There is already a funeral home for animals in Minho

Daniela Azevedo studied veterinary nursing, but never practiced because she suffered more than her owners, but she knew she had to dedicate her life to animals. When her cat, Thomas, who had accompanied her for 16 years, died, she felt she had to put a dignified end to it. Discover a funeral home for animals in Lisbon. When she got the ashes, the “inner peace” she felt made her realize that this was what she had to do. Pet Soul has officially opened in Esposende, this Sunday, in Viana do Castelo, at the solidarity event “Animals are also family”. It is the third animal funeral home in the country, and the first in Minho and in the North.

Born in Porto, Daniela Azevedo went to the Polytechnic Institute of Viana do Castelo to study veterinary nursing and stayed in the capital of Alto Minho. “I ended up never practicing veterinary nursing because I suffered more than the owners themselves, but I always knew I had to dedicate my life, in some way, to the animals,” O MINHO says. “And it was the death of my cat, who had accompanied me for 16 years, that I realized that one of the ways to dedicate my life to animals was precisely to give them a dignified end.”

Photo: Jukka Photographers/O MINHO

“In college I realized that animal corpses were cremated with hospital waste”

Thomas passed away in 2020 and Daniela Azevedo made sure her cat got the goodbye it deserved. “In college, I realized that animals, when kept in clinics for cremation, are incinerated along with medical waste, and then the ashes end up in a landfill. And I remember, at the time, telling my teacher right away that my cat wouldn’t end up in Trash, it wasn’t worth it. Even the teacher laughed at the time.”

But what is certain is that when she realized that Thomas “couldn’t take it anymore” with diabetes and pancreatic failure, Daniela Azevedo began researching “the options on the market.” There was already a funeral home in Lisbon that was making sets in the north. “I reached out to them, they collected and the truth is I felt that Tomás was treated with dignity. And when I received the ashes, I felt such inner peace that I said, ‘This is what I want to do.'”

Photo: Jukka Photographers/O MINHO

‘The legislation is not very clear’

From thought to action, he began a “search for the necessary licenses”, which led to more than “a year of struggle, because the legislation is still not very clear for this type of business.” By the way, the last license was obtained only “a short time ago”, hence the Pet Soul is revealed only now, after the Viana do Castelo City Council called for the initiative “Animals are also family”.

Pet Soul has facilities in Esposend, more specifically in the industrial area of ​​Borough, where customers – “for extra safety” – can watch the entire cremation process “as if it were a human”. “And he takes the ashes home the same day,” he asserts.

“I didn’t want the polls to be sad”

How does the whole process work? However, if the animal dies in the veterinary clinic, it is the veterinary clinic itself that communicates with the funeral home. “Otherwise, the customer may make the call, and we collect it on time. The person has the time they need to say goodbye to the animal, then they come with us to our facilities, we schedule the cremation, and if the customer wants to come, they can do it in person or online. If you attend. Personally, you take the ashes on the same day, otherwise we determine with the customer the best day for its delivery,” explains Daniela Azevedo, who develops the types of jars available.

Our marble urn can be laser engraved, animal print, or a simple image used as a decorative piece. I don’t want our polls to be sad,” he points out.

“Then we have the urn that turns into a tree, because we will represent a Spanish company, Biotree. The tree can be planted indoors or outdoors depending on the seed the customer chooses,” explains Daniela Azevedo, adding that there are still bamboo and other biodegradable jars out there. “It’s like Sao Joao lanterns that can be released into the sea or the mountain, and it doesn’t have any kind of environmental impact. The jar will naturally collapse,” he confirms.

“An animal that has been with us for 16 years is no less important or more important than any member of the human family.”

Finally, there is also the option to put the ashes into the jewelry pieces: “The customer can choose a necklace or bracelet, which can be customized because we work with a jewelry designer from Viana, a small amount of jewelry is incorporated into the ashes and so you can always walk with them.”

Pet Soul is the first animal funeral home in Minho and the North District. The other two located are located in Lisbon. There is a crematorium in Porto, but it has “no monitoring by clients”. And this part, for Daniela Azevedo, is essential: “It is important that the client is accompanied, to know that there is someone who understands the pain he is feeling and is not judged as it happened to me, for example. In my work at the time. [em que morreu o meu gato]They told me right away: “Are you crying because of a cat?” People cannot understand that the animal that has been with us for 16 years is no less important or more important than any member of the human family.”

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