CATALINA PET CEMETERY: Saluting the Fallen Animals of Yesteryear

301 Crestline Blvd, Catalina Island, CA 90704

 I've always been a bit conflicted about celebrating the whole Pet Cemetery thing.

On one end, it's devastating to know that you're surrounded by dozens of dead pets; animals who once attacked the mailman, peed on your carpet and ate all of your precious garbage. However, on the other end, it's difficult to not morbidly marvel over the elaborate graves, funny epithets, and-- at times-- the absurdity of it all. Either way, Catalina Island has a good final resting place that's worth a visit...if that's your thing. 

To fully realize the randomness of this, you'll need to gain an understand of what Catalina Island is all about. Located 22 miles off the coast of Newport Beach, Catalina is known for its swanky sailing scene, world-class golfing and lavish vacationing, all of which get eaten up by tourists, fans of 'Step Brothers' and middle-aged frat bros + wives from Orange County. Cars are banned on the Island, which is refreshing, so everybody gets around via golf carts, which is hilarious. With all of that said, it's strange to think that something like this would exist here and I assure you that it isn't in the tourism brochures.

The cemetery is located in a strange area of town: right off a beaten path en route to Catalina's famed Wrigley Memorial. It's easy to miss, as the joint is unmarked and zipping by at an intense 30 mph on your golf cart might cause you to pass it by. But I encourage you to stop, as this off-the-beaten-path excursion is one of the only unique things you'll find on the Island (Aside from buffalo milk). 

And it certainly delivers in the macabre department. Here are some highlights and I'll let the jokes write themselves.

Some are heartfelt

Others...well, they're in on it.

There are also some that pose more questions than answers

and this

Since Catalina is a pretty remote island (aside from the tourism shit) with a population of about 4,000, it's interesting to think that almost every local pet will end up here at some point, which I assume is the reason the area has survived all these years. Imagine taking your dog on her morning stroll past the cemetery, knowing damn well that it'll all end here. A little messed up, yes, but let's not forget that these pampered pets are getting a better burial than many humans have had.

And the graveyard is a pretty impressive one in the aesthetic department. Shrouded in twisty trees and fallen leaves, the plot of land gives off a calm vibe that resonates as you walk around admiring the goods. There are even adorable benches to sit down on and reminisce about all those times Rex sniffed his own crotch.

In all, the Catalina pet cemetery is a creepy but tranquil place. Yes, I agree that dead animals aren't cool, but if you gotta go, why not go in style?

Also, if pet cemeteries are your thing (you sick bastard!) you should also check out the Beverly Hills of dead animal sanctuaries.