How deep should I bury my cat?

This is not ment to be morbid… I just need some advice.

If you have followed the thread about my cat being hit by a car you will know that early this week I am going to have to have my cat put to sleep.

I want to bring him home and bury him… but I’m serious… I don’t know how deep. Two factors effect this… if I bury in the front courtyard like I think I would like how deep should it be? It would really really freak me out to go out front and be able to smell him decomposing because I didn’t bury him deep enough. I’m hoping thats an unrealistic fear.

Second… if I bury him out back I have three dogs. One likes to dig. He’s the same one that would spend hours wrestling with the cat and chewing on his head. I can just see him digging up that cat and chewing on his head…

I started to dig a hole in the courtyard this afternoon and hit the sprinkler system so I had to fill it back in…


I am so sorry about this. Life is so very unfair sometimes.

As I said before, I had my two oldest cats move on to a better place (both were 18 years old) a couple of years ago. I had them cremated, and for me it was the right decision.

Maybe this is an option you could consider?



:: slips in quietly ::

I buried mine about 2 feet deep…also added a few big rocks on top before filling it back up (makes digging it out difficult for dogs).


:: slips out ::

Whammo, dear, again, I’m sorry about Max. :frowning:

The only thing I can think of to keep your doggies from digging up Max is to put something over the spot. Maybe some decorative concrete pavers? They’re fairly inexpensive, and easy to lay. I’m not sure if you wanted to mark the spot like that or not, though.

You could always plant some nice flowers or something on the spot. A memorial tree, maybe? (The hole will have to be pretty deep if you go this route, to give the roots room to grow.)

Then again, I’m sure your dog will understand Max is dead. He may not even dig Max up.

God, this is morbid. {{Whammo & family}}

::scratches Max’s ears::

First, my condolances. I always get emotional when a pet dies.

I’ve buried two cats, but only one on my own property. I buried it (it was as neighborhood cat, so I didn’t know it’s sex) about 2 1/2-3 feet deep. We had dogs, plus plenty of neighborhood dogs that wandered the area (no leash laws where I lived). But none of them felt compelled to dig at the gravesite.

If it makes you more secure, perhaps wrap the body in plastic and place it in a sealed cardboard box.

Two feet is about right. If you cover him in something airtight, like a plastic bag, that might frustrate the digging dog. If I did this I would wrap him in a favorite blanket or towel first. I buried my cat Baby with his food dish, his favorite catnip toy, and a St. Francis medal. Toys for the next life made it hurt a little less. Sigh.

My cats went into bags and out with the trash.
Before you say I didn’t show respect, that’s approximately how I want to leave this world. I can’t understand burial of the shell when the spirit is gone.


My condolences to you, I’m sorry for your loss.

I could not begin to estimate something like that, but I am more than capable of offering you my most heartfelt sympathies.


Whammo, sorry about the cat. I’ve buried a couple of my own.

I dug a deep hole, about 2 feet, I guess. I put the cat in a plastic bag. After filling the hole up to within about 6 inches, I then put in a piece of plywood and covered it the rest of the way. I figured that the plywood would stop anything that tried to dig it up anytime soon but would eventually rot away. I never had a problem with anything trying to dig them up anyway.

Again, sorry about the cat. I hate losing pets.


i’ve buried two pets in the back yard. about 2-3 feet sounds right. i placed a rock over one and her favourite brick over the other, after scratching their names and dates on them. as soon as the season was right i planted a bleeding heart bush over them.

i’m so sorry your going through this. in my case i did all the grave planning after they died. i can’t imagine what your going through, dealing with this before…

you may want to consider cremation. my cousin had her dog cremated, heidi is in a very nice wooden box next to her picture on a bookcase.

it may sound a bit odd, you may want to consider having your other pets sniff max after. that way they will know what happened and not go about the house looking for him. seeing that may just break your heart even further.

condolences whammo


one thing I would like to ask is why people become so attached to their pets? If you’re a person who relies on pets as their livelihood ie:farmers you are excluded from this.

if an animal dies in the wild, it’s “family” (genetic) does not bury it. the animal simply lays where it’s demise came upon it, and decompses. If a carnivore chooses to devour it, then so be it. This is NATURE and the way things happen. The food chain is still the ultimate. So having said this…why bury your cat at all. Simply feed it to the dogs…and let nature take it’s course. In this world of Technological Revolution we still need to remember the basics of all living forms and nature.

condolences again for becoming so attached to an animal.

Adolph - hush.

Whammo -

I hate to inject reality for a minute, but…make sure you’re allowed to bury the cat on your property. Not all cities let you.

Aside from that…I can’t give much advice. When we put my beloved terrier Gretel to sleep, we had her cremated. We were planning on scattering her ashes in the yard, but we never could. And then my parents moved. So we still have Gretel in a little box in the attic…we just can’t part with her, I guess.

Again, I’m so sorry, Whammo. Unfortunately we’ve had much experience in this area, as our “puppy graveyard” on the hill in our back woods attests. (Actually, it’s a peaceful place, and we imagine the shades of our friends frolicking up there . . .)

