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Our Services

Pawsitive Memories was founded on the concept that our animal family members deserve the same dignity and respect in life that our human family members receive. We are happy to answer any questions you might have.

Jump to the services we provide.

Questions and Answers about pet hospice care:

Questions and Answers about Cremation and Memorial Services

What is Pet Hospice?

The mission of pet hospice care is to assure that your animal companion is comfortable and pain-free for as long as they can maintain their quality-of-life. Hospice care allows your pet to enjoy their last days in familiar surroundings and in the company of loved ones. Furthermore, it allows the family to have more time with their pet and truly allows a family to “do everything I can” in the care of their dying pet.

We are based on the human hospice concept, and follow the guidelines of the American Veterinary Medical Association and the Association for Animal Hospice and Palliative Care. For more information on our approach to pet hospice care, see our page on “What is Pet Hospice”.

I have children at home. How do I explain what is happening to them?

We can talk with you and with your children, if you desire, and explain what is happening in terms children can understand. Hospice care is designed to care for the family as well as the pet. We also have Chaplains and counselors available if you and your family need or want additional support.

Will my pet die naturally, or will euthanasia be necessary?

This is a question that your pet will answer. Pawsitive Memories will monitor changes via phone calls and/or home visits and check in on you and your beloved companion as needed.

If there comes a time where the pain cannot be controlled, or your pet’s quality-of-life has diminished, then we will be with you to help you as you make this decision. We understand the guilt that goes along with this decision…”did I wait too long?” or “did I do it too soon?” are common questions asked by the family. Our extensive training in grief and bereavement counseling, as well as our own personal experiences with our pets, will allow us to walk with you on this journey, so you don’t have to make these decisions alone.

If you decide that euthanasia is necessary, one of our veterinarians will come to your home when you are ready. Your pet’s final transition will be in the privacy and comfort of your home, not in a cold, sterile clinic environment. We can create a serene and tranquil environment where you can spend the final moments with your beloved pet and say good-bye on your own terms.

We can arrange for a veterinarian  to come to your home and evaluate your pet anytime you request it. Pawsitive Memories is available to you 24-hours-a-day, so you are never alone.

I asked my veterinarian about pet hospice and he told me there was “no such thing”. How do I know you are credible?

Even though pet hospice is recognized by the American Veterinary Medical Association, because the concept is relatively new, many veterinarians are still unaware of the practice. While pet hospice is widely recognized in other areas of the U.S., it is new to Texas. Pawsitive Memories is the first Pet Hospice in San Antonio and we are trying to get the word out to veterinarians in the metro area.

Pawsitive Memories is a member of the Pet Loss Professionals Alliance.

Do I need a referral from my veterinarian?

We do not need a referral from your veterinarian.

If you believe that your beloved pet would benefit from hospice care; if you have exhausted all treatment options but aren’t ready to say good-bye; if you want your pet to spend his or her final days in the comfortable, familiar surroundings of home with the people that your pet loves and trusts the most, then call us.

Pawsitive memories will come to your home and provide an evaluation. We can arrange for a veterinarian to see your pet, IN YOUR HOME, so your pet never has to endure a painful and stressful trip to a clinic again. All veterinary care is provided by independently contracted veterinarians.

What happens during cremation?

Cremation is a process where, with the use of intense heat, the remains are reduced to ashes, or cremains. The body of your pet is laid on the hearth, or floor, of the cremation chamber and the door is closed and secured. An average-sized pet takes approximately 3 hours to cremate. The cremains (mostly bones now) are removed from the unit and processed to a very fine consistency. We place the cremains in an urn and return them to you.

How do I know that the cremains (ashes) I get back are only my pets?

Pawsitive Memories uses a cremation authentication system identical to the one’s used in the human funeral industry. As soon as we take your beloved pet into our care, we attach a metal tag stamped with a unique number. This number is recorded in our records and the tag stays on your pet throughout the entire cremation process.

What is the difference between a “private” and “communal” or “group” cremation?

A “private” cremation means that your pet is the only animal in the cremation chamber. Once the cremation is complete, your pet’s remains are removed and placed in the urn.

