guinea pig cremation

A Guide to Guinea Pig Cremation – What You Need to Know

Losing a beloved guinea pig can be an incredibly challenging experience, and it is natural to want to honour their memory specially. Many pet owners opt for guinea pig cremation as a meaningful way to say goodbye and cherish the bond they shared with their furry friend.

In this comprehensive guide, we will discuss everything you need to know about guinea pig cremation. From understanding the process itself to exploring various options available, we aim to guide you during this difficult time. Whether you are considering individual or communal cremation, scattering ashes or keeping them close, we’ll cover all aspects that can help you make informed decisions.

My guinea pig, Popcorn passed away just a few weeks ago, you can see what happened during his last 48 hours of life in this video. So, in this article, I’ll also be sharing some of my personal experiences in his cremation process. And I assume that if you’re reading this article, it’s because your beloved guinea pig may have crossed the rainbow bridge as well, and I want to extend my deepest condolences to you.

What do I do when my guinea pig dies?

When your guinea pig passes away, it can be a difficult and emotional time. First and foremost, it’s important to allow yourself to grieve and process your feelings of loss. Consider options for handling their remains, such as cremation or burial, based on your personal preferences and any regulations in your area. Reach out to friends, family, or online communities for support and understanding during this challenging period.

Here is a complete guide on what to do when your guinea pig dies.

What is cremation in simple terms?

Cremation is a way to dispose of a body by burning it to ashes at a high temperature.

Which is better for my guinea pig – Cremation or Burial?

Most pet owners opt for cremation because it’s easier. Moreover, not all places allow pet burials in the pet owner’s backyard, and even if they did, there are many rules and regulations they have to follow. Pet cremation also allows you to turn your guinea pig’s ashes into jewelry as a memorial.

My family and I chose to cremate Popcorn for several reasons. Firstly, there are often rules and regulations that vary from city to city regarding whether you can bury your pet in your garden and how you can do so. Secondly, if and when we move away, I want Popcorn to be able to come with us. Thirdly, cremation is much easier to arrange than a burial. And finally, I wanted to have his ashes so that I could keep them in a necklace.

But remember that at the end of the day,  how you decide on what to do with your pet’s body is your choice.

How to find pet cremations near me

You can find small pet cremations by asking your vet and/or local animal shelter. Many have partnerships with pet cremation companies and can make the cremation process much easier.

For example, my animal hospital is partnered with a pet cremation company called Until We Meet Again, and when Popcorn passed away, they kept his body. Every week, the company will send someone to go to the hospital and pick up the bodies. Then they will transport them carefully to the cremation site and start the process. After that, they will transport his ashes back to my animal hospital so my family and I can pick it up.

sudden death in guinea pigs

Types of cremation for pets

There are three types of cremation for pets – Communal, individual and private.

Communal or Comingled: If you’re looking to save on cremation costs, communal cremation is the most budget-friendly option, usually ranging from $30 to $70. Here, they cremate multiple pets together, and unfortunately, you can’t get back the ashes of your specific furry friend. Some places scatter the ashes in a special field or garden.

Individual or Partitioned: A bit pricier than communal, individual or “semi-private” cremation involves cremating several pets separately. This increases the chance of getting your pet’s ashes back. The exact cost and process can vary between crematories. Although they try to keep the ashes separate, there might be a slight mix-up in some cases. But most places do their best to identify and return each pet’s remains.

Private: If you want the highest level of service, private cremation is the way to go, even though it comes with a higher cost. Here, only your pet is in the cremation chamber, minimizing the risk of any mixing. Once the process is complete, the ashes are pulverized and returned to you.

Remember, it is up to you to decide which type of cremation you want for your guinea pig, but remember to ask the cremation service what type they do if you have a specific kind of cremation in mind.

Guinea Pig Cremation Cost

pet cremation cost
https://ca.perfectmemorials.com/guides/understanding-pet-cremation-costs

Besides the types of cremations, several factors will contribute to the cost of your guinea pig’s cremation. It depends on the company, your location, and more. For a personal or private cremation, it costs about $150-175 to cremate a guinea pig. This includes transport and sometimes an urn as well. However, communal cremation can cost as little as $30 for a small pet.

Some companies also offer pet memorials like paw contours or jewelry, and we will dive deeper into those in a minute.

How long after a pet dies are they cremated?

Your animal hospital will most likely place your deceased pet in a plastic bag, labeled and in a freezer. They are partnered with cremation service companies who will pick the bodies up every week. Therefore, your pet will be transported to the cremation location in 1-7 days.

guinea pig cremation

Guinea Pig Cremation Process

The Pet Cremation Process involves a thoughtful and respectful series of steps to honour your beloved guinea pig. After selecting the preferred method, your pet is gently placed inside a specialized cremation unit, which meticulously heats up to temperatures exceeding 1,400° Fahrenheit. The duration of this process typically takes about 30 minutes for guinea pigs.

When the cremation process is complete, the remaining fragments may undergo a further step of pulverization. This involves breaking down the larger ash particles into smaller, finer particles, resulting in a more uniform and smooth texture. The purpose of pulverization is to create a consistent and manageable form of ashes, making it easier to handle, scatter, or place in urns.

