The alkaline hydrolysis process has been around since 1888, but surprisingly, not many people have heard about it, and even fewer understand how it works. When you are facing the death of a pet, or have been surprised by the death of a pet, we understand that the last thing you want to think about is pet cremation, but Heavenly Paws Pet Aquamation wants to provide a way for you to honor your pet’s life.
Heavenly Paws in Peachtree Corners, outside of Atlanta, offers water cremation services, which is a natural alternative to traditional flame-based cremations. But what is water cremation? How does the alkaline hydrolysis process work? Keep reading to learn more, and contact our office today.
What is Pet Aquamation?
A water-based alternative to traditional fire-based pet cremations, Heavenly Paws utilizes an alkali bath that consists of salt from the soil that would naturally help to break down a body when it’s buried. While the process can be used for both humans and pets, it is generally more common to be used for dogs and cats.
The Alkaline Hydrolysis Process
The process starts with placing a pet’s body in a pressurized stainless steel chamber. In some cases, the body will be placed in a sealed bag, which then goes into the chamber. The chamber is then filled with 95% water, 5% alkaline chemicals (either potassium hydroxide, sodium hydroxide, or a combination of both), and the solution-filled chamber is then heated to around 350 ℉. The combination of the pressure and chemicals work to accelerate the decomposition of the body by breaking down the chemical bonds in the body. This process is called hydrolysis, and heat is used to speed up the process.
Water cremation takes around the same amount of time as a traditional flame-based cremation — between two and three hours. The water and alkali solution is then drained from the chamber. The liquid is a mixture of amino acids, peptides, sugars, and salts. The water can be filtered and purified, then returned to the natural water cycle. What remains of the body are bone fragments and a white ash that has a flour-like consistency. Larger pieces of bone fragments can be rinsed and pulverized. The ash, which is about 20% more than what is left after a traditional cremation, can be returned to you in a pet urn.
Benefits of Water Cremation Services
There are a variety of benefits with this method of pet creation.
- Has 1/10 the carbon footprint of conventional cremation
- Uses >90% less natural gas
- Reduces >90% of carbon dioxide emissions
- Conserves >66% more electricity
- Is 100% mercury-free
- As a green alternative, uses 95% less energy than traditional fire cremation
- Returns 20% more of your pet’s ashes
Even though water cremation is still a little-known alternative to traditional flame-based cremation, Heavenly Paws Pet Aquamation believes it is a more compassionate and environmentally-friendly way to honor the life of your beloved dog or cat. We strive to provide humane services, including pet euthanasia, if you know in advance that your pet will need to be put down due to an illness or condition. You can either come to our office in Peachtree Corners, or we even provide in-home euthanasia services. Above all, we want to help as much as we can during this most difficult time.
If you have any questions about the alkaline hydrolysis process, the chemicals we use, or about our pet cremation prices, don’t hesitate to reach out to us.