Is it legal to bury pet in backyard

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Is it legal to bury a pet in the backyard: Laws in Australia

It’s heartbreaking, but it’s also a fact that every pet will die at some point. There is no getting away from it. We usually don’t know when, where, or how it will happen, but we do know it will happen. 

They all age and wear out, or they are involved in unforeseen events, such as accidents. 

Related :10 Self Care Essentials While Grieving The Loss Of A Pet

As a result, as a pet owner, you will be faced with one final act: deciding what to do with the remains and saying goodbye.

While there are numerous options for what to do with our pets’ bodies, one of the most popular is to bury them at home. 

Home burials are more private, and personal, and cost less than other options.

Is it, however, legal to bury pets in the backyard? 

Yes, it is legal in most states to bury pets in the backyard. Many states, however, have rules and regulations that you must follow when burying your pet.

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This article will assist you in determining whether it is legal in your state to bury your pet in your yard, as well as the numerous considerations you must make when making your decision.

Also Read: How to Comfort a dying bunny

Is it legal to bury pets in the backyard – Laws in Australia

If your dog dies at home contact your veterinarian and check your Council Rules & Regulations

If your dog dies during office hours, your veterinarian will most likely be able to advise you on what to do.

Your vet may be able to assist you with crematory services or a mobile vet service that can come to your home to pick up your pet’s body, or even for storage while you make decisions about aftercare services.

Also Read: How To Comfort A Dying Budgie? Eight things you can do to comfort them

Contact Your Local Council )r the relevant Govt Authority

Pet owners in Sydney, New South Wales, are required to notify the local council of the death of their dog within 28 days.

If your dog is deemed “restricted, dangerous, or menacing,” you must contact your local council within 24 hours.

You can notify your local government by phone, email, or letter. If your dog is restricted or declared dangerous, you may be required to provide veterinary documentation.

Also Read: How To Comfort A Dying Hamster?

Burial of Your Dog in Australia

Before burying your dog on your property, check with your local government as some areas may not allow it. If It is possible that you will need to bury your dog at a nearby pet cemetery.

If  Backyard cremation of pets is permitted in your state, you must remove your dog from the plastic bag and any other non-biodegradable materials. 

Also Read: Why parakeets die suddenly- Explained

If you want, you can bury your dog in a casket made of wood or cardboard.

You must bury your dog’s remains at least three feet deep.

A headstone, rock, or plant can be used to memorialise your dog/cat or any pet.

5 pet Cemeteries in Melbourne

  1. Bamganie
    Pet Cremation Service
  2. Edenhills –Melbourne and Adelaide
  3. Elysium Fields
  4. Pets Eternal
  5. Paws and Reflect

5 pet Cemeteries in Sydney

  1. Patch & Purr
  2. Pet Funerals Sydney
  3. Waverley Cemetery
    Cemetery – Bronte, NSW 2024
  4. Petrest
    Pet Cemetery & Crematorium – Sydney, NSW 2000
    Sydney NSW 2000
  5. Woodland

5 pet Cemeteries in Brisbane

  1. Pets R.I.P Pty Ltd
    Pet Cemetery & Crematorium – Brisbane, QLD 4000
    Brisbane QLD 4000
  2. Toowong Cemetery
    Pet Cemetery & Crematorium – Toowong, QLD 4066
    304 Birdwood Tce, Toowong QLD 4066
  3. Peace Of Mind Pet Crematorium
    Pet Cemetery & Crematorium – Camp Hill, QLD 4152
    8 Quebec Ave, Camp Hill QLD 4152
  4. Pets Eternal- Brisbane and gold coast
  5. PetsinPeaceComfort for your Family and a Proper Pet Farewell

Can you bury your pet at home Victoria?

Few pet owners choose to bury their pets in their gardens or backyard. While there are no current laws prohibiting this in Victoria,  varies from state to state. 

Before planning a backyard burial, it is critical to double-check with your local council.

Also Read: How To Deal With The Guilt Of Euthanizing A Pet ?

Can you bury your pet at home in NSW?

Some people choose to bury their pets in their gardens or backyard. 

While there are no current laws prohibiting this in NSW, it varies from state to state. Before planning a backyard burial, it is critical to double-check with your local council.

Can you bury your pet at home in Queensland?

There are no Laws against it in QLD, so you can bury your pet in the backyard at a depth of at least 60cm (dog, cat or other small animals only).

Please do not use your wheelie bins to dispose of your deceased pet (excluding birds, chickens, guinea pigs, mice, fish, etc.). 

If you must handle and prepare your pet’s body yourself, follow these steps:

Handle the pet’s body with gloves. 

Bodily fluids are frequently released after death. If you notice fluid and/or waste, you should clean the areas around your dog’s mouth, genitals, and anus.

It should be noted that when the body is moved, additional bodily fluid and/or waste may be released.

Obtain a large enough blanket, towel, or bed sheet to wrap around your body. Get a heavy-duty plastic trash bag as well (double them up if the body is very large or if the bags are thin).

Lay the body out on the blanket, towel, or sheet. Place the body on its side, curled up, as if sleeping. 

This will not only provide a sense of calm, but it will also make handling the body easier.

Wrap the blanket, towel, or sheet around the body tightly. After that, place the body in the plastic bag (s). In the case of a larger dog, this will require two people.

Tie the bag in a secure knot if possible (or, tape it closed if need be). You might want to buy two bags. 

If the remains are going somewhere else, make sure to include a label or tag with your name and your dog’s name.

Remains should be stored in a freezer or refrigerator until burial, cremation, or other disposition is made.

