Pet memories can last long after beloved animal companions are no longer with us. A dog may live for six to 20 years, depending upon his breed. An indoor cat may survive for 15 to 18 years. A hamster may live only two or three years.
How can pet owners preserve pet memories?
Many animal lovers create pet memory boxes to enjoy their furry friends during their life spans and to honor them afterwards. The process is simple.
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1. Pick a sturdy container.
A waterproof plastic box with a tight-fitting lid serves well as a pet memory box. The transparent varieties offer easy identification in storage areas of the home. Some pet owners pick fancier receptacles, such as hand-carved wooden boxes or decorative lidded tins.
Ideally, a separate box contains mementos for each pet.
2. Collect significant stuff to save.
What pet reminders are most meaningful to you? Suggested souvenirs might include copies of a pet’s medical records, breeding or adoption papers, training certificates, show awards, identification tags, and his or her baby collar.
Pet photographs are a must, of course.
A pet lover might clip a bit of fur and tuck it into a small zippered plastic bag for safekeeping as well.
Why not toss a favorite old chew toy, a ball, or a plush animal that resembles the pet into the pet memory box? Perishable items, such as dog bones or catnip treats, should be skipped.
3. Identify each item.
A fine-point permanent marker is handy for jotting down names, dates, and other details on each item going into the pet memory box.
4. Pack carefully.
Bubble wrap or packing popcorn help to keep treasured pet artifacts safe. Papers can be stowed in a folder or large envelope, placed neatly on the bottom of the container. Fragile items should be wrapped.
5. Store the pet memory box securely.
For safekeeping, the entire parcel should be stowed in a cool and dry spot and checked periodically for memory’s sake and possible updating.
A pet memory box takes little time to prepare, but it can lead to many hours of happy memories after a pet has passed away.
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