Pet Aftercare Options & Private Cremation

We know how important it is to celebrate the life of your pet in a way that is meaningful to you and your family. After saying goodbye to your beloved friend, our team can take your pet with us for aftercare services.

Aftercare Options

If you wish for us to provide aftercare, we can take your beloved pet with us after you have had time and privacy to say goodbye. During both private and communal cremation processes, we use an identification system that follows your pet all the way through as well as an instruction form to ensure your wishes are followed.

Due to carrying limitations and safety requirements, we need assistance to help carry any pets over 25 pounds. We require pets 70 pounds and over to be on the first floor if we are indoors and providing aftercare, unless your family can carry the stretcher from the upper floors without the doctor’s assistance or if we have help from the cremation service. For pets over 90 pounds, we will require the cremation service to meet us for carrying; this must be arranged prior to the appointment. If you are unable to assist the doctor in carrying your pet between 25 and 90 pounds, we will have the cremation service meet us. Additionally, pets over 120 pounds will require assistance from the family as well as the cremation service. There will be an additional fee if the cremation service meets us for assistance.

You may also choose to make your own arrangements for aftercare such as burial, transport for burial at another location, or working with a cremation service of your choice.

Private Cremation

With this option, your pet is cremated privately at a local licensed crematory. The cremains are returned in a lovely engraved wooden urn (see our available options) or a scattering pouch with a pine sapling. These are usually delivered to your primary veterinarian’s office within 7 business days. They can also be made available for pick up at the crematory office (locations in Apex or Sanford) at no charge. Alternatively, for an additional fee, the cremation service can hand-deliver the urn back to your home. Gentle Journey can also arrange for the urn to be returned to you via priority mail.

Standard Choice Urns

Options for Private Cremation:

  • Cherry MDF urn with engraving
  • Tree of life urn with engraving
  • Scattering pouch
  • Biodegradable urn with pine sapling
  • Private Cremation for pets up to 90 pounds: $250
  • Private Cremation for pets 91 – 200 pounds: $350 (includes transport assistance)

What to Expect from Our In-Home Euthanasia Services:

  • 1. Open and Supportive Discussion: We begin by addressing any concerns, thoughts, or questions you may have regarding in-home euthanasia. Your comfort and peace of mind are our top priorities.
  • 2. Sedation for Comfort: We believe that your final memory of your pet should be one of tranquility. To ensure your pet’s comfort, we administer a gentle sedation injection, which allows them to peacefully drift into a deep sleep before the last medication is given.
  • 3. Sedation Assessment: Our veterinarian carefully assesses the sedation level to ensure that your pet is in a deep and peaceful sleep.
  • 4. Euthanasia: When you and your beloved pet are as ready as you can be, the doctor will give the medication to allow your sweet companion a peaceful passing.
  • 5. Memorial Keepsakes: A clay paw print and a lock of fur will be offered after your pet is sedated. We can also help with making ink prints if you provide the supplies necessary.
  • 6. Notification: As a courtesy, we will notify any veterinary practice that has helped your pet.
  • 7. Optional Aftercare: If you choose cremation, we make all of the arrangements for you with our trusted partner, Companah, and take your dear companion with us at the end of our visit.

Need to talk to someone about in-home euthanasia?

Call to speak with a Care Coordinator today at (919) 646-4660.


Cherry MDF Urns

Tree of Life URNS

Tree of Life Urns

Scattering Pouch

Scattering Pouch

Biodegradable URN and Sapling

Biodegradable Urn and Sapling

Special Order Urns:

Cherry MDF and Dark Cherry MDF Engraved with Photo Slot Urn:

Please specify which shade of urn you would like. The crematory will contact you about the sizing, direction, and placement of the urn for engraving purposes.

  • Private Cremation for pets up to 90 pounds: $300
  • Private Cremation for pets 91 – 200 pounds: $400 (this includes transport assistance)
Cherry MDF Photo URNS
Dark Cherry MDF Photo URNS

Cherry MDF and Dark Cherry MDF Photo Urns

Bamboo Engraved Urn:

  • Private Cremation for pets up to 60 pounds: $300
  • Private Cremation for pets 61 – 90 pounds: $320
  • Private Cremation for pets 91 – 200 pounds: $420 (includes transport assistance)
Bamboo URNS

Bamboo Urns

Companah Pet Cremation can also provide other urns than those shown above, as well as other memorial items. (These other items will need to be purchased directly through Companah. Please see their website for more information.)

Communal Cremation:

This option is for families who do not wish to have their pet’s ashes returned or to bury them at home. Pets are respectfully cremated with other pets, and the ashes are scattered on the Pamlico River.

  • Communal Cremation for pets up to 90 pounds: $150
  • Communal Cremation for pets 91 – 200 pounds: $250 (includes transportation assistance)

We Partner With Companah Pet Cremation Service

Companah is a small business founded in Central North Carolina. Owned and operated by Hal and Shannon Atkin, the practice was founded on care for others, love for the natural beauty of our state, and passion for science and technology. The Atkins are excited to bring a technology that will significantly reduce the environmental impact of traditional cremation methods while returning a better overall result to your family.

Hal and Shannon have always enjoyed having dogs and cats as a part of their family, experiencing the joy of their companionship and knowing full well the pain of their loss. They recognize that the first experiences of grief and loss for young children often occur around the death of a family pet. Shannon and Hal believe very strongly that they can provide resources of healing that may serve them as they grow and mature – all the while showing that science can afford us advancements that reduce our impact while returning a lovely outcome.

At the heart of the Companah process is green cremation (also sometimes referred to as bio-cremation or water-based cremation). Utilizing alkaline hydrolysis, the process is more like natural decomposition than any other method of disposition. They use a gentle water flow, alkalinity, and warm water to accelerate our ecosystem’s natural method of breaking down and decomposing organic matter. A process that would naturally take months or years is reduced to less than a day. During that time, a combination of 95% warm water and 5% alkali gently rushes over the body.

This green cremation method is a much gentler option that mimics the natural process of decomposition. It also retains more of your beloved pet’s remains to be returned to you in an urn or scattering pouch. If you choose not to have the remains returned, they are scattered in the Pamlico River.

At the end of the cremation process, your companion’s physical components have been returned to their natural elements and dispersed in water. Afterward, only solid bone remains, free of pathogens and disease. In fact, viruses and even chemicals such as cytotoxic drugs (e.g., chemotherapy drugs) are broken down into basic nutrient elements, rendering them non-toxic. The mineral bone ash is returned in an urn to those who request take-home remains. The water byproduct, known as effluent, is not only benign but also beneficial. When returned to the environment, effluent is shown to improve municipal water systems. The effluent may also be used as a natural, chemical-free fertilizer.

Companah’s green cremation method:

  • Produces zero harmful greenhouse gas emissions
  • Uses low energy outputs
  • Creates 1/10 of the carbon footprint compared to flame-based cremation
Comfort Room at Companah

Comfort Room at Companah

(919) 728-7200