As you navigate through this emotional journey, you are presented with choices regarding the final disposition of the ashes. Depending on your preference and the selected cremation type, you may receive the cremated remains in a carefully crafted container suitable for scattering or storing in a dignified urn.

How long does it take to cremate a guinea pig?

Since guinea pigs are small pets, they can be cremated in about 30 minutes.

Does Cremation burn all of the guinea pig’s body?

Yes, unless your guinea pig has some sort of non-organic materials attached permanently to its body, such as identification tags or microchips. These small metal components may survive the cremation process.

If you have any requests or concerns regarding to the guinea pig cremation, you can discuss the specific details of the process with the crematorium or service provider. They can provide information on their procedures and address any concerns you may have about the handling of your piggie’s remains.

my guinea pig's ashes

How much ash is produced when a guinea pig is burned?

The exact amount of your guinea pig’s ashes depends on what type of cremation you chose, how thoroughly the remains were processed, as well as how big your piggy was. Usually, it is about 41 grams or about 1/4 cup. So it’s not much, because of their small bodies. Therefore it’s important to keep that in mind when you’re choosing an urn for your piggy.

I have had three male guinea pigs die, 2 of their ashes came back at 41g, the biggest pig’s ashes came back at 69g. They are the exact weights and fit easily in 100ml glass jars. In life two were 1.5kg pigs, one was substantially less, so not sure that size in life has too much impact on ashes weights.

SusieW, from the guinea pig fourm

what can you do with guinea pig ashes?

There are a lot of things you can do with your guinea pig’s ashes. While some owners like to spread their guinea pig’s ashes in a meaningful place, others like to keep them in a urn.

These are some ways to handle your guinea pig’s ashes:

Memorial Urn

This is keeping your guinea pig’s ashes in a personalized urn, which is a tall, rounded vase with a base. Sometimes instead of a vase, urns can be a small box as well. Most people will store their piggie’s ashes in urns or memorial boxes, because other ways like keepsakes only need to use a small amount of ashes.

When choosing a urn for your guinea pig, make sure to look for the right size or it because many urns are made to contain bigger amounts of ashes. Your cremation service company will also most likely have a simple free urn when you pick up your pet’s ashes.

There are many kinds of urns for guinea pigs that come in different shapes and colours as well, so take your time to choose one that you like.

urn for guinea pig cremation
this urn was a little too big for my guinea pig

Scattering

Another option is to consider scattering your guinea pig’s ashes in a place that holds special memories. Maybe it’s a sunny corner of your garden, a memorial garden, under a tree, on a beach or by the seaside. At the end of the day, the decision is up to you. Many people say that it’s a beautiful way to connect their spirit with nature.

My sweet, sweet loves next to each other. I’m going to scatter Gandalf’s ashes in the mountains. Miss you Buddy.

u/marisaj4488

Burial

When pet owners choose burial as their option, they usually prefer to bury the guinea pig’s body without cremating them. That being said, there’s nothing wrong with that and many like to bury their guinea pig’s ashes in a designated area and create a memorial site.

Cremation Jewelry

This is one of my favourite ways, as well as one of the benefits of cremating guinea pigs. Most cremation jewelry only requires a small amount of ashes (about 1 teaspoon or sometimes less), and there are hundreds of necklaces, bracelets, and rings to choose from.

Necklaces tend to be more popular, and I bought this one because it is customizable. My sister bought this necklace, and this cremation jewelry is a great keepsake to keep your pet close to your heart, literally.

guinea pig cremation jewelry

Artistic Displays

Are you an artist? If so, you might want to consider using your guinea pig’s ashes to create an art piece or a memento with the ashes on display. Some people want paintings with ashes, some make sculptures, etc.

But if you’re not an artistic person, don’t worry. Some wonderful creators and artists can do the hard and delicate work for you at a reasonable price. An example is Paws by Zann, who specializes in pet portraits, including oil memorial paintings and ash memorial paintings.

Artistic displays don’t need to be only using ashes for art either. As someone who loves making videos of my guinea pigs and has a YouTube channel that educates people on how to take care of them, I vlogged my grieving journey on the platform. I also make a video montage of my guinea pig Popcorn for just me and my family as well.

It’s a great way to get your creativity out and honour your pet at the same time.

Keepsakes for pets that don’t require ashes

If you’re not into jewelry but want to preserve the memories of your time with your pet, here are some ideas and keepsakes that don’t need ashes to consider.

Conclusion

In wrapping up our guide on guinea pig cremation, I hope this information has brought some clarity and comfort during a challenging time. Choosing how to say goodbye to a cherished guinea pig is a personal journey, and understanding the guinea pig cremation process, post-cremation procedures, and memorialization options can make this farewell more meaningful.

Remember, whether you decide on a special urn, scatter ashes in a favourite spot, or opt for a keepsake, the goal is to honour the memory of your beloved pet in a way that feels right for you. Take the time you need, and know that your guinea pig’s spirit lives on in the love and memories you shared.

guinea pig

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