Grieving Your Departed Pet? Remember Him With a Piece of Original Art

Remember Him at Play

Some pets are best remembered for their devotion to a particular activity or toy. Jack Brown's Border Collie, Java, loved to play fetch. When Java passed away last spring, the family cremated him with some of his favorite tennis balls. But they also went one step further and asked artist Bob Burch of Art From Ashes to create a tennis ball piece from the Border Collie’s cremains. Burch formed the piece from clear glass with Java’s ashes incorporated on the inside, and then painted the outside. To give it a chewed-up feel, he sandblasted it and added seams with a grinding wheel. The tennis ball costs $300. The company, based in Amherst, Mass., also makes glass and sandblasted dog biscuits, beads, jewelry and other tribute pieces.

Honor His Favorite Garden Spot

A memorial piece doesn't have to be big or elaborate; it can simply mark a place or activity that reminds you of your departed pet. If your pet was a backyard digger who enjoyed uprooting flowers or burying toys, mark the spot with a garden cremation urn. One marker reads, "In memory of a faithful friend and companion." Another says, "Forever in my heart, forever remembered and forever missed."The stone serves as a grave marker for buried ashes, or you can use its small compartment to store the ashes aboveground. Companies like Perfect Memorials and Dearly Departed Pets offer an assortment of marker urns with the option to write custom text or print a memorial passage.Prices for the marker urns start at approximately $50.

More Ways to Memorialize Pets

Art From Ashes Tennis Balls

Courtesy of Deb Brown

Art From Ashes Tennis Balls

Artist Bob Burch created these glass tennis balls for Art From Ashes in Amherst, Mass. The original piece memorialized a Border Collie named Java who loved to play ball with his owner. Each one-of-a-kind tennis ball costs $300.

Pet Art Memorial Abstract Painting

Joy Bliss

Pet Art Memorial Abstract Painting

Artist Joy Bliss created this abstract painting, which included cremains mixed into the paints, for Pet Art Memorial in Prospect Heights, Ill. Original paintings range in price, from $165 for a 4-inch-by-4-inch work to $1,540 for a 20-inch-by-20-inch painting. Custom sizes are also available.

Psyche Cremation Jewelry Marble

Mark Hamilton

Psyche Cremation Jewelry Marble

Psyche Cremation Jewelry also offers a Spiral Galaxy Cremation Marble made with ashes. Artist Mark Hamilton says the most rewarding part of his work is giving people the opportunity to heal by talking about their pet when people comment on the pendants and marbles. This marble costs $97.

Lorie's Inspirations Pendants

Lorie Marsh

Lorie's Inspirations Wirewrapped Pendants

At Lorie's Inspirations, Lorie Marsh offers keepsake pieces with ashes fused into the glass art. She started the company after she unexpectedly lost her beloved Sheltie, Sable. Prices for these customized wirewrapped pendants start at $110.

Purple Cloud Studio Bowl

Michele Palenik

Purple Cloud Studio Bowl

Michele Palenik's Purple Cloud Studio creates bowls that incorporate pet ashes. Not long after starting her business, Palenik reconnected with an old friend whose 18-year-old dog had recently passed away. Palenik integrated the dog’s ashes into a bowl with a peacock-feather design, and delivered it just before Thanksgiving. As the woman’s family gathered around her table for the holiday dinner, the woman clanged her glass and told everyone that the deceased Zippy was still at the table with them — in the bowl with the cranberry sauce.

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