Anyone have a pet memorial garden to share?

snowbunny_wi(4)May 28, 2010

We had to put our chocolate lab down and we buried her under the arbor and now I'd like to create a memorial garden in that area. We have fence sections on the sides of the arbor that I have some perennials in, just looking for some other garden decor/garden junk to add to the area.

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I don't have a pet memorial garden, but I have put memorials of previous pets along with memorials of friends and family in my angel garden. I found a terra cotta cat curled up, sleeping to which I added wings...then spray painted black..which was a memorial for our cat, Romeo (who was black as night). It got broken by squirrels romping through the garden, however.

The garden itself has multiple angels...the biggest one is concrete and about 4 feet tall....and a wheelbarrow filled with forget-me-nots. Many of the other plants either have plants that came from my grandparent's yard, have plants that share the names of deceased loved ones (for example, an "Elvera Wigiela" as a memory of my mother, Elvera)or plants that, for some reason, remind me of certain people (like the forget-me-nots which originated from seeds my now-gone best friend sent me on May Day a year before she died).

    Bookmark   May 29, 2010 at 1:05AM
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That reminds me--I want to order a plaque for my
'worlds smallest cat' Bitsy. She is buried in a
'people' cemetary. If I had buried her at home
and later had to sell the propery....but I know
the cemetary where my grandparents are, will
always be there (I hope).

    Bookmark   May 29, 2010 at 10:27AM
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Awwww, I'm so sorry to hear about your dog, snowbunny! But what a wonderful gesture to create a memorial garden for her. I love grandmathyme's ideas from her angel garden. I would include some sort of sign/marker for her so when people see your garden, they too remember what a wonderful dog she was.

    Bookmark   May 29, 2010 at 1:04PM
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spedigrees z4VT

I'm sorry about the loss of your dog, snowbunny. I have a memorial garden to my past cats and dogs and small pets, but it is still in the works, so not photos yet. Basically it is just a small patch along the bank of our brook where I planted mini rose bushes and a cement statue of a cat, with no thought of it being a memorial. However it looked so much like a pet memorial that visitors asked about it, so I decided if that is what people think it is, I will turn it into a memorial garden.

I intend to find or make a garden stake with swirly hooks to either side to place in the garden, and to order a stainless steel pet tag for each of our past pets and hang the (3) dog tags on on one side of the stake and (4) kitty tags on the other. I also have buried some of our smaller pets in this garden, a parakeet and a rat, and I added a forsythia bush to the plot that reminds me of the yellow feathers of my little bird.

This concept came to me after I replaced the old name plates on our barn last year with new stainless steel plates, 3 as memorials for our deceased horses and one for our old pony who is still with us. Each nameplate is framed by one of its namesake's old horse shoes.

I think I would try to find a theme or items that remind you in some way of your dog to incorporate into your monument and garden designs.

    Bookmark   May 30, 2010 at 3:19PM
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I sincerely apologize for focussing more on your garden than on the reality that you had lost your beloved pet! I am so sorry for your loss. Pets are such incredible parts of our hurts so much to lose them!

>>I think I would try to find a theme or items that remind you in some way of your dog to incorporate into your monument and garden designs.

I visited a local shop that sells concrete yard art the other day and noticed they had concrete life-size basketballs and soccer balls. Reading (above) I thought that when (hopefully in a VERY distant future) I lose my beloved Saber, he will need a concrete basketball to mark his resting place. That dog so LOVES playing ball that only a ball could truly mark his personality!

Just thought it might give you an idea of something to add to your memorial for your dog.

    Bookmark   May 31, 2010 at 3:17PM
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First, I'm so very sorry for your loss. A garden by the arbor for her sounds lovely.

Years ago, I made "stepping stones" for beloved dogs I lost. But after we moved, and some of the stones were broken, I didn't do a garden here, and only have one stone left. I'll attach a photo, and try to explain how I did some of the others too. I made a wood frame and did my own stone mold, but now you can buy the kits at Michaels easily to make stepping stones. (I hate to call them that, LOL, cause no one better step on mine!) Anyway, I put my dog's name and the date of birth as well as death.
Then I added various memororbilia. Lexie, who's stone is pictured didn't have as much as some of the others as she was the first one I made and was learning to do these.
She was a Borzoi (Russian Wolfhound) that I showed. So when the cement was fairly set, I pressed in a medallion she'd won at a big show. Also a plastic pin of a Borzoi painted like her. I impressed a heart into the cement too. I also pressed a Borzoi head design into the cement. And added a few pretty little rocks.

