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November 13th, 2011
November 13th, 2011

Pet cremation services lack regulation, business owners say

Avoiding scam artists in the pet cremation business is a little trickier than you might expect.

Note from Jocelyne Monette - owner of Pet Loss Care Memorial Center in Victoria, BC - Here again, more horror stories about pet cremation fraud, this one from the US which not only included pets, but humans as well. The video starts with the recent arrest of 2 funeral home owners for the mishandling of human remains and pet remains...followed by interviews with pet cremation operators and the PLPA - Pet Loss Professionals Alliance, an organization dedicated to the standardization of the pet cremation industry in the US and Canada.

NDIANAPOLIS (WISH) - Avoiding scam artists in the pet cremation business is a little trickier than you might expect. The industry is relatively new.

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"Every single family that has a pet thatīs cremated has the same question in the back of their mind. And that question is, is it really my pet?" says John Pyle who runs Pet Angel, a pet crematory on the south side of Indianapolis.

Pyle says families need to ask how the crematory keeps track of each pet.

"We actually have a six step authentication process," he said.

Pyle says every animal thatīs brought in is tagged and numbered and has a written record of the entire process.

Thatīs what Pyle does at his business. But itīs not required. 24-Hour News 8 has learned if you buy the equipment and get zoning approval, you too can open your own pet crematory.

"Unfortunately, at this time our industry is not regulated. And unfortunately, people that are in this business can do whatever they want to do," says Pyle.

Coleen Ellis is credited with having the first pet funeral business in the nation. It was in Carmel. Now sheīs an industry consultant and chairperson of Pet Loss Professionals Alliance, a trade group that is trying to put professional standards in place.

"And making sure theyīre abiding by ethical processes and abiding by the standard that we abide by in the human side," says Ellis.

Ellis and Pyle say you should find a crematory that has a tracking process for your pet, allows you inside the business unannounced and has separate equipment for whatīs called community cremations, where you donīt keep the ashes, and individual cremation where you do.

Remember, when it comes to cremating your pet, you are on your own. So ask questions and get it in writing.

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