New York State: Pet Cemeteries Are for Pets, Not Their Humans

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‘Till death do us part. It’s a vow many animal lovers planned to break by being buried alongside their pets. But people who want to rest in peace with Fido are facing a state agency crackdown in New York.

New York’s Division of Cemeteries has barred human burials in pet cemeteries, and New Yorkers who dreamed of an eternity scooping poop are not amused. “Suddenly I’m not at peace anymore,” Rhona Levy of the Bronx told the Associated Press on Friday. “You want to be with the people you are closest with, your true loved ones. The only loved ones I have in my life right now are my pets, which I consider my children.” Levy hoped to have her ashes interred alongside her five animal offspring.

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New York state cottoned on to the practice after the AP ran a story on human/pet burials – a practice which has continued uninterrupted at several New York sites, including the 115-year-old Hartsdale Pet Cemetery 20 miles north of Manhattan. Hartsdale has interred the ashes of 700 humans alongside its 75,000 animals at a rate of about 10 pet lovers per year.

Officials say the state permanently maintains human cemeteries, while pet burial sites are afforded no such protections – cold comfort for those who want to secure a place (or two) in doggie heaven.

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