Burying A Cat – Step By Step Instructions



Burying a cat

There comes a time in all pet owners lives where they have to say goodbye to their beloved cat. Hopefully, you will have had time to decide what you would like to do with your cat’s body after he has passed.

Questions to ask include:

  • Are you likely to move in the future?
  • Do you own your home or is it a rental?
  • Can you bury cats in your area?

Your options: 

  • Pet cremation (communal cremation where your cat along with other deceased pets are cremated together, or individual cremation, where your cat is cremated on his own, and his ashes are returned to you)
  • Veterinary disposal
  • Burial at a pet cemetery
  • Home burial

This article will look at how to properly bury a cat at home.


Check with your local council to see if you are permitted to bury a cat in your garden.

Ensure that there are no underground cables in the area you plan to bury your cat.

If you are renting, check with your landlord that he or she is okay with you burying your cat in their garden.

Choose the location carefully.


Bury your cat in a public park.

Bury your cat near a stream, creek or dam as contaminated soil can leach into the water.

What you will need

  • Gloves
  • Spade
  • Biodegradable cardboard box
  • Sheet, blanket or towel
  • Strong string or rope to tie around the box
  • Large stone or paver

How deep should I bury my cat?

Dig a hole; this should be at least three feet deep to prevent scavengers from digging up the body.


Bury the cat as soon as possible as decomposition occurs quickly, particularly in the warmer months. If immediate burial isn’t possible, ask your veterinarian to store your cat’s body until you can bury him. Alternately, wrap your cat in plastic, and place in a styrofoam container filled with ice, and ensure there is drainage at the bottom to allow melted water to escape. This method is temporary, and should only be used for short-term. Ensure the container either has a heavy object placed on top or is securely strapped to keep scavengers out.

  • Dig the hole to a depth of at least 3 feet.
  • Wrap your cat in the sheet, blanket or towel and place him in the cardboard box and tie the box with rope or strong string.
  • Place soil over the box and firm down well.
  • Put a large stone or paver over the area.
  • Many pet owners choose to decorate the grave with a plant (such as catnip, catmint), a headstone or an ornament.


    • I don’t believe so. I believe attachment to the physical body is just a coping mechanism of humans, and we should all do whatever we need to for closure. We want to do something nice for our loved ones, but the truth is there is nothing else we can do after they are gone.

      I put Zeus in a box padded with our shirts, but that was really only for the comfort of myself and the kids – he didn’t look as harsh as he had lying where he passed on the hard floor. On the softer surface, he looked as I’d he were sleeping – a much easier memory for me. After the box was closed, it enabled me to disconnect as much as possible from what I was having to do. It would have been more painful to touch his fur again once he was cold, or to see dirt on him…

      Again, I don’t think any of that mattered to Zeus – it just made it easier on us. If he hadn’t died so suddenly, he would probably have hidden and decomposed somewhere naturally.

  1. Was it cruel for me to bury my pet directly in the ground without a coffin or towel ? I buried him 14 days ago – would he be decomposed now ?

  2. We had to bury our cat yesterday. 😢 He passed suddenly in his sleep at 5 years old. I placed him directly in the ground as I didn’t want to “litter” with a towel or other fabric. I guess my question is…do we need to worry about any smell? He’s about 30 feet from our house under a young tree that our kids have been caring for. They wanted him to help it grow big and strong.


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