The death of a beloved pet is devastating, especially for the British who are known the world over as a nation of animal lovers.
So just how do you keep a lasting reminder of their part in your life once they are gone? Well, it seems there are a number of inventive ways to ensure your pet is forever by your side.
Proving that diamonds and canines are man’s and woman’s best friends, actress Jennifer Aniston had the ashes of her beloved German Shepherd turned into a diamond necklace.
Of course, it doesn’t come cheap. Uk founded company Heart In Diamond offers a 1ct diamond crated from pet ashes for £13,500, with more money on top for the setting.
Dakota Fanning opted out of having her West Highland terrier, Lewellen cremated and instead had the dog’s white fur pressed into a pendant, with the actress claiming: ‘I’m a walking shrine to her’.
Of course, if your pocket doesn’t run to diamonds, one pet owner revealed on Twitter that she’d had a Pandora charm bead made for her bracelet and filled it with some of her cat’s ashes.
‘It really helped me when I lost him,’ she said.
British TV chef James Martin went the slightly more traditional route and chose a custom-made treasure box for his dog Fudge’s ashes. He keeps it on his bedside table along with one of his culinary awards.
He admits: ‘I have this nightly mantra where I tap the box and touch the award, then I can go to sleep. It’s pretty special.’
There are key rings, vases, rings, paperweights as well as Christmas baubles, all of which require just a teaspoon of your late pet’s ashes. Amazon has a whole range of memorial gifts including wind chimes and grave marker stones.
But beware, it can quickly add up and in the midst of your grief, before you know it the momentos are costing hundreds of pounds.
One woman admitted she’d bought a living urn, a kind of double-walled plant pot. The outer section is filled with your pet’s ashes and a plant goes into the main, inner section.
‘It’s just a way to keep my beloved animal alive’.
‘The grief of losing a pet is very real,’ says one vet. ‘It is like losing a member of the family and their life does change. Having momentos or arranging a memorial day is a way to help people get through their loss’.