Understanding Pet Cremation Costs

After the sudden loss of a pet, deciding what to do with the remains can be difficult. Some people choose to bury a pet in the backyard or in a pet cemetery, although each can have its challenges. Cremation is a very common choice, and you can keep the ashes or scatter them in a place of your choosing. It’s important to know what factors contribute to your pet cremation cost and what you should expect to pay. So, how much does pet cremation cost?

The average cost of pet cremation can vary considerably, ranging from around $30 for a small animal communal cremation to $250 or more for a large animal’s individual cremation. Pet cremation fees typically vary according to the size of your pet and the cremation method. You may also pay additional fees for pick up services and a special urn or keepsake box.

Your veterinarian may recommend a pet cremation service, or he or she may offer to handle the cremation planning for you. If you’d prefer to take care of the process yourself, be sure to let your vet know. You’ll need to contact the crematorium yourself and arrange for the animal to be picked up and transferred.

Cremation Costs by Pet Size

Generally speaking, the larger your pet, the higher your pet cremation cost. You’re likely to pay a higher dog cremation cost, for example, if you need services for a Labrador Retriever than you will for a Pomeranian. Larger pets take up more space in the cremation chamber, take longer to cremate, and involve more after cremation processing.

Depending on where you have your pet cremated, the price ranges can vary. Crematories will often group pets into weight classes, such as 1 – 20 lbs. or 30 – 60 lbs. There is not a set standard for exact weight ranges or the cost of pet cremation in each range. It’s a good idea to call around to several services for price quotes. Be prepared to tell the crematory the weight of your pet and whether or not you want the ashes returned to you.

Pet Cremation Cost by Size

Here is an example of price ranges for private cremation from a pet burial and cremation service in Indianapolis, IN:

Pet Weight Private Animal Cremation Cost Pet Examples
1 – 30 lbs. $150.00 – 175.00 Hamsters, Ferrets, Guinea Pigs, Chinchillas, Gerbils, Hedgehogs, Parrots, Parakeets, Cockatiels, Mice, Rats, Turtles, Bearded Dragons, Iguanas, Snakes, and rabbits; most cats; small dogs, such as the American Cocker Spaniel and Pomeranian
30 – 60 lbs. $200.00 Medium size dogs, such as a Basset Hound, Border Collie, and Standard Poodle
61 – 90 lbs. $225.00 Medium-large dogs, including the Boxer, Doberman Pinscher, and Golden Retriever
91 – 120 lbs. $250.00 Large dogs, including the Rottweiler, Scottish Deerhound  Bloodhound and ; Pot Bellied Pigs, Goats, Sheep 
Over 120 lbs. price varies Very large dogs, like Saint Bernards and Tibetan Mastiffs; Horses, Alpacas and Llamas

How Much Does Dog Cremation Cost?

How much does it cost to cremate a dog? The average cost to cremate a dog can vary depending on the size of your dog, your location, and the method preferred. It may cost between $50 and $150 for small dogs like Chihuahuas, or as much as $250 and more for large dogs like St Bernards and Tibetan Mastiffs. 

Some pet crematoriums may charge a standard dog cremation price for all sizes, however, it’s common to find rates change based on the size of the breed. Local crematoriums may also offer low-cost cremation options, so it’s always recommended to reach out to your local crematorium for accurate pricing.

Dog Cremation Cost by Breed Weight

Dog Weight Private Dog Cremation Cost Dog Breeds by Typical Size
1 – 30 lbs. $175.00 Chihuahua, Jack Russell Terrier, Yorkshire Terrier, Pomeranian, Miniature Poodle, Pug, West Highland Terrier, Miniature Schnauzer, Beagle, Dachshund, French Bulldog, Bichon Frises
30 – 60 lbs. $200.00 American Cocker Spaniel, Basset Hound, Border Collie, Shetland Sheepdog, Corgi, Shar Pei, Bichon Frises
61 – 90 lbs. $225.00 Boxer, Doberman Pinscher, Labrador Retriever, Australian Shepard, and Golden Retriever, German Shepherd, Standard Poodle
91 – 120 lbs. $250.00 Great Dane, Bernese Mountain Dog, Greyhound, Old English Bulldog, Tibetan Mastiff, Bloodhound, Bouviers des Flandres, Rottweiler
Over 120 lbs. price varies Saint Bernard, Alaskan Malamute, Mastiff, Newfoundland, Boerboels, Greater Swiss Mountain Dogs, Irish WolfHounds 

The larger the dog, the more expensive it will be since they will require more room in the chamber and more time to process. Transportation may also be provided for an additional cost. Usually, transfer fees range from $50 and $75

Cat Cremation Cost

How much does it cost to cremate a cat? Typically, an individual cat cremation is typically around $80-$150, although communal cremation can cost less. Cat cremation prices are typically the same regardless of breed or size. By choosing to cremate your cat with other pets, the charges could be as low as $30. However, many pet owners choose private cremation for their beloved kitty at a higher cost, to ensure that all cremated ashes belong to only one cat. 

