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Wasteland Made into Pet Cemetery
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Pet owners in China are usually generous when it comes to spending on breeding or dressing their beloved pets. And, after their pets pass away, some owners just can't stop! Some have started buying graves to commemorate their former buddies.

China Economic Net reported on Saturday that a pet hospital in Fuzhou in southern China has made a wasteland into a pet cemetery.

And official with the hospital, Liu Ronghui, said there are three types of pet funerals: small, medium and large scale. A common funeral costs about 200 yuan, while a luxurious one takes about four to five thousand yuan, including the fee not only for renting a plot, but also buying a coffin and erecting a gravestone.

The website reported that each grave takes up less than two square meters. The names of the pets are engraved in palm-sized gravestones, accompanied by flowers.

Liu Ronghui said all the dogs buried in the cemetery died naturally. The hospital doesn't handle cases of dogs that died from unnatural causes, such as infectious diseases or poisoning.

He noted that the hospital opened the cemetery in 2004. It controls its number of clients for fear of getting into trouble. He explained that cemetery space for dead people is limited, let alone for pets.

A local animal health supervisor, surnamed Lai, said there are no laws about interring pets in the city. The official said burying pets in a certain place helps manage the placement of their bodies as well as control pollution.

Xu Doudou, a sociologist at Fuzhou University, said it's understandable for pet owners to want to inter their long-loyal companions. But the professor doesn't strongly advocate the move, as he calls for relevant departments to regulate pet cemeteries with both the environment and hygiene in consideration. 

(CRI.cn March 31, 2007)


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