Healthy dog euthanized for burial with owner, sparks debate

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Veterinarians and funeral homes in Virginia are rejecting the idea that pets should be buried with their owners after a recent case in which a healthy dog was euthanized so it could lie with her owner.

WWBT-TV in Richmond reports workers at one animal shelter tried to talk the executor of the estate out of the plan. They failed and the Shih Tzu mix was euthanized and cremated. Its ashes were placed in an urn and given to the estate’s representative.

Dr. Kenny Lucas says while it’s an emotional situation, he said his clinic won’t do it. Larry Spiaggi, president of the Virginia Funeral Directors Association, said he finds the practice abhorrent. Virginia law generally forbids burying pets with humans.

A state lawmaker is considering legislation to address the problem.

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