Pet Connections

A Remembrance You Can Cuddle


Event is Sunday, September 9, 2018

For more information, contact:

Deb Chebatoris at 412-220-7800

Bernadette Kazmarski at 412-429-9553 or

Chartiers Custom Pet Cremation website at

HI-RES PHOTOS: I can also provide many hi-res photos for print or web of the dove release, the tent with attendees (from the back), each of the speakers and the memorial table.


A Remembrance You Can Cuddle

“Your pet is special to you and your family. With this one-of-a-kind bond often comes a family’s desire to memorialize their pet in a special way and CCPC strives to fulfill that request,” said Deb Chebatoris, owner of Chartiers Custom Pet Cremation.

“Listening to you and your family tell me what made your pet special gives me the opportunity to create a one-of-a-kind memorial,” she continued. “Chartiers Custom Pet Cremation is here to see that you have choices so that what you keep in your home brings you comfort and peace.”

As an example of the many unique presentations that Deb has created, the picture shows a white monkey, the pet’s favorite toy, hugging the turquoise bag that contains the pet’s cremains. Another family provided their pet’s favorite brown plaid blanket. His favorite toy, a tan monkey, was made to snuggle the bag (made from his blanket) forever. Still another family requested to have their beloved pet’s cremains interred inside his favorite toy teddy bear. Perched in a peaceful spot, he will forever be near to hug and snuggle with a small snippet of his fur to see.

The level of care given to your pet as well as your family sets CCPC apart. From personally receiving your pet from your home or your vet to the handmade fabric bag made as the vessel for return of your pet’s cremains, every cremation done by Deb at her facility in Bridgeville reflects the personal attention to detail that is the hallmark of her service.

Deb’s been providing individualized comfort and support to her families all over Western Pennsylvania for over 12 years.  She also knows the importance of a remembrance ceremony for pets we’ve lost. That’s one of the reasons she hosts the Pet Memorial Sunday ceremony each September.

Pet Memorial Sunday Remembrance Ceremony

The second Sunday of September was set aside as a time to remember our pets by the International Association of Pet Cemeteries and Crematories. Deb has hosted a ceremony on Pet Memorial Sunday since 2005 for families who have lost a pet.

“Our society does not normally have a ritual to help families transition through the loss of a pet. This event is an effort to meet that need,” said Deb.

Chartiers Custom Pet Cremation will host its annual Pet Memorial Day remembrance ceremony on Sunday, September 9, 2018 from 2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Melrose Cemetery in Bridgeville. Anyone who is dealing with grief over the loss of a pet is welcome to attend.

As part of the ceremony three speakers will discuss our relationships with our pets both before and after their death.  Topics addressed by the speakers include “Our Last Moments Together”, “Our Grief Response” and “The Joy of Pets: Pet Parenting After Loss”.

Families can add their part to the ceremony

Pet owners in attendance are also invited to offer their own “Words of Tribute” which are read by the speakers as part of the ceremony. The tributes offer a glimpse of what was so very special about their departed pet.

Here are two examples of tributes that were written in prior years:

“In remembrance of Hobbes, a little black cat who lived life at full speed, loved with his whole heart and had something to say about absolutely everything.  You taught me the importance of not taking things too seriously. I miss you every day.”

“Lacey was a seven pound Maltese ball of fluff (hence her affectionate name ‘Peach’). She had the heart of a lion, the smarts of a sheepdog and the demeanor of a wise old owl. She loved being a part of everything we did and was simply ‘one of the girls’.”

Families are also encouraged to bring a photo or memento of their pet to be displayed during the ceremony.

After the tributes are read, each participant is given a lit candle and is encouraged to join in a Release Recitation focusing on the transition from being in this life to being a treasured memory.

The dove release

One of the most touching parts of the ceremony is the dove release. To symbolize letting go, a single white dove is offered to each person to touch. Each touch is a final goodbye, a transfer of the family member’s grief and a release of the soul of their beloved pet as the dove rises to the sky.

A permanent remembrance

After the ceremony, pet owners who wish to participate may submit their pet’s photo and tribute which, along with photos and remarks from that year’s event, are made into a video/slideshow, called the “Tribute Scroll”. The Tribute Scroll is added to the CCPC website for families who wish to remember the day and share it with family and friends. Tribute Scrolls from 2010 to 2017 can be viewed at  

Please RSVP

Since the gathering will be held under a tent in the cemetery (rain or shine) it is important that family members who want to attend call to RSVP so that adequate seating can be prepared. Light refreshments are served afterward as participants are invited to share the companionship and experiences of other families who are deeply grieving the loss of their pet.   Kindly call Deb to RSVP by Friday, September 7 at 412-220-7800

For more information, please visit

Also, in order to provide a peaceful environment for all, it is not appropriate to bring live pets to this event.

To read about past Pet Memorial Sunday events, visit the CCPC’s blog “Animus” and read “Pet Memorial Sunday 2011”.


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