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Pet Burial Laws (Is It Legal To Bury a Pet in Your Backyard?)

In this article, you will find the answer on whether your state allows or not pet burial in your backyard or properties. And resource links where you could get more information or contact local authorities.

Is It Legal To Bury a Pet in Your Backyard?  Burying a pet in your backyard or property has many regulations and rules, and they all vary from state to state and even county to county. Most states will allow it if you meet certain conditions, but the best thing to do is verify within this article.

Pet Burial Laws By State:

Alabama

Alabama will allow you to bury your pet in the backyard; you just have to make sure to bury it 2 feet underground. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities

Alaska 

Alaska does allow pet burial; the burial site must be 100 feet from any well, stream, lake, or drinking water. Also, if the soil is too frozen, they recommend that you proceed with a cremation process. For more information, please download this resource page or contact local authorities

Arizona

By law, it’s illegal in many Arizona counties to have a backyard burial of pets. But they do have public pet cemeteries that you can use. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities

Arkansas

Arkansas won’t allow pet burials in your backyard or any public property. The pet owner is responsible for removing the animal outside of the city limits to burn or bury. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities

California

When it comes to California, backyard pet burial varies depending on the city or county. There are many considerations. But in general, most city doesn’t allow burials, but they do note that in rural areas is usually not enforced. They recommend pet cemeteries or cremation. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities

Colorado

Colorado will allow pet burial in your backyard as long as you are the property owner and the pet has no infectious disease. But they also have many regulations depending on the case, so the best thing to do is to verify. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Connecticut

The state of Connecticut allows pet burials in your property; they do request to make sure to bury them deep enough and far from water sources. And it might sound bad, but they even allow for you to dispose of the animal in the trash with the kitchen scraps. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Delaware

The state of Delaware t allows pet burials in your backyard; they do request to make sure to bury them deep enough and far from water sources. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Florida

Florida will allow pet burial in your backyard as long as it is your property. You must bury 2 feet below the ground’s surface; if the animal died by a disease, it must be disposed of by cremation. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Georgia

The state of Georgia allows pet burial in your properties; they do request it must be far from any water source, and you should bury it deep enough. They also note that the disposal of any dead animal on land that you do not own is forbidden, and you can face the consequences. You must have the permission of the owner. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Hawaii

Hawaii allows you to bury or cremate your pet’s remains as long as it’s in your property; if not, you should get the permission of the owner of the property. If you bury the animal, make sure to do it deep. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Idaho

You can bury your pet in Idaho, but it must be 3 feet underground, 300 feet from wells, lakes, springs, or any type of drinking water. And 50 feet from property lines. You must also dispose of the animal within 72 hours. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Illinois

Burying a pet in Illinois is allowed as long as the pet is not contaminated with infectious diseases and is buried 200 feet from a portable water supply. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Indiana

Indiana’s state will allow you to bury your pet in the backyard, but it must be 4 feet underground, and you must dispose of the animals with 24h. 

For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Iowa

Iowa requires the disposal of any dead animal with 24 hours of its death. You are allowed to bury it in your backyard or burn it with precaution. Failure to comply can result in a fine between 100 and 1000 USD. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Kansas

Kansas will allow you to bury your pet in the backyard as long as it’s not contaminated with a disease. The animal must be buried within 48 hours and far from any water line. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Kentucky

Kentucky allows pet burial in your property, but all animals must be 4 feet underground and within 100ft of any water line. All animals should be disposed of within 48 hours. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Louisiana

The state of Louisiana allows pet burials in the backyard as long as the anima was not infected by a disease and is buried 6 feet underground. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Maine

The state of Main allows pet burials in your property as long as the animal was not carrying any disease and near a water source. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Maryland

The state of Maryland allows pet burial in your backyard; you just have to make sure to bury it 4 feet underground and avoid doing it close to water lines. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities

Massachusetts

In the state of Massachusetts, the town and city have the final say on whether you can bury your animal in your backyard. In general, most cities or towns will allow pet burial, but it is important to contact the town or city clerk. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Michigan

The state of Michigan will allow pet burial on your property; you just have to ensure the burial is not close to any water source and 2 feet beneath the natural surface. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Minnesota

Minnesota allows pet burials in your property, but you must do it with 72 hours of the animal death and bury far from any body of water. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Mississippi

The state of Mississippi will allow pet burial on your property; you just have to make sure to do it 2 feet underground to prevent diseases or offensive odors. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Missouri

The state of Missouri allows pet burial as long as it is in your property and within 300ft from your neighbor, also avoiding closeness with any water lines and disposing of the animal within 72 hours. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Montana

Montana allows pet burial in your backyard as longs as your the owner of the property and you bury the animal 2 feet underground and far from water lines. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Nebraska

The state of Nebraska will allow pet burial in your properties, but you must do the burial 500ft away from water lines, and it must be bury 5 feet underground. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Nevada

