Hold a Pet Farewell Ritual

A Memorial Service for Your Deceased Furry Friend

Close-Up Of Kitten And Dog At Home
Peter Kelly / EyeEm / Getty Images

This is a ritual that you can hold after a pet has passed away. Obviously, you may need to make adjustments, based on what sort of pet you had, the manner of their death, and so forth, but you can use this ritual as a general template. You can also turn this into a group ritual if the pet was one who belonged to the entire family.

You will need:

  • Salt
  • A pink candle (pink to represent your love for your pet)
  • Incense of your choice (for a cat, as an example, blend catnip, valerian, and mint)
  • Water
  • A stone to represent your pet
  • A stone to represent yourself
  • 4 matching crystals*
  • A small tray, plate or dish

Arrange Your Elements

Arrange the salt, incense, candle, and water to represent the four elements (or in any other manner you traditionally use). Place one of your four matching crystals with each. Light the incense and the candle. Place the stones representing you and your pet in the dish in the center of the work area.

Take a moment to meditate quietly, and focus on the two stones in the center. One is you, and one is your pet. They should be side by side, touching each other, as you and your pet touched each other in life. Take both stones in your hands, and hold them tightly. As you do so, remember the positive and happy memories of your time with your pet.

Say a Pet Prayer

Pass the stones over the salt, and say:
, with the energies of Earth, I am with you in spirit. Your memory will always remain with me.

Pass the stones over the incense, and say:
, with the energies of Air, I am with you in spirit. Your memory will always remain with me.

Pass the stones over the candle, and say:
 , with the energies of Fire, I am with you in spirit. Your memory will always remain with me.

Pass the stones over the water, and say:
, with the energies of Water, I am with you in spirit. Your memory will always remain with me.

Tell Your Pet How Much You'll Miss Him

Place the two stones back in the dish in the center of your work area. Take each of the four matching crystals/gemstones and add them to the dish as well. As you do so, tell your pet how much you will miss him, and how thankful you are that you were allowed to be part of his life. If you have family members such as children involved, ask each of them to place one of the matching stones in the dish, and tell the pet one thing that they will miss about him.

*There are a number of crystals associated with animal magic, and you can use any of these. The important part is to select four that are the same. Use quartz, turquoise or amethyst, which are all-purpose healing crystals, or sugilite, which is associated with crossing over at the time of death.

If you had to euthanize your pet, make sure you tell him why you made that decision, so that he understands how difficult it was to do so. This is a good time to verbalize how you feel, such as admitting it would have been selfish to prolong your pet's suffering any further.

Close your eyes, and reflect once more on how different your life was because of your pet. If you need to cry, scream or yell, now is a good time to do it. Don't hold back.

Finally, take the dish with all the stones in it, and pass it to everyone involved in the ritual. Allow each person to hold it for a moment, to feel the energy of you and your pet together in the stones.

Conclude the Ritual

Conclude the ritual in whatever your tradition requires  Once you have done so, place the dish with the stones in a place which was a favorite of your pet's—a sunny spot on the floor, a warm corner in the bedroom, or a bright warm windowsill. Leave the dish there for several days. Whenever you walk by it, say hello to your pet, and let them know that they are remembered.

After time has passed, put the stones in a safe place somewhere, perhaps in a drawstring pouch, or in a special box, so that whenever you begin thinking of your pet you can see the stones again, and remember him. You may even choose to make one of the stones into a necklace​ or pass them along to family members for their own comfort.

When a pet crosses over, you may wish to use these prayers in a family memorial for your deceased friend, from goldfish to dogs and cats. Read over our collection of prayers for deceased pets:

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Your Citation
Wigington, Patti. "Hold a Pet Farewell Ritual." Learn Religions, Sep. 8, 2021, learnreligions.com/pagan-pet-farewell-ritual-2561441. Wigington, Patti. (2021, September 8). Hold a Pet Farewell Ritual. Retrieved from https://www.learnreligions.com/pagan-pet-farewell-ritual-2561441 Wigington, Patti. "Hold a Pet Farewell Ritual." Learn Religions. https://www.learnreligions.com/pagan-pet-farewell-ritual-2561441 (accessed June 10, 2023).