A “communal” or “group” cremation means that several pets are cremated together. The cremation chamber is filled with the animals and they are cremated at the same time. Obviously, there is no way to separate your pet from the others, so returning your pet to you is not possible with this option.

Pawsitive Memories does not offer “communal” or “group” cremation services. We would never stack or pile other animals on top of our beloved pets and would not do that to your pet either. We treat your pet as we would treat ours from the moment we take them into our care, wrapping them in our Tender Loving Care© blanket, until we return the cremains to you or until burial is complete.

What happens to my pet after you pick it up from the clinic or my home?

We strive to arrive at the clinic or your home within one hour of the death or euthanasia of your pet. If you have scheduled that final appointment with your family veterinarian, call us and tell us the appointment time. We will be there with you and give you emotional support during this difficult time. When you are ready for us to take your pet into our care, we wrap them in our Tender Loving Care© blanket and transport them to the crematory. This is different from the services that have been offered by clinics in the past: traditionally, your pet would be placed in a 3 mil trash can liner and stored until the crematory they contract with comes by on their regularly scheduled route.

If you and your family want additional time to say good-bye, we can arrange a time with you to come to your home and offer you a memorial service so you, your family and friends have a private place and time for your final farewells.

I don’t want to cremate. What about burial options?

Most city ordinances prohibit burying pets in your yard. There are pet cemeteries in our area and we can arrange for the burial of your pet at the cemetery of your choice. We can talk with you about the choices available to you and provide a casket and graveside service, including a Chaplain.

I’d like to have a small memorial service for my pet but won’t my friends think I am crazy if I tell them I’m having a “funeral for my dog”?

We know that some will think this is a strange concept. If you prefer, we can make those phone calls for you. More than likely you will be inviting friends that have been in your home and have known your pet. You are giving them the opportunity to say good-bye too.

Just as funerals for human family members allow us the opportunity to say good-bye and to grieve, a memorial for your pet also allows you to grieve and to begin the healing process. A memorial service allows your friends to give you support when they don’t know what else to do. We even provide memorial programs with a photo of your pet.

Services We Provide

The caring, professional team at Pawsitive Memories will educate and guide you through the many choices available for your pet’s final arrangements, making sure that all of the options are made available to you.

Home Euthanasia

We believe that the final moments between you and your beloved pet should be spent in a serene and tranquil environment. That is why we work with several veterinarians that are available to come with us to your home, when you ask us to, and provide this final “act of love”.

Memorial Services

  • A private visitation in your home to allow friends and family members to say good-bye
  • Cremation and/or burial arrangements
  • Ordained clergy for counseling, comfort or to perform funeral services
  • Personalized memorial items to honor and remember your pet
  • Special information and assistance with the children in your pet’s life
  • An opportunity to share in special holiday programs in remembrance of your pet

Burial

  • Being with you in the final moments, if possible, to offer comfort and consolation
  • Pick-up of your pet from your home or the clinic
  • Visitation in the home
  • Personalized service designed specifically for you, your friends, and the special relationship you shared with your pet
  • Fur clipping of your pet’s fur in a personalized card
  • Paw print Keepsake
  • Packet of Grief Information
  • Memorial listing (obituary) on our Facebook page
  • Phone calls to offer support and grief counseling
  • Someone to assist you in extending invitations for your pet’s memorial service
  • Casket with pillow and blanket

Cremation

  • Being with you in the final moments, if possible, to offer comfort and consolation
  • Pick-up of your pet from your home or the clinic
  • Visitation in the home
  • Single, private cremation
  • Fur clipping of your pet’s fur in a personalized card
  • Paw print Keepsake
  • Packet of Grief Information
  • Memorial listing (obituary) on our Facebook page
  • Phone calls to offer support and grief counseling
  • Hand-carved wooden urn with engraved name plate

We also have a selection of keepsake urns, lockets and pendants to hold fur or a small amount of cremated remains, custom-made hand-etched glass sculptures of your pet, and many other specialty items.

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