How Much Does It Cost to Cremate a Cat?

Make your cat's end-of-life decisions now to give yourself emotional space later.
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You may be dreading all the end-of-life decisions you'll have to make after your ailing cat's death. But making these decisions now could save time and even give you space to focus on grieving when the time comes. One popular options for cats is cremation. Pet owners often choose cremation so as to have a tangible memory of the cat or to sprinkle the ashes somewhere special. Plus, it's far less expensive than burial in a pet cemetery.

1 Price Range

An urn for your pet's ashes will cost an additional sum.
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Depending on where you live and where your cat is cremated, the process could cost anywhere from $50 to $200. Another variable is your cat's weight; lighter cats and lighter animals in general, cost less. On average, you should probably expect to pay $100 to $150. Some crematoriums include fees for animal pickup and other additions, like a a wooden box or stainless steel urn to store the remains. Ask about all fees when you make arrangements.

2 Cremation Options with Returned Ashes

One reason the price range is so wide is that there are several ways for a crematorium to cremate the remains of a cat. On the more expensive side, you may prefer to have your cat cremated alone in the cremation chamber, with no other animal remains. This is called a private cremation, and you will have the option to watch if you like. Alternately, the cat can be cremated with other animal remains, but with some sort of barrier that separates its remains from the rest. This may be called individual, individual segregated or separated cremation, and it costs less than private cremation. With either option, you should receive the ashes.

3 Cheapest Cremation

The crematorium won't return your pet's ashes if you choose communal cremation.
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The cheapest option is called communal cremation; it means that multiple animals are cremated in the chamber with no separation. You will not receive the remains.

4 Proper Remains

Your funeral home or veterinary crematorium will verify the remains.
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If you choose a private or separated cremation, the crematorium is legally bound to return the correct ashes to you. Most of the time, identification tags are used to prevent mistakes; ask your crematorium what method it uses. To set your mind at ease, use a crematorium with membership in a professional organization such as the International Association of Pet Cemeteries and Crematories or the Cremation Association of North America.

Christina Lee began writing in 2004. Her co-authored essay is included in the edited volume, "Discipline and Punishment in Global Affairs." Lee holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and politics from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, a Master of Arts in global affairs from American University and a Master of Arts in philosophy from Penn State University.