If you are unable to store the remains in this manner and are unable to transport the body to your veterinarian or a local pet aftercare facility, a garage or basement may suffice. 

Also Read: Cavapoos as pets : cost ,life expectancy , and temperament

How Long Can You Keep A Dead Dog Or Cat Before Burial?

The majority of states require you to bury or dispose of your pet within 24 to 48 hours of its death. 

If you are having your pet buried in a pet cemetery, the local authorities will allow you to keep them for a little longer because burial can take a few days.

Should You Bury Your Pet In A Plastic Bag?

It is preferable to bury your pet in a biodegradable bag or box. Plastic can take years to decompose completely. 

Many pet coffins are made of wood or cardboard, which degrades much faster than plastic and is better for the environment.

How Deep Do I Need To Bury My Pet?

Most states in Australia require you to bury your pet at a certain depth. This is usually between 3 and 5 feet deep. This would be measured from the pet’s head to the ground.

As a result, a small animal, such as a fish or a small cat, does not need to be as deep as a large dog.

How Much Does It Cost To Bury Your Pet In A Pet Cemetery?

Everything depends on where you live and which cemetery you choose. 

The average cost ranges from $600 to $6,000+, depending on the casket chosen and the additional services desired, such as a memorial service, headstone, paw print keepsake, and so on.

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What Do You Do With A Dead Dog

There are numerous options available for your deceased dog.

If permitted, you can bury them at home, in a pet cemetery, have them cremated, or have your veterinarian dispose of the body.

When your dog dies at home, there are numerous factors to consider. 

Many decisions must be made, and your dog’s body must be stored quickly and correctly.

It can be emotionally draining, so calling a friend or relative for assistance is often a good idea. 

They can assist you in deciding what to do if your dog dies at home.

The reasons why the backyard isn’t the greatest  to Bury your Dog

Backyard burial may appear to be the most straightforward method of caring for your pet’s remains in a dignified manner. 

Unfortunately, it can be harmful to other pets and wildlife as a result of this.

The majority of pets are put to sleep using an anaesthetic substance that is exceedingly concentrated, resulting in a very peaceful death for them (hence the term euthanasia, which means “good death”). 

Pentobarbital, the medication used to treat the pet, can remain in the pet’s buried body for up to a year. 

The euthanasia solution will poison any animals that come into contact with the corpses while they are being buried.

In my professional experience, I have witnessed two instances of this occuring, both of which resulted in catastrophic consequences. 

In one instance, a family put their pet mouse to sleep and buried it in the backyard of their home. 

The mouse was dug up and eaten by the family’s terrier, which was left unconscious in intensive care for nearly a week.

Also Read: Are Dogs Allowed In Cemeteries?[Things you must know ]

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Some Alternatives to Burying  Your Dog in Your Backyard

When we have to say goodbye to our pets, we sometimes become overwhelmed with the thought of what to do with them.

As great as it is to bury your dog in your backyard, there are other options that we sometimes overlook when considering how to keep our pets close at hand.

Consider a few alternatives to burying your pet so that you are aware of all of your options before making a final decision. Keep in mind that some of these options will have a corresponding cost associated with them.

Consider donating your pet’s body for research

If you are interested in donating your pet’s body, your veterinarian can direct you to potential local options. 

In most large cities this will be the veterinary school at the local School Or university. 

Alternatively, you can contact the veterinary science school directly through their website or general enquiries telephone number.

Most schools are interested in all species for teaching.


Pawprints are yet another option to keep your pet’s memories alive without having your pet buried in your backyard or graveyard of your choice.

You can have your pet’s paw print pressed into a circle of clay that will remain permanently in place, providing you with a great memento of your furry companion.


When it comes to commemorating our pets, cremation is quickly becoming the most popular choice.

In most cases, animal clinics have a working relationship with a local cremation service that may provide you with a range of options, from cedar boxes to urns that retain your pet’s ashes.

While the usual cremation fee will be between $75 and $200, your local veterinarian can go over all of your alternatives with you in detail.

Also Read: 15 best Pet Urns dogs- Forever in our Hearts

Stones of Remembrance

It is possible to connect your pet’s memories with your home without burying them in your garden by placing memorial stones around your property.

Having your dog’s ashes incorporated into the stone allows you to memorialise your pet in a specific location within your yard. These stones can be made to order.

This is an option that most cremation businesses provide, so be sure to enquire about it with your nearest clinic.

Pet Cemetery

If you do not want to bury your pet in your backyard, you can always choose to bury your pet in a pet cemetery in your neighbourhood.

These cemeteries have been specifically designed for animals and will provide a peaceful resting place for your pet.

If you want to have your pet interred at a pet cemetery, you will be able to visit your pet on an as-needed basis.

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Final Thought…

If you have recently lost a beloved pet, you may want to remember them by burying them in your backyard.

This is a wonderful way to remember all of the happy times you and your pet have shared.

While this is legal in the majority of states, there are rules and regulations that must be followed.

If you are unsure, contact your local authorities.

If you feel you want to keep your Pet Ashes next to you and feel that can help you grieve better – Here is what you can do.

Pet Ash can be stored in many ways: I have listed a few items that can be purchased from Amazon.

Is it legal to bury pet in backyard

About the Author: Dog Behavioural Consultant

Jennifer W loves Pets! She is an animal lover. She loves caring for and sharing her knowledge of all kinds of pets.

Her Love for pets made her Join the pet paws hub Team, to share knowledge with the world.

Jennifer WDog Behavioural Consultant

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