Since ancient times there have been funeral ceremonies for animals, and as early as 1000 BC great tracts of land specifically for their burial were laid out alongside the Nile in Egypt.
The first public pet cemeteries in Europe were in fact founded in France in 1899, and subsequently have been built far and wide. One such sanctuary is Silvermere Haven in Cobham, Surrey, with over two thousand melancholy epitaphs set in idyllic undulating woodland and open fields.
It was opened in 1977 by the Gilbert family, who still run it today. Among the animals buried here are a 3.5m-long python, two goldfish, and a dog and a rabbit in the same coffin – as well as a family of rats and an alligator!
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