In a small clearing in a wooded area not far from St. Mary’s Anglican Church in Nanoose Bay, a memorial garden has been set up for pets.
The idea came to Reverand Selinde Krayenhoff while she was on a pilgrimage in England and came across a huge cemetery for pets.
“That pet memorial garden made a big impression on me and we have a lot of pet lovers here at St. Mary’s, people for whom their pet is an integral part of their family,” said Krayenhoff.
The woodland pet memorial garden is named after St. Francis, the patron saint of animals, and could satisfy the practical and emotional needs of pet owners.
“A bunch of us were talking about how many people have their pet’s ashes in a container in their home and really don’t want to just put it in their garden,” added Krayenhoff.
The idea of a memorial garden for pets seems like a good idea to some people out with their dogs Wednesday.
“We have four cremated dogs and have no place to put them where we are right now,” said Wendy Kellis.
“I think honestly if it gives people peace to put their pets in a place where they can go visit them where there are other pets. That’s the purpose of it, then I don’t see anything wrong with it,” said Elena Kellis.
Krayenhoff is careful not to call it a pet cemetery but understands when the reference to Stephen King’s book comes up and is happy to go along with it.
“I actually don’t know the book, I mean I know of the book, I’m not very good with horror stories,” she said with a laugh. “But yeah we’re a garden, not a cemetery, we’re integrating ashes to ashes dust to dust.”
The ashes are put directly into the garden and nameplates are available for about $50.