Bella the Cocker Spaniel is working hard at Creston Valley Services to provide support to grieving families. (Submitted)

Ask Your Funeral Director: Meet our new furry staff member

Bella the Cocker Spaniel will provide comfort to grieving families at Creston Valley Funeral Services

By Jason Meidl, Funeral Director at Creston Valley Funeral Services

Therapy dogs have long been common sites at places such as hospitals and nursing homes. Dogs just seem to have this innate ability to comfort those when they least expect it. Anyone who has had the opportunity to be on the receiving end of a therapy dog’s love and affection knows that they just seem to know when someone needs their help by instinct. In recent years, it has also become common to see therapy dogs in funeral homes for all the reasons above. We recently welcomed our newest staff member, Bella, she is a Cocker Spaniel puppy who already in her short time with us has brought smiles and comfort to our families as they walk through their grief. When Bella isn’t cuddling up to our families, she can be found in my office waiting for permission to meet her next friend. As always, we welcome anyone to come visit us for coffee and now puppy cuddles. We look forward to Bella learning to be a comfort dog and eventually trained fully as a therapy dog.

“How do I find out the costs of funerals?” – Ian

This is a good question and one that funeral homes field quite often, whether it be a phone call, email, or someone coming into our facilities. In the province of B.C., funeral homes are required by law to have their prices posted at the funeral home as well as being readily available to give to anyone who is inquiring. Funeral home prices are set as such so that families can find the exact costs of services. There are some costs that funeral homes can sometimes only give a range for, such as third party costs or costs that we pay out on behalf of our families. These are costs such as hall rentals, catering (if not provided in house), newspaper obituaries, etc. Aside from these third-party costs, you should be able to call any funeral home in B.C. and ask for example what their direct cremation cost is, and they should be able to give that to you. Another thing to note is that funeral home costs are the same for everyone. I use the example of a direct cremation as it is normally one of the costs that we get asked the most about. Whatever the cost you are given for direct cremation over the phone for example should be the same for everyone.

Interesting Fact:

Research shows that a comfort dog lowers stress, boosts mood, and allows people to feel less anxious all by lowering blood pressure and decreasing heart rate. When experiencing the loss of a loved one, emotions are high and comfort dogs allow individuals of all ages to experience comfort. Comfort dogs have the innate ability to sense a person’s emotional needs and act with unconditional love.

Keep the questions coming to!

READ MORE: Ask Your Funeral Director: What is Medical Assistance in Dying?

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