Pets provide us with unconditional love and companionship and become members of the family. When a pet dies, it can be devastating. If you’ve ever lost a pet then you know the loss can be just as profound as grieving a human. Because saying goodbye is an important step in the grieving process, many people choose to host pet memorials.  A pet memorial provides an opportunity to grieve with loved ones and honor the important role your pet played in your life. 

​​What to say at a pet memorial

A pet memorial is a good time to share special memories of a pet. You may talk about their funny quirks, the adorable things they did and the way they made you feel loved.

Consider opening with a pet memorial quote or saying to start your speech. You may find that a memorial saying for the loss of a pet can express your feelings better than you can yourself. There are also many wonderful quotes about pets and the joy they bring to our lives that would be appropriate to use as a pet memorial saying. These quotes can also be written in a sympathy card when a loved one loses a pet. To help you get started on what to say, we’ve compiled 40 pet memorial sayings and quotes.  

Read more: How to write a memorial tribute

Memorial quotes for pets

  1. “How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard." – Winnie The Pooh
  2. “Pets are humanizing. They remind us we have an obligation and responsibility to preserve and nurture and care for all life.” – James Cromwell
  3.  “Animals have a much better attitude to life and death than we do. They know when their time has come. We are the ones that suffer when they pass, but it’s a healing kind of grief that enables us to deal with other griefs that are not so easy to grab hold of.” – Emmylou Harris
  4. “Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened.” – Anatole France
  5. “When we adopt … any pet, we know it is going to end with us having to say goodbye, but we still do it. And we do it for a very good reason — they bring so much joy and optimism and happiness.” – Bruce Cameron
  6. “To live in hearts we leave behind is not to die.” – Thomas Campbell
  7. “Don’t cry because it’s over; smile because it happened.”  – Dr. Seuss
  8. “Death ends a life, not a relationship.” – Jack Lemmon
  9. “Our perfect companions never have fewer than four feet.” – Colette
  10. “Animals are such agreeable friends — they ask no questions; they pass no criticisms.” – George Eliot
  11. “An animal’s eyes have the power to speak a great language.” – Martin Buber
  12. “Sometimes losing a pet is more painful than losing a human because, in the case of a pet, you were not pretending to love it.”  – Amy Sedaris
  13. “Be kind to all pets and animals because they will be kind back to you.” – J. Wesley Porter

Read more: 10 special ways to say “you’ll be missed” 

Memorial quotes for when a cat dies

  1. “There are no ordinary cats.” – Colette
  2. “No amount of time can erase the memory of a good cat.” – Leo Dworkin
  3. “I love cats because I enjoy my home; and little by little, they become its visible soul.” – Jean Cocteau
  4. “No one can truly understand the bond we form with the cats we love until they experience the loss of one.” – Unknown
  5. “What greater gift than the love of a cat?” – Charles Dickens
  6. ​​“When the cat you love becomes a memory, the memory becomes a treasure.” – Unknown
  7. “The smallest feline is a masterpiece.” – Leonardo da Vinci
  8. “I believe cats to be spirits come to earth. A cat, I am sure, could walk on a cloud without coming through.” – Jules Verne
  9. “Time spent with cats is never wasted.” – Sigmund Freud
  10. “There are two means of refuge from the miseries of life: music and cats.” – Albert Schweitzer

Memorial quotes for when a dog dies

  1. “Dogs’ lives are too short. Their only fault, really.” – Agnes Sligh Turnbull
  2. “Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole.” – Roger Caras
  3. “No matter how little money and how few possessions you own, having a dog makes you feel rich.” – Louis Sabin
  4. “There’s a saying. If you want someone to love you forever, buy a dog, feed it and keep it around.” – Dick Dale
  5. “Once you’ve had a wonderful dog, a life without one is a life diminished.” – Dean Koonz
  6. “You don’t really own a dog, you rent them, and you have to be thankful that you had a long lease.” – Joe Garagiola
  7. “Dogs are the most amazing creatures; they give unconditional love.” – Gilda Radner
  8. “If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went.” – Will Rogers
  9. “You do not own a dog. You have a dog. And the dog has you.” – Chelsea Handler
  10. “A dog…is a bond between strangers.” – John Steinbeck
  11. “We never really own a dog as much as he owns us.” – Gene Hill
  12. “Whoever said that diamonds are a girl’s best friend never owned a dog.” – Unknown
  13. “The average dog is a nicer person than the average person.” – Andy Rooney
  14. “Dogs and angels are not very far apart.” – Charles Bukowski
  15. “Having a dog will bless you with the happiest days of your life and one of the worst days.” – Unknown
  16. “Money can buy you a fine dog, but only love can make him wag his tail.” – Kinky Friedman
  17. “My little dog — a heartbeat at my feet.” – Edith Wharton 

What to write on a dog urn

If you’ve had your pet cremated, you might be thinking about what you can write on the urn. No matter what kind of pet you’ve cremated, unless the urn is very large, you probably won’t have much space for an inscription. Keep it simple — the pet’s name and years of life are enough. If you have enough room, consider adding their nicknames or a short memorial quote from the list above.

Read more: 9 healthy ways to grieve the loss of a pet