In the state of Nevada, you are allowed to bury your pets in the backyard as long as your the owner of the property and bury them 2-3 feet underground. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

New Hampshire

In the state of New Hampshire, you are allowed to bury your pet in your backyard; you just have to make sure to bury it 3 feet underground and 75 feet from any water line. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

New Jersey

In general, New Jersey allows pet burials in your backyard as long as it’s buried 2-3 feet underground. But there are some communities that won’t allow it, so it is best to verify. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

New Mexico

The state of New Mexico allows pet burial in your backyard as long as you are the owner of the home or land. It is also recommended to avoid water lines and to bury the animals 2-3 feet underground. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

New York

As of Oct 2011, in the state of New York, there are no municipal or county laws on whether a pet owner can bury the animal in their backyard. So it is best to confirm with the local authorities in your area, but also, the states have many pet cemeteries and crematoriums that you can use. 

North Carolina

The state of North Carolina allows pet burial in your properties, but you must bury the animal within 24 hours of passing and buried 3 feet underground. It is also recommended to bury far from any water lines. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

North Dakota

In North Dakota, you are allowed to do pet burials as long as any type of disease did not infect the animal; you must also bury it 3 feet underground and avoid water lines. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Ohio

In the state of Ohio, you are allowed to do pet burial in your backyard as long as your the owner of the property. But there could be some variations to the rules, so it’s best to verify locally to make sure you are following the rules. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Oklahoma

The state of Oklahoma allows backyard burials; you must make sure to do it far from any water source and bury the animal 3 feet underground. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Oregon

The state of Oregon will allow you to do a backyard burial, but they do require you to bury the animal 3 feet underground. They also recommend you avoid any type of water source. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Pennsylvania

In Pennsylvania, you are allowed to do pet burial in your backyard as long as it is your property, or you have the permission of the owner; you must also bury the animal within 48 hours of passing. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Rhode Island

The state of Rhode Island requires all animals to be buried 3 feet underground, complying with the requirements of the superintendent of health. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact a local veterinarian.

South Carolina

The state of South Dakota allows pet burials in your backyard as long as you are the owner of the property and bury the animal 2-3 feet underground, avoiding water lines. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

South Dakota

In the state of South Dakota, you are allowed to bury your pet in your backyard, but you must depose of animal with 36 hours and buried 3 feet underground, avoiding water lines. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Tennessee

The state of Tennessee will allow pet burial in your backyard as long as you are the owner of the property, bury the animal 3 feet underground and as far away from any water line. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Texas

Texas will allow pet burial in your properties, but you must bury the animal 3 feet underground and avoid any type of water lines. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Utah

The state of Utah will allow you to bury your pet in your backyard as long as you’re the owner of the property; you must also depose the animal within 48 hours; they also recommend burying the animal 3 feet underground. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Vermont

Vermont doesn’t have a set of regulations when it comes to burying pets in your backyard, so I recommend calling the local veterinarian in the area because rules may vary from city to city.

Virginia

The state of Virginia allows pet burials in your backyard as long as you do it on your property, bury the animal within 48 hours of passing and avoid water lines. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Washington

In the state of Washington, pet burial is allowed, but when buying the animal, you must completely cover it with soil; it is also recommended to bury it 3 feet underground and avoid any type of water source. Some rules could vary depending on the city, so it’s always good con verify local authorities. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

West Virginia

The state of West Virginia will allow pet burial in your properties; you must avoid water lines and bury 3 feet underground, covering the animal completely. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Wisconsin

In the state of Wisconsin, you can find different rules when it comes to pet burials depending on the county, so the best thing to do is confirm with local veterinarians. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

Wyoming

In the state of Wyoming, some parts require local approval from animal control authorities. In this scenario, the best thing to do is to contact local authorities in your area. For more information, please visit this resource page or contact local authorities.

FAQ

Should I bury my dog in a plastic bag?

Plastic bags could last for years and years, so it is not the best option out there; I recommend you use a decomposable bag and put it in a wood coffin made for pets. Making sure you bury it 3 feet underground.

How long can you keep a dead dog or cat before burial?

After an animal’s death, most states will give you 24-48 for you to proceed with the disposal of the animal, whether you bury it or cremate. Sometimes if you bury it in the pet cemetery, you could get more time.

What is the cost of a pet cemetery?

The cost of a pet burial in a cemetery could go from 1,000 up to 5000; it all depends on the location and your personal needs for the burial. It is recommended to verify if you have a pet cemetery nearby and get in contact with them to get a specific answer.

Can humans be buried in a pet cemetery?

Some cemeteries have sections for humans, pets, and humans/pets. You will have to confirm with your local cemetery to see if they have the availability. But if it’s only a human cemetery, most won’t allow this since some may consider it disrespectful. 

How deep should an animal grave be?

Most states require you to bury all animals 2-3 feet underground, making sure it’s far from water lines. I recommend you take a look at your state in this article for more details.