What Happens To My Pets When I Die?

It’s the New Year. We are in February of 2016 can you believe it??? And my husband and I are going over certain life planning details that no one ever wants to think about much less talk about. We’ve decided to revisit life insurance and in doing so we are making sure we include our furkids. And making sure we are on the same page about who and how our fur babies will be cared for in case we die.

I swear, it’s breaking my heart to think I could actually die before them….I’m not sure what’s worse, the thought of me losing them or them losing me. But as a responsible pet owner we (my husband and I) want to make sure all scenarios are covered. I know if I die my husband will care for our four dogs and cat, and vice versa. But what we forgot to think about is if I die we need a dog walker to check in on the pups while he’s at work. So we need to make sure our life insurance can cover those expenses for a few years. If he dies I need to be able to care for them without his income.

What if we both die? Who will take care of our zoo? We need to make sure they have funds to properly care for them, which includes their freakin high quality diet and lifestyle!!! $$$$

Will they all stay together? No shelters!!!

Oh gosh. I need a glass of wine. This is exhausting just thinking about it.

But it’s important. As important as making sure your spouse is taken care of, or your children. Pets, not by their choice, you chose them, are part of your family and need to be included in end of life care. We should make sure they are taken care of and not dumped. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen “Owner past away, family doesn’t want them. Needs to be adopted before taking to shelter” posted on Craigslist, Nextdoor, Facebook, etc. It’s heartbreaking. But we can plan for this. We can make sure our babies don’t get left in the cold.

First off. You need to assess your family. Ex:

  • Me
  • Hubby
  • Son
  • Angel
  • Brezzi
  • Hobo
  • Tango
  • Bella

Assess how much the bread makers make. How much do each require to live. For the pets this includes meals, treats, grooming, dog walking, pet sitting, parasite prevention, medications, yearly vet visits, toys, and geriatric care, and etc. And then extra. (Because our fur babies are a little spoiled) We’ve decided to increase our life insurance because our pets depend on our living wage and need it!

But, there’s more. If you’re alone, or God forbid both owners die. You need to make sure your pets are included in your Will, Trust, or Estate. And yes, make sure pets are included in the Power of Attorney information in case your alive but not able to handle your estate.

I’m not a lawyer or estate planner so I won’t go in detail about that but in your planning please include your pets, but make sure you’re aware of the cost to care for each pet, speak to family members, friends, pet sitters, dog walkers, etc and make sure the specific care takers are in the loop and agree to the pet care terms to illuminate the possibility of your babies ending up in a shelter. Don’t just assume. Get it in writing (whatever way you prefer and works for you)

In case of medical emergency or car accident. Make sure you have a card in your wallet that states:

         I have number of  pets at home. Please call my pet sitter/dog walker at number 

so she/he may care for them and make the appropriate arrangements.

Or something that fits your situation. You also want to make sure there’s a decal on a noticeable home window stating very clearly  how many pets you have and a number to call in case of emergency.





I’ll tell you what you do.


Make sure your pet sitter/dog walker is included in your plans. Humans will be human in grief and you can’t expect them to do

otherwise. Unfortunately the first to feel the neglect is our pets. The benefit of including your sitter/dog walker is that they are not grieving as much as your relatives and closest friends (who are the people we tend to rely on after life)

Us pet sitters and dog walkers are there for you and your babies. Sometimes we’re the last thought of in an emergency but the most needed. I’ve seen a couple of posts in the Rancho Penasquitos Nextdoor community stating a pet needs to be adopted because the owner died and there have been positive results. You just don’t want to gamble with your baby’s lives. If the sitters and walkers are included in all life’s plans we can limit the gambling of all pet’s lives! Please, don’t put it off. Don’t get to it when you can.

Make your after life plans now. Because they don’t always pass before we do.

Do you need a sitter or walker and live in the Rancho Penasquitos area, or Sripps Ranch, Poway, Mira Mesa, Del Mar, Santaluz, Rancho Bernardo, or Carmel Valley? Call us at 858.205.8132





  1. Carol

    I just had a medical emergency that really brought this to the forefront. I was headed to catherization lab unexpectedly and all I could think about was what would happen to my 3 Sr dogs if I didn’t make it. I live w my elderly parents who are not capable of taking care of them. And I don’t trust anyone in my family. So who’s left. I plan to do a will but have no one to appoint as executor. It’s a real concern and definitely on my mind.

  2. JenTaylor

    I’m sorry you went thru this Carol! I hope you’re able to speak with your local pet sitter to help for future needs!


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