Those who are buried underground were always wrapped in a soft piece of my husband’s clothing, such as a sweatshirt. I believe he also used the patio block technique as protection from digging. 3-month old kitten Phil is buried at the edge of our sandpit under about a dozen patio blocks at the surface, and he is undisturbed after 2 years. (Hubby just wandered in, and he said Phil is only about 6 inches down. He also agrees with the consensus so far, from his own sadly vast experience, that 2 feet is plenty.) Benji died when the ground was frozen, so he rests under a rather unique tomb made of large rocks, about 2 feet high.

Someone mentioned the possibility of cremation, which we chose for Miss Emily, who was after all our best beloved. If you go this route, Whammo, be absolutely sure to check (or have someone else check for you - perhaps better) that both you and Max’s remains will be treated as respectfully as if a human had died. Unfortunately, our experience was horrid due to deliberate cruelty toward us by the pet crematory staff. But later we dealt with another (human) crematory when finding a permanent urn for her ashes, and the people there were wonderful. As a result of what I told them about the first place, they have now opened their crematory to pets; if only they had been available for Emily! I later spoke with several other pet cremation services, and the consensus was that my bad experience was one-of-a-kind, and that 99.999% of these services are very sensitive and caring.

It’s a very personal choice, and we’ll likely bury all future pets (what a morbid shelf we’d have in the house otherwise!), but Emily was special and it’s nice having her on the piano rather than outside in the ground. I understand that the $55 fee we paid is a little on the low side, but up to $100 is still not too expensive IMO. And if we move we can take her with us.

You also might want to go to and write a memorial to Max. I like to go there and look at Miss Emily’s every so often myself.

As for other pets, they’ll know. Emily did most of her dying inside our house; when we returned from the vet’s afterward, the outside dogs were very subdued. I think they smelled her on hubby’s clothes. And when we brought Scout inside the next day, she immediately went sniffing at the places where Emily had been sick and the last place she had lain – even though we had cleaned. She was uncharacteristically quiet for about a week. They’ll know. Trust me.

Oh, Whammo, it’s a terrible thing to lose a pet. We were glad we were home with Emily during her final hours (though we didn’t realize they were final until shortly before the end) and were there still telling her how much we loved her, and that she did not die alone. I know that you will be with Max, and that he will know he’s loved. And that’s something you’ll be glad of in your sadness.

(can’t type anymore – my vision is blurring wetly)

My dear Whammo, I am so very sorry. Wish there was something I could say to take away some of the hurt you’re feeling. As to advice, Mr Bear was kind enough to let me bring her home, and he put her in a plastic bag, then inside the cardboard box the vet gave us to bring her home in. I picked a spot by the back fence, under a tree for shade, and he buried her about 2-2.5’ deep, then put a bunch of rocks on top. He even made a cross out of some sticks and placed it on there. I can look out of my kitchen window and remember the good times, the companionship and love she brought me for more than 14yrs.

I hope this helps you some. I just read rocking chair’s post. It might help, letting them sniff his body, as hard as that will be for you to do.

This bites. Sniffles :frowning:

Adolph- hush. And, ajschn has a good point, they will most likely know anyway.



That is one opinion… and I don’t discount your thoughts… but by the same token… instead of having my cat put to sleep… maybe I should just throw it to the neighbors pit bulls and not worry anymore? After all… thats nature too… and thats about your thinking too isnt it? run away now boy and when you parents die be sure to thow them to the sharks… thats a good boy

LMAO Some people… though that is a point and I don’t think he ment any harm (maybe).

now thank you all for your sincere answers… you all told me what my mind was thinking… somewhere between 2 - 4 feet should be right. Its just good to hear someone else say so. I’m sorry for your all’s losses, but thank you for sharing.

I will/do grieve… its hard to pet and love the cat and not cry… but by the same token I do know that it is a pet and that life will go on… even with a grieving process. As a pet owner you have to realize that you will outlive your pets and that you must prepair for that.

As for the exGF that I still live with… I am not so sure she realizes that and her grievence will be much more drawn out…

I found a solid wooden box for Mike, my faithful friend and companion of 10 years, put a small pillow in it and wrapped him in a sheet, included a note with him saying how much I loved him, a tissue that I used to dry my eyes, a toy mouse and a bag of catnip and buried him about a foot deep in my backyard.

Adolph asks how anyone can become so attached to an animal.

When I found Mike he was just a little kitten,both his eyes were full of puss and scabbbed over,he was flea infested,had maggots crawling in and out of his ass and was a wild little beast that gave me several scratches and bites as I nursed him back to health. The vet told me I had little chance of keeping him alive. Don’t know how I ever got attached.

I love and adore my cats, they are my family. I can honestly say that if my cats and your children were trapped in a burning building I would go in to save my cats.

Wait a minute. You’re a GUY whining about a cat?
I thought it was too much when I assumed you were a girl.
I can’t think of any adult I know who hasn’t lost a pet, but I bet none buried them.

so what… do real men eat their dead pets… or just throw them in the trash where you grew up?