- American Kennel Club
- A perfectly healthy Shih Tzu in Virginia was euthanized so she could be buried with her late owner.
- Staff at the shelter tried to talk the executor of the woman’s estate out of killing the dog, but their request was refused.
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In a shocking example of animal cruelty, a perfectly healthy Shih Tzu mix named Emma was euthanized so she could be buried with her late owner.
Emma first arrived to the Chesterfield Animal Shelter in Virginia in March, according to Richmond-based WWBT. Staff at the shelter tried to talk the executor of the woman’s estate out of killing the dog, but their request was refused. They said they told the person on numerous occasions that they could easily find a new home for Emma. They described the situation as heartbreaking.
Larry Spiaggi, president of the Virginia Funeral Director’s Association, told the New York Post that it’s not legal to put animal remains in a casket for burial. He said that a client years ago had made a similar request, which he allowed at the time. “Knowing while we were taking care of her that that poor dog was being euthanized… I still ache over it,” he told the Post.
Many took to social media to express their shock. One person tweeted “what a selfish monster,” in response to the dog’s demise, while someone else said: “let the dog live, the owner won’t know anyway.” Another person described the situation as “heartless.”
Under Virginia’s Cemetery code, and while pets are forbidden from being buried in commercial cemeteries, exceptions can be made for private and family-owned cemeteries, though state lawmakers are reviewing ways they might amend the code.
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