services who have the ability to do your pet justice in a painting or with a canvas print like this one.
If your pet is cremated, invest in an urn keepsake. An urn is a visual reminder of your pet. Store the urn somewhere visible in your home, like on a shelf or table.
Some pet cremation or burial centers capture your pet’s paw print. While this isn’t always possible, it’s a wonderful tribute when it is. The paw print is something you’ll want to hold onto for a lifetime.
If you get the chance to take the pawprint yourself before your furry friend passes, use a clay cast like this one that pairs with a photo to keep the print forever.
If your pet is buried in a local cemetery or even on your property, honor their memory with a marker.
A custom grave marker lets you honor their memory while also serving as a place you can return to in the future.
18. Outdoor stone
If your pet loved the outdoors, why not place your keepsake somewhere that meant something to them? An outdoor stone with their name gives them a small piece of land in their memory. This makes the perfect addition to a backyard or garden.
19. Memory box
For all those miscellaneous things that you’re not ready to get rid of, get a memory box. Customizing a small box with your pet’s name on it is the perfect way to store things like dog tags, collars, and pet toys that remind you of your furry friend.
Pet Memorial Ideas to Do With Pet Ashes
If you’d rather hold a pet memorial, you can use your pet’s ashes in a unique way to honor them. Holding a memorial, no matter how small, can help you find closure and peace after a loss. Here are the best pet memorial ideas to do with pet ashes.
20. Scatter ashes
The first option is to scatter your pet’s ashes in a short memorial service. This is an easy, affordable option. Returning your pet’s ashes to nature is therapeutic and peaceful, and it can bring a lot of comfort after a loss. You can use an eco-friendly scattering tube or scatter directly from their urn.
A memorial vase is created with your pet’s ashes and ceramic. The ashes are mixed with the ceramic clay to create something entirely unique, designed with your style and taste in mind. This isn’t just a gorgeous tribute. They’re also something worth holding onto for years to come, a constant reminder of your pet’s presence.
22. Memorial painting
Did you know it’s possible to paint with ashes? It’s true. Just as tattoo ink can use ashes, so can traditional paint. There are many memorial painting providers, and you can easily send your ashes to an artist for a unique commission. Not only will this be a stunning work of art, but it will also memorialize your pet for years to come.
23. Floating ashes
Another memorial idea that honors their memory in a natural way is to float the ashes out to sea or on any body of water. If your pet loved to swim, this is a lovely tribute. There are many eco-friendly water urn options to make this a reality.
24. Coral reef
Honoring your pet’s memory with a tribute to nature is one of the most unique sendoff ideas. Eternal Reef turns human or pet ashes into a unique type of coral reef that’s sustainable for marine life growth. When placed in the ocean, loved ones can return to this spot for a unique memorial dive.
For any pet that brought a spark to your life, send them out with a bang. With Heavenly Stars Fireworks, you can send your pet’s ashes into the sky with a unique firework display. Perfect for a memorial service or special event, your pet’s memory will light up the sky. Who wouldn’t want to make such a glowing exit?
Pet Memorial Ideas for the Garden
If you have a garden, this is likely a place your pet enjoyed. Bringing their memory into this space provides you a place to go when you wish to feel close to them. Though simple, these memorial ideas for the garden are very meaningful.
26. Plant flowers
Returning your pet to nature is like bringing them back to a place they loved. There is a sense of coming full circle. You might wish to plant stunning flowers in your pet’s honor so you can always return back to this special place.
There are many flowers that can be planted alongside ashes. However, take extra care to make sure the soil is rich and fertilized. As the flowers bloom, so will your comfort. Better yet, add a special sign or plaque in honor of your furry friend.
27. Parting Stone
At Parting Stone, human or pet ashes are transformed into realistic river stones. These are easy to hold onto, offering something solid you can hold in your palm. Similarly, they’re safe to store outdoors in a garden. This unique twist on the classic urn is an up-and-coming option for both human and pet ashes.
28. Planter urn
Urns are commonly shaped like planters, so it only makes sense that these are the perfect fit for your garden memorial. The Living Urn has a variety of urn planters that are perfect for a garden or outdoor patio. They are versatile, and you can use them for many different trees and plants.
