Pets Everlasting - Would You Freeze-Dry Your Dog?

More on PawNation: death of a pet, DeathOfAPet, freeze-drying, pet loss, pet preservation, taxidermy

Freeze dry your dog picture Leilani will be with her family forever, Anita Pace

Like so many pet owners, Anita Pace was grief-stricken when her dog died a few years ago. But now, when she wants to remember the good times, she can do more than look at pictures of her chihuahua-papillon mix, Leilani.

All she has to do is look at the little white dog perched on her fireplace mantle.

It may seem creepy to some, but more pet owners are opting to preserve their animals forever by having them freeze-dried and mounted. In fact, the premiere episode of Jerry Seinfeld's new show, "The Marriage Ref," featured a couple's spat over the husband's choice to have his dead Boston terrier "stuffed" and displayed in the living room. (The judges sided with the wife.)

For the owners who never want to let go, at least 20 companies in the U.S. offer "pet preservation," the industry term for freeze-drying the animal's body while maintaining its size, shape and general appearance.

The husband-and-wife team that runs Perpetual Pet in Keyser, W.Va. call freeze drying the "loving and lasting alternative." Some people don't believe in cremation, and burial is not always an option, the company's website says. There may not be a pet cemetery in the area, or "perhaps you know that you might someday move from your home, and can't bear the thought of leaving your pet behind," the company says.

Not everyone is prepared emotionally to see their pet every day and be reminded that it will never wake up. But Pace, who lives in Oregon, knew she didn't want to cremate or bury her beloved dog. She searched for "taxidermy" on the Internet and found an article about freeze-drying.

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