Dog killed after owner died

Dog killed because owner insisted that they be buried together

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Recently, a healthy dog was killed because her owner insisted that they be buried together…the dog’s name was Emma, and as reported by Live 5 News, her owner left “explicit instructions” that Emma be put down in order to be “laid to rest” with her.

According to the news agency, Chesterfield Animal Shelter personnel tried to no avail to get the executor of the will to release Emma from her death sentence…but the executor was determined to follow through with Emma’s deceased owner’s wishes. The dog, described as “healthy,” was taken to a veterinarian and euthanized.

Most dog lovers agree that healthy dogs should not be put to death just because their owners have died…but there are some people who argue that it IS the most humane thing to do in certain circumstances. Would you ever leave instructions for your pet to be euthanized upon your death? If there was no one to take in your dog (or cat) would you consider having him or her euthanized if you died? Please feel free to share your opinion in the comment section below.

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5 replies
  1. Bunny Peters says:

    OMG: how selfish and cruel…… I can’t believe this poor precious little treasure was murdered like this…… She could have been adopted out and then, after her death in the future, been cremated and reunited with her original owner……
    I completely understand the wish to keep a beloved furbaby with you in death BUT ONLY if the furbaby has “predeceased” you….. & they have already been cremated (ashes are in a small wooden casket) to add to the owner’s casket.
    If the furbaby is young and healthy, NO……. let them live with a designated caregiver.
    Our wills leave money and care instructions to specific caregivers for any furbabies who survive us. Our other furbabies, who have predeceased us, have all been cremated after their deaths and their ashes are in wooden caskets so they can be placed into our caskets with us after we die.
    We care for my Dad’s dogs (I promised him on his deathbed that we would ensure they were cared for and loved)……. No way would we have euthanized his pets. He knew we would care for his precious little treasures and was totally at ease with this arrangement.

  2. Jan Barnes says:


    Every pet family MUST make advance plans for the care of their beloved pets in the event of their deaths! In fact, there should be plans “A,” “B” and “C.” At the very least they can include a no-kill shelter in their estate planning to take care of their beloved pets. Many shelters provide workshops on how to do this in a simple effective way.

  3. Susan says:

    It’s very sad but I do understand. Some people don’t have the means to set up an estate for their pets and, like it or not, relatives are not always interested or able to care for others’ animals. I used to volunteer for a large no=kill and saw animals neglected and relegated to life in a cage. I’m sure this person did this because she saw no alternative and did not want her companion in strange surroundings (or worse) wondering why he or she was abandoned. Unless this was unexpected, she should have had a vet come to her house and euthanize there instead of making the post-motel death trip.

  4. Larry says:

    I couldn’t disagree more with Susan’s comment that she “understands” why some people would have healthy animals killed. This is one of the most selfish, uncaring acts a person can commit. claiming that they love their pets so much they can’t stand to be separated from them, even in death. I seriously doubt that this act was perpetrated because the owner saw no reasonable alternative when there are so many alternatives available. Talk to familly members and friends about taking in the beloved pet. If no takers, ask your vet for recommendations and perhaps the vet can find a person to adopt the animal; consult with local rescue groups; find another way. I have many rescue animals I care for and want each and every one of them to outlive me by many years. I have actually been given less than a year myself. I also have my own pet cemetery and when I’m gone, my ashes will be scattered among the graves of the pets I have lost over the years. At least in that way I know I will be with my treasured friends and companions forever.


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