Huntley’s DeFiore Funeral Service adding pet crematorium

Award recipient Carol Lynn DeFiore speaks during the Northwest Herald's Women of Distinction award luncheon Wednesday June 7, 2023, at Boulder Ridge Country Club, in Lake in the Hills. The luncheon recognized 10 women in the community as Women of Distinction.

Huntley-area pet owners may soon have a new place to process their grief when their pet crosses the rainbow bridge.

DeFiore Funeral and Cremation Service in Huntley is planning to expand by adding a separate pet crematorium.

The expansion that’s geared toward furry friends will be a new building next door to the existing DeFiore funeral home off Dundee-Huntley Road. Plans indicate the new structure would have a pet viewing room and caretaker residence once built, among other things.

Owner Carol DeFiore said the ideal caretaker for the pet crematorium would be a retired veterinarian, and a therapy dog will move into the pet funeral home once it’s ready.

“We definitely see this as an extension of the funeral home,” DeFiore said.

The Huntley Village Board recently took a look at, but did not vote on, DeFiore’s plans. She told the Village Board she felt there was a need for such a service. She recalled a couple years ago an elderly lady walked into the funeral home with her cat Tobias and asked her to help bury the cat.

“Tobias got a funeral just by her walking in and literally handing me Tobias,” DeFiore said. “We really see it as honoring those pets that feel like they’re part of your family.”

After DeFiore spoke, the Village Board gave their review.

Said trustee Vito Benigno: “I see nothing but positives.”

Trustee Mary Holzkopf told DeFiore “you’re really providing a service [across] numerous areas, which is really a beautiful thing.”

Other officials agreed that the pet crematorium was a need.

“You’re warm and compassionate,” Trustee Ronda Goldman said. “I think this is needed.”

The plans still need approval from the Plan Commission and Village Board before a shovel can be placed in the ground.

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