Will Bratislava finally get its first official pet cemetery?

The District prosecutor's office has challenged the approval process.

The Borievka pet cemetery in Dúbravka is preparing to open in spring.The Borievka pet cemetery in Dúbravka is preparing to open in spring. (Source: Sme)

It was supposed to be the first pet cemetery in Bratislava. However, the opening of the Borievka cemetery, above the city borough of Dúbravka, has been delayed for two years. This is because the district prosecutor’s office has challenged the approval procedure. The initiator and builder of the cemetery Stanislav Vlkovič, legal representative of the Icona company, claims that he has followed the respective legislation and will wait to open the cemetery until everything is cleared up.

“I do not want to face criticism and negative media exposure,” said Vlkovič as cited by the Sme daily. He has hired a law firm to scrutinise the steps he has taken to build and operate the cemetery and for now, he is maintaining the site with his own resources.

The first pet cemetery in the capital

Related articleBratislava gets a pet cemetery Read more 

The idea for the first official pet cemetery goes back to 2014. At that time, the then Bratislava mayor Milan Ftáčnik gave a green-light to the building of the pet cemetery on a private plot of land below Devínska Kobyla hill. The cemetery should contain around 6,000 grave sites and should also serve as a park. The price for burying an animal and renting a grave for five years should be between €150 and €200, depending on the size of the animal. Vlkovič also plans to offer coffins and urns. The cemetery should also have a refrigeration facility although a pet crematorium is not part of this project.

The city council approved the idea for the creation of the cemetery and Martin Zaťovič, current mayor of Dúbravka, also supports the project.

Prosecutor objects to approval procedure

However, the respective regional prosecutor’s office has challenged several decisions made by the Dúbravka construction office and the steps which the builder and the offices have taken. The prosecutor’s office does not approve of the fact that Vlkovič did not apply for permission for the cemetery as a whole but for individual projects on the site instead. The construction office has asked Vlkovič to respond. He has not yet done so.

There is also a pending accusation that Vlkovič, when clearing the plot of land for the creation of the cemetery, cut down some protected trees accruing damages that exceeded €80,000.

Where to bury a pet?

There are only two legal pet cemeteries in Slovakia – in Lučenec and Dolné Šútovce. Pet owners can also use the services of the pet crematory Pet Heaven in the village of Jablonové about 30 km from the capital.

Bratislavans often bury their animals in the floodplain forests in Petržalka or in the forests of the Železná Studienka recreational area, despite the fact that it is illegal and they risk a fine of some hundreds of euros.

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