Call the local vet, who can organise the disposal of the remains if owners are too distressed. The Waste Management Licensing Regulations (1994) say you can bury a domestic pet in your garden as long as it isn't diseased.

Support group SCAS (Society for Companion Animal Studies, 0891 615285) has recently launched a 'befriender' service. 'People are extremely upset at the loss of a pet,' says director Anne Docherty. 'Befrienders reassure owners that they are not silly to be so upset. We will listen and accept them for how they feel.'

Chestnut Lodge, Furnace Wood, East Grinstead, West Sussex RH19 2PU. (0342 712976) Mon-Fri 8am-7pm/Sat 8pm-5pm/Sun 8am-7pm. Burials cost between pounds 160 for a cat or small dog and pounds 240 for a very large dog. Prices include a year's grave maintenance, wooden casket and the burial. Headstones vary in price. Cremations can also be arranged: pounds 54.50 for a cat, pounds 84.50 for a large dog.

Claver Hambury Pet Cemetery and Crematorium, 158-160 Chingford Mount Rd, E4 9BS. (081-529 0979) Mon-Fri 9am-5pm/Sat 9am-4pm. Burial prices are pounds 185.06 for a pet wrapped in a blanket. Wooden coffins cost pounds 49.35 for a cat, pounds 58.74 for a small dog, pounds 77.55 for a mastiff. Burial and headstones extra. Cremations vary according to the size of animal.

Pets Meadow, House Lane, Sandridge, St Albans. Office is at Harper Lodge Farm, Harper Lane, Radlett, Herts WD7 7HU (0923 852470) Mon-Fri 8am-5pm/Sat 8.30am-2pm. An animal can simply be buried in hay: prices range from pounds 137 for a cat to pounds 193 for a goat. Silk-lined mahogany caskets with brass handles and name plate range from between pounds 45-pounds 95, according to animal size, plus burial prices from pounds 70-pounds 180. A brown plastic plaque costs pounds 24. The cemetery will also cremate animals for between pounds 70-pounds 120.

Silvermere Haven, The Byfleet Rd, Cobham, Surrey. (081 546 7591) Mon-Fri 9am-4pm. Open every day. While burials are pricey, a marble headstone, a marble surround and yearly maintenance is included in the price. A cat costs pounds 250-pounds 300, a large dog pounds 470. Lined wooden coffins are available at pounds 50-pounds 80, engraving on headstones costs pounds 2 per letter.

Cremation costs pounds 41 for a cat and a large dog pounds 76; a polished wooden casket costs pounds 15-pounds 20.

Willow Haven, East Lane, Bedmond, Watford, Herts WD5 0QG. (0923 263536) Mon-Sat 24 hours. Willow Haven has only cremation facilities. There are varying types of casket or urn available; scatterboxes range from pounds 51.45 for a small dog or cat to pounds 93 for a Great Dane; and ceramic urns from pounds 66-pounds 120.50. All prices include VAT, plus collection of the animal, cremation and returning the ashes to the vet. There is a small memorial garden.