Posted tagged ‘animal preservation techniques’

Freeze-Drying Fido…

March 9, 2012

– – Up until recently, people had to relegate deceased animal companions to the grave or cremation; a few even chose to have deceased animals stuffed, although traditional taxidermy involves stretching the animal’s hide over a three-dimensional mold, which tends to yield a rather generic appearance.  Requests by grieving owners, however,  have led a handful of taxidermists to pioneer animal preservation through freeze-drying, which results in a more individualized, natural appearance. 

Freeze-dry chambers lower air pressure to the point that ice turns directly into gas without going through the liquid phase; internal organs and fat don’t freeze-dry well, and accordingly must be replaced with artificial fillers.  The machines themselves are incredibly expensive and require lots of electricity to run; the process is also a slow one, requiring perhaps six months to prepare a ten-pound cat, and up to a year for preservation of a large dog.  The process costs hundreds of dollars for even the smallest of animals, and thousands for a larger dog. 

Despite the high cost, businesses piloting freeze-drying animal preservation report handling between 150 and 200 deceased pets per year…

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