29. Outdoor wind chime
Sometimes it’s possible to still hear your pet’s memory, especially in nature. A memorial wind chime designed for the outdoors has a small space for collecting ashes. As beautiful as it is functional, this makes the perfect addition to any memorial garden.
30. Rock urn
Lastly, urns come in all shapes and sizes. Some even match the outdoor world, blending seamlessly with their surroundings. Limestone cremation urns are designed to resemble realistic rocks, and they’re just as durable. However, they also function as urns, including a memorial plaque for your beloved pet.
DIY Pet Memorial Ideas
Last but not least, there are a number of DIY pet memorial ideas. These ideas below are easy no matter your budget, and they’re an honorable way to show your pet they’re remembered.
31. Photo album
If you’re interested in a simple crafting idea, it’s possible to make a DIY photo album in honor of your pet’s memory. A photo album can be created physically or digitally, and it’s a fun way to express your favorite memories of your pet.
32. Collar frame
Your pet’s collar is a part of their memory, and it’s something many pet owners like to hold close. Framing your pet’s collar or getting a collar holder is an easy DIY option. This is a keepsake you can hold onto, reminding you of your pet every day.
33. Memorial mug
A memorial mug is another easy DIY option. You can easily have your pet’s image printed on a mug of your choice, or you can create this at home yourself with basic supplies. Every time you drink from your mug, you’ll be reminded of your pet’s memory.
34. Memorial corner
If you would prefer to dedicate a small corner of your home to your pet, you can easily create a memorial corner. By selecting a few important mementos and placing them on a small shelf, your pet’s memory is fresh in your thoughts each and every day.
For those who prefer to collect memories digitally, you can create a memorial video of your vet. This can include videos of your pet, photos, and photos of their favorite places and things. When you miss your pet, you can simply watch your memorial video and be reminded that their love is near.
Other Pet Memorial Ideas
Not all the ways to memorialize a pet are physical. It’s also impactful to pay tribute with actions and new habits. Consider these other pet memorial ideas below to pay tribute in a new way.
36. Memorial event
Losing a beloved pet is hard. Hosting a memorial service or funeral for your friend gives you the chance to grieve with the support of friends and family. Invite a small group of guests or just honor your pet’s life alone. Either way, allow yourself to grieve and say your goodbyes.
Travel, sickness (or pandemics), and other issues can lead to a postponed event. Some people choose to hold a virtual funeral for those who can't make it.
Tip: We recommend GatheringUs's virtual funeral planning service to help you with logistics, tech, and day-of-memorial production.
Tattoos are a way to express yourself with permanent artwork. Getting a tattoo in honor of your pet is a powerful gesture of what they meant to you. Tattoo artists are familiar with these types of designs, and they likely have a lot of ideas about how to create something special.
Doing good for others is a great way to focus on the positives after a loss. Volunteering, especially with animals in need, allows you to focus your energy in a new way.
39. Foster a pet
Pet lovers might not be ready for a new adoption right after losing a beloved pet. Fostering a pet is a way to feel connected to an animal without a long-term commitment. You’re doing great for a pet in need, and that’s a special tribute.
40. Light a candle
In many cultures, lighting a candle is the way to remember a deceased relative. Lighting a candle in honor of your pet on holidays and special days helps you feel closer to them.
41. Plant a tree
Remind yourself that nature involves both life and death by planting a tree. While our time on earth might be fleeting, we have the opportunity to grow where planted. A tree is a living reminder of our furry friend and their impact.
Finally, a gift in honor of your pet. Gifting funds or other items to a pet shelter, animal rescue, or other animal organization helps your pet’s memory live on. There are a lot of pets in need, so why not do something good?
Keep Your Beloved Pet Close
Losing a pet is never easy. Using one of these unique pet memorial and remembrance ideas above keeps your beloved pet close even after they’re gone. No matter how short of a time they’re with us, our pets hold a big piece of our hearts. Cherish their memory with a keepsake or by doing good for others.
Whether you have a pet of your own or you’re helping a loved one, it’s never too early to start end-of-life planning. What will happen to your pets after you’re gone? What legacy will you leave for your friends and family? It’s time to answer these questions.