TAKING CARE OF OUR PETS. IT iS A MULTI-BILLION DOLLAR INDUSTRY. THE PART OF IT THAT HAS REALLY TAKEN OFF IN RECENT YEARS: FUNERALS. W-L-K-Y’S STEVE BURGIN IS HERE TO EXPLAIN… STEVE? MORE AND MORE PET OWNERS ARE MEMORIALIZING THEIR BEST FRIENDS WITH ELABORATE CEMETERY PLOTS AND BRASS URNS, EVEN JEWELRY. 11:22:30 6905 Katherine Onan says, My husband, he belonged to him. He had him three and a half years. He came to our place, someone dropped him named his Buddy. Crying. Burgin says, You miss him a lot. Yes. WIDOW KATHERINE ONAN MEMORIALIZED HER BEST FRIEND AND COMPANION WITH A CEMETERY PLOT AND THIS HEADSTONE. THE BORDER COLLIE WAS 16 YEARS OLD. IT’S THE KIND OF GRIEF OTHERS HAVE DIFFCULTY COMPREHENDING. 9:53:49 6926 Thomas Haffner/Family Counselor says, Although they are not humans, that does not negate the reality that humans are very capable of forming meaningful attachments to animals. THREE THOUSAND ANIMALS, INCLUDING BIRDS, SPIDER MONKEYS, AND A BOA CONSTRICTOR ARE BURIED AT THE 32 YEAR OLD OHIO VALLEY PET CEMETERY IN SOUTHERN INDIANA. 11:37:23 David Lee/Cemetery Owner says, The burial costs can range, a small cat $340 up to one of those big double sized lots and a stone and everything, they spend $1000. MANY PET OWNERS CHOOSE CREMATION. IN 2003, THE SCOTT FUNERAL HOME IN JEFFERSONVILLE BUILT A CREMATORY JUST FOR ANIMALS AND ESTABLISHED A NEW BUSINESS CALLED FAITHFUL COMPANIONS. 6879 Aaron Scott/Funeral Director says, In 2003, I think we did 30 cremations the entire year. NOW FAITHFUL COMPANIONS DOES A HUNDRED A MONTH WITH AVERAGE CREMATION COST AT $130. PET OWNERS HAVE SEVERAL DIFFERENT OPTIONS. 10:30:50 6879 Aaron Scott/Funeral Director says, A lot of families will want a paw print of fur clipping done. They’ll want to look at an urn. AN URN CAN BE PERSONALIZED WITH AN ENGRAVING. ONE FAMILY HAD THIS MADE FOR THEIR PET RACOON, DOWN TO THE HAND PAINTING OF SEVEN RINGS ON THE TAIL. THERE’S EVEN JEWELRY WITH A LOCKET FOR A PIECE OF CREMATED REMAINS. OR A PIECE OF LAZER ETCHED GRANITE. 9:57:22 6926 Thomas Haffner/Family Counselor says, They are honoring that relationship and that is a very healing thing. butt to 9:59:41 6926 Thomas Haffner/Family Counselor says, Well, how many humans do we have in our lives. Sometimes that care and show affection unconditionally or our worst days, they are still there. AND THAT’S HOW KATHERINE FELLS ABOUT BUDDY. THE 72 YEAR OLD LIVES IN JEFFERSONTOWN AND CAN’T DRIVE. SO ONCE A MONTH SHE TAKES A CAB TO SELLERSBURG TO SPEND A COUPLE OF HOURS AT THE CEMETERY. 11:47:48 6905 Burgin says, You went to a lot of expense to take care? Katherine Onan says, Yes, a lot of worry to get this. I’d do it again. You would do it again? All over for buddy. I’ll never find another Buddy, like him. PET FUNERALS HAVE BECOME BIG BUSINESS. THERE’S EVEN AN INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF PET CEMETERIES AND CREMATORIES. IF YOU WANT TO LEARN MORE ABOUT OPTIONS YOU HAVE LOCALLY, WE’VE SETUP SOME LINKS AT OUR WEBSITE. STEVE BURGIN WLKY NEWS.