NY passes law allowing cremated human remains to be buried with their pets

A new state law now makes it legal for pet owners to have their cremated remains buried with their beloved pets. (6/19/14)

HARTSDALE - A new state law now makes it legal for pet owners to have their cremated remains buried with their beloved pets.

The Hartsdale Pet Cemetery, the oldest in the country, says it has been interring cremated human ashes since the 1920s, but it only became a problem in 2011. Former NYPD Officer Thomas Ryan requested to have his cremated ashes buried with his wife and their three dogs. Ed Martin, the vice president of the Hartsdale Pet Cemetery, says he received a cease and desist letter from the state, asking him to stop burying humans at the pet cemetery.

Ryan's niece says she knew her uncle wanted to be buried with his wife and dogs, so she and hundreds of others fought the decision. State Assemblyman Thomas Abinanti (D-92nd District) eventually introduced a bill to make it legal.

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The law says pet cemeteries cannot charge a fee for the burial of human ashes and they cannot advertise the service. They also need a signature of approval for the burial.

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