Meet the taxidermist who turns dead pets into rugs and works of art

Get Stuffed says the art is as popular now as it’s ever been – and its clients range from pet lovers to zoos

With pets becoming such a valued member of the family, it makes sense that many want to give them a fitting tribute when they die.

From keeping their ashes on the fireplace to burying them in their favourite spot in the garden, there are endless ways to give them a fitting send off.

But for some, they wish their pet to remain with them if not in spirit but in body.

Taxidermy is the art of preserving the an animal, often by stuffing or mounting them.

The art of taxidermy has a long history, with stuffed or mounted animals traditionally being kept as hunting trophies or on display in museums.

The service – often reserved for rare specimen and prize kills – is being offered to personal pets, as reported by MyLondon.

The Get Stuffed team have been based at their current North London premises for more than four decades, though the family’s roots in taxidermy stretch back much further.

Robert Sinclair from Get Stuffed told MyLondon: “Our family have been involved in taxidermy for over 100 years – we’re the third generation now.

“We stuff pets for members of the public all the time. Their cat or their dog dies, they’ll bring it in, we’ll do the taxidermy work and then they’ll get their cat or dog back.”

Robert explained that although having your pet stuffed or made into a rug may not be for everyone, his customers sincerely appreciate the work done by the business.

He said that the price varies hugely depending on the size and breed of the animal, but customers can expect the price to begin at around £500 or £600.

“You either love it or hate it, or accept it or don’t accept it – a bit like Marmite,” he explained.

But everybody that comes here thinks their pet is so beautiful that to just either bury it or have it cremated is not enough.

“We can recreate a three dimensional model, they can remember the good times, they can touch it, they can stroke it.

“With the cats and the dogs, the most common pose we do is actually curled up asleep. If you were to take one of those cats or dogs and put them in your house you would not know that it wasn’t alive.”

Not only do the Get Stuffed team work with beloved pets, they also provides services to zoos and wildlife parks for exotic animals, including lions and bears.

Robert explained that they work to an extremely high standard and have strict rules when it comes to where the animals come from.

“The exotic animals only come from zoos and wildlife parks in this country, and only if they’ve been put down, died of old age or natural causes.

“We’re extremely fussy as to where everything comes from, across the board not only the exotic stuff.

“We don’t take anything that’s specifically been killed for taxidermy or for any other reason because, from a moral point of view, we’re not interested in anything to do with that.”

Although taxidermy may seem to many like a thing of the past, Robert explained that it is in fact more popular than ever.

“Like everything in history, it gets popular at one point and then it’s not popular at another point,” he said. “It goes up and down.

“At the moment, taxidermy is very, very popular.

“We’re regarded as a top company in the country, and we’re also one of the last, if not the last, company that have the skills to do the big animals like the lions and the bears.”