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Friday, 5 October 2012

Life after death


Please could you advise?

I have two Japanese Chins and would like to know what options are available for making sure they’re looked after in the event of my death.

I do have family and friends who have said they would take them on, but I just wondered if there was anything I could do to guarantee they will be cared for. I would not wish for them to spend a long time in kennels after I’m gone.

Thank you for your help.

Linda Benson, Croydon

Dogs Trust advises...

Many people worry about what would happen if they were to die before their dog. Thankfully, Dogs Trust is on hand to ease this worry. The Canine Care Card scheme is a fantastic free service that gives you peace of mind, knowing that Dogs Trust will care for your dogs if you pass away before they do.

What would happen if your dog came to Dogs Trust

If you pass away and have registered as a Canine Care Card holder, we will arrange to bring your dog or dogs to our nearest Rehoming Centre. Once there, they will be examined by our vet and cared for by our dedicated, trained staff.

We will then try to find your dog or dogs new owners whose lifestyle and experience match their needs. Any new owners would be visited at their home and given a thorough briefing in caring for your dog.

How to join the Canine Care Card scheme

If you decide to become a Canine Care Cardholder, we will issue you with a handy wallet-sized card. It acts in a similar way to an organ donor card and notifies people of your wishes for your dogs, should anything happen to you.

We also strongly recommend that you mention the care of your dog in your Will. That way, there can be no confusion about your wishes. If this is something you wish to do, we suggest that you include the following phrase in your Will: "It is also my wish that Dogs Trust care for or rehome any dogs that I may own at the time of my death".

Find out more

If you would like further information about how Dogs Trust can arrange to take care of your dog in the event of your death, please contact our Supporter Relations team on 020 7837 0006 or download a registration form online via

Mrs Jarvis, CEO of The Cinnamon Trust, says...

Cinnamon Trust specializes in caring for bereaved pets.  Although The Trust offers may different services to elderly and terminally owners, anyone of any age can make arrangements with The Trust to care for their pet in the event of their death – all bereaved pets have had their lives shattered, no matter what the age of their owner.  The Trust undertakes to care for bereaved pets for the rest of their lives.  This can be in one of our two unique home-from-home sanctuaries or in a lifelong foster home where The Trust pays all vet bills, food bills if necessary and acts as a “safety net” to ensure all bereaved pets are happy, loved and properly cared for for life.  Very great care is taken to ensure that each pet’s needs, likes, dislikes and previous lifestyle are taken into consideration – every pet is a unique individual!


  1. It might shock some people, but I've left directives that in the event of my death, all my dogs are to be put to sleep, in their home environment, quickly.
    I've seen too often families and/or friends who say they are prepared to take on dogs, but when the time came, they've either made excuses, put the dogs in rescue or had them put to sleep.
    Rescue shelters are already overflowing with dogs and hundreds are put to sleep each week because of lack of space.
    This way my dogs come with me and will be cremated with me. They won't be spending time in kennels etc.

  2. It is possible to put provisions for them in your will. You can set aside money from your estate for their care and designate who you would like to care for them. This is probably the best way to ensure they are looked after in the event of your death.

  3. I have my boy registered with The Cinnamon Trust in the event of my untimely death or my needing of residential care.

    The Cinnamon Trust is the only specialist national charity which seeks to relieve the anxieties, problems, and sometimes injustices, faced by elderly and terminally ill people and their pets, thereby saving a great deal of human sadness and animal suffering. The Trust was founded in 1985 by Mrs Averil Jarvis.

    I have also added a clause to my will stating that if my family are unable or unwilling to take on my boy or any future dog of mine, then he is to go to The Cinnamon Trust.

    Here is the web address so you can check them out

  4. The Cinnamon Trust will provide foster care or rehoming of pets after the death of an elderly owner. The dogs need to be registered with them and they provide documentation to show the owners wishes in the event of their death.