Pet Cremation Methods

There are three methods or types of pet cremation:

  • Communal
  • Individual
  • Private

No matter which method you choose, your pet will be placed in a cremation unit that heats up to more than 1,400° Fahrenheit. The body will stay in the unit for 30 minutes to 2 hours or more, depending on the size of your pet. The remains are then removed and pulverized into small fragments. Depending on the type of cremation you choose, you may then receive the ashes in a container to scatter or store in an urn.

Communal Pet Cremation

If you’re trying to keep your animal cremation cost low, then communal cremation is typically your most affordable option. On average, communal pet cremation costs $30-$70. This method involves cremating multiple animals together at one time. Because the animals are not separated during this process, it is not possible to return the cremains to any individual owner. Instead, the crematory disposes of the ashes. Some pet crematoriums scatter the cremains in a local field or garden dedicated to this purpose.

Individual Pet Cremation Cost

More expensive than communal cremation, the individual or “semi-private” method still involves cremating several pets at the same time. In this case, however, the animals are kept separate, and it is often possible to return the cremains to the owner. The exact methods of individual cremation vary by pet crematory, as do the individual pet cremation cost.

While the animal remains are kept separate in individual cremation, there are cases in which the cremains will experience some degree of mixing. This is difficult to prevent, but many facilities do their best to ensure that each pet’s remains can be identified and returned.

Private Pet Cremation

The method with the highest pet cremation cost, private cremation means that only your pet will be in the cremation chamber, and there is little or no risk that the cremains will be mixed. Once the cremation is complete, the ashes are pulverized and returned to the owner.

Additional Costs

In addition to the actual pet cremation cost, there are a number of services that may add to your final bill. Many crematories charge an additional fee to pick up the remains of your pet from the veterinarian or your home. There may also be a charge to have the cremains delivered to you after the cremation.

Some pet crematories will allow you to witness the cremation, but they may charge a fee. You’ll also need to pay for any urn that you buy from the facility, although most offer a basic urn box at no extra charge.

Discuss: Understanding Pet Cremation Costs

3 People Discussing
  • MY LHASSA -APSO DIES LAST WEEK IN MY POOL BY FALLING UNDER THE SOLAR COVER AND I FOUND HIM 3 DAYS AFTER AND HAD HIM BURRIED BEHIND THE BACKYARD IN A BLACK PLASTIC BAG. I WAS SO UPSET AND ON PANIC THAT I DIDN’T THINK RIGHT; NOW I WOULD LIKE HIM TO BE INCINERATED, I HAVE NIGHTMARES AND CANNOT SLEEP MORE THAN 2 HOURS A NIGHT BECAUSE I SEE HIM AND FEEL THAT I CANNOT LEAVE HIM IN THE EARTH AND I WANT HIS ASHES WITH ME IS IT STILL POSSIBLE TO HAVE CREMATION FOR HIM AFTER 12 DAYS? I CANNOT FIND A CREMATORY IN MY AREA; CAN U HELP ME TO FIND ONE;
    I’M IN WEST MELBOURNE FLORIDA ZIP: 32904
    DIANE 514-236-0144 CELL OR 450-233-1650 MAGIC JACK PHONE

    Comment by DIANE HAMEL — February 10, 2019 @ 9:02 pm

  • Gentlemen:

    I see prices per pound of the pet. What can one expect to see returned in ash volume per pound of the pet?
    Does this change if mammal vs fish vs bird vs etc. This is to consider the volume/size urn required.
    In your experience is the main volume of the pet going to be calcium carbonate, sodium carbonate,etc.
    No rush on answers….like….. I don’t know.

    Always, Bill

    Comment by Bill Andrew Ricker — February 13, 2019 @ 6:50 pm

  • What about pet fish?

    Comment by Bre Cole — July 29, 2019 @ 8:51 am

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