Many people dread the day when their beloved pet will no longer be able to stand by their side, but an Australian family has paid tribute to their deceased pup by turning it into something they can keep forever.
A Melbourne taxidermist turned the family’s golden retriever into a pelt for preservation and shared the results on social media.
Chimera Taxidermy taxidermist Maddie Grant shares her work on social media including Instagram, Facebook and TikTok with thousands of viewers commenting on her work.
Ms Grant told NCA NewsWire that there has been a recent surge in interest in taxidermy, particularly with former pets.
“Many people want a physical reminder of their pet, whether it’s seeing their pet sleeping peacefully in their bed, feeling their fur or even their skull,” she said.
A TikTok video featuring the family’s beloved golden retriever has nearly 2 million views with thousands of likes and comments as a result.
Some were shocked by the owners’ decision to turn their puppy into a keepsake, saying it was lovely but they themselves “couldn’t do it”.
“It’s interesting, but certainly not for everyone,” said another.
“I have mixed feelings about this; not sure if i can do it. But it’s beautiful!”
“My memories give me peace; I couldn’t do it, it would be harder for me,” another user commented.
Ms Grant said she understood the different opinions people had about her work.
“This art form is definitely not for everyone, and I respect that,” she said.
“I’m just happy to help people who want to honor their pets in this way.”
But many comments supported the taxidermist, praising her excellent work.
“I love it for those who can handle it,” said one.
“This is something I’ve never seen before and honestly it’s pretty cool,” said another. “Great job.”
“I do this with my gold when she passes,” one person shared.
Hundreds of others tagged their friends, saying they’d like to do the same for their pets when they pass.
“It’s kind of weird, but it’s cute,” said one participant.
The taxidermist has shared all kinds of work on social media, including full taxidermy, skull preservation and skin tanning.
“Being able to bring a little comfort to grieving families is by far the most rewarding part of being a taxidermist,” Ms Grant said.
“Sometimes it’s hard working with pets, but knowing you’re helping someone by creating a memorial that will last a lifetime makes it all worth it.”
Originally published as As taxidermy grows, so does the number of pets