With some of the others I added miniature things from Michaels/Hobby Lobby that reminded of the dog. I had one dog that loved BREAD as a treat, and loved tennis balls. I found a tiny plastic loaf of french bread, and a flat backed plastic tennis ball in miniatures. I also found a ceramic magnet that was hand-painted with roses and said You Are Loved. I just added any kind of thing that reminded me of that particular dog. In the jewelry charm section as well as the miniature section, you can find all sorts of things.
I always meant to remake the broken stones but didn't. I know I have pictures somewhere of the others, just need to find them! Days of old photographs, before digi cameras or me even having a computer!
Anyway, here's how Lexie's was done.

Also, Collections Etc has some wonderful pet memorial things on their site I think.
I hope to see your garden when its done.

hugs, Karen

    Bookmark   May 31, 2010 at 5:01PM
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canadianprairiegirl(zone 3)

I'm sorry too about your dog and know how you feel as we just put our dog down rather unexpectedly, She loved it on the farm, bolting out the door in the morning to run a wide circle in the grass and while away the hours we spent in the garden, fixated on the birds and the bees or laying in the shade. We also buried her in the garden and like you, would like to mark her little spot in some way. One idea I've seen is to use an old shovel spade stuck into the ground handle end down. You could add your dog's name and anything else you'd like to the spade.... Its not too 'funereal' and goes with the garden theme. The book showed a grouping of rusted garden implements poking out from the greenery and it looked great!

    Bookmark   May 31, 2010 at 9:33PM
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concretenprimroses(4B NH)

I have a garden that to me is kitty memorial, because several are buried there (not all) and I have a memorial totem there as well as some other garden junk. I think of them when I plant in that bed. But it is not obviously a pet memorial and no one else would know unless I tell them.

    Bookmark   June 1, 2010 at 7:29AM
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I have a spot where our old Mother Cat 13 yrs and her 3 boys (2 were 12 and the other 14)are buried. Lost 3 of them within 2 months a few years ago. It started as a place to put trees and plants waiting to find a permanent home (yeh right), they are still there.

As I was weeding there I thought, someday it will come and I will need a place for them. Talk about forethought being a Godsent. Anyway they are under a weeping cypress, next to a big horsechestnut. Holly bushes are now crowding them. Ivy spreading over them. Clematis above with a birdfeeder. Roses and Stargazer lilies bloom every year. Crushed stone as mulch. Cedars outline it all. The most important thing I put there that was a big comfort to me was a concrete St. Francis of Assisi, paton Saint of Aminals and a little bench to visit.

Everyone does it their own way.


    Bookmark   June 2, 2010 at 9:13PM
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I'm sorry to hear that you lost your beloved pet. I too had to put my lab down, he was black. Here is a pic of the bed that I made in his honor "he used to lay in his spot>

It has:

iris chasing rainbows
Jacobs ladder stairway to heaven and heavenly habit
black mondo grass
phlox speed limit
iris full tide
black mondo grass
heuchera black out and a cimicifunga black neglegee.

Again, I'm so sorry.It's not easy to let them go.


    Bookmark   June 3, 2010 at 7:26PM
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spedigrees z4VT

Purplemoon, I love your stepping stone for Lexie. It is a shame that the other stones for your other dogs were broken.

Also your memorial gar*den is very pretty, Lisa. I like that it is on the same spot that your lab used as a bed.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2010 at 8:40AM
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So sorry to hear about your Lab, it's never easy to lose a beloved member of the family.

And as much as I love my other dogs, the ones I have now and the ones that have gone, there is still always that one special one. With me it was my standard poodle, Monet, I lose a big piece of my heart when I lose him, someone once called him my doggy soulmate, couldn't have said it better myself. So of course I have a memorial garden for him.

Don't have any pics, but this is what I did. My best friend, knowing how special he was to me, gave me a stepping stone she had made as a Christmas gift one year. It had his name and an image of a standard poodle. And then I made my own stepping stone using his tags with his name, his collar, some of his hair, and his baby leash, he never needed a leash as an adult, he was glued to my side.

That is the main idea I want you to do, make your own stepping stone to honor your lab. Most craft store carry the kits, but you can even just get some ready mix cement and a pie pan. I did have to shelac (sp) to keep the hair, but I did have a big poof of his hair because I did my own grooming.

