Pet owners living in Wales are far less likely than the rest of the UK to give a four-legged family member a ‘good send-off’, according to a new survey.
Just 19% per cent of pet owners living in Wales would hold a memorial event to remember a deceased pet, according to a national Populus survey of over 2,000 adults.
This compares to the 30% of pet owners in Northern Ireland who would hold such an event, 28% of people in England and 24% in Scotland.
The survey commissioned by 3D pet sculpture specialists Arty Lobster (www.artylobster.com) in the run up to national Pet Remembrance Day on 5th July asked: ‘Thinking about any pets you currently own, when your pet(s) dies, how likely or unlikely are you to hold a memorial event – such as scattering their ashes, or reading a poem at a favourite place – for them?’
Lars B Andersen, CEO of Arty Lobster, who helped launch Pet Remembrance Day in 2015, said: “These days, pets are increasingly regarded as members of the family and more people than ever want to commemorate their lives and the important part they have played in enhancing family life. I’m a little surprised that the Wales figure is so low, but maybe this year is the time to change all that and embrace a softer side?
“Pet Remembrance Day is an important day when people will take time out, even if just a few moments, to remember beloved deceased pets. So, put Wednesday 5th July in the diary as the day to remember a departed companion animal, even if just for a few precious moments.”
Best-selling author and speaker Wendy Van de Poll, MS, CEOL (Certified End of Life and Pet Loss Grief Coach and Founder of Center for Pet Loss Grief, LLC) explained: “Outwardly mourning is a way of saying good bye in a very healthy way by celebrating the life of your beloved companions.
“Paying tribute to those animals that touched your heart with a pet funeral, memorial, or remembrance will help you heal your loss all the while keeping the love of your companion close by. Pet Remembrance Day is a great reminder for you to get in touch with your feelings of loss and learn how they are going to help you throughout your life.”
Among all respondents who currently own a pet, just over two fifths (42%) said they would be likely to hold a memorial event for them in the event of their death. Just over one in twenty (7%) were unsure, while half (50%) said they would be unlikely to do so. Women appear slightly more likely than men to hold a memorial event for their pet (44% vs. 40%).
Those with older children (aged 16-18), or with no children at all are less likely to hold a memorial event in the event of any of their current pets passing away (39% and 41% respectively). Whereas just over half (53%) of those with younger children aged 5-10 are likely to do so.
Single pet owners are more likely than pet owners who are married, in a civil partnership or cohabiting to hold a memorial event for their pet (48% vs. 40%).
The likelihood to hold a pet memorial event also varies across social grade with those in the highest social grade being more likely than others to hold such an event (AB; 46% vs. C1; 41%, C2; 40% and DE; 41%).
On national Pet Remembrance Day (Wednesday 5th July), a Twitter chat will take place using the hashtag #PetRemembranceDay for people to show their support and share thoughts and photos of deceased companion animals.