Pet Rest, Inc. was founded in 1984 by Leon E. Gerber, a “gentleman farmer” in Wells County, Indiana whose love of dogs and other pets made him shudder when he thought of them being sent to rendering plants.
Mr. Gerber reasoned that most people would want their pets cremated, and then either kept in an urn or interred in such a way as to help flowers bloom and make the earth more beautiful.
“My pets always made the world a more beautiful place,” he thought, “and so why shouldn't they continue to do so after they are gone?”
And that is how Pet Rest and Pet Rest Cemetery were born. Mr. Gerber began phoning veterinarians all over Northern and Central Indiana, telling them of his new idea.
The idea appealed to a vast majority of the veterinarians he contacted. Soon Mr. Gerber was picking up pets who had died or been put to sleep, cremating them, and then either returning the cremains to loved ones or interring them on a five-acre site south of Fort Wayne, IN.
In 1997, Mr. Gerber turned the business over to three nephews and a niece. The family-owned and operated business remains in the same family and is now in its second generation.