I did take it a bit farther. I had a hosta sport spring up in my gardens while he was still alive. It wasn't an unusual sport, there are actually a couple registered varieties that look just like it. But in the hosta world, a sport, aka, mutation, of a hosta can only be called by a registered name if it is a division of or tissue culture of the orginal sport. So since this sport came from my gardens, I was free to name it what I wanted and can actually register it, which I won't, but I named it Mr. Monet. I buried his ashes under it, and put the stepping stones around it.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2010 at 12:19PM
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This was a hard thread to open. I avoided it for a long time. My beloved Jackie is gone now 3 years and it still hurts. The other day I was looking up statuary and found that they make a pet memorial markers. I tried to find again the same website and could not...but found many different types. The one I saw was kinda like a mound and a had cap napping on top of it...thought it was sweet for someone who lost their kitty.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2010 at 7:33PM
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I am sorry you lost your beloved dog. What was her name?

I have three memorial gardens for my lost dogs. The first is for Bridget, an incredibly smart, funny, Golden Retriever/Lab mix. Two years before I lost her, she helped me dig the water garden, me with my shovel, she with her paws. When the liner was installed, the water added, and the rock edging in place, we began and ended every summer/spring/fall day there. In the morning I would sit and drink my coffee, Bridget at my feet, and at night, we would sit and listen to the frogs and watch the fireflies. She is buried on the other side of the path. I put a shepherd's hook over her grave and hung her collar from it. Six years later, though faded, it is still there, as are my memories of my beautiful girl. And though they are covered with moss now, her beloved tennis balls can still be seen, here and there, among the plants.

My little Homer, a rat terrier, died two years ago. His loss has hit me like a ton of bricks. On the last camping trip with him, I found a triangular rock that I brought home and less than a month later it became his grave marker. I hung a grapevine wreath on a tripod behind his grave and grow a beautiful vine with bell-shaped flowers over it. A friend gave me a small angel holding a tiny dog in her arms, and I put that there too. Because hiking and camping were Homer's favorite activities, besides loving me, whenever I go camping or hiking, I bring home fossils, special rocks, and small pieces of driftwood, and surround the angel with them.

And lastly is the Big Dog Memorial Garden. It is in honor of Big Sunny (165 lbs), O'Malley (120 lbs), Badger (110 lbs), Byron (90 lbs) and Peanut (125 lbs), all whom were dearly loved. The plants in this garden are all huge, either in leaf or in height, and it is located by the large pond they all loved to dive into during the hot summer months or played on the ice of during the winter.

My best to you. Whatever you come up with for your garden will be wonderful.


    Bookmark   August 14, 2010 at 2:50AM
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When I had to put my 16 yr old cat Boo down in 2007, I had him cremated and brought the ashes home. I took the flower bed below, which nothing would grow in due to a huge pine tree, put down landscape fabric and white rocks, and buried Boo in the center. Then I hung the plaque for him.
We have since moved, and yes, I brought Boo with me to bury here.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2010 at 10:22AM
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concretenprimroses(4B NH)

I have buried many, but not all of my cats under our plum tree which is also a flower garden. I have a totem wiht a solar light in the top there. I can see it from the kitchen window. The light works best when there are no leaves on the trees, but that seems fitting.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2010 at 9:36AM
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My eyes filled with tears as I read the above posts, but I have gotten some good ideas.
This summer I lost my beautiful 8 year old horse. I know God chose to take her when we were on vacation and there was nothing I could do for her.
She is buried on our property at the edge of the horse pasture. I want to make a memorial garden for her using landscape fabric covered with white stone and a wooden cross in which I will burn her name and date.
I really love Grandma Cindy's marker, and if I can find that one (our garden center has similar ones) I would lay it at the base of the cross.
I am going to plant a tree nearby in the spring and eventually put a bench under it.
I will plant some perennials around the stones.

I do have a question.....would it be proper to put hooks at the end of the cross and hang potted plants on it?

    Bookmark   October 13, 2010 at 11:20AM
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woodlandgal, I am so sorry you lost your beloved horse. I know how horribly upset I was as a child when 3 of my horses died in a fire on my aunt & uncle's farm. A memorial garden would be so fitting for them. I still miss Lucky, Fanny and Jim to this day. I love the creative ideas that people have come up with.

    Bookmark   October 14, 2010 at 12:11AM
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I'm so sorry for your loss! I have a memorial shelf at home for my beloved pets. I have made many pet memorial stones for other people. I can give you directions if you would like. God Bless!

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   October 14, 2010 at 12:50PM
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