Should Pets Get Obituaries?

Should Pets Get Obituaries?:

by Zoë Pollock
Not everyone believes so:
Contributing to a book called Making Animal Meaning, anthropologist Jane Desmond has written about the power of pet obituaries to subvert the animal-human boundary and thus to unnerve a healthy segment of the human population. Some years ago in the Iowa City Press-Citizen, Desmond's local newspaper
at the time, an obituary was printed for a black Labrador dog named Bear—the first animal obituary published by the paper. Bear, who frequently walked along, and napped on, the town streets, had been known to many locals. Even so, that brief obituary, writes Desmond, "became the cause of bitter debate" in the community. Especially offended was a woman whose sister-in-law's obituary had appeared on the same page as Bear's.
(Photo: A gravestone for the deceased pet 'Muffin' stands in the Hyde Park pet cemetery on November 18, 2010 in London, England. The cemetery is situated in the small garden of Hyde Park's Victoria Gate Lodge and was created in the 1880s. It contains over 300 graves although the last pet was laid to rest in 1976. George Orwell is reputedly to have described the cemetery as 'perhaps the most horrible spectacle in Britain' By Oli Scarff/Getty Images)


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